At each of its 31 area locations, the YMCA of Greater Houston pursues a mission to bring health, wellness, and personal growth to communities. Kids leap into activities ranging from swim lessons and youth sports to a teen Youth & Government program that stirs up confidence and leadership abilities in students, preparing them for mudslinging student-council campaigns.
Zumba, ballroom dance, and Les Mills group exercise classes shake up adult workout routines, as complimentary childcare frees up parents to pursue fitness goals. Meanwhile, adult sport leagues such as basketball and racquetball result in friendly competition and hyper-literate team names inspired by obscure philosophers.
Gold's Gym began more than 45 years ago and today features an impressive array of next-generation fitness gadgets, a results-oriented focus, clean facilities, and certified personal trainers. Hop on a cardio machine, possibly including a built-in TV, pump up in a controlled manner on strength-training machines, tighten up in the abdominal and functional stretching area, or stick with lifting huge, heavy pieces of metal and commercial chest freezers. Facilities and classes vary by location; weekly classes include Zumba, BodyCombat, yoga, Pilates, group cycling, and lion punching.