Basketball, yoga and jiu-jitsu: Meet your fitness needs with these 3 San Francisco newcomers

Empower Me Academy. | Photo: Jerome G./Yelp

Interested in trying some new fitness spots in San Francisco? You're in luck: we've found a lineup of places to fill the bill. Here are the newest places to check out the next time you're searching for fitness around town.

Empower Me Academy


800 Presidio Ave., Lower Pac Heights
Photo: jerome g./Yelp

Empower Me Academy is a basketball court and personal training spot, which, according to its website, targets student-athletes of various ages.

Potential students start with an evaluation consisting of basic drills, with the goal of determining if the program is a good fit for them. After a successful evaluation, students move into private or semi-private training. Finally, after gaining familiarity with the academy, students are offered year-long courses to hone their skills. (Find the description of the training courses here.)

With a five-star rating out of five reviews on Yelp so far, the new basketball training academy is on its way to developing a local fan base.

Kaylene P., who was among the first Yelpers to review the new spot on September 26, wrote, "Coach Jerrome is an amazing coach and mentor. He is concerned not only with kids improving their technical skills, but even more so, with developing personal attributes of determination, positive attitude and leadership."

Yelper Rita G. added, "We appreciate the personalized attention at Empower Academy. It is a premium experience. They have great coaches that meet each player where they are to develop their basketball skills and to develop them as leaders and good citizens."

Empower Me Academy is now open at 800 Presidio Ave., so stop by to welcome the new business to the neighborhood.

CorePower Yoga


241 California St., Financial District
Photo: corepower yoga/Yelp

CorePower Yoga, the Denver-based fitness chain with more than 170 locations nationally and multiple in San Francisco, has opened up a new location in the Financial District.

The class schedule includes workshops like Yoga Sculpt, which combines free weights with yoga sequencing and cardio to intensify each yoga pose, while mixing in strength training moves like squats, lunges and bicep curls. Other options include Core Cardio Circuits, which combines strength training with high-intensity interval training (HIIT) to help tone your body, increase cardio endurance and boost metabolism. (Find the full list of classes here.)

With a three-star rating out of four reviews on Yelp, CorePower Yoga is still finding its way, but it's early days yet.

Yelper Hanah L., who reviewed CorePower Yoga on October 13, wrote, "I personally think Shervin is an excellent instructor and a great addition to the CP management team. I agree there should be more lockers, it gets cramped and it's pricey."

Stephanie H. noted, "The class was good. Warmed floors. Lots of heat for the CorePower 2 class. No natural lights in the studio I was in, which I feel like their other Fremont studio does have."

Empire Jiu Jitsu


2356 Mission St., Mission
Photo: empire jiu jitsu/Yelp

Empire Jiu Jitsu is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu spot that offers monthly memberships, private lessons and a 10-class pass. (Find the full schedule here.)

According to its website, the studio is helmed by head instructors Kurt Osiander and Jake Scovel. Osiander has won world championships and taught seminars globally, from Sacramento to Shanghai. Scovel teaches that "jiu-jitsu is founded on economy of motion, focusing on using the body's natural structure to maximize both efficiency and offense."

Yelp users are excited about Empire Jiu Jitsu, which currently holds five stars out of 17 reviews on the site.

Yelper Sylvia L., who was one of the first users to visit Empire Jiu Jitsu on August 10, wrote, "It's fun and physical, but there is always something new to learn and each move has a counter move (and each counter a counter to that!). The people who come here are some of the nicest, most down-to-earth and un-snobby people you'll meet. Along with the coaches, a lot of the students are top-notch."

Nicholas A. noted, "World-class jiu-jitsu by guys who have been at it for many years. Both Kurt and Jake are long-time competitors and can give you the kind of insight that can transform your game. Check them out!"

Empire Jiu Jitsu is open from 7 a.m.-8 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m.-1:30 p.m. on Saturday. (It's closed on Sunday.)
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