Kids bounce inside a truck, giggling and showing no signs of settling down. At Bounce USA, youthful antics aren't suppressed. Instead kids are encouraged to burn off extra energy and nurture their imaginations. Ten inflatables, such as the truck or a basketball court, house tunnels, slides, and air-filled obstacle courses. Kids aged 2 and younger even have a giant inflatable all to themselves, replete with a ball pit and oversized blown-up blocks. To get the most out of the facility, parents can choose from four party packages, which include an attendant to serve cake and pour soft drinks as well as organize games of inflatable Twister, Pin the Tail on the Donkey, and Pin the Apology Letter on the Donkey's Front Door.
In 1976, educator, musician, and kinesiologist Robin Wes longed for a children's gym that valued personal growth over competition. Robin's program is now used in more than 300 Little Gyms worldwide, but he still pens original music to accompany lessons, which engage whippersnappers aged 4 months to 12 years with gymnastics, dance, karate, and parent and child activities.
Each of The Little Gym's classes introduces simple movements that sharpen motor skills and set brains whirring, teaching kids to progress the skills they need to build a computer out of macaroni and glitter. Staff members strive to build social skills and self-assurance with each exercise, including activities rooted purely in fun, such as summer classes or birthday parties, which helped The Little Gym to earn title of #1 Birthday Chain in Parents Magazine.
At Asheville Gymnastics, athletes are moving in every corner of the room?tumbling into the foam pit, cartwheeling across a balance beam, and flipping from the uneven bars. To help students master these and other skills, the center runs gymnastics classes for all ages, starting with Mighty Mites lessons for kids up to 3 years old and progressing all the way through to gymnastics, aerial silks, and body-conditioning sessions for adults. Recreational and team-gymnastics classes give kids the skills they need to delight family and friends or to medal at their next competition. Birthday parties build fun gymnastics lessons into a two-hour burst of activity, complete with any needed anti-gravity equipment for kids who forgot to put grasshoppers into their shoes.
Olympic Start's staff of experienced gymnastics instructors and childcare providers coach young tumblers in basic Olympic-standard gymnastics during the course of four one-hour courses. Using the USA Gymnastics team's curriculum, coaches train boys and girls in second grade or above in the arts of floor acrobatics, trampoline, bars, beams, and vaults in classes categorized by the student's experience level and understanding of Newton's laws of physics. Girls embark on entry-level exercises in gymnastics skills, theory, and basic body shapes in Bronze class, before building upon those same skills with strength and flexibility training in Silver class. In Titanium sessions, beginner-level boys dart through seven events such as pommel horse, parallel bars, and rings without the heckling they receive at home from Olympic-trained stuffed animals. Young athletes flip and frolic on colorful, child-size equipment above safe, padded floors in a modern gym, with class sizes capped at eight students to allow for thorough instruction.
Brian Griffin, head cheerleading coach and director of Mountain Elite All-Stars, knows how to take a squad to the top of the pyramid. From his start as a Power Cheer all-star in Port Orange to his four state championships and six national titles with the Power Cheers elite open squad, he honed the skills to win and now sports more than six years of experience as a cheerleading-and-tumbling coach. With contagious enthusiasm, Brian and the coaching team of Mountain Elite All-Stars welcome students to the home of the Thunders, where aspiring boys and girls of all ages learn to be roaring tumblers and pompommers under their expert tutelage.
Cirque de Chine assembles acrobatic troupes from China's finest showmen to enthrall all ages with two hours of derring-do. Integrating aerial arts, illusion, and data learned from studying flying squirrels, shows parade a dynamic blend of spectacle onstage, from jar jugglers and dragon dancers to circus artists who dive through hoops 10 feet high. Further thrills include the five flying motorcyclists defying gravity in a 26-foot steel sphere. Admission is valid for any spot at the 1,746-seat Smoky Mountain Palace, assigned upon reserving by phone or sending a robotic butler to the theater.