NFL players, arena-football stars, and elite college athletes are just a few of the many pupils who have turned to Nate Turner of Sport Speed Austin to hone their speed, agility, and performance on the field. Certified by the National Strength and Conditioning Association, the International Youth Conditioning Association, and CrossFit, Turner and his program director, Kristen Turner, have developed programs delineated by sport and age.
Organized by the Austin Sports and Social Club, Downtown Dash TX unleashes teams on a race across the city rife with physical challenges, social interactions, and mental puzzles. The undefined course lets participants choose their own route, but with a catch: travel must be completed on foot or by public transportation, not on bicycles, rollerblades, or stolen emus. While following a clue sheet, teams attempt to topple up to a dozen challenges all while encountering some of Austin's most historic and renowned sites. Upon crossing the finish line, the top three teams receive a special prize, but everyone wins during a postrace party that stretches the day's festivities into the evening.
A Triple-A affiliate of the Houston Astros, the Round Rock Express's players bat, slide, steal, and knock spherical things out of Dell Diamond. Managed by former pitcher and major league first base coach Marc Bombard, the team receives its silent hand signals and coaching from former major league pitcher Burt Hooton, minor league veteran Keith Bodie, and star of Major League: Back to the Minors Scott Bakula. The Pacific Coast League power beat the Nashville Sounds to clinch the American Conference finals in 2006. Win or lose, the fun of just watching the game will be celebrated with a round of fireworks.
Encompassing an 11,000-square-foot indoor batting arena, an air-conditioned clubhouse filled with training videos, and an outdoor plot of screen-enclosed batting cages, Power Swing's facilities help train baseball and softball players of all ages and skill levels. Instructors train students in four private pitching tunnels and let them practice on a turf infield or field hits from regulation-size pitching mounds. Outside, players swing at four T-ball cages, or return machine-pitched volleys from 10 baseball pitchers and nine softball pitchers that launch balls and unwanted vases at up to 80 miles per hour. A team of coaches, many of them former athletes, can also help students hone pitching and hitting skills in private, semiprivate, and small-group lessons, and lead instructional clinics and athletic afterschool programs.
For more than 130 years, the YMCA has worked to facilitate growth for individuals as well as communities by providing social-enrichment programs that promote honesty, respect, and responsibility. YMCA of Greater San Antonio, which features locations throughout the metropolitan area, helps people improve their lives with healthy living programs that offer inclusive training classes as well as lifelong learning classes. Youth development initiatives and childcare services allow children as well as teens to develop positive behaviors while exploring their interests in a safe, supportive environment. The centers also encourage social responsibility by providing opportunities to support local communities through volunteerism and charitable giving.
Though they operate more than 200 locations in upwards of 30 states, the team behind U.S. Baseball Academy aims to make each young athlete's experience a personal one. Their four- or six-week camps are taught by local instructors who are current or former coaches at the high school or college level, and typically offer a 6:1 or better player-to-teacher ratio for intense, professional-style training. The Academy's proven itinerary of hitting, pitching, fielding, and baserunning drills was developed by an advisory board of college coaches and Major League players, including Cy Young Award–winner and ace pitcher Brandon Webb.