Occupational therapists Dr. Brian R. Foltz and Ross E. Sato founded Pediatric Motor Playground to help children aged 2.5–12 develop physical and academic skills needed to succeed in school. At centers in Lafayette and Danville, the therapists and their team of educational-fitness instructors guide kids through the company's patented Motor Curriculum: 50 straight minutes of activities specifically designed to develop skills such as hand-eye coordination and social interaction. During these sessions, instructors might have kids play basketball, climb on foam-padded gym equipment, exercise with fitness balls, and practice their handwriting.
Dr. Foltz and Mr. Sato aren't comfortable just letting any instructor or animated snowman teach their curriculum. Each educational-fitness instructor completes at least 240 supervised hours of training and must pass both written and physical evaluations.
The certified CrossFit trainers at Lamorinda CrossFit want their clients to be in the best shape of their lives. Whether their goal is weight loss, building strength, or becoming more athletic and agile in general, the center has everything members need to become stronger, faster, and leaner. Using everyday, functional movements, such as squats, lifts, and pulling, in conjunction with weights and gymnastics, CrossFit works all the major muscle groups for a full-body workout. Clients begin by taking four Basics classes, after which they move onto the Workout of the Day, which can be customized for each individual’s fitness level. Members can choose to work out alone or in one of Lamorinda CrossFit’s classes, which offer the motivational boost of group energy.
The co-founder of the Escuela de Tango, Marcelo Solis, has been an Argentine tango dancer and teacher for more than 25 years. Solis formed the Escuela de Tango dance school in 2012. The San Francisco location is one of a few branches of the school, which is headquartered in Buenos Aires?the so-called capital of tango. In San Francisco, a cadre of skilled instructors offers private lessons with one-on-one coaching as well as group classes suited to all skill levels and astrological signs. If you want to put your new moves into practice, the school frequently hosts and sponsors milongas?special dance celebrations with music, food, and drinks.
After gaining her gemology degree, Design 4 U, founder Ruby has been designing and repairing jewelry for more than 15 years. Now she works with all things sparkly at her shop, running consignment and retail, jewelry repair, and jewelry-making lessons. Ruby's birthday parties and classes teach groups of students how to design and create their own jewelry using silver clasps, metal wire, and beads in a variety of sizes. Design 4 U also stocks handmade jewelry such as crystal necklaces, beaded chokers, and turquoise earrings in an online shop.
The Junior League of Oakland-East Bay sprung into existence more than 70 years ago, but the history of the larger organization dates back to the turn of the 20th century. In 1901, Mary Harriman and 85 other women founded the Junior League for the Promotion of Settlement Movements, a charity devoted to the improvement of the human condition. Today, the Oakland-East Bay branch carries on that do-good philosophy. They've launched such nonprofits as The East Bay Children's Theatre, the Volunteer Center of the East Bay, the Family Stress Center, and Super Stars Literacy.
Samira Dawn was a synchronized swimmer for 17 years before she discovered belly dancing. She stumbled on a performance by chance and found herself mesmerized by the sensuality and confidence of the dancers and signed up for classes as quickly as she could. After 14 years of performing and teaching belly dancing, she now shares her love of belly dancing with the community by leading women of all ages, sizes, and abilities through classes that include learning the skills and using the techniques for cardio exercise.