Featured on programs such as The Dr. Oz Show and Good Morning America, Aqualipo’s water-assisted fat-removal system sneaks under skin to steal away lipid collections from designated body geography. Licensed physicians Dr. Jeffrey Caruth and Dr. Mauricio Giraldo photograph, mark, and sketch abstract self-portraits on the client's problem area before applying local anesthetic and cutting a small incision to reach the fat layer. Pulsing water jets then flush out fatty tissue with a sterile fluid, evicting lipids without stressing surrounding muscles, nerves, or other tissues. Unlike traditional liposuction, Aqualipo treatments require no general anesthesia and typically last 30–45 minutes, leaving most patients ready for discharge 15 minutes after completion. Clients can expect faster results and less intense side effects—such as swelling, bruising, and uncontrollably transmitting ham-radio signals—than those caused by conventional liposuction procedures.
Years before he would teach hand-to-hand combat to Special Forces candidates or have his studio voted the best of 2011 and 2012 by CT.com, Andrew Scala was stuck in traffic. As he inched down a clogged I-95 on his way back from New York and his job as a sales representative, he made a decision that changed his life. The next day, he quit his job, sold his car, and bought a plane ticket to Japan, where a friend was studying martial arts. He arrived three days later, beginning an eight-year stay in Hokkaido, where he eventually trained daily beneath the great-grandson of a samurai. At one point, he and two of his colleagues were invited to demonstrate their skills in front of more than 300 high-ranking Japanese military officials. Andrew not only mastered styles such as aikido, karate, and iaido, but also immersed himself in Japanese culture and learned to speak fluently, opening the door for the lifelong bond he shares with his teacher. Today, Andrew runs Darien Martial Arts Academy based on a philosophy that values integrity, honor, and self-discipline alongside physical skill. He lavishes his rich depth of knowledge upon students, teaching them the basics of Japanese with each lesson. As they grow curious, he relates the modern practice of martial arts to tales about the "truly intelligent and also fierce" nature of the samurai, erasing misconceptions along the way. "All those things are useful tools for helping children get motivated, not just for martial arts, but to become good students, good musicians, good athletes, good people," Andrew said, noting that as they train their minds with martial arts, the benefits spill into other aspects of life. His students bring in their report cards to show him their successes—and they also know that "if a student is good [at the academy] but he's starting to be disrespectful at home, he comes here and he pays for it here." He trains all ages of students, who typically begin with karate and then train in other styles or master weapons—the long and short staff, sword, and chain. He periodically brings his best students on trips to train at his old dojo in Japan, watching them develop a lifelong love of Japanese culture as they see him integrate easily into his old home. But though he takes martial arts seriously, Andrew makes classes fun and encourages each of his students. He's known for telling jokes and keeping the sessions lighthearted. "You don't have to be mean to be strong," he said. "The strongest guys I know are also the funniest guys I know."
The supportive staff of personal trainers, boot-camp instructors, and nutrition coaches at Infinity Fitness may be quick to give clients technical tips regarding exercise, but they’re even quicker to give words of encouragement. This kind of engagement helps exercisers get the most out of the gym’s offerings, which include boot-camp workouts as well as private and semiprivate personal-training sessions that track results five different ways. As noted on the website, staff members view clients as “walking billboards” for their programs' effectiveness. In return, the staff asks only that clients work hard and stand for weeks at a time by the highway.
In Venture Yoga's hot room, infrared rays elevate the temperature to triple digits. This balmy environment plays host to Vinyasa classes that link poses and breath into fluid cycles. Adjacent to the hot studio, traditional classrooms welcome students for other physical disciplines. Pilates classes strengthen core muscles, and gentle yoga gradually improves balance and flexibility. Prenatal yoga serves the unique needs of expectant mothers and people who swallowed watermelon seeds that later germinated. Kids’ yoga is also available.
Koko FitClub is a radically different kind of fitness center. Members come in, have their fitness levels checked on the Koko Smartrainer, and then receive a custom, computerized key fob that stores all fitness information. The key fob, programmed with data to help clients achieve individual fitness goals, stores the day’s prescribed 30-minute workout and guides clients expertly around the workout of the day. With this fitness technology on hand, members move seamlessly from exercise to exercise, burning fat and building lean muscle while minimizing gym time.
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