Cherylin Von Aldenbruck has no treadmills or weights at her outdoor "gym." The equipment is leather instead of lead, and your workout partner isn't a beefy personal trainer—it's a horse. After realizing that sitting atop a horse requires muscles to continually stabilize and balance the body, Cherylin founded Equestricise as an alternative fitness venue for anyone who's curious about horseback-riding. Each of her lessons now serve as a strengthening workout for the core and limbs.
Cherylin and her team of certified instructors aren't only concerned with toning physiques, though. They also teach groups how to care for the horses, tack, and stables. Classes cover disciplines from basic equitation to hunt seat skills, and accommodate riders of all experience levels, from beginners to those who can steer a horse blindfolded, even when the horse is also blindfolded.
Evolution Swim Academy has one goal: help youngsters feel comfortable in the water. To that end, the pool is heated to a soothing temperature and expert instructors hone strokes such as the freestyle, backstroke, and butterfly while emphasizing safety. Their class sequence starts with the basics: a firm grasp of swimming fundamentals such as side-breathing, swimming short distances, and refraining from drinking all the pool water. Aquatic adventurers as young as six months are welcome, joining Parent & Me classes for fun kicking and floating drills. As they grow, children undergo more rigorous training, culminating in high-level courses that prep students for competition.
SeaFit Studio's encouraging exercise instructors lead groups through Lagree Fitness classes, a Pilates-based workout developed by trainer Sebastien Lagree that combines cardio movements with intense strength training. Inside the sunny studio, rows of padded Megaformer machines rest side by side, waiting patiently to burn calories and activate sweat glands as upbeat music blasts from speakers. All Lagree Fitness classes are available in small packages, unlimited monthly packages, or limited monthly packages.
While seated in a boat on Laguna Niguel Lake, visitors feast their eyes on the surrounding rolling hills and lush forestry while taking advantage of 44 acres of fishing spots. The staff constantly stocks the waters with new fish, sending thousands of pounds of rainbow trout, catfish, and other species to swim amid the watery depths. With the fishing arena prepared, they then repel down on fishing lines to awaiting customers to supply permits, poles, and bait, which they use to entice bluegill and other aquatic passersby.
Though all share the same lake, visitors can embark on fishing adventures in multiple ways. They can wrestle with carp from the lakeside, steer a rented boat, or bob across the water in float tubes, a single-person watercraft reminiscent of the floating easy chairs used by retired penguins.
Named one of the top five best Pilates studios in the OC in 2008 and 2009 by CityVoters, ABC Pilates molds muscles and tones tendons with a variety of classes and techniques. Mat flow classes combine traditional mat work with free weights, bands, and stability balls, improving your ability to walk while holding a chest freezer overhead. Rubber band enthusiasts can try TRX, a suspension system designed to increase strength using your own body weight. Zumba is a cardio carnival that blends Latin rhythms and easy-to-follow moves to create a sweaty dance-off, and boot camp is an indoor/outdoor class that mixes cardio, body weight exercises, and interval and strength training. To build strength, flexibility, and balance while working the mind, take a yoga class.
MVDPAC has strutted its way to the top of numerous competitions, including first place in the 2009 CityVoter OC Hotlist for best dance studio. Under the limber guidance of decorated instructors, both novice and seasoned can shakers choose from the list of one-hour daily drop-in classes, where twinkle-toes light up floors with sparks rivaled only by Christmas trees that have fallen in the fireplace. Once inside the spacious studio, bodies bound across seven sprawling rooms and a studio theater. Students can elongate into states of grace through a selection of ballet courses, animate their legs and develop rhythm in the hip-hop courses, or practice freeform toe tapping and scatting the Greek alphabet through the jazz classes.
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