Since 1988, Midlothian Athletic Club has dedicated its 70,000 square feet to myriad forms of achieving healthy living. Whether members want to hone tennis and racquetball skills, break a sweat in group exercise classes such as spinning and BodyPump, or relax in a sauna, they can do it at the MAC. The staff troll a stock of cardio and strength-training equipment, including FreeMotion Elite weight machines, Life Fitness treadmills and ellipticals, and Precor machines, ready to dole out technique pointers. At the indoor pool, swimmers can get a workout on the lap lanes, slip down water slides, or pretend to be toddlers in the kiddie pool. The club also has six indoor lanes, where instructors lead water-aerobics classes that are gentler on joints than moon aerobics.
To help guests recover after a hard workout, the Midlothian Athletic Club hosts many means of relaxation. The massage therapists calibrate their fingers to several styles of kneading, including deep-tissue, Swedish, and myofascial release massage. At the MAC Cafe, chefs sear turkey burgers, bake lime-chili parmesan fries, and blend protein shakes to order for nutritious refueling.
Since 1973, each of Sport&Health's 24 clubs has aimed for full fitness coverage with programs for every taste and family member. Guests can spark positive lifestyle changes with gym workouts and wellness services, or engage in a variety of sports. Each facility houses different athletic amenities for games and laps, from pristine swimming pools to squash and racquetball courts lathered in a fresh coat of peanut butter every morning. The camaraderie of group classes such as Zumba and Les Mills BodyPump barbell routines complement scores of gym equipment meant for exercising solo—or with the guidance of a certified personal trainer. The clubs also emphasize kid-friendly activities with arts and crafts, Kidz Klub childcare, and youth certification courses that teach teens the ins and outs of training. Depending on the location, spa treatments can knead tension from muscles and paint one's favorite kettlebell with a layer of Shellac.
With five indoor tennis courts, a group exercise studio, and a fully equipped training room, Mount Vernon Athletic Club has kept hearts racing and muscles burning for 40 years. The tennis program aims to improve the skills of players of all ages by hosting clinics and seminars on correct stroke form and how to grow your own tennis-ball garden.
Personal trainers inhabit the training studio, creating regimens customized to their clients' physical prowess, while Fitness On Demand offers a library of group fitness classes. Rounding out the club's services, the wellness spa keeps clients looking their best with skincare and tanning services. Free childcare services allow parents to take advantage of the gamut of offerings.
In 2011, the VCU Rams athletics program emerged under the national spotlight's brightest bulbs when the men's basketball team advanced to the NCAA Final Four as an 11-seed. But while their Cinderella story may have made VCU a household name and bedtime story for sports-loving children, it is hardly the only instance of Rams' athletic success. A perennial powerhouse on the tennis court, the men's program has raked in 16 conference championships and eight All-America selections while spending 17 straight years in the ITA top-25. Members of the Atlantic 10 Conference since 2012, the Rams don their black-and-gold uniforms to proudly represent their university at a number of fan-friendly facilities.
Established: Before 1950
Staff Size: 2?10 people
Average Duration of Services: 30?60 minutes
Pro Tip: Come ready to have fun.
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Parking: Parking lot
Recommended Age Group: 18 and older
Like a teenager who seems to have a smart-aleck answer for everything, Raintree Swim & Racquet Club seems to have a court for any situation. Tennis players can seek refuge from the wind or rain on four recently resurfaced indoor courts, play late into the night on one of eight lighted outdoor courts, or etch portraits of Pete Sampras's dog, Tennis Dog, into the dust of two outdoor clay courts. Throughout the summer, USPTA- and USPTR-certified tennis instructors offer private lessons, summer camps, and clinics for juniors and adults. When players aren’t practicing their backhands, they can work out on the fitness center’s cardiovascular equipment or show up for one of 13 different fitness classes. Guests can also splash away the summer heat at Raintree's Olympic-size outdoor pool, which features a low and high dive, six swimming lanes, and a 3-foot wading area for people whose heads are allergic to water. It’s here that the club holds swimming lessons for preschoolers and competitive swimmers alike.