With machines set up in rows to encourage competition, many ordinary gyms cater to men's bodies and psychology, right down to the urinals that were "accidentally" installed in the women's locker room. At Curves, you'll move around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage your machine maneuvering and your muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing your momentum, the hydraulic machines use your body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches your abilities, decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
When it comes to pain relief, MBJ Health and Fitness's Julie Ashlock is a one-woman band. For starters, she is a licensed massage therapist and an ACSM-certified personal trainer who leads personal-training sessions and cranial release technique treatments, which help unlock the body's natural healing mechanisms by concentrating on the head. Additionally, her level two certification from the Titleist Performance Institute means she can schedule 11-point TPI screenings. Designed for golfers or people whose flyswatter is a 7-iron, the screenings create customized exercise routines that strengthen the muscles worked by a golf swing.
Patrick Shaw's lifelong devotion to fitness paid off when he received a full athletic scholarship to Indiana University. Although his days as a college football player have since waned, Patrick's love and appreciation for fitness and nutrition has only grown. At Glory N-U Fitness, Patrick turns his attention to helping others reach their own fitness goals, combining his experience as a D1 athlete and his personal-trainer certification to lead boot camp classes and develop personalized exercise programs. Each workout is tailored to suit each individual's goals, be it losing weight or becoming strong enough to lift a sword out of a concrete sidewalk after it's dried.
At Punch Boxing for Fitness, visitors experience an entire boxing match without having to dodge a single punch. That's because the gym's workouts are staged in three-minute rounds where exercisers jab heavy bags, shadow box, and boost their heart rate by jumping rope. One-minute breaks let them catch their breath in between toning muscles and building cardio endurance, not to mention mastering proper punching technique.
Punch Boxing for Fitness' expert trainers shape each hour-long training session around beginning and advanced boxers alike; in fact, many pros, including Roy Jones, Jr. and Winkey Wright, have trained there.