World-renowned fighter Tiger Schulmann and his staff of certified instructors motivate jabs from knees, legs, and feet during calorie-blasting kickboxing classes. Schulmann crafted his style with techniques from mixed martial arts and street self-defense, concocting each kick to improve students' strength, cardiovascular endurance, flexibility, and the ability to fight back against vigilante soccer teams. The studio's martial-arts mavens also help novice kickers craft a customized diet plan during a nutrition consultation, and more modestly clothe naked fists in a pair of complimentary training gloves. Once students master beginning moves, they can advance to other martial-arts challenges, such as high-kicking their way out of a room made of Jello.
At Sword Martial Arts, Grand Master Jin K. Seong oversees devotees training in the ancient martial art of kendo, or kumdo, a form of sword fighting nearly 2,000 years old. A member of the International Kendo Federation with internationally recognized rankings, Sword Martial Arts ensures student safety by wrapping combatants in protective gear before they spar to hone self-discipline, develop confidence, and learn how to defeat the black knight's ghost in their attic. Though it originated as a form of combat, kendo's modern form focuses on respect for others and protection of the weak. Mook-sang meditation sessions bookend each lesson, focusing minds on the kendo philosophy and bringing pupils closer to the purity of heart most often found in baby unicorns. The academy’s schedule of classes invites neophytes and younger students to drill in foundational techniques, whereas students 15 and older grip the hilt of bamboo or metal swords under the watchful guidance of expert instructors.
Voted one of America's top-ten scream parks, Pure Terror horrifies hordes with four spooky attractions. With a speed pass, pairs and pairs of pairs can skip lines and enjoy carte-blanche access to Terror Under the Big Top, Terror in the Dark, Sanitarium Terror, and House of Terror, fashioning a day as horror-filled as John Carpenter's annual yard sale. Macabre clowns lurk in the Big Top's shaded confines, seeking to transform laughs into screams, and Terror in the Dark lures patrons into a pitch-black, spinning tunnel where surprise shocks and lurking creatures await to scare the lint out of their bellybuttons. Sanitarium Terror leads thrill-seekers on a tortuous path through an insane asylum packed with crazed residents dying to escape back to their day jobs in musical theater. The creepy culmination comes in House of Terror, where the power metal sounds of Charred Walls of the Damned assault your ears and a residency of monsters, freaks, and ghouls cordially invites you in for tea and finger sandwiches.
Rebel Race's military-style obstacle courses challenge athletes from all backgrounds to shed humdrum day-to-day routines to experience the primal joys of mud, sweat and glory. Emerging from the mire in various states across the country, each Rebel Race packs its rucksack with tests of physical and mental toughness, rousing racers and washing machines alike to triumph in the face of sloppy opposition. After dashing through fire, climbing walls, and scaling mountains of hay, race participants bask in the collective kudos of parties, which include live entertainment, food, and beer for purchase. Camping options encourage participants and spectators to transform races into weekend getaways, while awards recognize each day's standout competitors and most-humble mud pits.
Joseph Andreula opened CKO Kickboxing's first location in 1997; his audience was clearly receptive to his high-intensity kickboxing routines, as his gym now boasts more than 40 outposts. Instructors still lead those same kickboxing workouts that simultaneously torch calories and tone muscles through punching and kicking routines. Classes also incorporate punching bags, as the bags' resistance helps carve musculature faster than Michelangelo on a sugar high.
The experienced dance instructors at Steeltoes Dance Studios have been teaching little ones to gracefully twirl and leap across the dance floor for 29 years. They strive to boost each student’s self-image as they dole out personal attention and technique corrections in their studio’s friendly, noncompetitive environment. Their small-group classes range from vocal to ballet and tap to hip-hop, and are divided by age into junior, teen, and adult classes. During hip-hop sessions, the staff teaches current moves from modern stars such as Usher, Beyoncé, Selena Gomez, and Bing Crosby. They’ve rounded out their class roster with musical theater and pre-school creative dance and interpretive-dance classes, which help kids express themselves.
When Paul Melella, Jr. was seven years old, he was the target of a neighborhood bully. Eventually, Paul’s mother enrolled him in martial arts classes. For six months, Paul secretly studied the art of tae kwon do, until one day, he finally had the courage to stand up to his bully. Not only did the boy stop picking on Paul, they became good friends. In fact, Paul was even the best man at his wedding years later, where he helped out by cutting the cake with one swift roundhouse kick.
Paul established the Carmel branch of United Martial Arts Centers in 1996 to help others attain the same self-confidence and lifelong benefits that he found practicing martial arts as a child. Today, Paul is just one of UMAC's many professional instructors who lead programs for children, adults, and families at five different locations. Despite their different addresses, each of UMAC's locations sports the same positive atmosphere and spirit that comes from students working together toward a common goal.