From fuchsia-colored walls peppered with inspirational quotes to a staff of motivating instructors, studioFiT curates a high-energy yet encouraging atmosphere for fitness workshops and classes. The studio’s seven-day curriculum blends cardio, toning, and mind-body classes in order to cater to each student’s individual fitness goals, whether they seek improved pliability and balance, or the ability to beat a mongoose in a Zumba dance-off. By keeping class sizes small, studioFiT ensures personalized attention for each student. Firm believers that good exercise health should be shared, the gym also boasts a member-referral program that rewards clients who bring in friends by gifting them a raffle ticket for a chance to win prizes such as class discounts or fitness apparel.
At Fit Zone for Women, ladies workout in a friendly, supportive atmosphere highlighted by natural light and a bright color scheme of purple and light pink. Upbeat music plays as members bounce from treadmills and elliptical machines to free weights and pin-select weight equipment. And to keep exercisers in the cardio area distracted from the burn, the gym boasts large screen TVs airing popular TV shows and videos of woodland creatures practicing yoga. The gym eschews the presence of sweaty and grunting power-lifters for the mindfulness of Pilates, yoga, and women’s self-defense classes. Members can even grab a paperback from the gym’s book nook before starting their workout to include their brain in their full-body workout, and lock up their belongings in the spacious locker room with private changing areas.
While almost everything else that is five millennia old has fossilized, the ancient practice of yoga remains relevant. At The Yoga Studio of Shelby, teachers with a minimum of 200 training hours teach students the age-old art, which builds strength, enhances flexibility, and aids with stress management. The studio’s classes range from hot Vinyasa, which is a flowing style taught in an 85-degree room, to Hatha, where meditations help to clear students’ minds without making them forget their Social Security numbers. Expectant mothers can stretch with low-impact poses in prenatal-yoga classes. Studio workshops on partner yoga, meditation, and other specialty topics round out the schedule.
"Torture chambers"—that's what Bikram Yoga's founder Bikram Choudhury calls his yoga studios. It's an apropos name for places set at a blazing 105 degrees that feature students twisting their bodies into 26 yoga postures as Bikram shouts: "Lock the knee!" "Lock the knee!" at someone who isn't quite into the desired position.It might sound unpleasant, but Choudhury believes that if you follow his instructions, which are passed on to each Bikram yoga teacher at the various franchises located around the world, you'll "live a better, healthier and more peaceful life.”The yoga guru, who was born in 1946, has strived to live such a life since he was a little boy in India. At the age of 4, after giving up dreams of being a robot, he started practicing yoga with India's most renowned physical culturalist at the time. At the age of 13, he won the National India Yoga Championship and went undefeated for the next three years before retiring as the undisputed All-India National Yoga Champion.However, when Choudhury was 17, his life took a terrible turn. He severely injured his knee during a weight-lifting accident and was told he would never walk again. Ignoring the doctors, he turned to his old yoga teacher, and within six months, his knee was totally recovered. That's when he realized how effectively yoga could heal the body, and he decided to develop his Bikram method.Bikram is a form of Hatha yoga that is taught in specialized studios throughout the world. The studios are always set at 105 degrees, which helps the body flow through the 26 Bikram postures effectively. The studios can be found everywhere from the United States to South Africa to Antarctica's vast polar bear caves.
On the day when Everyday Yoga opened in 2010, the yogis behind the project prepared a pot of tea to warmly welcome in new practitioners. Their goal was to make yoga accessible to their community, regardless of financial restraints. Though the gentle aromas of that first pot of tea have long since faded, the instructors still uphold their community-minded mission, helping students to apply yogic philosophy to their lives, on and off the mat. They continue to serve up pots of hot tea daily to welcome students to their studio.
Amid EveryDay Yoga’s warm adobe walls and delicate pendant lamps, students of all ages and abilities flow through Vinyasa, Ashtanga, and restorative Yin series that range from slow and gentle to vigorous. The instructors strive to make the atmosphere as welcoming as possible so that guests can confidently reach for their toes, reach for their neighbors' toes, and practice resonant breath—which they’ve cheekily dubbed "Darth Vadar breath."
Professional body builder Ken Jackson teams up with a seasoned dance instructor and two certified personal trainers to lead a diverse array of fitness classes. Within a 3,000-square foot training studio, the expert trainers lead functional workouts that aim to strengthen cores, tone muscles, and increase endurance. Other days, they conduct rigorous kickboxing training sessions and lively Latin dance-inspired Zumba classes.