At Albuquerque Stars, students can begin to practice their pirouettes as young as age 3. They're helped along by instructors who respect each child's skill level, and who impart the values of teamwork and confidence as passionately as they demonstrate each leap and spin. Their curriculum covers a wide range of styles, including jazz, ballet, and hip-hop. Though students are welcome to learn dance as a casual hobby, they are also encouraged to perform in yearly Stars National Dance Program competitions.
World Balloon's skilled pilots have been cruising gentle air currents in their colorful balloons for over 41 years. From the safety of a basket, they unveil panoramic views of the arcing earth, the sun rising above the Sandia Mountains, and the lush greenery of the Rio Grande Valley. After the balloon alights upon the ground, the staffers keep the experience going. They treat guests to a champagne toast and a light snack, and give them a commemorative certificate. The crew also sets the tone for each celebration with a short lesson on the origins of hot-air ballooning and how to identify which clouds would yield the fluffiest pillow stuffing.
Fire and wind: that’s all it takes to fly. Hot air ballooning’s sheer simplicity sparked pilot Scott Appelman’s interest in the sport 30 years ago. “In a lot of ways, it’s the exact opposite of the way the world is today,” says the Rainbow Ryders, Inc. founder. “And I think that gives it a certain degree of romance.”
Further evidence of ballooning’s inherent romance can be found in the number of proposals and weddings that have taken place aboard Rainbow Ryders’ fleet of 19 balloons, earning the company a spot on Yahoo’s list of top five places in the nation to pop the question. Even if engagement is not on passengers’ agendas, the crew still strives to ensure a memorable expedition. Guests can join the launch crew to help inflate the balloon before takeoff, and upon landing, pilot and passengers clink glasses in a champagne toast to celebrate another successful flight.
Though whimsy and romance may prove the biggest draw, Rainbow Ryders’ untarnished safety record is what ultimately keeps the balloons hovering. Since 1982, experienced pilots have safely floated 160,000 people over the Rio Grande Valley. Pilots not only helm top-tier equipment, but carefully monitor the region’s weather patterns to ensure smooth thermal drafts and minimize hitchhiking requests from migrating geese.
Duke City Aquatics welcomes swimmers of all ages, skill, and gill level into the pool for swimming and polo programs. Kids as young as 1 can learn swimming basics during parent-tot lessons. Once basic techniques have been refined kids 5?10 can dip their toes into a splashball class, the beginners? version of water polo, eventually diving into competitive water-polo leagues. Adult swimmers who want more intense training can enroll in masters' swim classes where they can develop or refine competetive swimming skills suited to triathlons and water polo alike.
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 circle of hydraulic resistance machines designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage machine maneuvering and muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing momentum, the hydraulic machines use body weight and fitness levels to create resistance that matches 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 perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
LA Boxing sculpts physiques into fighting shape with group fitness classes in boxing, kickboxing, and mixed martial arts. The proprietary style of the LA Boxing workout is a mixture of genuine fight training, engaging fitness, and stronger-than-earth gravity. These total-body routines combine external inspiration with jukes, jabs, and kicks. Both men and women are welcome in the ring, where they'll learn new techniques and methods to blissfully break into a sweat in an energetic group setting. Sixteen-ounce gloves are provided, as is complimentary motivational mumbling from Mickey Goldmill.