With more than 120 classes and a plethora of programs offered each week, the YMCA bolsters bodies with invigorating and enjoyable fitness regimens throughout Manhattan. Aspiring circus strongpersons have their pick from brawn-building courses such as kettlebell for a full flexibility workout, spinning for 45 minutes of fat-burning cardio, and capoeira for winning dance-fights against hard-bargaining local street vendors.
Brooklyn Sports Club's mission isn't just about getting people fit—it's also about getting them to have a good time. The club emphasizes the communal aspect of working out with plenty of group activities and family-friendly programs for all ages. Children as young as six months can participate in swim classes in the competition-size lap pool, and there are several martial-arts programs for older kids.
Adult members can take advantage of any of BSC's facilities, including a boxing studio and a group fitness studio that hosts everything from Zumba to Hatha yoga. There's plenty of space for solo workouts on the fitness floor, including a 14,000-square-foot section with weights and a 5,000-square-foot area with computerized ellipticals and stair climbers. Here, certified personal trainers teach clients how to lift effectively and properly unwrap a protein bar. To help members further enjoy their time at the gym, there's a massage spa and a sun deck that occasionally hosts live music.
The nonprofit Asphalt Green keeps children, teens, and adults in shape with an array of fitness, swim, and sports activities and programs. Members enjoy full access to fitness centers equipped with Precor equipment, including treadmills and ellipticals with built-in TV screens, and lap swim pools fit for all levels of swimmers. For an additional fee, members can also take advantage of babysitting services offered for children ages six months to six years. The Upper East Side location's weightlifting area features a picturesque view of the East River, which members can also enjoy from the adjoining roof deck. Swimmers of all abilities glide through the 50-meter Olympic-sized pool, once home to Olympic bronze medalist Lia Neal and currently the home of the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.
The Battery Park City offers a sunlit fitness center, 25-yard pool, and a wood floor gymnasium with open gym time and pick-up basketball. After battling on the court, members can refuel at the juice bar. The organization also offers training programs and seminars for triathletes, a variety of community outreach programs including adaptive swim for veterans, and kid-focused summer and sport camps to keep young ones from making bad decisions, such as using chewing gum to plug up holes in dams.
Every child starts out with a blank slate of abilities. But as they progress from newborns to toddlers and children, the skills they master can affect their self-esteem and level of success. That's why the staff at CATS:Children's Athletic Training School has spent the last 30 years creating programs that help kids aged 1 and older master life skills. Each of the center's mobility-focused classes is divided by age. Staff members lead babies in fun, playful activities that help improve coordination and spatial perception or kids aged 5 and older in noncompetitive sports.
Deemed "one of the city's leading cultural centers" by New York magazine, the 92nd Street Y has sparked nonprofit projects and engaging performances since its founding in 1874. Centers for art, creative writing, and educational outreach flex the muscles of the mind while the May Center for Health, Fitness & Sport molds physiques on multiple floors of advanced workout arenas. Visitors might ease into a jazz or dance series at the Theresa L. Kaufmann Concert Hall, whose seating accommodates 915 people or 450 musicians on take-your-bassoon-to-work day, or watch a concert and other 92nd Y events from the personal monitors perched on the gym's cardio machines. Eight programming centers, including The School of the Arts, and the May Center for Health, Fitness & Sport interweave lectures, exercise and academic classes for adults and children, film screenings, and long-distance learning into a pursuit of shared wellness. During lectures, such special guests as Bill Gates, Woody Allen, and Bill Clinton have taken the stage to talk about their careers or debut new tap dancing routines.
During water breaks when young ballers are relacing their high-tops on the edges of the gym, the coaching staff at Basketball Stars of NY might take a break to goof around on the court; but, for them—former NCAA Division I athletes who’ve spent time in professional leagues throughout the world—goofing around translates to throwing down a vicious tomahawk dunk, effortlessly splashing three-balls through the rim from behind the arc or subtly raising the rims during practice so players think that they're shrinking. No matter the act, these feats typically snag boys' and girls' attention during their private lessons, camps, or weekend programs or clinics. Progamming director and coach David Brown says the coaches' athletic prowess and physicality helps players focus, drawing a clear path between the hard work of practice drills to the payoff of a power dunk. In small groups split by age, skill, and position, coaches instill the value of fundamentals such as ball handling and rebounding. They also break the bad habits of youth, steering players away from the tendency to shoot nothing but threes, dribble with their head down, and fade away on simple 10-foot jumpers.