After spending years immersed in the fitness and athletic industries, Ernesto McLaurin and Kim Brutzman had grown weary of the monotonous exercise equipment found in large corporate gyms. On their search for a more substantial form of fitness free from bulky machines, the two trainers fell in love with the CrossFit program’s high-energy, functional-movement-based workout routines, eventually joining forces to form CrossFit El Paso in 2006. They stuff their Eastside and Westside locations with simple resistance-training equipment, free weights, and kettlebells, conducting CrossFit classes throughout the week with the help of certified instructors. In addition to leading rigorous CrossFit workouts, they provide students with nutritional guidance and host regular health seminars. They also offer a FemmeFit class, where women and male comedians in convincing makeup can practice CrossFit workouts specifically designed for the female body.
David Kneip leads The Human Lab's crew of tough-as-nails trainers, who find common cause in his no-frills approach to exercise. Eschewing loud music, televisions, and machinery, David and his team prefer to force their clients to rely only on the rhythm of their bodies and the strength of their will to overcome the challenges of any given workout. Students tackle everything from Olympic-style weightlifting and kettlebells to old-fashioned pushups and pull-ups in their quest to tone and strengthen their bodies. The Lab's most popular program, CrossFit, runs muscles through a wide variety of exercises—preventing the body from easily adapting to the routine and ensuring maximum results in minimum time—but other workouts can build muscles for specific sports, bestowing skiers with more powerful legs and croquet players with fingers shaped like mallets.
Founded with the goal of outfitting its pupils with the skills necessary to excel in the spa and salon industries, Milan Institute of Cosmetology deploys a rigorous curriculum that emphasizes professionalism and hands-on learning to train fledgling cosmetologists and aestheticians around the country. As the most important aspect of the course of study, student salons and spas serve as a real-world classroom wherein nascent beauticians—under the careful supervision of their instructors—can practice their newly minted skills on humans or sentient mannequins. The beauty apprentices gussy up patrons head to toe via sundry lavish salon and spa services—specific to each location—that may include nail services, haircare, facials therapeutic massages, or nourishing body wraps.
Ornaments, mugs, dishes, and figurines await creative customization at Stonepainters, a welcoming studio devoted to paint-your-own pottery. After selecting a ceramic piece as your blank canvas, you can infuse your own personality onto it by using the idea books, stencils, and nontoxic paints provided by the studio. After this step, Stonepainters's staffers coat the pottery with a clear glaze and fire it in an on-site kiln powered by the hot air of a local politician.
Professional dancer Patchica McCoy of Rhythmic Moves Dance Studio melts waistlines in Zumba dance classes and perfects the moves of dancers age 3 and up in a variety of dance disciplines. Zumba classes use Latin and global beats to inspire dance workouts, achieving energy levels vast enough to shimmy a dwarf planet off its axis. Zumba is offered evenings at Rhythmic Moves, with many calorie-burning sessions to choose from weekly.
Unified by the theme of fire trucks and fairy tales, Panorama's curriculum draws on multiple cultures and disciplines to nurture the natural, borderless curiosity of children ages 5–12. Throughout a four-hour session, experienced multitongued instructors speak in French, Spanish, and English, exposing children to basic greetings and traditional songs, from "bonjour" and "buenos dias" to "hey, I'm walkin' here!" After an exploration of international art, kids draw from a variety of media to create their own piece to take home, along with a photo album culled from lessons in digital photography and HD video. A cooking seminar teaches kids about cuisine and culinary traditions from beyond their borders, bequeathing Panorama aprons, shirts, or Food Network contracts to the young chefs as they whip up firehouse sandwiches and butterfly-apple salad. As each session is limited to a small number of participants, children receive individual instruction within a collaborative atmosphere.