At CrossFit Nyack, the coaches believe that no matter a person’s fitness level, they can always achieve a new level of intensity. Phaidra Knight, director and three-time World Cup rugby competitor named Player of the Decade by RugbyMag.com, teams up with the coaches to help people do just that. They challenge groups of 5–10 students to master functional movements, ditching traditional gym equipment in favor of kettlebells, medicine balls, and even tires.
The coaches focus on form, then build upon that basis by upping intensity while maintaining safe movements. A series of six Fundamentals sessions readies new students by helping them master CrossFit's movements—such as dead-lifting weights, dynamic stretching, and lobbing satellites into orbit—so they can safely dive into regular sessions.
The house rules are CrossFit Momentum are simple: hustle, get after it, and be sure to clean up any chalk or sweat after each workout. Trainers preach a dynamic approach to fitness rooted in high-intensity, functional movements. Each 40-minute workout might include a mixed bag of plyometrics, handstands, dead lifts, clean and jerk, and a couple kettlebell swings for good measure.
Equipment: X Training equipment
Students should bring: Bottle of water, workout gloves
Registration required: Yes
Good for beginners: Yes
Average class length: 60 minutes
Number of Staff: 1–5 people
Class location: Mix of indoor and outdoor classes
Guests allowed: No
Parking: Free street parking
Pro Tip: Come with an open mind and be willing to try workouts that are a little different.
Exercise is challenging, and people frequently give up on their fitness routines. How do you keep clients motivated?
By using the CrossFit method of constantly varied workouts
When and how did you first develop a passion for fitness?
I've always been involved in different sports activities since I was a kid.
After running a successful CrossFit gym in New York, Olga Jourova and Vadim Noskov ventured over the border to start Crossfit Armadillo. Six days a week, they guide members through workouts that focus on functional, varied movements, and incorporate aspects of Olympic weightlifting, plyometric conditioning, and gymnastics. The duo oversees each workout, and tracks members’ progress toward personal fitness goals so that they can see clear improvement and have something to hang on their fridge.
Wendy Traskos's career as a pole-dancing icon began with one fateful spin. Impressed by the strength of self-expression she glimpsed in accomplished pole-dancers, she tried the art for herself and was hooked immediately, so much so she has been honing her spinning skills for 16 years. Now a self-taught professional, she channels her background as a certified personal trainer and gymnast to enhance her routines. Wendy’s fitness knowledge landed her celebrity clients, including Montel Williams and Mary J. Blige, and her proficiency on the pole led Germany's version of America's Next Top Model to feature her as a dancing expert.
At NY Pole studios, Wendy passes on her spiraling prowess through her original Climb and Spin method. She believes that students should build a foundation of muscle and a repertoire of techniques as they progress to more advanced pole tricks, which require them to shed all rock-climbing gear. Her classes accommodate varying skill levels with choreographed routines, motivating participants to practice recently learned grips, climbs, and transitions. The studios also offer fitness classes, private parties, and workshops led by guest instructors such as Cleo “The Hurricane,” also known as Miss Pole Dance Australia.
After 25 years of working in the medical and fitness industries as an ACE- and NSCA-certified trainer, Tanya Bange understands the importance of setting goals. Alongside group fitness instructor Kathy Dorney, Bange leads women of all ages and fitness levels through a rigorous boot camp designed to help clients formulate fitness goals, stick to them, and, ultimately, achieve them. Together, the duo helps clients meet goals that range from simply developing stamina to passing the arm-wrestling portion of their quarterly performance evaluation at the office. They lead full-body workouts that may involve classic pushups, bleacher sprints, and flipping a tire end over end.
Bange and Dorney also run 30-minute workout sessions for preschoolers, planting the seeds of an active lifestyle early by keeping them active in games that include the cardio-centric I’m a Super Hero! and the yoga-based Hungry Caterpillar.