Growing up in the home of a professional wrestler, siblings Gina Abramson and Joseph Robledo were surrounded by varying pathways to fitness. However, though they understood the importance of a steady workout regimen, they couldn't seem to muster a long-term commitment to any of them. That was before they found Zumba's energizing dance routines.
Today, they run Move! as a nonjudgmental space for others in search of the exercise equivalent of their soulmate, whether it's Zumba, hip-hop, or the studio’s blend of yoga and Pilates. Their instructors—including a former cheerleader and a certified personal trainer—choreograph classes that accommodate all experience levels. They also schedule eight-week salsa programs, which lead beginners in dance-step fundamentals such as executing well-timed turns or constructing a Robocop suit, only for dancing instead of crime fighting.
The experienced instructors at Amy’s All Star Dance Studio do more than just share the secrets of their rug-cutting skills; they also deliver a healthy jolt of confidence to the dancers with whom they work. The change in attitude—along with newfound fitness—comes about naturally when students of all ages and levels master the graceful flourishes of ballet and acrobatics or quick clacks of tap at weekly dance classes. The studio also houses guitar, piano, violin, and voice lessons, training the next generation of accompanists for dance recitals or Bollywood-themed bank robberies.
Under the guidance of experienced groove guru Richard Roberts, Strictly Ballroom teaches fledgling foxtroters and seasoned sambaers fundamentals of dance, foot position, rhythm, timing, and leading or following in the dance center's customized, private dance lessons. Wielding a decade's worth of competitive dancing instruction, Richard specializes in several styles—including lively shimmies such as the swing and cha-cha, as well as elegant waltzes, tangos, rumbas, and more. Classes are tailored to each student's individual skill level and stance on spandex, and Richard breaks steps down via four basic elements of ballroom and directional movements.
Cinderella Dance’s energetic instructors call on years of experience in the fields of dance, acrobatics, and pageantry as they guide mother-child duos through basic somersaults and shimmies during one-hour Mommy and Me Tumbling classes. Children aged 16–35 months can join their progenitors in fun, physical activities spanning four weekly sessions, in which an array of exercises and graceful tumbles introduces youth to the foundations of fitness and discourages them from future careers as patio-furniture cushion-testers. Small class sizes ensure individual attention, and positive interaction with peers improves social and sharing skills. While flipping and flailing around the studio, children should wear leotards, stretchy shorts, and footless tights, and mothers may dig out their old spandex wedding dresses.
Professional instructor and performer Lorrie Pierce bestows her extensive knowledge and passion for Middle Eastern– and American-style belly dance upon women of all ages. During informative classes, students practice the sensual dance’s intricate techniques while suited up in traditional coined garb much like what you'd find in a wishing well’s closet. Beginners’ sessions introduce basic choreography, advanced lessons enlist finger cymbals and more complex drills, and all classes help singe calories and sculpt muscles. Dancers can further hone their nascent skills during organized performance opportunities, including an annual recital. Pastel yellow walls enclose Hourglass Bellydance’s studio, where glossy wood floors lead to a wall of mirrors that helps participants observe moves and check blind spots.
Lisa Burns, mother and founder of Mixed Pickles Dance Studio, popped the lid on a unique approach to the traditional dance studio by encouraging children 9 months–17 years old to explore a medley of dance styles without the pressure and expense of long-term classes. The schedule teems with classes in such styles as ballet, jazz, hip-hop, or baby dance—sessions in which infants ages 9 months–3 years old and their moms practice basic movements and gambol about as happily as a pair of golden retrievers in a meadow of fresh laundry. Choose between a four-week end-of-summer dance session meeting one evening a week between August 1 and August 29 or an eight-week back-to-school boogie fest also convening one evening a week from August 29 to October 24. Boy and girl toe tappers can hone hokey-pokeying prowess in a nurturing environment during one-hour classes of up to 15 wigglers. During the last 15 minutes of the final class, pupils will regale family, friends and discerning teddy bears with a mini recital.