Rocking out in front of an ecstatic crowd is every musician's dream. For students of all ages and skill levels at Rockaway Arts Academy, it comes true twice a year, when the academy hosts recitals inside a 400-seat auditorium. To ready pupils for the spotlight, instructors with extensive backgrounds in teaching and performing customize lessons around each student's goals and favorite musical styles. Along with private instruction for instruments such as guitar, piano, and drums, teachers gather their students for group sessions that range from music-theory tutorials to rock-band classes.
In addition to housing a show room full of discounted pianos, violins, guitars, and other new instruments, B Natural Pianos and Music School is home to a cadre of teachers who illuminate burgeoning musicians from the tender age of 3. Instructors hold a bachelor’s degree in music in one hand while playing their instrument of choice with the other. They lead private and group lessons on more than a dozen instruments, such as piano, guitar, and tamed guitarfish. The music school also teaches voice.
With more than 100 pieces of cardio equipment and numerous strength machines, the Rockaway branch of World Gym upholds the franchise's relentless tradition of providing comprehensive fitness. Each device in the cardio stable is hooked up to a personal cable TV. Conversely, a bevy of tanning beds help clients obtain a healthy glow to match their burgeoning biceps. Instructors lead a medley of aerobics and yoga classes, and personal trainers help members to craft their own custom fitness plans.
The instructors at Prana Yoga Center help visitors connect with the mind, body, and spirit through yoga and Pilates classes inside an elegant studio. A peaceful sanctuary that was voted Best Yoga Studio by readers of Morris/Essex Health & Life, Prana Yoga Center’s practice space emulates Hindu culture with rustic tile and wood details, mottled orange and yellow walls, and a tranquil golden icon. Classes range from gentle, meditative sessions to advanced sequences, including twists, arm balances, and back bends, most of which do not require students to have rubber skeletons. The studio also hosts events such as introductory workshops, guest instructors, candlelight yoga, and special mommy-and-me classes.
At Parisi Fitness Center, visitors boost their health and well-being not only through the professional guidance of a staff of fitness specialists but also through the support and motivation of their fellow members. In this friendly group environment, guests give their lower back and core muscles a tune-up during Nancy Gorra's Pilates Reformer classes. In one-on-one personal-training sessions, a team of extensively certified personal trainers and fitness experts ensure that clients maximize their workout efficiency and refrain from accidentally swallowing any free weights. After sweating to Latin tunes during Zumba sessions, or targeting and toning problem areas with boot-camp workouts, members can pick their kids up from the complimentary childcare center, or enjoy a muscle-building shake or light fruit beverage from the juice bar.
The ochre walls of Bikram Yoga Cedar Knolls bring to mind vast and peaceful deserts while certified instructors lead yoga students through challenging poses in a 100-plus-degree studio. During 90-minute classes, instructors assist students in mastering Bikram’s fixed sequence of 26 challenging postures. These poses, when performed correctly, sculpt lean muscle mass and increase flexibility enough to help students reach that python hiding under the fridge. Due to the extreme temperature of the studio, students are advised to bring a mat and towels and drink plenty of water before class.