Inside-Out Sports keeps leg jockeys motoring with a catalog of specialty items in a 2,500-square-foot store replete with helpful gait analysis tools. A knowledgeable staff composed entirely of runners, triathletes, and future uncles assists customers with treadmill stride analysis and Fit Kit and F.I.S.T. dynamic bike fitting. Favorite shoe brands such as K-Swiss and Saucony (running shoes start at $89.99) insulate foot rockets from scorching the ground.
Grandmaster Kang Seok Lee grew up in a small village in South Korea. He began his tae kwon do training at age 7, and shortly thereafter, got started with hapkido?a discipline designed to subdue adversaries by applying firm, focused pressure to specific joints. Kang was immediately drawn to the discipline, and eventually went on to win a world championship in hapkido in the 1970s, the same decade he and his family immigrated to the United States. The Tae Kwon Do Times featured him on their cover in 1996 and named him to their Tae Kwon Do Hall of Fame in 2006.
In 1986, Kang opened his first school, and in the years since has managed to build a team of instructors chosen not only for their skills, but also for their good character and caring attitudes. Together, Kang and his team continue the traditions formed over the course of tae kwon do?s 2,000-year history, inviting students to participate regardless of their age, size, or sympathetic feelings toward wooden blocks. The grandmaster and his associates lead a variety of programs that emphasize self-defense skills and personal development, including introductory and belt-level-specific classes.
Lead by Dr. Daniel Bannard, a "Fellow" of the International Academy of Medical Acupuncture with over 30 years of experience to his name, the team at The Bannard Center uses a range of treatments to promote full-body wellness. With help from licensed acupuncturist and massage therapist Dr. Sebastion Lee, the team specializes in holistic chiropractic work, augmenting unique, energy-balancing herbal formulas with sauna sessions and acupuncture treatments. During massage work, a certified specialist rubs clients' muscles to release pent-up stress and loosen the gnarled knots of shoulder anxiety and misplanted back saplings. All visits take place in a professional office space, recently renovated with hardwood floors and warm colors.
Before founding Master Chang?s Martial Arts in Raleigh, Grand Master Do Hyun Chang honed his skills as the captain of the Korean Tigers Demonstration Team, an internationally roving martial-arts exhibition. The Tigers' shows under Chang were quite a spectacle, combining martial prowess with acrobatics, power breaking, and self-defense seminars. Today, Master Chang takes all that knowledge and distills it down to essential lessons in tae kwon do and hapkido. He and his team of instructors specialize in introducing martial arts to young children. They layer each lesson with character-building exercises that help kids succeed in school, especially if they ever need to punch through a wall to get to class on time.
Kenrick Smith and his team of golf instructors are driven by one central goal in their eight-week lesson package: turn beginners into lifetime golfers. Kenrick?s academy, The Triangle Golf School, provides a curriculum that focuses on building a fundamentally sound swing and a teaching environment that is fun, constructive, and does not force students to forage for their own bounty of wild golf balls. Though primarily geared toward junior golfers, the school offers lessons and clinics to clubbers of all ages and abilities. The Triangle School?s indoor facility fosters year-round practice, allowing players to hone their swings without fearing rain or dust storms created by rebellious sand traps.
Although the art of taekwondo may have origins thousands of years into Korea's past, Master Michael Wegmann and his wife Julia inject a modern approach at Vision Martial Arts. Together, they teach effective techniques to kids, women, and men, imparting equally valuable lessons in self-defense, exercise, and mental discipline. They run their six academies with help from a team of trained instructors, who all focus on developing mentor-like relationships with their students through personal attention and powerful speeches delivered atop school desks. At select locations, they also teach a form of kickboxing similar to krav maga.