Drafted into the Philadelphia Phillies straight out of high school, Gary Bennett spent 13 seasons as a major-league catcher, a career that included a stint on the 2006 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals. Gary is one of several baseball specialists whose tutelage has contributed to Slammer's Training Academy's assistance in more than 250 collegiate scholarships and 30 major-league prospects. Each instructor enriches pupils' pitching and batting skills with private sessions, team instruction, and clinics and camps designed by major leaguers throughout the fiscal year.
The practiced pros at Racquet Club of Lake Bluff hone students' strokes on the club's eight indoor Plexipave tennis courts. Beginner classes teach the basics of the game, and advanced classes prepare players to challenge Pete Sampras to a match where the winner gets the loser's Social Security number. During junior sessions, competition-minded youths develop footwork and shot selection with drills and match play supervised by coaches. Kids' classes introduce fundamentals to tykes as young as 4. This Groupon can be used for any of the classes found on this schedule, all of which are limited to six people so participants get individual attention.
Ticket Reserve rewards football fanatics of all collegiate allegiances with the opportunity to reserve plaza-level tickets to witness the hard-hitting action of the 2012 Sugar Bowl game. Pigskin fanciers can reserve big-game tickets with the hope that their favorite team of chin-guarded play practitioners gets invited to play January football amid the arctic-like conditions of a New Orleans winter. Fans can choose their favorite team, alma mater, or imaginary alma mater and then sit on a chair made of pins and needles until the team selections are announced on December 5, 2011. If the team they picked gets chosen to play, reservations will transform from a fancied fantasy into a fancied reality that will take the shape of two tickets and be delivered straight to their mailboxes or beckoning hands.
Mikhail Kogan, the highest-ranking crushalo master in the United States, once taught the hand-to-hand combat style to an elite unit of the Russian military. At Spetsnaz USA—named for that same military unit—he teaches crushalo, a defense method used by police forces and armies worldwide. Kogan stratifies classes by skill level and age, welcoming both kids and adults into his studio.
The word “KAPAP” is derived from the Hebrew acronym for fearsome, face-to-face combat. Operating under the umbrella of the international KAPAP Academies, Kapap Combative Concepts helps mold students in the skills of modern, real-world combat. A staff of veteran instructors trains up-and-coming MMA fighters alongside first-time students learning self-defense techniques. The gym’s core KAPAP class teaches practical fighting skills similar to krav maga, infused with elements of boxing, judo, and Japanese slappy-hands. Instructors also teach submission grappling, muay thai, and kickboxing skills, and lead dedicated sessions in women’s self-defense. The gym’s combat-fitness classes help build better bodies through a rigorous, boot-camp-style environment that works indoors and outdoors while challenging strength, endurance, and flexibility.
Focused on fun and fitness, Beauty N’ Motion specializes in eight-week, pole-borne workout classes, held in a resplendent aluminum forest flanked by vivid crimson drapery. The one-hour introductory classes offer a glimpse of the more specialized sessions, and include some stretching, a workout, and instruction in a pole trick that is suitable for beginners, yet more advanced than licking a flagpole in winter. Intro classes are scheduled at various times throughout the week, and more sessions may be added if there is demand. After building muscle strength, poise, and confidence in two introductory classes, students can choose to sharpen their skills with more nuanced lessons or by breaking into a tetherball court after-hours.