For more than three decades, locally owned Spectrum Athletic Clubs have aimed to create a resort-like experience for patrons with upscale perks and personalized care. After workouts, gym-goers can avail themselves of unlimited towel service and change in comfortable locker rooms. Other amenities include saunas, steam rooms, healthy cafes, specialized workout areas, and complimentary Internet access.
In addition, racquetball courts let athletes improve their game independently, and patrons can sweat solo on cardiovascular equipment with individual viewing screens. Group classes, more than 1,200 of which are held daily, include Zumba, Pilates, Body Combat, and CXWorx sessions and enable trainees to draw motivation from each other or from each exercise studio's complimentary tank of moxie. The Spectrum Kids Club gives kids a place to play while adults work out and hosts such events as pool parties and pizza parties throughout the year.
Since its 1965 founding in Venice Beach, California, Gold's Gym has dotted the globe with more than 600 locations where professional athletes and exercise newbies gather under the umbrella of personal strength. Nearly 3.5 million Gold's members chart and aim for their fitness peaks, perspiring beneath the gaze of certified personal trainers or pedaling beside peers at cycling sessions. In a diverse lineup of group classes, patrons strengthen cores with Pilates, finger-paint pictures of ninjas in martial arts, and amp up heart rates along to the pulsating soundtracks of Les Mills routines. Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
The philosophy at Blank Canvas is that anyone can be an artist with the right materials and a little encouragement. To prove this philosophy, the studio hosts weekly sessions where artists of all experience levels come together to create their own works of art based on an existing painting. Likewise, Blank Canvas encourages kids as young as pre-kindergarten and up to high-school age to follow their artistic impulses by attending classes and camps instead of drawing on the walls or painting the kitchen the wrong shade of mauve.
A guitarist for more than 20 years, instructor Ralph D'Ignazio imparts his knowledge of music theory and plucking techniques to aspirant fret-tappers with one-on-one lessons custom-tailored to each student's tastes and interests. Budding virtuosos of all ages can shred on acoustic, electric, classical, and bass guitars in styles from folk to metal. Atlantis’s warm and inviting environs provide a comfortable and fun atmosphere for fresh fish to dive into the six-string waters.
Apex Fitness shapes the health of partakers through safe and effective supplements and high-quality nutrition products, all manufactured in an FDA-registered facility and delivered to customers' doors. The Apex superfoods fat burn ($26.99 for a 60-capsule bottle) blends acai berry and green tea to help boost weight loss and the Apex Fit performance multivitamin ($15.99 for a 60-capsule bottle) packs a compendium of nutrients for active individuals hoping to bolster a range of athletic abilities, such as pole vaulting while playing the flute. Encourage muscular and immune-system strength with Apex Max L-glutamine ($21.99 for a 10.6 oz. jar) or down the Apex Fit Lite meal-replacement drink in chocolate ($34.99 for a 2 lb. jug) to revel in saved calories and a dinner of chocolate. The shop also stocks ready-made snacks, such as the body-balancing Apex Fit fiber bar in peanut butter ($19.99 for a 12-bar box), and the S'Mores cookie ($18.99 for a 12-bar carton), which supplies both energy and a safer way to sate hiking food cravings than setting up a campfire in the middle of the gym.
Few professionals can credit Flashdance with rerouting the course of their career. But the unconventional dance moves Richard Giorla saw in the film motivated the former Pennsylvania Ballet member to hit the streets of his new home, Manhattan, to learn break-dancing moves from dancers at the heart of the movement, trading his ballet expertise as payment. His dance career was in full swing when he was sidelined with an injury. After undergoing physical therapy, he was still not ready to take the stage, so he started teaching a ballet-barre class. Though he appreciated its stretching and toning components, Richard craved a more aerobic workout. So he created his own solution?Cardio Barre.
The workout consists of high-energy, no-impact movements that help students sculpt the long, slender body of a dancer without ever having to step foot in a traditional dance studio. As they balance at the ballet barre, pupils direct all their focus to one muscle group at a time while the entire body stays in motion. The approach?s pudge-melting abilities have made the fitness method a favorite of many health magazines and celebrities.
Cardio Barre?s Thousand Oaks location is piloted by Lili Merhavi-Surkin. Educated in marriage and family therapy, she believes in maintaining the vital balance between mental and physical health.