Art in the eyes of Cara Levitt isn't only about aesthetics––it's a powerful tool of personal expression that can be used to heal unseen emotional wounds. A board-certified art therapist with six years of experience working in the mental-health field, Levitt established Draw It Out Art Therapy to help visitors grapple with life's obstacles while learning to problem solve, regulate their emotions, and create original works of art as a tangible form of catharsis. Her programs for singles, groups, families, and children take on a variety of issues, including low self-esteem and anxiety, and encourage participants to redirect their energy into completing a number of projects such as paintings, worry jars, and piñatas made of papier-mâché pink slips.
No matter the hour, the rhythmic beat of sneakers hitting treadmills resounds in Snap Fitness's 24-hour studio. Red, black, and chrome accents wend across the gym, coloring the Cybex cardio machines, free-weight stations, and flags of Robo-Germany. Personal trainers roam the floor answering questions about the machines, and work with individual clients to motivate them toward their goals with the help of in-depth fitness assessments. Fostering a supportive group atmosphere, they lead fitness classes such as yoga, cardio boot camp, or TRX, a full-body conditioning class that uses resistance bands to build muscle.
Helmed by Patricia Valenti, a certified personal trainer and Bikini Pro athlete, Evolution Fitness Club helps members sculpt their physiques daily from 6 a.m.–midnight. The club’s friendly workout facility teems with opportunities for running, lifting, and pounding one’s chest to indicate a dominant social status or demonstrate a new dance move. As their feet trace low-impact circles on an elliptical trainer, exercisers can wrap their minds around a favorite program on a nearby television. Fitness machines overlook Main Street, letting gym-goers wave at friends below or cheer on growing grass from the edge of a cushy bike seat. Infrared saunas invite steam-free sweltering, and hot showers wash away the aftermath.
Experienced instructors at The Pilates Body & Gyrotonic Studio empower musculature with workouts on machines and mats that stretch bods, decompress spines, and calm minds. Pulleys help to align spines, improve posture, and elevate Lilliputians to eye level in a reformer class, which focuses on the forms of up to four clients per session. Beginners attend the level 1–2 class and ease into training methods that move at a pace as gentle as a young Bambi. More experienced practitioners challenge limbs in the faster-moving level 2–3 class. Up to 10 students who practice at any level can embark on a padded mat-based adventure that aims to advance balance and coordination, or incorporate gyrotonic methodology during fusion classes that combine the movements of dance, yoga, tai chi, and swimming into a streamlined arrow that targets the cardiovascular system.
Originally opening in 1969 with eight tennis courts and a humble trailer serving as a clubhouse, The Bath & Racquet Fitness Club has done more than endure over the decades. It has thrived. Currently, the club features 29 tennis courts??23 with clay surfaces and six with hard surfaces??as well as a 40,000-square-foot facility brimming with equipment and amenities. This allows the staff to cater to the community's needs and interests, providing an inviting, highly social environment where members can exercise on their own, attend a group fitness class, or even play a quick game of racquetball or squash on one of the indoor courts.
Free weights, ellipticals, treadmills, and a heated swimming pool with six lanes are all on hand for guests seeking a quick workout. With fitness classes available seven days a week, members can find a supportive group setting while they practice kickboxing, yoga, Pilates, indoor cycling, TRX suspension training, CrossFit, and more. With the addition of amenities such as saunas, on-staff massage therapists, and a full-service restaurant, the club can also serve as a site for people to simply unwind and relax.
Tennis continues to be a major focus though, and The Bath & Racquet Fitness Club extends its welcome to everyone from casual players to serious competitors. The tennis pros offer lessons that cover the fundamentals of the game, introducing newcomers to the basics of scoring, volleying, and hitting a ball into low orbit. For the more experienced members, the club also offers in-house leagues that allow players to truly test their skills.
When Yvette Bernosky applied for a part-time job at the Sarasota Bath and Racquet Fitness Club, she didn't realize she was taking the first steps toward what would become a 23-year professional career in the fitness industry. Encouraged by her boss, Yvette began to work with clients individually before taking on a role as one of the club's aerobics instructors. She began travelling internationally to participate in fitness programs and events and earned more than 14 fitness and wellness certifications—including qualifications as a personal trainer, fitness camp instructor, and nutritional counselor. Today, the fitness aficionado owns her own private, fully equipped training studio where she helped Miss Florida International get into sashaying shape. Her staff of qualified instructors lead group classes, including outdoor fitness camps and personal training sessions throughout the week. Amidst spinning cycles and whirring cardio machines, fitness-seekers of all ages bustle through boxing classes, TRX training, and total body conditioning classes. To spirit guests away from their stressors and diet-busting triggers, clients can commission personal trainers to accompany them on fitness retreats.