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 allow you to use your own body weight 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, instilling you with the power to crush a grapefruit without looking like you can.
Balance Fitness Studio's instructors pilot fat burners through body-trimming classes held in a studio heated to 80–85 degrees in order to make students sweat and increase their flexibility. Stretch into the Balance Restore yoga session to flow through a series of poses designed to release tension and ease the mind, or jump into the fusion belly-dance class, which uses Middle Eastern hip-swiveling techniques to create a full-body workout. The Balance Barre Method class employs the ballet barre, Pilates movements, exercise balls, and light weights to tone muscles, and the TRX class relies on the TRX suspension system used by U.S. Navy Seals and weight-conscious dolphins.
Body of Work Yoga offers classes that combine the meditative powers of controlled breathing with the body-sculpting, posture-straightening flow of classic yoga poses. A month of eclectic yoga classes selected from the flexible schedule can help stretch out and sooth even the stiffest of unoiled joints. Each session is lead by a dedicated instructor who brings years of experience and nuggets of bendable wisdom to each class, guiding the harmonious trifecta of your body, mind, and spirit animal.
Inside its serene studio, Essential Yoga guides groups toward health and wellness with more than 10 different yoga classes, including multiple threads of Vinyasa and an intro to Ashtanga. The facility's roster of passionate instructors acts as a source of constant encouragement, and a flexible schedule of daily classes bends to accomodate students of all experience levels. To kick workout routines up a notch, Essential Yoga also offers energized sessions of Zumba.
The instructors at CrossFit - Springfield know their workouts take a little getting used to. Students rarely walk in with perfect form on the clean and jerk or the endurance to repeatedly launch medicine balls into the air. With this in mind, instructors lead free introductory classes twice a week to familiarize new guests with CrossFit. During high-intensity workouts throughout the week, the gym fills with the snap of jump ropes, the clatter of free weights, and the idling of airliners waiting to be pulled somewhere. Classes blend plyometrics and exercises on parallel bars with Olympic lifts, including the power clean and the deadlift. Workouts are scaled to meet the fitness level of each participant and are led by a dynamic collection of instructors, including ER nurses, college-football stars, Marines, and competitive kickboxers.
In a handful of studios scattered between Charlotte, North Carolina, and Springfield, Missouri, kids express their artistic creativity under the friendly supervision of Noah’s Art instructors. Classes cover a wide variety of topics—from painting and clay sculpture to vocals-based Song Art—and are arranged by age group, allowing children to interact with peers of a similar developmental stage while engaging in philosophical musings on the meaning of parent-enforced time-outs. Instructors also teach basic art tools and techniques, such as how to properly hold a paintbrush or sculpt clay using only your mind.