At the age of 14, Contra Mestre Andre was introduced to the sport of capoeira—the ancient Brazilian martial-art form—in his homeland of Brazil. After traveling to the states, Andre began showcasing capoeira's explosive kicks and effortless backflips for Sony, Red Bull, and Fashion Institute of Technology events. Andre also gained experience as an Equinox trainer, obtained a black belt in jujitsu, and was a mixed-martial-arts fighter in the 2008 Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Now, Andre’s career has come full circle as he shares his love for capoeira in Nago Academy’s spacious studio. He and his team of supportive trainers help students meet diverse fitness goals by offering five different types of classes, including cardio kickboxing and fitness. Zumba sessions fuse upbeat tunes with Latin dance moves for a sweat-inducing cardio workout, whereas a Zone Fitness class kicks choreography up a notch by adding kettlebells with resistance training. During capoeira sessions, two people in the center of a circle pantomime the movements of one-on-one combat by exchanging rhythmic kicks, full-powered spins, and up-to-date insurance information.
When Lesley Powell founded Movements Afoot, she knew the fitness world was changing—in line with her own evolving views on the necessity for a grounded, whole-body philosophy of movement. After working in a physical therapy office for the better part of a decade, she discovered Pilates as a means of rehabilitation. Movements Afoot was founded on that discovery, and everything that goes on at the studio focuses on integrating breath with movement and spinal alignment.
Classes rely mainly on reformer Pilates and tower to strengthen bodies. In every variety of class, experienced teachers customize the core-strengthening lessons to each student's needs, whether they're exercising for osteoporosis rehabilitation or athletic training. They also encourage students to follow in their footsteps with a Balanced Body teacher-certification course for people hoping to launch a fitness career or fill in one last space on their wall of certificates.
The 39 acres of Queens Botanical Garden are a lush oasis amidst the city's expanses of asphalt and concrete. Inside its themed gardens, roses burst with colorful blooms, native grasses wave in the breeze, and a Fragrance Walk fills with floral aromas. Currently, the garden features more than 25 living exhibits that showcase native plant species, habitats ranging from woodlands to meadows, and even sustainable landscaping practices, such as methods for naturally controlling storm water runoff. Even the buildings embrace the concept of sustainability, featuring a rainwater collection roof, a geothermal and cooling system, green roof, recycled steel columns, energy-efficient windows, and furniture made from renewable bamboo.
For a serene escape from city life, the botanical garden encourages visitors to walk along the trails and enjoy the displays, which shift depending on the season. This environment is meant to be touched as well as seen. Throughout the year they host events such as seasonal festivals along with educational programs that give school groups an opportunity to learn about the surrounding environment.
Named a Bronx beer nerd's best friend by The New York Times, The Bronx Ale House features a rotating cast of ales, ciders, lagers, and stouts to fill glasses, goblets, rubber boots, and eventually mouths. On their on tap and bottled beer menus bespectacled beer lovers will find a variety of New York brews such as Blue Point Toasted Lager and Ithaca Flower Power IPA, as well as international mainstays including Guinness and Chimay Blanc. Once you've made your sudsy selection, pair pale ales with classic bar grub such as sliced beer sausages, fried mac 'n' cheese, hot wings, burgers, fries, and more.
Within the multihued walls of Kidville’s indoor playland, tykes expand their minds, network with members of their peer group, and deplete their vast energy reserves. Babies, toddlers, and kids 6 or younger delve into classes developed by Kidville’s early-childhood-development gurus. Burgeoning Beethovens can swivel their hips, flex their sing-along muscles, and edit their massive music manuscripts during one of Kidville’s music and dance classes, or enlist in one of the art classes to create a piece that captures their inner rage toward broccoli. Fun and fit gym classes let tots run, roll, and hover through gauntlets of plush blocks and spongy play mats. Clasping hands and scampering legs can also roam freely through Kidville’s sprightly indoor playspace, though all munchkins must be supervised by a parent, guardian, or trustworthy primate.
With work that has drawn accolades from such notable publications as the New York Times, the Paul Taylor Dance Company has expressed the trials and tribulations of mankind with elegant beauty and fierce honesty since 1954. Dancing doyens mold a full show from a series of short performances, gifting the audience all the variety and brevity of an audio mash-up of the decade's best shampoo commercials.