Visitors to the 72-foot-tall Old Cape Henry Lighthouse enjoy a day amid the rich, salty Chesapeake Bay air, exploring a towering remnant of America's early post-colonial government. Originally constructed from Aquia stone in 1792, the John McComb–designed structure was commissioned by Alexander Hamilton to protect important America-bound ships and incinerate incoming French snowballs. Today, budding historians traverse the lighthouse's rustic environs, soundtracked by the rocky crash of waves and the insightful loquations of their friendly tour guide before clambering up the cast-iron spiral stairs and drinking in the lucky lantern's daily view. Multiple Groupons may be purchased to provide a convenient group outing for families or feral packs of dog-boys. Tours shove off seven days a week beginning at 10 a.m. Check online for specific site closures.
The instructors at Studio Rio's Twisted Fitness approach their job with sensitivity and expertise that earned them 2010 and 2011 Best of Virginia Beach Reader's Choice awards. But the staff refuses to rest on its laurels, pushing themselves every day during sultry dance and cardio classes to help women of all abilities ramp up their sensuality while getting fit. The more than 35 weekly classes range from kickboxing to the signature pole dancing classes, held in an all-lady, judgment-free environment for participants with experience levels from beginning to advanced. The pole dancing sessions target specific body parts including the core and glutes and incorporate strength training, choreography, and challenging inverted poses made hyper-feminine with the inclusion of inverted knitting. The instructors reinforce that sexiness is both ageless and timeless—all classes are designed to help women of all ages over 18 to not only reshape their bodies, but boost confidence as well.
Certified by the Yoga Alliance, the instructors at Hot Yoga Studio lead daily detoxifying lessons in which they slide into peaceful poses on their studio’s bamboo floors. A wall-length window floods the studio with natural light and offers a glimpse of the world outside, and tall mirrors reflect the yogis as they lead their classes inside a heated environment. This steamy setting purges toxins from the body and allows practitioners to sink more deeply into each stretch.
During the studio’s more intense classes, students cycle through up to 30 postures that release oxygenated blood to organs, which can lead to more efficient living. After class, full-service locker rooms await with showers, shampoo, and blow-dryers. The studio’s shelves are also stocked with towels, mats, organic mat cleaners, and artisanal soaps made with goat's milk and moisture from the clouds that the instructors levitate on.
Founder Isa Cohen can describe Tula Adventure Sports' mission with a single word: balance. The company's staff draw from certifications and internships as teeter-totters to create balance of mind, balance with nature, and balance aboard various watercrafts. The kayaks, standup paddleboards, and charter boats that form their fleet let customers see Virginia Beach through new eyes. Whether on tours or self-guided adventures, these vessels pass along scenic coastlines and into the native habitats of dolphins, waterfowl, and goldfish crackers.
For more intense thrills, Tula Adventure Sports' instructors unlock the secrets to shredding across waves and launching into the air. Their adrenaline-packed activities include water skiing, wakeboarding, and kiteboarding.:m]]
At Fitness Together, getting fit involves getting focused and fired up to achieve. Here, certified personal trainers guide clients of all skill levels through motivating boot-camps and exercise programs designed to meet goals loftier than a giraffe’s basketball hoop. To help their charges torch calories and tone muscles as efficiently as possible, the trainers incorporate evidence-based training methods, such as intervals, tempos, and fartlek, into each fitness regimen. Filled with cardio challenges and resistance training, workouts are tailored to individual needs and paired with nutrition tips that help the body build lean muscle. In-studio sessions take place in a private, spa-like studio, flush with grey and lime-green walls and functional training tools such as medicine balls, kettlebells, and gymnastics rings.
Julie Fabing Burleson and Suzy Vinson Nettles feel that the kitchen is just another place for kids to flex their creativity. They opened Young Chefs Academy to provide kids aged 3–18 with cooking programs targeted to preschoolers and kindergarteners, elementary schoolers, and older kids ready for trickier techniques and intricate recipes. Regardless of a student’s age, he or she is always taught the pillars of home cooking, including how to be safe in the kitchen, how to properly handle and prepare food, how to bake, and how to talk down an oven that constantly overheats. While participating in the entertaining cooking lessons, kids may not even realize that each class also allows them to practice their math, reading-comprehension, and communication skills.
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