Relaxing and working out don't usually go hand-in-hand, but things aren't usual at The Sports Center at Chelsea Piers. As soon as visitors set foot in the Mind Body Studio, they're set at ease by a modern lounge area, which boasts sleek bamboo floors, exposed brick walls, and sprigs of verdant plants. Inside the workout space, classes such as yoga and the barre method emphasize the mind-body connection. The Nalini Method classes also push students toward inner harmony with a combination of Pilates, aerobics, barre work, and yoga, helping students de-stress while toning limbs and burning calories without ever tossing any cheesecakes into open flames.
Sculpted into a landscape of fountains, streams, and waterfalls, the 18-hole miniature golf course at Station Sports is just is one of the attractions that entertains guests. Over at the wild west-themed paintball station, players showcase their marksmanship and quick-draw skills by firing off paintballs at moving and stationary targets. Baseballs are hurled between 30 and 90 mph inside five batting cages, while a cage for youngsters features whiffle balls flung at a more kid-friendly pace. Inside Sport Station?s arcade, pucks zip across air hockey tables, bowling balls tumble down lanes, and toes hastily tap on Dance Dance Revolution mats. To refuel after such fast-paced games, visitors can stop by the snack shack for popcorn, hot dogs, and ice cream.
Baseball is alive all year-round at All Star Indoor Batting Range Baseball & Softball Academy. Started in 1991 by three baseball fans—Kevin and Brian Gilroy and Frank Rizzo—the facility gives players the chance to practice no matter how many inches of snow or packs of rabid umpires are flurrying outside. The 15,000-square-foot sports haven boasts seven tunnel cages for practicing all aspects of the game. Other elements, such as stadium benches and 7,000 square feet of artificial turf, give the academy the feel of an indoor diamond. To help players take their skills to the next level, the academy also offers private and semiprivate lessons, and maintains a pro shop stocked with essential gear.
Matt Guiliano's Play Like a Pro packs eight hitting tunnels, four batting cages, four pitching mounds, a 90'x40' fielding area, and a 96'x40' soccer field into its 33,000 square feet. The varied areas set the stage for equally diverse play, from private baseball or softball lessons to Sports Bash camps (which cover everything from soccer to European-style handball) to Xbox gaming in the Sports Cave. Or athletes can practice their swing in the batting cages, adjusting the speed of the pitch to anywhere between 35–80 miles per hour.
At Hardball Training Center, seasoned coaches impart young players with the mental and physical fitness to excel in baseball and softball. A staff of trainers draw from extensive experience in sports at collegiate, minor-league, and major-league levels to guide pupils in proper pitching techniques, defensive strategies, hitting, and skill drills. A 16,000-square-foot, climate-controlled indoor space keeps practice running no matter the weather, and batting cages and pitching tunnels allow players to fine-tune their abilities.
Whether they're looking to build up to the precision power-hitting of a Ted Williams or the impressive mustache-growing of a Rollie Fingers, students can develop personalized training plans with coaches that cater to their specific strengths, skills, and goals. Softball and baseball teams and small groups hone fundamentals with pre-, mid-, and post-season regimens, while sessions in the gym condition athletes to perform at their peaks.
For more than 20 years, Frozen Ropes has helped improve the skills of ballplayers ranging from aspiring youngsters to Major League players all over the country. At the location in Elmsford, the 22,000-square-foot sports facility offers lessons, summer camps, and a travel league, in addition to multiple batting cages equipped with Iron Mike Pitching Machines. Skilled instructors use a tried-and-tested teaching model to help students refine techniques, learn age-appropriate conditioning drills, and improve confidence. Frozen Ropes also offers a High School to College Bound program to groom players who wish to play or heckle from the dugout at the NCAA level.