In 1976, educator, musician, and kinesiologist Robin Wes opened The Little Gym based on his new take on physical education. His curriculum emphasized motivating children to achieve instead of pressuring them to win. As a result, The Little Gym became a noncompetitive, positive, nurturing environment where young ones could develop physically, socially, emotionally, and intellectually. Since then, Little Gyms have sprouted up across the country. Enter Kevin and Page Helmick. Kevin and Page's passion for working with children stirred the duo to open their own Little Gym locations in Liberty Township and Mason. Parents of two young boys, Kevin and Page captain a talented staff of childcare professionals and instructors that is as passionate about childhood development as they are. The programs and classes they teach aim to help kids develop skills such as rhythm and coordination, and kids camps during winter, spring, and summer breaks prevent children from creating finger paintings that express the existential ennui they feel when school is out of session. The gym's classes, camps, and childcare programs have earned this location the Best Children's Play award from Cincinnati Family Magazine.
There's something for everyone at Court Yard Sportsplex, keeping families busy and active with its variety of sports facilities and classes. Tennis balls thwack against rackets during private lessons, instructional clinics, and competitive inter-club matches at the complex's 11 indoor and outdoor courts. Elsewhere, cardio and weightlifting machines whir with the effort of exercisers, and the squeak of tennis shoes echoes upon basketball and racquetball courts. Outside in the heated pool?open Memorial Day through Labor Day?younger kids splash in the shallow end during beginners swim lessons, and older kids sluice through the water while working on their strokes. For the more artistically inclined, music emanates from classrooms where a Joffrey Ballet?trained instructor orchestrates youth ballet classes, which culminate in a summer recital. Whatever activity they choose, members can soothe exerted muscles by visiting the onsite massage therapist, who calls upon nine massage modalities and essential oils infused with lullabies.
With more than 15 locations nationwide, Wine and Canvas commissions accomplished artists to spread the joy of painting during informal painting classes. These talented brush wielders guide students of all abilities through a landscape, portrait, or abstract artwork via step-by-step instructions. Though each Wine and Canvas location is home to an art studio, the classes are taught in students’ living rooms or at local hot spots—many of which mix up tasty drink specials during classes. Instructors provide their artists-in-training with all the supplies they need to create eye-catching masterpieces, from paints and canvases to Ouija boards with a direct line to van Gogh. Though adult painting classes are Wine and Canvas’s bread and butter, they also help little ones unleash their creativity and satisfy their sweet tooth with Cookies and Canvas classes.
Kimberly Denney has dedicated her entire adult life to teaching music to kids. After receiving her BA in music education and MA in education administration, Kimberly taught music and band in public schools for 21 years. Now she teaches Kindermusik to families in Dayton and Cincinnati.
At her school, Kimberly and her team of instructors lead children from newborns to 7-year-olds in playful music classes with the goal of helping kids develop into great learners—not necessarily the next Mozart. Children sing, dance, and play age-appropriate instruments, all while developing a variety of skills in language, literacy, socialization, and problem solving, as well as improving their self-esteem. Parents and children receive Kindermusik@home materials that include a variety of activities to continue learning at home between weekly classes.
Signature service: Fundamentals of Drawing
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Average Duration of Services: 1?2 hours
Brands Used: Young Rembrandts
Pro Tip: Young Rembrandts teaches drawing and visual learning skills for children ages 3-and-a-half to 12.
The instructors at Pendleton Pilates’ four locations teach 125 classes each week, showing students how to elongate and strengthen their muscles on mats, inflatable exercise balls, and the studio’s reformer machines. During each group or private session, instructors customize workouts that use a rotating selection of 500 core-focused movements developed by Joseph Pilates in 1945. Additional classes include sessions in which students use parallel ballet barres while performing Pilates exercises, as well as spinning classes at the Westchester location.