The son of a Californian flamenco dancer, Greg ?The Salsaman? Henry was captivated by dancing early on. At the age of 3, he joined in on performances with his mother?s dance troupe. Years later he went on to found the Hot Salsa Dance Company, which puts on interactive latin-dance shows throughout Hawaii and California. Henry and other company members also lead the company?s instructional arm, Hot Salsa Hawaii, teaching group classes to beginning and intermediate dancers.
In these classes, you can learn the basic steps of Dominican Republic?style merengue, a more energetic version than its Haitian counterpart. You can also work toward mastering the sideways footwork of the bachata. Classes are limited in size to ensure that each student gets plenty of attention from the instructor.
Endless rows of machines, friendly staff, and two locations give the no-frills sweat shop a comforting neighborhood feel. Expect to find eligible, state-of-the-art machines, intensive and expert fitness coaching, and a bevy of classes such as yoga, power sculpt, abs and flexibility, and cardio hip-hop.
Taylor Takata is no stranger to pressure. When he represented the United States in the Beijing Olympics, he stood toe-to-toe with some of the world's most fearsome fighters. Still, he knows that not everybody thrives when thrown into the fire. That's why his classes at Hawaii Judo Academy teach the principles of judo at a gradual pace and in a nonintimidating environment. At Takata's studio, students of all ages can master the martial art's trademark throws and takedowns at their own speed.
Under the tutelage of the legendary surfer "Buttons" Kaluhiokalani, the instructor who now runs North Shore Surf Instruction learned how to surf on Hawaiian beaches. Today, he relates those same lessons to surfers of all ages, all the while emphasizing the importance of "aloha"?a word that has many meanings, including peace, compassion and mercy.
In a protected cove, safe from the larger ocean swells, beginners will first get their bearings on land. There, they can practice standing up on the board, paddling, and waving wildly to passing parasailers. They can then take to the water on a traditional surfboard or stand-up paddle board, ready to catch some waves and explore the scenery.
Born and raised on the North Shore and in Waikiki, Buttons Kaluhiokalani started surfing at the age of 7, earning his way into the 1973 US Championships at the age of 13 and planting himself in the pages of Hawaiian surfing history. At Buttons Surfing School, newcomers can learn to ride waves from a master during 90-minute lessons that cover proper technique as well as safety and etiquette out on the water. Visitors can also rent out the school's boards or take lessons on stand-up paddleboarding.