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 to 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.
The artists at Wine and Canvas awaken their students’ inner Rembrandts and Van Goghs with classes that pair a featured painting with specialty cocktails and wines. The mobile studio’s monthly calendar includes themed classes in which instructors expound on the nuances of painting Parisian street lamps, Japanese flowers, or Venetian cityscapes. The master painters—many of them local artists—provide step-by-step instructions while students mimic each stroke and periodically dip their brushes into glasses filled with crimson cabernet. Each of the studio’s various drink-friendly venues boasts a specialty libation selected to incite creativity or conversations with fellow painters. When the artistic frenzy concludes, students return home with a finished masterpiece large enough to conceal any wall safe or mirror portal.
After studying music performance and opera at the North Carolina School of the Arts, Tiffani James decided she wanted another degree. She loved to teach, and was soon awarded a degree in education from University of Phoenix. At Arigner Vocal Studio, she combines her two passions, teaching students aged 4 and older everything from singing fundamentals to hitting high notes and controlling vibratos. Tiffani draws upon her more than 20 years of performance experience—during which she’s serenaded crowds at contests and opened for nationally renowned gospel singers—at each personalized lesson.
At Bartending School Coast to Coast, students do more than imagine what it's like to work at a bar. They get hands-on experience in a classroom, which was formerly a bar, that's set up like a bar and interactive instruction from experienced mixologists. During classes, fledgling bartenders learn drink recipes, proper usage of bar equipment, and customer-service techniques. They leave with a certificate and job-placement assistance that will help them land gigs at upscale bars, neighborhood hot spots, or private parties thrown for their cat's birthday.
At Art League of Jacksonville, a team of skilled multidisciplinary artists teach courses, deliver speeches at events, and showcase work at special exhibitions. Though it focuses on the visual arts, the league also offers a music-and-acting curriculum, teaching aspiring artists to draw pictures with charcoal, create elegant sculptures from stone, and remove all of Rutherford B. Hayes' facial hair with Photoshop. Classes cater to artists of all ages and abilities, and exhibitions allow students to display their work to the public.