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Improve the Odds of Fitness Success

Keeping your New Year’s resolutions isn't simply a matter of willpower. How, when and where we exercise can have a significant impact on our success. Although there are plenty of the big-name national chain health clubs here in Austin, there are also a few local gym gems that can give you the motivation and tools you need. Austin is also a great place to do yoga, and there are some very special studios that can help you start or continue on your path to holistic well-being.

We’ve put together a list of some of the best fitness options for Austinites, so take a look and see if some of these local folks can help you get in the best shape of your life.


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The Best Gyms and Yoga Studios in Austin

The parties are over, the confetti is gone, and it's time to pull out those New Year's resolutions and make your 2012 dreams into your 2013 reality.

Most of us create health and fitness resolutions at this time of year. Health clubs usually see a 12% increase in memberships during January, and about one in seven of us has a gym membership. But our good intentions don't last very long – obesity is still on the rise, and the majority of New Year's resolutions don't make it past the six month mark. Choosing the right instructor and surrounding yourself with the right people can go a long way toward helping you achieve your goals.

Pure Austin

Two locations – one downtown and one in North Austin, not far from the Arboretum – make it easy for folks to fit a workout into their busy schedules. But this is more than just a place for a good workout. Pure Austin calls itself “an indoor gym for outdoor people.” There are classes that can get you ready for the next marathon, triathlon or long distance cycle, and facilities that include a swimming pool, a rock climbing wall and a lake. That's right – a lake. The North Austin location sits on the shore of Quarry Lake, and members are allowed to swim and kayak or run the beautiful, private 1-mile trail that encircles it.

Castle Hill Fitness

The somewhat small location belies a big presence in the Austin fitness scene. This colorful spot at 11th and Lamar offers cardio and strength training, of course, but also a wide range of pilates, yoga, cycling and boot camps. There are also facilities for massage, acupuncture, skin care and structural integration as well as a cafe.

The Hills

The Hills Health Club and Wellness Center is a sprawling, 11-acre complex that includes everything you'll need to get — and stay — in top shape. Yoga and pilates studios provide a wide range of instruction for novices and experts. The basketball court, racquetball court and cycling studio add opportunities for sports training to your regimen. Indoor and outdoor pools allow for water fitness, physical therapy and swimming lessons for beginners and experts alike. There are loads of classes on everything from barbells to ballroom dancing, and kids programs that will instill the right habits — and a love of physical activity — at an early age. They also boast four other satellite locations around downtown, so even the busiest executive can find time to take care of her most important asset – her health.

Yoga Yoga

With five locations scattered around the city, Yoga Yoga has become a solid fixture on the Austin yoga scene. Classes in all of the major forms of yoga are offered, along with dozens of events, including educational seminars in topics ranging from pre- and postnatal yoga to anatomy and conscious breath. There are a multitude of weekend workshops covering all sorts of topics, and a 7-day yoga retreat on the beaches of Maya Tulum.

Black Swan Yoga

This newcomer to Austin has quickly become a favorite for yogaphiles. A co-operatively run shop with two locations, classes are paid for by donation ($10-$15 suggested). More than a dozen classes are available, and some really unique events are on the calendar, including “Punk Rock Yoga” and yoga for runners. There’s also a 10-week training course for those hoping to become yoga instructors, and a couple of retreats, including a spring retreat in Japan.


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Austin Boot Camps Offer A More Personal Path

Some of us need a little more individualized attention, and boot camps can fill the bill. Usually, camps consist of a few people in a small group that work closely with a trainer for several weeks. This kind of program can create a much more supportive environment, and make success more likely.


Brian Prinzo incorporates all kinds of workouts in his four-week sessions, and the price is one of the best out there. Take advantage of the many, many locations from far north Austin to Zilker Park.


Located on Burnet Road, Relentless offers 6-week training programs for beginners, and ongoing athlete training for those who want to maintain their great form.  

H.E.A.T. Boot Camp

High Energy and Agility Training Boot Camps (H.E.A.T.) are situated on Lady Bird Lake in downtown. Along with class packages and four different camps for different skill levels, they offer personal training for everyone, from newbies to elite athletes.

Camp Gladiator

This national franchise of boot camps offers dozens of locations all over Austin, from Bee Cave to Pflugerville to Circle C. This program puts the boot camp experience on steroids, offering a competitive obstacle course, kid’s programs, personal and nutritional training and adventure vacations.