Bikram Yoga Princeton's intensely heated practice space enfolds students in 105-degree air made velvet by humidity as high as 40%, urging muscles to relax and stretch further during athletic Bikram sessions. Instructors attentively lead students of all ages and fitness levels through two breathing exercises and 26 poses, using standing twists and seated stretches to methodically shepherd oxygen-rich circulation throughout bodies. The physical exertion, combined with infrared heat, encourages detoxifying perspiration, purging students’ bodies of dangerous toxins to make room for the more enjoyable toxins that accompany the weekend. Throughout class, teachers demonstrate proper form, fine-tune their instruction with verbal cues, and suggest pose modifications with hands-on adjustments. After practice, the studio's shower and changing facilities allow men, women, and sentient claymation figures to regain their composure.
The look of Can Do Fitness’s three locations may differ—its Shorts Hills club has three cardio decks, its Edgewater club has two cardio decks, and its Princeton club is a 73,000-square-foot facility with a pool and spa—but each was built to make exercise as convenient as possible. All of the fitness trainers and instructors have at least one national certification, and the Pilates instructors have at least 600 hours of training, which they draw on while leading group classes such as yoga, Zumba and BodyPump. Each Can Do Fitness club also offers a range of amenities such as complimentary childcare and locker rooms with a steam room and dry sauna as well as showers with frosted glass doors.
Honing his skills under Sri Swami Satchidananda, the founder of Integral Yoga, the experience of the director of the Institute now spans 40 years. Jayadeva developed his teaching chops at the Integral Yoga Institute in New York City, where he mentored yoga teachers and developed training materials that are now used by instructors around the world and on some sectors on the moon. Eventually, Jayadeva settled in Princeton, where he now directs the training school Princeton Integral Yoga Institute. Along with his staff of registered instructors, he strives to foster a supportive environment free of competition, in which students of all experience levels can further their practice toward achieving a healthy mind, body, and spirit.
The Grape Escape intoxicates senses with interactive, winemaking courses that yield 12 bottles of wine over the course of four sittings. Each 60-minute sitting separately integrates the various stages of winemaking: crushing, pressing, racking, and bottling. During spring, crafty oenophiles gather and sift through scores of South American grapes shipped straight from Chile and Argentina. Classes commence upon choosing the type of fruits, barrels, and aging durations that will foster forthcoming fermentation. Crush sweet juices from well-measured mounds of nature's candy before reconvening about two weeks later to begin the pressing process. Work the wine press to extract elixirs and transfer them to your oak barrels of choice. After learning how to properly rack wines during the third sitting, burgeoning vino makers conclude courses with a bottling and custom-labeling session that curbs urges to conceal beverages in paper bags.
One Yoga & Wellness Center's pliable instructors lead yogis of all skill levels through relaxing and modifiable asanas. During gentle-yoga sessions, students practice light stretching and engage in guided meditation at a pace that allows beginners to become familiar with fundamental relaxation techniques. Hatha yoga classes find body twisters holding poses for longer periods so as not to ruin the work of the in-studio daguerreotype portraitist. A style of yoga that emphasizes flow from one pose to another, Vinyasa teaches breathing techniques and asanas that can be combined endlessly to create adaptable routines. Instructors teach three levels of Vinyasa classes, from a slower-paced, beginner-friendly session to a fast-moving flow taught in a heated room. Prenatal yoga ensures even expectant mothers find serenity and provides babies an early leg up on preschool limbo contests.
As memory cards replaced film reels, many photographers—both professional and amateur—felt befuddled by the new technology. That's where Digital Photo Academy stepped in. Since 2007, the business has facilitated workshops that explore all aspects of digital imagery, from operating cameras and uploading digital files to editing images and airbrushing realistic mustaches. Seasoned professionals lead the courses, helping understudies hone their use of light, framing, and timing. Students furnish their own cameras, and can tote along any ancillary equipment such as tripods, laptops, and flashes that relate to the course at hand.
Gold’s Gym’s staggeringly expansive 65,000-square-foot facility stands as a ziggurat built to fitness. A phalanx of personal trainers—muscles bulging from heaving around armloads of certifications—team up with exercisers, ripping pages from the Total Transformation Training system playbook to handcraft custom fitness routines and practical nutrition plans that help clients to lose weight, build lean muscle, and learn which barbells are for lifting and which are for eating. For a more communal experience, patrons can leap into all manner of group classes, pedaling through spin, limbering muscles in yoga, or tussling with water resistance in aqua classes held in the 25-lap pool. Inside the Cardio Cinema, projectors pipe movies such as Argo and Looper into engaged retinas to infuse bodies with the endurance needed to power through intense workouts.
The fitness emporium also trains athletes in sport-specific or general programs. During performance training, coaches work one-on-one with their charges, focusing on all-around speed and functional movements to forge sportspersons capable of traversing the field faster than an antelope riding piggy-back on a lion.