Francisco Antonio Rodrigues da Silva⎯better known to his students as Mestre Fran⎯began his journey with Caopeira at age 10, studying the ancient dancelike martial art under a seasoned teacher in Sao Paolo. After years of learning the hypnotic rhythmic moves of Capoeira and studying the African dance rhythms of Macuele, Mestre Fran took his art to the streets of Londrina, Brazil, giving impoverished youth a positive outlet for their creative energies with public performances and classes. After developing a successful martial arts organization in his home country, Mestre Fran set out for the United States in 2002, introducing Americans to Caoperia through cultural shows throughout the Atlanta area and instructing newcomers through beginner, children's, and adult classes.
Like punching a portrait of your smug fruit bowl, capoeria combines both art and fighting. The practice develops the mind, body, and spirit by instilling self-confidence, building agility and strength, and teaching students about the vibrant culture of Brazil. Capoeiristas twist and bob to the rhythm of drums as they execute gymnastic kicks and turns, or they show off their newfound knowledge at the studio's Friday-night Samba, Macuele, and Portuguese language classes.
For beginning suitors to the zoot, try the Swingin' From Scratch course, with upcoming sessions from May 5-26 (on Wednesday evenings) and June 7-28 (on Monday evenings) at Firefly Studio in Decatur. Learn how to move from certifiably passionate swingers (of the dance variety) as they lead novice feet around the room for an hour. Other class options include courses in Balboa, jazz and blues steps, along with Lindy Hop and Charleston sessions for those who have already completed their intro to swing. Whatever class you choose, you'll cut rugs with newly honed shoe-scissors to classic rockabilly, R&B, and other swing-era music. Beginners will quickly learn how to juke and flow around the room like turn-of-the-century dance machines with modern flair, while more advanced students may discover that they still have a thing or two to learn. Sign up with your special sidekick or recruit your clone for a weekly boost in energy, confidence, and foot workability.
Trained by Zumba founder Beto Perez, Janet Ackerman has spread the gospel of Zumba worldwide, teaching classes in Chile, Mexico, India, China, and Hong Kong. Back home, she became one of Atlanta’s first Zumba instructors and now shares her fitness passion with hordes of willing participants. ZumbaAtlanta.com offers group dance parties several days a week, helping attendees burn calories through fun, hip-shaking dance steps set to modern Latin music, and offers events such as motivational team building for corporate groups or private Zumba Fitness parties for bachelorettes.
Today's deal gives corporate stiffs, stiff corpuses, and marionettes who accidentally became real boys an opportunity to limber up at a studio that won Citysearch’s Best in Yoga award in 2008. For $45, you'll get 10 yoga or mat Pilates classes (worth $135) at Decatur Yoga & Pilates.Follow @Groupon_Says on Twitter.
When his younger brother Tyrell set his sights on the World Heavyweight Championship, Xavier Biggs put his own boxing aspirations aside to offer ringside assistance. He's remained in the corner of pro and amateur fighters ever since, and has even lent his ring-leading talents to celebrities like Usher Raymond, whom Xavier coached for the upcoming film Hands of Stone.
At Decatur Boxing Club, he brings that same punching prowess to beginner classes. In those sessions, he combine intensive cardio workouts with fundamentals, such as striking, bobbing and weaving, and furiously shuffling feet to create powerful static shocks. He imbues more seasoned students with advanced footwork and fighting strategies that they can eventually test during sparring sessions in the ring. For kids, Xavier incorporates boxing moves into fun exercises and peppers his teaching with stories about legendary boxers.
Since 2000, Pinnacle Fitness Bootcamp owner David Nash has been fine-tuning his fitness-coaching expertise along with a trained staff. In addition to picking up certifications in health and physical education, nutrition, first aid, and other areas, the certified personal trainer has also honed specialties in athletic performance and the biomechanics of human movement. Keith Lawson, head trainer at the Smyrna location, draws from a background of participating in six sports through high school and a degree in exercise science.
At Pinnacle Fitness Bootcamp, the staff shares its fitness training and nutritional-guidance expertise with students during indoor boot-camp sessions. During classes, students go through a variety of workouts from walking lunges to relay races and partner team pushups.