The enthusiasm and joyfulness of 24-year-old Black identical triplet brothers Malik, Ahmad and Khalil Jones is infectious — they just love working out and helping you work out. (They’re also steeped in Philly’s boutique workout scene: In addition to running their own fledgling fitness company, Malik teaches at Unite Fitness, Ahmad teaches at Barry’s, and Khalil is an instructor at Rumble.) Their classes are some of the hardest in the city, and in the wake of Philly’s Black Lives Matter protests, the three seamlessly shifted their Instagram feed from playful synchronized dance videos to serious snippets on practicing meaningful allyship and becoming anti-racist.
Before the pandemic, Julia Naftulin’s spot in West Philly provided therapy, massage, body-positive joyful movement exercise classes, Pilates, functional training, queer yoga and more. After? She took the entire gym online and made every class donation-based, so people of all financial situations could participate. 4305 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104
After weeks of protests, a new group founded by Germantown activist and artist Sudan Green sought to heal the Black community through yoga and meditation events in poignant locations, like where the Frank Rizzo statue once stood in front of the Municipal Services Building and, on Juneteenth, in West Philly’s Malcolm X Park. The events were free, came with gratis yoga mats, and were taught by notable local instructors, including Jean-Jacques Gabriel and Adriana Adelé. Future plans include a brick-and-mortar location and sponsored teacher training for Black yogis.
For many of us, the pandemic renders evenings synonymous with Netflix and weekends with the outdoors. Wandering around the neighborhood or visiting a nearby park brings much-needed respite, and there’s no shortage of activities to keep you busy: You can practice archery or bird-watch at the John Heinz at Tinicum National Wildlife Refuge; search for what are believed to be the city’s oldest and most historic trees at Bartram’s Garden; hunt for headstones at Laurel Hill Cemetery or the Woodlands in Southwest Philadelphia; go boating at Peace Valley Park in Bucks County; rock-climb in Wissahickon Valley Park; and hike and bike in many of the region’s state parks, including Ridley Creek in Delaware County and Marsh Creek in Chester. When there’s little to do but so much happening, nature can help us feel grounded. Plus, getting out and about makes returning to Netflix — and your couch — that much more rewarding.
This Old City health outpost boasts an infrared sauna; a tonic bar serving adaptogenic smoothies, herbal lattes and juices; and a marketplace where you can shop Moonrise toners, sleep sprays, and other New Age essentials from brands like Organic Olivia, Wooden Spoon Herbs and Girls Gone Happy. 216 Church Street, 1st Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19106
When Somerton’s Michael “Gagz” Gagliardi set out to run the perimeter of Philadelphia, he was just looking to keep himself busy during stay-at-home orders. But he mapped his route turn by turn, then released those directions publicly (find ’em at phillymag.com/fourcornersrun), thereby setting a new, extremely hype running goal for every Philly runner out there, the likes of which Philly’s fitness community hasn’t seen since the Rocky 50K Fat Ass Run.
Many Philly fitness classes pivoted during the pandemic; Come Alive 215 thrived. Complete with shadow-boxing and full-body training, this livestream workout series from Rumble trainers Kim Harari and Shannon Brennan is high-impact and fun as hell. They’ve partnered with the likes of Michael Solomonov for a boot-camp-and-brunch Saturday and drag performer VinChelle for rainbow-filled performances to accompany your reps.
No one wanted to buy the funky two-pronged carrot or the crescent-shaped zucchini. Then along came Misfits Market, a Pennsauken-based organization that “rescues” unsellable organic produce from local farms and boxes it up into consumer-friendly subscription services. Not only did they provide food delivery when we needed it most; they’re working toward a future where there’s always enough food to go around — and the healthy stuff is available to all.
Luna Maye’s web-based “Sound Lab” is a multi-sensory treat assembled by a killer array of Philly talent. Featuring harp accompaniment from local musician Elizabeth Steiner (and visually brought to life by photog Max Grudzinski and stylist Liz Barella), the sound meditation sessions range in mood from “Love + Longing” to “Focus + Motivation.” They’ll have you meditating yourself to a state of mind far away from your living room couch.