An intense workout can lead to an endorphin rush. Members of Sky Club Fitness & Spa get this rush—along with a rush from elevation—every time they work out near a window. That's because the gym looks out over the New York City skyline.
This epic vista follows them as they step out onto the sky deck to lounge in the sun. On the top floor, windows peek out at the horizon near an Olympic-size saltwater pool. In the lower floors, members work out on rows of cardio machines and free weights—alone, with friends, or under the guidance of a personal trainer. They also forge muscles during group fitness classes that range from cycling to boxing and unpacking heavy boxes. After a tough workout, they gather quietly in the European bath to detox or ease their lactic acid buildup with a massage.
The family-run Astoria Sports Complex offers batting cages and indoor soccer, and has one of the largest fitness centers around. The facility got its start more than 30 years ago, when owner Steve Poliseno converted an abandoned ice house, purchased at auction, into the gigantic sports complex it is today. The most recent addition to the facility is a gigantic, Olympic-sized swimming pool, where kids can take lessons and prepare to be the Model U.N. delegate from Atlantis.
There are six essential ingredients that compose each of Complete Body's fitness programs: strength, cardio, flexibility, meditation, nutrition, and rest. Founder Alex Reznik is the mind behind this philosophy. In 1995, he founded the company believing that, if given the opportunity, most people would seek to better their health. Soon thereafter, he was proven right by both rising membership numbers and favorable media attention, including articles in Time Out New York and the New York Times.
Complete Body has now expanded to three locations. At each club, experts adhere to Mr. Reznik's principles, blending Eastern and Western techniques during classes such as yoga, boot camps, and kickboxing. Complete Body also hosts cross-training classes, which are designed to burn fat, build strength, and improve flexibility by focusing on six elements: strength, cardio, flexibility, meditation, nutrition, and rest. Among the state-of-the-art equipment and fitness technologies that help members reach their fitness goals, independent trainers utilize the facility with their clients. At onsite spas, massage therapists work tense muscles and aestheticians refresh skin with facials. Physical therapists can help to rehabilitate clients following injuries, calling upon various training methods in their arsenal.
What makes it great: USA Triathlon-Certified Training Center, enormous rock-climbing wall, 100-plus group fitness classes per week, 20,000-square-feet of cardio and strength training equipment, plus a six-lane indoor pool, indoor track, and boxing ring
Racquetball pros, take note: the New York Health and Racquet Club has two regulation-sized racquetball courts—hard to find in the middle of the city. That’s not nearly all that NYHRC has to offer, though. It’s conveniently located for those in midtown, so stop by during your lunch breaks or after work to take advantage of the huge six-floor space that is well-stocked with all sorts of weights, cardio, and strength-training equipment. The 52-foot saltwater swimming pool is excellent for the middle of the city and there are even special kids’ swim hours. Try out the intense jets in the whirlpool after a long exercise session—if the great classes and facilities don’t convince you to keep coming, the jets surely will.
One of the largest public recreation centers in the city, this place has all of your favorites to help you have fun and keep in shape. In the mood for swimming? Check out the huge, six-lane pool--there's plenty of room for everyone! If basketball’s your thing, the gymnasium has hoops and volleyball courts to suit your team sport preference. Fitness rooms, a game room, a dance studio and even a computer resource center are available to keep you occupied throughout the day. Classes ranging from gymnastics to yoga and even basic computer skills can help you improve a range of skills during your visit. Annual membership is extremely affordable, so give this rec center a try.