Charwood Country Club's three nine-hole courses wind through acres of thick forest, their manicured greens sticking out from the trees like polished emerald jewels. On any 18-hole combination, golfers will find plenty of challenges as they contend with sharp curves, sand traps, and roving gangs of golf carts. Speaking of carts, groups can claim one before heading out to save time and stamina on the course. Some of that extra time can be spent on a post-game detour to LC's Grille for breakfast or lunch.
Lake Murray Golf Center appeals to both putt-practitioners and full-scale iron swingers by placing a miniature course alongside nine regular holes. Quartets can take to the 18-hole miniature-golf course as many times as they desire to send spherical associates caroming toward their targets. Golf balls navigating the littler links must dodge fountains, streams, and a 15-foot waterfall that churns fresh Arnold Palmers.
A former Parelli Natural Horsemanship Professional, Katy Nichoalds teaches students to bond with their horses by building trust and communicating through non-verbal cues. Students remain on the ground at the beginning of their lessons, which lets the horse know who's giving instruction and forces it to pay attention rather than daydream about starring in the Seabiscuit sequel. Once a connection is established, students can experiment with riding without the reins and communicating with the horse through physical contact. By learning to read the horse’s body language, students can engage it in silent conversation as they work through obstacles that may include traversing trails and, eventually, jumping over fences. To round out the Natural Horsemanship curriculum, Katy also sheds light on equine subjects such as proper grooming, which extends from brushing the horse's mane to selecting the best hoof polish.
“It’s like having Mr. Rogers teach your child to swim,” said one parent who left it up to The Swim Lessons Company’s Jim Reiser to show her child the secrets of not sinking. A third-generation swim teacher and coach, Jim approaches his pupils from a gentle, comforting angle that’s especially calibrated to meet the needs of infants, preschoolers, and adults disguised as Toys 'R' Us kids, employing fun activities and drills to impart skills. His friendship with water began in elementary school, and it was a friendship destined to last. To pay for college, Jim leased the university pool and used it to train young swimmers; he went on to teach aquatic courses at the University of South Carolina and lead multiple swimmers to state championships. "The Swim Professor"—a nickname Jim earned after founding Swim Lessons University, an online learning resource loaded with educational videos—now spends his days sharing the magic of swimming with people of every age, imparting the tips and tricks they'll need to survive in a pool, from holding their breath to performing a proper backstroke and catching Marco Polo.
At its two Columbia locations, Plex Indoor Sports aims to provide complete indoor recreation with artificial-turf fields, ice arenas, inflatables, basketball courts, family entertainment center, and full-service cafe. Both facilities offer after-school programs providing access to soccer, football, and lacrosse programs, ensuring that children learn the proper techniques required to work toward goals and play safely. Total-fitness classes are also available throughout the week, highlighting invigorating methods such as yoga, Zumba, and hip-hop aerobics. The Sandhills location hosts a roller-skating rink, and the Irmo location houses an NHL regulation-sized ice rink with public skate times in between hockey games and practice sessions of the local ice-fishing team.
A 30-foot rock-climbing wall towers over the Family Entertainment Center, granting visitors an elevated view of a facility packed with wall-to-wall inflatables and family activities. Visitors can roller skate, set new high scores at the arcade, or attempt to stay atop a mechanical bull. Other attractions include bungee jumping, a rock-n-roll ride, and more.