Dave Gerry started the Princeton Club with three simple tenets in mind: great trainers, exceptional equipment, and easy access. To realize that dream, he assembled a team of American College of Sports Medicine–certified personal trainers to helm the cardio and strength-training centers 24 hours a day.
Whether working out solo, in a group class, or with a trainer to remind them that bench-pressing beehives is safer with a spotter, guests can drop their young ones off at the free childcare center. Splashes fill the natatorium as swimmers paddle across the six-lane lap pool, as the resistance-current pool's adjustable waves enable guests to walk in place. A dip in the whirlpool soothes stress, and the steam room's eucalyptus aromatherapy and sauna's rejuvenating heat send bodies back into the world refreshed. Above the club, tennis and soccer players soak in vistas of Madison as they duke it out on the rooftop garden's turf. The competition continues indoors on basketball, racquetball, and volleyball courts.
Trainer Brian Austin has spent the last 10 years of his life working in the fitness industry, though his passion for healthy living started at an early age. In addition to being a high-school athlete and college mountain-bike racer, Brian has also spent time training with a grand master boxer. And he brings all of his fitness experience to his personal-training and fitness classes, during which he caters workouts to athletes of all ability levels. Brian also offers nutritional counseling for clients who want to make more-healthful decisions or for aggressive bananas that keep bruising the other fruit in the bowl.
When 9Round founder and IKF Light Middleweight Kickboxing Champion Shannon "The Cannon" Hudson isn't dominating combat rings across North American and Europe, he is taking care of his two children. It was with his kids in mind that the seasoned black belt crafted his signature workout¬—a challenging professional fighter's training regime compacted into a hectic, schedule-friendly 30 minutes. Today, trainers in 9Round gyms across the nation lead members in Shannon's workout, guiding classes through its nine rounds of aerobic, anaerobic, and resistance-training exercises. Instructors vary the rounds each day, supplementing body-weight exercises with jump ropes, punching bags, and free-weights. Coaches also encourage diets of fruits and lean meats and counsel members against common dieting pitfalls, such as skipping breakfast or storing smoothie surplus in unmarked laundry-detergent bottles.
The techniques that Lauren Birkel imparts to her trainers are the same ones she used on herself while preparing for and completing the rigorous Ironman World Championships in 2005 and 2011, as well as the France-held International Triathlon Union Long Course World Championships in 2007. With this history of achieving difficult goals, Birkel knows how to inspire students without commissioning a band of rabid coyotes to chase them while they run.
She and her many cotrainers use these thoroughly tested methods of motivation to push students toward healthier lives in one-on-one, small-group, and large-group training sessions. She decks out her indoor studios with all the necessary equipment for personal-training sessions and isn't afraid to lead all-outdoor boot-camp academies in the heat or rain.
Monkey Bar Gymnasium aims to provide guidance and simple workout tools that open people’s minds to the ways their bodies work, making improved health and fitness an attainable goal. It accomplishes this with a trifecta of techniques: Eischens yoga, a type of yoga designed specifically to improve people’s posture while teaching usual yoga skills including conscious breathing and levitation; nutritional advice, for which Monkey Bar Gymnasium has a plant-based approach; and whole-body skill training, which uses minimal-equipment exercises (such as gymnastics, running, Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and resistance training) to strengthen muscles, improve endurance, and make people masters of their physiques. The dedicated staff strives to help each person who walks through Monkey Bar Gymnasium’s doors meet their fitness goals, be it by attending myriad classes, doing workouts at home, or learning to bench press goats. Click here to see the class schedule.
Helmed by Isthmus-lauded personal trainer Pat Gilles and featured on the NBC 15 News, Pat’s Gym helps athletes of all levels look and feel their best. Exercisers can gather for morning, evening, and weekend classes, in which a seasoned instructor shares muscle-sculpting moves and motivational air-guitar solos. Bolstered by sidekicks such as kettlebells and body-weight drills, Superhero workouts strengthen biceps and take vengeance upon calories. Total Body sessions pair boot-camp-style intervals with intense circuit training, cultivating mental toughness and thighs firmer than a mattress made of dictionaries. Customers can fend off injuries with sports-conditioning classes, which teach proper recovery techniques, and let go of embarrassing memories of forgetting the pets’ birthdays during yoga’s relaxing poses. In addition to running the gym and competing in Olympic-level sailing events, Pat Gilles creates how-to videos to help clients vary their workouts. The gym’s website also brims with other healthy-living tips, including nutrition pointers and step-by-step chewing instructions.