There is no “standard” workout at Stride Club. Instead, trainers cater to the different needs of each client with their more than 15 program options. Some predesigned personal-training programs include the Wedding Planner, which helps clients slim down before their wedding days; the Pre/Postnatal, which helps women safely stay in shape throughout the stages of pregnancy; and the Sports Specific, which helps athletes such as football players and wrestlers improve their math skills. In addition to their one-on-one sessions, the trainers lead group fitness classes that help build overall muscle tone with moves suitable for all levels of fitness. Natural light filters into the studio, adding an invigorating burst to workouts.
Voted the top local yoga studio by Richmond Magazine, Yoga Source offers around 50 classes a week ranging from prenatal programs to weekend workshops. Certified instructors promote the proper postures and inhalation execution necessary to improve pliancy and increase circulation among waning subscribers. Buy a vowel with tongue-twisting techniques like Iyengar and Vinyasa, designed to help each shape-shifter experience the transformative power of yoga, while drop-in classes allow for increased flexibility.
Thoroughbred Fitness & MMA has a completely new definition for the Kentucky Derby. An elite MMA training center that specializes in competition and weight loss, it has developed an intense heavy workout called “The Kentucky Derby.” It’s designed to help athletes get into fighting shape. The trainers also supplement this training with boot-camp workouts, cross training, and fighting classes in boxing and kickboxing. They have personal trainers at the ready to assist clients in achieving their goals, whether they want to step into the cage, drop a few pounds, or transform their entire bodies.
At CrossFit Full Circle, dedicated coaches motivate students to get into the best shape of their lives. They’re guided by the no-nonsense workout ethic of CrossFit, a system that focuses on constantly varied functional exercises executed at high intensity. The gym's personal trainers draw from a wealth of experiences and certifications—owner Jason Struck is working on a master's degree in exercise physiology, and coach Matt Bahen boasts a background in serving with elite units in the navy⎯as they lead boot camps and exercises such as hurling kettlebell weights and performing pull-up reps. In order to build muscle, burn fat, and shake houseguests' hands firmly but not so firmly that they lose their arms, members use top-shelf equipment, weights, and bumper plates from brands such as Pendlay, Rogue, Kraiburg, and Dragon Door, all under the constant encouragement of a like-minded community of fellow athletes.
Sherma Francis founded Diva Fitness because she wanted women to have a holistic alternative to the gym. That explains why the boot-camp classes are held outdoors, but the workouts aren’t just an opportunity to admire the fresh air and blue skies. Francis is a certified fitness and spinning instructor, and her intense cardio and strength-training exercises are designed to whip bodies into shape fast. In addition to boot camps at public parks, she offers at-home personal-training sessions for exercisers who prefer to work out in private or are afraid of being distracted by cute baby deer.
At Shockoe Bottom CrossFit, the focus is always on the functional cross-training exercises that make up each CrossFit workout. In the spartan 2,500-square-foot space, Shockoe Bottom CrossFit's trainers show newbies the ropes during Fundamentals classes, and everyone gets the chance to tackle the constantly changing Workout of the Day. Classes are capped at eight to ensure more personalized attention, with each exercise scalable to a person's physical abilities. Aside from CrossFit classes, the facility also offers yoga classes and massages.
At Richmond Balance, trainers forge bodies to match the beauty of life-changing events. Their bridal boot camp, which has been featured in Richmond Bride, tones wives-to-be with regular, small-group workouts that culminate in confident struts down the aisle. Likewise, their new mommy boot-camp classes help ladies achieve post-pregnancy goals, such as a slimmer stomach or arms that can change stroller tires without a jack. Support remains the common element of these specialized programs—the staff gathers students with similar objectives and capitalizes on a sense of camaraderie. The same method guides the Balanced Buddies system, in which partners share the same personal trainer, and PWR! Fitness Training, a regimen for guests with disorders such as Parkinson's disease.
Even outside the communal atmosphere of classes, Richmond Balance prioritizes an intimate, custom approach to health. Its certified trainers will travel to homes for private sessions or supervise clients as they sweat aboard the gym's Precor, Tuff Stuff, and Schwinn equipment. During workouts, guests can occupy their eyes by watching the individual flat-screen televisions on select machines or by counting the exposed bricks on the walls around them.