Splash! Synthetic Ice Skating nestles its eco-friendly synthetic rink amid 18 verdant acres of pirate-themed water-park facilities. Made of interlocking plastic panels, the rink, like a snowman built from Legos, entertains kids and resists melting regardless of temperature or SpaghettiOs spills. Tykes can strap on rental skates and traverse the petite arena's lubricated surface for as long as eight hours, pulling up at the sidelines to replenish energy and warm bellies with coffee or hot chocolate. During special events on December 10 and December 20, kids reel around the rink with renowned philanthropist Santa Claus, most famous for his work genetically engineering luminous reindeer noses.
Favoring small group swimming lessons targeted to all ages, The Aquatic Zone's instructors are trained in the Aquatic Concepts, Inc. method, and use positive reinforcement to teach beginning swimmers the basics of water comfort, body balance, and movement. Once budding amphibians have gotten their foot-flippers wet, they'll try out various strokes and other swimming must-knows such as wall kicks, breathing patterns, and psychic communication with sea life. Lessons are available for children as young as six months and are offered at multiple skill levels for every age group. The goals at each stage are clearly presented and taught, ensuring that the time spent in the pool is always productive and goal-oriented. Awards such as toys, certificates of completion, and surgically implanted gills are bestowed upon students when all the elements of a particular level are mastered. Sessions typically last a half hour, and the saltwater chlorination pools keep water clean without irritating eyes or skin.
For more than three decades, locally owned Spectrum Athletic Clubs have aimed to create a resort-like experience for patrons with upscale perks and personalized care. After workouts, gym-goers can avail themselves of unlimited towel service and change in comfortable locker rooms. Other amenities include saunas, steam rooms, healthy cafes, specialized workout areas, and complimentary Internet access.
In addition, racquetball courts let athletes improve their game independently, and patrons can sweat solo on cardiovascular equipment with individual viewing screens. Group classes, more than 1,200 of which are held daily, include Zumba, Pilates, Body Combat, and CXWorx sessions and enable trainees to draw motivation from each other or from each exercise studio's complimentary tank of moxie. The Spectrum Kids Club gives kids a place to play while adults work out and hosts such events as pool parties and pizza parties throughout the year.
Boot Camp H20 is not your average water-fitness class. In fact, if it were possible to work up a sweat in a pool, this is where it would happen. Each fast-paced, high-intensity, waterlogged workout combines strength and cardio training to build muscle and burn fat quickly. Led by a qualified instructor, these challenging classes—which take place in an indoor pool—incorporate swimming strokes, water polo, modified plyometrics, water aerobics, and strength exercises.
The instructors at Waterworks Aquatics believe anyone can learn to swim, no matter their age. This belief drives each instructor-led session, accommodating everyone from babies as young as 3 months old who are just getting acquainted with the water, to older children learning more advanced strokes and adults learning to swim for the first time. The instructors focus on teaching stroke techniques that utilize muscle memory and rhythms that are easy to grasp, while cultivating a fun, relaxed environment to help reduce students' anxiety. They lead private, semiprivate, group, and Parent and Me lessons, all of which move at the pace of the swimmers' abilities. Beyond bestowing swimmers with efficient form, the lessons also help them stay safe in the water by teaching them how to control their breathing, reduce unnecessary movement, and stay completely still in the presence of pool krakens to avoid begin seen.
In the middle of The Wave Waterpark, people lie upon colorful rafts that float gently down the lazy river. It’s a serene way to soak up some rays and keep cool. But in the center of the lazy river, separated by raised concrete and a foot bridge, an adventure awaits: the Flow Rider. This simulated surfable ocean wave dares visitors to try and hang ten without falling off their boards into the safe, if rollicking waters.
These two attractions represent the broad spectrum of activity at The Wave, a family-friendly destination equally suited to mild-mannered relaxation, adventurous fun, or something in between. Other rides include a tangle of waterslides, such as the Slam Dunk, an enclosed-tunnel body slide with plenty of twists, and Rippity’s Rainforest, a kid-friendly playground gushing with fountains and waterfalls.
From April to September, lifeguards teach swim lessons in the park’s competition pool for kids as young as 6 months, as well as adults. The Wave is also an ideal spot for birthday parties, with rental cabanas that can fit as many as 30 people or one enormous birthday clown, and a Surf Spot Grill that refuels revelers with burgers, burritos, and pizza.
Scuba.com stocks its digital shelves with thousands of scuba and snorkeling products from reputable manufacturers and offers a full manufacturer's warranty on all products. A pair of blue or silver H2O Andros full-foot dive fins ($21.95) facilitates speedy propulsion across sparkling waterways, and a Genesis Quadra dive mask ($24.95) allows divers to garner panoramic views of oceanic life and Atlantis's fabled art-deco skyscrapers. Diving devotees can invest in a warm-water wetsuit package, which ropes in an entire wardrobe of scuba gear including a wetsuit, a hood, boots, and gloves ($172.80+). Wearers of Sherwood Edge snorkels ($19.95+) gaze upon stunning underwater vistas while hovering near enough to the surface to grab some fresh air or crawl back onto the boat in the event of delinquent dolphins. Or flaunt maritime hobbies on T-shirts ($7.95+), hats ($6.95+), and jackets ($19.95+). Scuba.com offers free shipping on select orders more than $25.