At each of its seven locations across Michigan, Seung-Ni Fit Club helps clients of all ability reach peak physical condition through kickboxing, bootcamps, and the studio's proprietary body-sculpting and slimming regimens. Core workouts build strong abdominal and lower-back muscles with targeted movements, while kickboxing sessions burn up to 1,000 calories per hour as participants fight against the resistance of heavy bags and invisible bad guys. Zumba classes get bodies moving to infectious Latin rhythms, and BodySculpt classes build dense, well-defined musculature through high-intensity dumbbell workouts.
For a more defense-based workout, exercisers can turn to Seung Ni's comprehensive martial arts program. Classes include Brazilian jiu-jitsu, taekwondo, and kids' programs for children as young as three.
As photos of Katie Kelly lunging and stretching on the sun-drenched beaches of Lake Michigan attest, all the world is her yoga studio. After acing her bachelor's degree from Michigan State University, she sought out renowned yoga sensei Jonny Kest in Birmingham, Michigan. At his levitating feet she learned his secrets, and when the time came, she rose up and snatched her 200-hour certification from his famously clenched fist. From there, she downward dogged and warrior posed her way up the coast, before finally opening her own cozy Saginaw studio.
Today, assisted by a faithful thermostat that keeps the atmosphere hot but not unbearable, she wrings sweat and toxins from bodies with the intense poses of Ashtanga yoga or the gentle stretches of relaxing Yin yoga. Classes spirit away distractions, creating a meditative space in which students turn off their cell phones, slip out of shoes, and set their portable microwaves to vibrate.
For many, maintaining a healthy fitness regimen is an off-putting chore on par with cleaning the garage or assembling that backyard roller coaster for the kids. The folks behind Snap Fitness, which now boasts locations all over the world, are of the opinion that this doesn't have to be the case. They believe 24-hour access to premium cardio and strength-training equipment, innovative easyFIT monitors to track personal progress, and perpetual guidance from certified professionals can help transform physical fitness into an accessible activity that yields measurable and tangible results. In addition to providing online workout rubrics and meal plans, they work to keep sweat glands up and running by offering workout rewards programs, making regular check-in calls, and measuring bodies—sans padded muscle suits—every 30 days.
Shawn Sanders—one-fifth of a quintet of instructors trained in burlesque, Egyptian belly dance, and group fitness—helps women foster physical fitness and self-confidence through flirty exercise classes. In her bubblegum-hued studio, dancers teach women of all ages and builds the sensual signature pole moves that build long, lean muscles from torsos to toes. Students leery of performing elevated spins can pop into Zumba dance classes infused with latin music, where easy-to-follow steps burn calories and prepare guests for impromptu office dance parties. Pole Passion Fitness also hosts special pole-dancing events where women practice tantalizing routines in the company of their best friends, perfect for bachelorette parties or girls' nights out.
Snap Fitness's around-the-clock gyms enable members to work on their physical well-being with a cornucopia of fitness equipment. With 24-hour access, members don't have to let The Man tell them when to help themselves to Snap's strength and cardio equipment, which features built-in TVs and other media diversions. For those who exercise during conventional hours, Snap's friendly, unintimidating atmosphere welcomes patrons of all ability levels, unlike schoolyard dodge-ball squads. Members also enjoy nationwide access to all Snap Fitness locations, ideal for working out while traveling.
For a dose of custom advice, patrons can seek out a personal-training session with a certified coach, who helps them assess and address their fitness goals. Clients reap the benefit of individual attention as a personal trainer helps them tackle weight loss, prepare for an arm-wrestling competition, or unveil the mysteries of arcane cable-weight machines.
As the founder of Samadhi Yoga Center, Denise Alick leads by example, drawing on her own experiences practicing yoga for more than a decade. She and her staff of instructors guide adults and children alike through expert and introductory classes, from slow-flow yoga sessions that introduce first-time students to the basics of breath and movement to more involved Vinyasa flow classes. At the center's retail shop, yogis can pick up new mats, bags, and instructional DVDs that were recorded live in Samadhi's studio, free from the distracting celebrity cameos found in Hollywood yoga videos.