In 1976, educator, musician, and kinesiologist Robin Wes longed for a children's gym that prioritized personal growth over competition. Unveiled at a time when physical-education classes pushed students to focus almost exclusively on winning, Robin's program was swiftly adopted and is now used in more than 300 Little Gyms worldwide. Robin still pens original music to accompany lessons, which engage whippersnappers 4 months old–12 years old with gymnastics, dance, karate, and parent and child activities.
Each of The Little Gym's classes introduces simple movements that sharpen motor skills and set brains whirring, allowing kids to progress at their own pace until they can finally build a computer out of macaroni and glitter. Staff members strive to build a base for lifelong social skills and self-assurance with each exercise, including activities rooted purely in fun, such as summer camps or birthday parties, which helped The Little Gym to earn title of #1 Birthday Chain in Parents magazine.
No Excuse Workout is a full-service health and fitness club that provides a motivating and friendly gym atmosphere, as well as up-to-date equipment and classes. At this functional space, gym-goers can run on treadmills, climb up Stair Masters, and lift free weights before punching away stress at the onsite boxing ring. Five personal trainers help clients get customized and tangible results, and there's plenty of free group classes taught in the studio. The teachers help students dance away calories in upbeat Zumba classes, or try circuit training or yoga—there's even a belly dancing class. The gym further demonstrates its ability to accommodate diverse guests with a relaxing onsite sauna, plenty of resistance-training equipment and tanning beds, and a pro shop. Here, patrons can buy exercise equipment and nutritional supplements—which, if bought in large enough quantities, can be lifted just like dumbbells for strength training.
Open year round, Capital Clubhouse is an all-ages, 90,000-square-foot facility wholly dedicated to sports and recreation. The multisport arena can easily transform into a soccer, volleyball, dodge-ball, or inline-hockey court, allowing it to host all manner of team-based events from intramural games to kids' parties. Dasher boards that spent their youth exchanging quick embraces with Washington Capitals players at the former US Airways Arena now comfortably surround Capital Clubhouse's NHL-sized ice arena, which is kept cold year round thanks to 11 miles of underground cooling pipe and a steady diet of popsicles. When not supervising skaters from the comfort of the heated balcony, guests can race lithe mountain goats to the top of the center's 30-foot rock-climbing wall, where five different routes offer challenges for wall walkers of all ages and experience levels.
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.
Sometimes it takes more than medication to heal. That’s why acupuncturist Linda Wentz founded Holistic Touch Center and its mission to help hasten the healing process by offering services that extend beyond the body to incorporate the needs of the mind and spirit. There, Silvy Franco, the center's holistic esthetician, blends years of skin care experience with training in natural health and energy medicine to produce treatments that restore the body while rebalancing the mind and spirit. She reads each client's skin like a map, plotting out appropriate treatment courses that are delivered as part of one of the center's rituals, which include components ranging from traditional facials and detoxifying peels to Vitamin C infusions and cold stone massages. In addition to performing these rituals, Silvy also helps clients adapt these treatments for use in at-home skin care regimens, keeping epidermises glowing and well-adjusted to changes in seasonal weather.
Those interested in acupuncture may enlist in Kirsten Jacob, a trained herbalist who received her Masters of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine from Han University of Traditional Medicine in Tucson, Az. In addition to specializing in facial-rejuvenation acupuncture treatments, she also possess a background in pediatric respiratory therapy as well as general family treatment. Her specialities include pediatric and family acupuncture, behavioral/learning issues, and stress reduction and internal medicine. Kirsten incorporates classical Chinese botanical therapy into her work, which includes tui na–or Chinese medical/therapeutic massage–cupping, and moxa. When she is not helping her clients attain inner peace through eastern healing techniques, she tends to her kids while indulging in reading, writing, and traveling.