When the treadmill incline is at 90 degrees, your fingerprints are etched into the dumbbell grips, and you start talking to the exercise balls, it’s time to pursue a new way to challenge your body. The staff at VIP Women’s Dance invites ladies of all shapes and ages to fill that need with a dance, acrobatic, strength, and aerobic workout performed on a vertical pole. In their intimate studio, 11 brass poles line the hardwood floor surrounded by striped pink walls and black ceilings. During each 45-minute class, ladies try out new dance moves, spin on the pole, and do push-ups, all while learning to support their entire frame with their lower- or upper-body strength. In addition to group classes, the studio also hosts private classes and instructor-led private parties, divulging the sultry art forms of burlesque and belly dance.
The instructors at Lu Lu’s Pottery help students transform their talents into tableware through a variety of techniques and classes. Use glass remnants to recreate unforgettable scenes from Footloose on tabletops in the tiled-tables class ($50+), or brighten up the path to a backyard outhouse by enrolling in the stepping-stones class ($15+). Retired wedding DJs can repurpose their spinning skills in the individual wheel-throwing class ($50), creating receptacles large enough to hold their vast memories of the bunny hop, and homeowners with difficult soil can create a tree sculpture ($40) to replicate absent foliage. Classes last two to eight days and include one to two firings, tools and clay, and expert guidance. Call to inquire about current offerings and to reserve your spot in class.
Fitzone for Women’s 14 locations across Florida, Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan beckon ladies of all ages and fitness levels to sweat side-by-side during supportive group classes and workouts. Each location hosts 20-minute circuit-training sessions that incorporate Nautilus machines, which increase weight in 1-pound increments, rather than the traditional 10 pounds. Fitness professionals work hand-in-hand with members to design a personalized workout plan, while group classes get bodies in shape with high-energy sessions of Zumba, strength training, kickboxing, and running away from a giant boulder rolling downhill. Fitzone for Women’s specially designed windows simultaneously let in sunlight and block views into studio from the outside, and its locker rooms have private dressing stations for an extra ounce of comfort.
For a stationary object, the ice rink at Lakeland Arena sure does go through a lot of transformations. Some days, it flattens out as a glistening stage for the triple axels and pirouettes of local figure skaters. Other days, it morphs into a speedy battleground for youth and adult hockey leagues, or a speedy playground for community members. And on days in between, the icy surface hosts a number of learn-to programs helmed by expert instructors. One such program, Atoms, teaches kids aged 4-12 the basics of hockey as well as the more advanced steps required to outsmart an army of sentient Zambonis.
Michigan College of Beauty's licensed professionals pass on their beauty know-how to aspiring aestheticians and cosmetologists. In addition to completing their course work and exams, students gain hands-on experience pampering clients with nail, hair, waxing, and other salon services. At the student salon, senior beauty students perform all services under the watchful eyes of state-licensed cosmetologists, who ensure that clients receive professional-quality care and that students are using only No. 2 scissors.
Marketti Academy of Cosmetology's 10,000-square-foot facility houses student aestheticians, manicurists, and cosmetologists who perfect their trades with hands-on training. Instructors lend one-on-one attention and hand-to-hand high-fives to each pupil, creating an intimate learning environment that celebrates individuality. In the clinic, 50 students hone their skills on actual clients. The burgeoning professionals perform inexpensive facials, Redken coloring treatments, mani-pedis, and other salon services.