Get your running shoes out folks, this Saturday marks Fitness and the New York Road Runners family races in Central Park. Before you reject the notion of running a marathon, there are a few options for every family member. For the older set, there is a 4-miler on East Drive and 68th, which we predict will be competitive. Afterwards, NYRR will send the kids out dashing for a short version intended for toddlers up to pre-teens. Those people who just don’t delight in running, there are free Pure Barre total body workouts and the awesome SurfSE wave-surfing simulator to try out.
“A lot of times, kids get into a sport where parents have expectations. Here, it’s just a game,” said Alissa Schmelkin, co-founder of the newly opened Gaga Center on the Upper East Side. “You don’t have to live up to standards.”
Gaga may be “just a game.” But played in octagonal pens – though rules can vary, the basic aim is to avoid getting hit below the knee – it offers a high-energy workout that kids seem to love, building endurance and flexibility, according to general manager Avi Gordon.
The Gaga Center – the only such venue in Manhattan – offers coed groups for kids under 7 and for 7- to 10-year-olds. The game – the ball is soft – is well suited toward the littler kids, though their games often devolve into simple passing of the ball.