Situated along the banks of the Brazos River and down the road from the trails and paths of Cameron Park, Outdoor Waco connects the community to Waco's most exciting outdoor adventures. Whether they're selling a bike, repairing a flat, or renting out a tandem kayak, the knowledgeable staff members pride themselves in their fervent love for the outdoors and all the cool gear that comes with it. This same gear awaits within their showroom, waiting to outfit customers in search of bikes, watercraft, apparel, and equipment.
For more than 15 years, Chris Brennan has taught his students how to fight, and he certainly knows how: He's battled for UFC belts and titles since 1998. Brennan helms Next Generation Mixed Martial Arts with a staff of decorated instructors who dole out lessons in wrestling, muay thai, Brazilian jujitsu, and boot camp. Although they prime future UFC fighters for the big stage, they also teach high-intensity fitness classes for adults as well as coordination- and discipline-building classes for kids.
"You can do it," is not just an empty phrase at Texas Tumblers Gymnastics, it's the cornerstone of their entire philosophy. The coaches teach their students confidence from the get-go as they work their way through complicated recreational gymnastics or prepare for competitions. They also teach dance to kids ages 3 and older, as well as helming a program called AllStars cheerleading. The positive teaching philosophy also carries over to classes for adults. The fitness program for fully grown students includes circuit training and dance cardio classes, but does not include lessons on how to pole vault over cubicle walls.
A gentle breeze ripples the waters of Pat Cleburne Lake before continuing eastward across the fairways of Cleburne Golf Links, rustling golfers' hair along the way and holding downwind drives aloft for an extra second. The lakeside breeze is a constant challenge at the 7,068-yard, par 72 course, testing players' ability to counteract crosswinds, adjust their yardage for shots hit into the wind, and ignore sand wedges' pleas to fly kites. Water hazards also come into play on multiple holes, including three par 3s where tee shots must clear water to make it to the green in regulation. The Links Grille awaits just beyond the 18th green, catering to hungry golfers with burgers, adult libations, and patio seating, from which guests can look out on the course and daydream about domesticating golf carts as housepets.
At Sigma Performance Swimming, dedicated instructors coach everyone from toddlers taking their first splash to adults training for professional trials. The waters in 25-yard indoor and outdoor pools are churned to a froth as swimmers work to hone the school’s three focuses: technique, speed, and endurance. With a ratio of five students to one instructor, pupils are granted ample individual attention as they learn basic aquatic strokes. Students can consult footage of their form during an underwater-stroke analysis to further refine their technique. As their talents grow, swimmers can join Sigma’s nationally competitive teams or set personal goals, prepare for races, and perfect their sailfish Halloween costumes.
Running in heels is usually a hassle, but at the annual Stiletto Stampede, it’s a sport. There, women sprint 100 yards in their favorite stilettos, or even, as one past participant did, in chunky platforms with breast cancer awareness’s pink ribbon drawn on the heel. The event benefits breast cancer research and awareness. The Survivor Stampede, for example, is for breast cancer survivors, while the Boot Scoot is for racers in cowboy boots, rather than boots that have recently become self-aware.