Instructors never run out of steam at BODYROK. It’s their job to keep the atmosphere upbeat and encourage students to push through their demanding Sculpt and Cycle classes. The 40-minute Sculpt classes heighten the core-toning effects of Pilates with cardio exercises on individual Proformer machines. The Proformer's resistance can be adjusted to accommodate any fitness level so first-time students can follow the workout and veterans can continue to challenge themselves. In Cycle classes, students hop atop Scwhinn A.C. Performance Indoor Cycle Trainers that use magnets to generate resistance instead of forcing riders to pedal through tubs of yogurt. The two workouts collide in the 50-minute Sculpt and Cycle class as students hop from Proformers to Schwinns for a blend of lower body- and core-focused training.
The air at CrossFit Society fills with wafting plumes of weightlifting chalk and triumphant shouts at completed workouts. Expert trainers emphasize proper form as students learn an ever-changing collection of Olympic lifts, kettlebell movements, and calisthenics such as burpees and box jumps. Legs trace slow circles through the air as patrons hang from gymnastics rings, and kettlebells clang against racks with the sound of Robocop trying to exit a Honda Civic. Workouts can be scaled to meet the fitness level and needs of any participant, and students set and meet their own measurable goals. Trainers keep a constant eye on subtleties in movement, ensuring that workouts are always safe.
Originally developed by the Soviet Union for cosmonauts, whole-body vibration and its health benefits are now accessible to anyone in short, 10-minute sessions. The device consists of a small platform that clients can stand, sit, or lay on as it vibrates. As muscles contract and work to keep the body in position, clients may see greater muscle tone over time, as well as possible improvements to arthritis, circulation, and flexibility. No change of clothes is necessary, as there tends to be no sweating during sessions, and use of the machine is appropriate for clients of any fitness level.
For Rachel Robertson, five is a magic number. It's the number of movements that the spine is capable of—flexion, extension, lateral flexion, rotation, and neutral—and it's the maximum number of students she'll allow in one of her classes (which are 55 minutes long). Because the classes are kept small, her guidance is precise and personalized. She makes small modifications to each student's form as they segue from one exercise to the next, helping them not only to perfect their technique, but to become increasingly aware of the way their body functions.
Rachel's lessons incorporate mats as well as Stott Pilates equipment, from Reformers to stability chairs. Though all of her routines help to build core strength, balance, and flexibility, she tailors them to address the needs of each client, whether they're an athlete hoping to hone performance or someone looking to lose weight. Rehabilitative and specialty classes even focus on conditions such as scoliosis or pelvic-floor problems. Alongside her fellow instructor and former student Shyra, Rachel coaches clients of all ages and fitness levels to higher levels of wellness.
The Dollhouse Fitness classes provide multiple womanly ways to work feminine forms into firm yet flexible states. First-timers can wrap themselves around a pole-teaser intro class, in which instructors demo proper positioning, posing techniques, and how to strut like a diva for the impending paparazzi. Unlike army boot camps, booty-camp classes put bodies through an intense series of drills in preparation for storming the beach in a skimpy two-piece. Less-aggressive courses, such as the Goddess Yoga class, provide femmes with a focused stretch of time to contemplate universal connectivity and the overwhelming complexity of the cardiovascular system. There are about 25 weekly classes to choose from—the just-right amount according to three out of five Goldilocks.