In 1976, educator, musician, and kinesiologist Robin Wes longed for a children's gym that prioritized personal growth over competition. Unveiled at a time when physical-education classes pushed students to focus almost exclusively on winning, Robin's program was swiftly adopted and is now used in more than 300 Little Gyms worldwide. Robin still pens original music to accompany lessons, which engage whippersnappers 4 months old?12 years old with gymnastics, dance, and parent and child activities.
Each of The Little Gym's classes introduces simple movements that sharpen motor skills and set brains whirring, allowing kids to progress at their own pace until they can finally build a computer out of macaroni and glitter. Staff members strive to build a base for lifelong social skills and self-assurance with each exercise, including activities rooted purely in fun, such as summer camps or birthday parties, which helped The Little Gym to earn title of #1 Birthday Chain in Parents Magazine.
Dedicated instructors at In the Spotlight Dance Center lead burgeoning ballerinas ages 2–18 through class curriculums of classical and modern ballet, lyrical and contemporary dance, and rhythm-boosting sessions in jazz, tap, and hip-hop. Students meet each week to shimmy and shuffle in one-hour sessions, prepping for potential careers as performers or the interpretive dance translator for the United Nations. Young tots can receive a triple threat initiation to dance with a combination class of tap, ballet, and jazz, and advanced dancers have the option of attended accelerated classes in pointe and repertoire.
The encouraging coaches at SwimAmerica teach swimming skills that build confidence and coordination in kids. The CPR- and first-aid-certified aquatic instructors acquaint wee ones with splashing during parent-child classes, begin building technique in elementary-school-age classes, and welcome older pupils to join them for adult classes, including water aerobics, an arthritis aquatics program, and underwater poker.