As they enter the training circle at Curves, female guests come face-to-face with the smiles of other women. And just as points on a circle share a common distance from the circle's center, workout participants share the experiences of those nearby by trading stations throughout the 30-minute training session. One minute is spent on a piece of strength-training equipment built for feminine frames and designed to work two opposing muscle groups with a single movement. Exercisers then move on to a recovery station, where they run, jog, or dance to maintain heart rates and keep platforms in place during momentary losses of gravity.
At Escape to Yoga, the teachers love when a beginner musters the courage to give a class a try, whether it’s yoga or cardio fitness. Their fun, accessible approach to yoga lessens the intimidation factor, especially after students attend a gentle hatha class, during which they’ll learn the basic poses, proper alignment, and the most-stable pose for practicing on the wing of a flying airplane. The more fast-paced vinyasa-flow classes add a cardio aspect to get participants sweating while simultaneously helping them feel calmness spreading through their bodies, and the studio also hosts barre fusion and other calorie-attacking cardio sessions.
At The Fit Corps, certified personal trainers welcome beginners and experienced athletes alike for group classes, personal training, and health coaching. During group classes, exercisers push their limits in circuit and strength training with heavy battling ropes, kettlebells, weight lifting, full-body functional suspension training, and more. They also move to fluid rhythms in Zumba or stretch out in yoga. In the gym’s space, members can lift weights and work on their core exercises.
Fitness expert Christina Lucy founded Code Pink Boot Camp and has since expanded her fitness program into numerous locations throughout the western United States. Each of the trainers working for Code Pink claims extensive training and accredited certifications in the industry, and must undergo a strict audition to demonstrate their fitness prowess and knowledge of how many annual budgets each U.S. president could bench-press. With a schedule that includes several sessions throughout the weekday, the classes accommodate clients with varying schedules. During each session, instructors guide participants through high-intensity exercises that aim to incinerate fat, tone torsos, and improve overall well-being. The program caters to women of all ages and fitness levels and stresses safety, fun, and perseverance.
In the sunshiny studio at One Yoga and Wellness, skilled instructors guide students of all levels through various yoga methods to enact lean, strong, and bendy bodies and overall health and balance. The various daily classes help students become well versed in the poetry of postures, whether they wish to educate muscles in hot Vinyasa flow yoga and Pilates or learn how to perform jumping jacks in iambic pentameter. Or spicy up each movement with Latin flavor in the Zumba classes, which fortify bodies with upbeat dance exercises. The helpful instructors present an encouraging, welcoming atmosphere, in which stretchy apprentices are free to reach goals at their own pace, ultimately leading them to a newfound pliability and the total equilibrium to balance their checkbooks while doing headstands.
Kate Dessommes has traveled the world in search of techniques to further her knowledge of yoga. She began with a five-year apprenticeship under Luciana Proaño in Portland before packing her bags for New Zealand to study with instructor and author Donna Farhi and John Friend, founder of Anusara yoga.
At Portland Yoga Studio, Kate and her team of instructors fold those globe-gathered techniques into classes that incorporate Ayurveda, asanas, meditation, and relaxation techniques. They also offer special classes for students who otherwise might not be able to participate, such as those with MS, fibromyalgia, arthritis, or problems balancing. Classes for children and families round out the curriculum, giving parents and their kids a new way to bond that’s more active than watching television and safer than traveling to the future by falling into a coma together.