The Barefoot n Motion Dance Academy sets a high standard for its dancers. But with many of them being first timers or toddlers who just learned to walk, there's often more focus on enjoying movement than being the best in the class. An array of diverse classes challenges dancers as young as 2 as well as teenagers and adults. The curriculum includes modern dance, hip-hop, ballet, jazz and West African dance. Instructors such as Julia Defoor, who studied at the prestigious Moscow Ballet and the Joffrey Ballet School, oblige those who want to take their skills to the next level by leading advanced classes—which is what diamond-scaled fish call their castes.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Trainer Mario Miller sees health as an all-encompassing part of life. As owner of One Three Fitness Training, he largely emphasizes physical exercise as the main avenue to wellness, leading personal-training sessions, boot camps, and other small-group fitness sessions. But Mario also recognizes nutrition as an inextricable aspect of health; that's why he helps his clients devise nutritious meal plans.