Throughout the 11 courts lined up inside and outside of Court Yard Sportsplex, tennis balls thwack against rackets swung by players in private lessons, instructional clinics, and competitive interclub matches. Elsewhere, cardio and weightlifting machines whir with the effort of exercisers, and the squeak of tennis shoes echoes upon basketball and racquetball courts. In the heated outdoor pool—open Memorial Day through Labor Day—younger kids splash in the 3- to 5-foot waters during beginners' swim lessons, while older kids sluice through the water with instruction on a variety of strokes. Music emanates from classrooms, where a Joffrey Ballet–trained instructor orchestrates youth ballet classes and adults embrace personalized instruction with ballroom-dancing lessons. After any activity, members can soothe exerted muscles with the onsite massage therapist, who calms muscles with one of nine modalities and essential oils infused with lullabies.
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.
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.
Snap Fitness's easyFIT monitor is a small, clip-on accelerometer that helps keep track of daily exercise. Unlike pedometers that merely measure steps and spy on daydreams, the easyFIT monitor senses the intensity and duration of physical activity, transmogrifying those stats into simple, numerical points that help assess activity levels from sedentary to peak performance. In addition to tracking exercise in real time, easyFIT monitors can connect to the wearer's personal web portal to upload data and create fitness graphs that help show progress, snag exercise suggestions, and stave off the temptation of living next to a hamburger farm. Watch a video about the easyFit here.
During your two-month membership ($80, plus the $35 key-card charge to access the building) at Anytime Fitness, you can re-bloom your wilted health with the state-of-the-art facility's diverse range of cardio and strength equipment. Exploit muscles for non-financial gain with free weights, tone legs on the treadmills, undergo a demanding tour de fitness-center via exercise bikes, or just catch up on reruns of Homeboys from Outer Space with the gym's HDTV monitors. If the flawed workout plan you concocted yourself results only in frighteningly muscular ring fingers, one of Anytime's motivating personal trainers can prescribe a regimen designed to help you meet your fitness goals during a personal-training session ($55). For an even swifter kick in the shants, drop in for one class of boot camp (your first class is free)—an intense combination of cardio, resistance, stretching, and a range of challenging movements and exercises. When you've finished sculpting your flesh-statue, purify yourself of sweat and fried-cheese memories in Anytime's private restrooms and showers.
People mainly emulate bats when they dress up for Halloween, but students at Anahata Yoga Center imitate the flying mammals year-round. During the center's Bat aerial yoga classes, yogis hang upside down from seven hammocks, decompressing their spines and tapping into hard-to-access core strength as warm temperatures allow for maximum flexibility. Basic Bat aerial yoga classes are suitable for beginners, while intermediate and advanced Bat aerial yoga sessions see experienced students spending more time suspended in their hammocks and less time hibernating.
Built from recycled materials and sustainable cork flooring, the eco-friendly studio complements its aerial yoga courses with more traditional sessions. Slow Vinyasa-flow instruction builds strength with long holds, while Ashtanga flow centers on syncing postures with breathing in a room warmed to 85 degrees. The center also hosts family yoga sessions for both parents and kids, perfect for clans looking to bond through exercise.