In his tae kwon do classes, former world welterweight kickboxing champion Eric Melton covers techniques from basic stances and blocks to black-belt sparring. In another room, members of the competitive gymnastics team hone their flips and flexibility in year-round preparation for bouts against rival gyms. The competitive streak continues on in the cheerleading team, with whom decorated cheer directors harness national-title experience to perfect the squad's choreography and teamwork.
Along with classes with a competitive bent, the Mpact staff hosts sessions for kids who just want to try out new activities and have fun such a Nerf Wars where kids engage in friendly nerf football battles or open gym sessions. A parent-and-child gymnastics class introduces youngsters to obstacle courses and trampolines, and extreme tumbling's foam pits and padded mats train students of all skill levels to jump and flip more fearlessly than a blindfolded dolphin in a shark tank. For performing pupils, Mpact also teaches aerial-acrobatics classes and Demo Team programs, where kids learn how to deftly handle martial-arts weapons, including nunchaku and staffs.
For more than 26 years, the fitness experts at Push Pedal Pull have shared their knowledge with customers purchasing new and used muscle-pumping equipment. The staff happily equips exercisers with brawn-building devices for home, commercial, and hovercraft-based gyms, such as treadmills, ellipticals, and free weights from brands including Precor, Everlast, and Spri. Push Pedal Pull’s refurbished selection of used equipment from health clubs and commercial fitness facilities rotates regularly, stocking workout rooms for discounted prices. Manufacturer-certified equipment technicians repair malfunctioning equipment according to manufacturer standards and stock spare parts in the store to speed up repairs so customers can return to running, lifting, and astrally projecting as soon as possible.
Equipment from such brands as STX, Brine, and Warrior fills more than 2,000 square feet of space at Lacrosse Nashville. There, stick-handlers can outfit themselves for the season by stocking up on helmets, pads, and shorts or having a trusty stick re-strung in one of 12 different styles, from rebound-resistant, goalie-friendly designs to deep pockets ideal for carrying the ball or storing the coach's keys. The store also orchestrates competitive leagues as well as camps and clinics in which players can hone their skills under the tutelage of all-Americans and Division I coaches.
The rustle of feet swiftly move over grass as quick successions of pops echo off the sides of gutted vans and cars. Over the splatter of shots fired, orders are yelled out as teams communicate strategy. These sounds are music to the ears of all players that patrol the hallowed grounds of Nashville Paintball. The five fields present visitors with obstacles such as inflatable Xs, large industrial piping, and old cars targeted by paintballs of games past. While Nashville Paintball's fields received an expert's touch when designed, they cater to players of all levels, even offering games arranged specifically for beginners. Keeping the sport even more accessible, they rent paintball markers and gear and don't check for abstract art degrees at the door.
Upon walking into Beauty Escentuals, clients find themselves surrounded by more than 20 different haircare brands—from Paul Mitchell to Pureology to Moroccanoil. The same products that neatly line the retail shelves also star in salon services, where stylists craft chic dos or use accent foils to highlight cheekbones and pupil-less eyes. But hair isn't the only focus at the salon. Clients are also pampered with waxing and threading services as well as presented with a collection of OPI polishes, handbags, and BaByliss styling tools.
A bicycle store is not the first place one would expect to find a diaper-changing station. Luckily, Eastside Cycles' claim of catering to families isn't just lip service— youngster-toting customers can take care of the wardrobe requirements of their charges or borrow a toy from the shop's stash of playthings as they browse a rotating selection of handpicked rides from Cannondale, Kona, and Surly. Mechanics unleash a jangling chorus of tools as they repair and fine-tune bikes while owners pass the time browsing free WiFi and TV. The staff also leads groups of riders out into the sunshine on weekend mornings, revealing new routes and fresh air that hasn't been sitting in a park ranger's pockets.