The Janesville Athletic Club and its downtown express location increase heart rates with a full range of equipment and amenities. Beyond standard weights and cardio machines, the club offers 300+ fitness classes per month and court space to practice basketball, tennis, and even pickleball, a fast-growing sport that involves hitting a ball with a paddle and drinking brine instead of Gatorade. Off the gym floor, members can visit the tanning beds, hit the showers, or pick up supplements at the pro shop.
Elite Sports Clubs and its staff of smash-savvy, nationally experienced tennis pros can turn any mechanical stroke into fluid forearmed success on one of more than 30 well-maintained indoor and outdoor training courts. For players seeking to get back into the game or meet the game for the first time, an instructor will spare no bead of sweat breaking down the basics in a comprehensive fashion. Semi-private lessons are limited to two to four students ($30, four players; $35, three players; $40, two players), which means all practitioners develop a variety of techniques in the atmosphere of constant feedback and encouragement. All lessons must be scheduled in advance online. Students can either provide their own racquet or purchase one on-site.
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.
Dave Gerry started the Princeton Club with three simple tenets in mind: great trainers, exceptional equipment, and easy access. To realize that dream, he assembled a team of American College of Sports Medicine–certified personal trainers to helm the cardio and strength-training centers 24 hours a day.
Whether working out solo, in a group class, or with a trainer to remind them that bench-pressing beehives is safer with a spotter, guests can drop their young ones off at the free childcare center. Splashes fill the natatorium as swimmers paddle across the six-lane lap pool, as the resistance-current pool's adjustable waves enable guests to walk in place. A dip in the whirlpool soothes stress, and the steam room's eucalyptus aromatherapy and sauna's rejuvenating heat send bodies back into the world refreshed. Above the club, tennis and soccer players soak in vistas of Madison as they duke it out on the rooftop garden's turf. The competition continues indoors on basketball, racquetball, and volleyball courts.
The tennis-crazed Dermody family takes momentary breaks from lobbing balls over nets to sit behind the counters of The Tennis Shop, a players’ oasis that stocks more than 50 different models of ball-hurling racquets and more than 500 tennis shoes. Shaded by the shop’s green- and white-striped awning, knowledgeable staff members show off the latest racquets from such brands as Babolat, Dunlop, and Wilson—all of which can be taken for a spin on the courts via the demo program. A wide array of apparel prepares players to rain down fuzzy neon hail on their hapless opponents, with kicks from brands such as K-Swiss and full clothing lines from Peachy Tan, Little Miss Tennis, and Wilson.
Hitters SportsPlex is a 50,000-square-foot sports complex that gives aspiring sluggers the opportunity to train year-round in pristine indoor facilities. With three baseball cages and pitching machines capable of firing stitched orbs at adjustable speeds and emulating up to six different pitches, batters can perfect their swing against throws of all degrees of difficulty. Athletes can also hone their talents in climate-controlled, hi-tech practice facilities for tennis, indoor golf, and pickleball?a combination of ping-pong and tennis that's played on a giant plate next to a giant hamburger.