In 1976, educator, musician, and kinesiologist Robin Wes opened The Little Gym based on his new take on physical education. His curriculum emphasized motivating children to achieve instead of pressuring them to win. As a result, The Little Gym became a noncompetitive, positive, nurturing environment where young ones could develop physically, socially, emotionally, and intellectually. Since then, The Little Gyms have sprouted up across the country. The programs and classes aim to help kids develop skills such as rhythm and coordination, and kids camps during winter, spring, and summer breaks prevent children from creating finger paintings that express the existential ennui they feel when school is out of session.
A Zumba instructor, certified personal trainer, and dancer since he was 7 years old, FitNice owner Paul Schneider helps students tone their bodies with a variety of Zumba classes. His Zumba fitness classes help adults shed pounds as they use Latin-inspired dance moves to burn calories, whereas Aqua Zumba classes transfer the same properties to the pool for an intense and therapeutic aqua fitness workout. Paul also leads Zumbatomic classes for kids, yoga, and aqua yoga.
Curves houses a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines designed to work with women's bodies to promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and cope with arthritis. Instead of guests fiddling with weight stacks and losing momentum, the hydraulic machines use body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches each exerciser's abilities during their 30-minute workouts. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, machines use push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
At Bay Area Yoga, a medley of moldable mentors, all nationally registered with the Yoga Alliance, are on hand to help beginner benders and flexperts alike. Nirvana newbees looking to build on their basic abilities will benefit from the self-paced beginner class, which focuses on developing strength, flexibility, stamina, and concentration. More dexterous disciples can opt to flex an already malleable muscle in the advanced course, which combines precision of alignment with an awareness of the breath-body connection, or quiet a mind traumatized by work, school, and Gilbert Gottfried–narrated audio books in asana breath meditation. Loose-limbed guests stuck in rigid routines will appreciate the flexible class schedule, and Bay Area Yoga happily supplies students with any necessary class props such as mats, straps, blocks, and cupcakes carefully positioned just out of reach.
Owned and operated by the Village of Howard, this 9-hole, par 36 municipal course welcomes orb smashers with twisting water hazards, challenging bunkers, and pristine tree-lined fairways obscured by teasing turns from the tee box. Seasoned swingers will be able to navigate doubles drive carts ($15 value) with sidekicks or parole officers around the hilly landscapes of the course's varying holes, including the its signature 161-yard Hole 5, which forces golfers to tee off over a large lagoon and avoid the trash-talking trees that yell the names of obscure French films while you're trying to putt. Those famished from the fairway can return to the clubhouse for a frosty brew and a weekly fish fry, featuring salmon, grouper, walleye, and more.
For 26 years, Titletown Fitness has been toning physiques and promoting general fitness with an array of amenities. Decorated with advanced cardio equipment, such as elliptical trainers and recumbent stationary bikes, Titletown gets hearts racing without the threat of wind burn in a spotless facility that welcomes patrons of all fitness levels. A full selection of free weights and strength-training machines gives body builders a chance to reinforce muscular foundations, and a 40-foot lap pool confers full-body swimming workouts along with the feeling of weightlessness. Members can take advantage of on-site childcare for an additional charge ($1.50/child), which lets little ones play under the watchful eye of chaperones.