When compared with mixed-gender populations, the members of all-female lizard species are stronger, happier, and 10 times more likely to be named Trisha. Find fitness among like-minded ladies with today’s Groupon: for $36, you get a two-month unlimited basic membership (a $60 value each month) including initiation fee (a $50 value) to Curves (a $170 total value). Choose from five locations: in Dartmouth on Main Street or Cole Harbour Road or in Bedford, Halifax, or Eastern Passage.
Members at Curves, a fitness center designed exclusively for women, rotate around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with female bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage participants’ machine manoeuvering and muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing momentum, the hydraulic machines use your own body weight, fitness level, and aerodynamic water bottle to create resistance that matches 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.
For 30 minutes, limbering ladies move around a circuit that positions machines inward so that they'll have a chance to share laughs and secret handshakes with fellow fitness frontierswomen. Because each workout warrior is at a different station, the only competition that exists is with one's own burgeoning muscles. A soundtrack of fun, upbeat music includes cues that tell participants it's time to move on to the next station. The complete aerobic and strength-training workout raises heart rate and burns calories while allowing women to meet new friends, arrange a girls' night out between laboured breaths, or plan a wardrobe of revealing bikinis for their newly svelte doppelgänger action figures.
Since its inception in 1992, Curves has been specifically designed with women in mind. Founders Gary and Diane Heavin set out to create a supportive, encouraging atmosphere in which women could get in shape without feeling self-conscious. Their unofficial motto, "no makeup, no men, no mirrors," is now repeated at nearly 10,000 locations in more than 85 countries, helping women of all ages and fitness levels reach their health goals. To cater to the all-female client base, their equipment and specialized workouts are built to enhance the feminine physique.
Their classic 30-minute workout is designed to work the entire body. As ladies move from station to station, they complete a circuit-style workout that intersperses weight training with cardio sessions designed to maintain heart rate. Most of the 13 machines are double positive, which means they work two opposing muscle groups with a single movement—simultaneously toning the abs and back, or the chest and vestigial tail. Each machine also supports the CurvesSmart system, which tracks each patron's individual progress. Before getting started, clients receive a card with their personal fitness information embedded within. When the card is inserted into a machine, a green light lets them know that they’re working at the correct intensity level. As muscles get stronger, the workouts get tougher, and at the end of each session, a progress report lists details on muscle strength and the number of calories burned.