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Meet Our Parkour Instructor!

Meet our popular Parkour Instructor, Joneil! He attends Bucks County Community College where he is majoring in both Cinematography & Business. He enjoys traveling, producing videos, and staying active, where he one day hopes to become a director and film Parkour!

What exactly is Parkour?

There are so many ways to describe it! The simplest version of what Parkour means is the art of motion. It takes aspects from martial arts and allows the person to express themselves in a very creative and unique way.

How long have you been doing Parkour?

I have been practicing Parkour for the last 5 years!

How long have you worked at the NAC?

I have worked at the NAC for the last 3 years and I absolutely love it.

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What is the most rewarding part of being a Parkour Instructor?

The most rewarding part is being able to do what I love everyday. I was able to connect with the kids over the last 3 years, get to know their families and watch them succeed the more they learn the skills.

What do you love most about Parkour?

There are too many things to name! I love that you are able to make it your own. You can express yourself in anyway you want. There are no rules, it is all about free movement, being carefree and being able to do something I am so passionate about.

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We love having Joneil at the NAC!

For more information about youth programs, head to our website!

Click here to view our Youth Programs schedule!

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First Week of Fall Session Recap

Our youth programs fall session has begun!

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Youth programs at the NAC offers both noncompetitive and competitive programs for children ages 1 through 12.  Programs are designed to appeal to all children with their individual interests in mind. We offer a variety of different classes including Gymnastics, Kidfit, Dance and Taekwondo. Each session lasts about 11 weeks, which gives kids the opportunity to try new activities, meet new friends and work on skills they have learned prior.

This past week, we offered a ton of exciting classes for a range of age groups, levels and interests. From dance classes, fitness classes, cooking classes and more, we had a great first week of our fall session and are looking forward to the upcoming weeks.

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Youth Programs classes are open to both NAC members and the general public. If you still need to sign up for classes, stop by the Program Desk! For more information, email heather@newtownathletic.com or click here to check out our fall session brochure.

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April Showers: Rainy Day Activities

We all know “April showers bring May flowers,” but the often unpredictable weather can really put a damper on your fitness plans. Plans for family walks after dinner, bike rides on the weekends or even just a game of catch can get rained out and replaced with lazy days on the couch. While you wait for warmer weather, don’t let those April showers ruin your fitness plans.

With these fun indoor activities, kids can work up a sweat without getting wet!

Musical Kitchen Chairs: Even with chairs, there’s not much sitting involved in this classic game. Invite a few friends over and pump up the music. Kids dance around to their favorite tunes, but when the music stops everyone must find a seat. Those left standing become DJs and get to pick the songs. Last player sitting is the winner!

Commercial Cardio: We know that rainy days mean snuggling up on the couch to watch your favorite show. Work in your workout during those pesky commercial breaks. Kids can do some easy moves like butt kicks, jumping jacks, high knees and more! Every time the commercial changes, switch moves to mix it up.

Partner YogaParents and children can team up to master some cool partner yoga poses. Yoga is a great way to stretch out and get your muscles working. Check out some cool poses for parents and kids to do together here.

Lazer Mazes: Kids will love pretending to be a secret agent or spy with this fun fitness game. All you need is a roll of string and some tape to create your lazer challenge. In a hallway, tape the string to various places on the wall to create a maze. The string is the lazer beam and your child’s task is to get through to the other side without touching the string. This will require them to use their muscles in a controlled way. Once you’ve won you can start over with a different maze for hours of fun!

Charades: This classic game is a great way to get off the couch and moving around. Divide into teams or play as individuals. Kids will have to move around and get active for the other players to guess their card.

What fun ways do you stay active on a rainy day? 

 

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#TeamTuesday – Holly Costanzo

How well do you know the NAC Youth Programs staff? Each week we will be highlighting a different instructor, coordinator, or manager from the youth programs department to help you get to know our team! Want to nominate your favorite youth programs instructor? Fill out the form below!

This week’s #TeamTuesday team member is Holly! Holly is the Kids Club coordinator at the NAC, getting her start three and a half years ago as a member of the Kids Club team. She grew up in Newtown with her parents and two sisters. When she was younger, Holly participated in competitive figure skating for 15 years! Currently, Holly still lives in Newtown with her husband and three children.

Get to know Holly!

1. What is your favorite part of your job?

The best part of my job is working with the children. It is amazing to watch the kids grow up and develop.

2. If you won the lottery, what would you do?

First, I would secure my children’s futures by setting up an education fund for all three. I would also want to make smart investments and donate to the American Diabetes Association–a cause close to my heart. A bigger house would also be nice too!

3. What is a skill you would like to learn and why?

I have always wanted to be able to sing. I love to sing but many around me would agree…….. I shouldn’t.

4. If you could trade lives with one person for an entire day, who would you choose?

This question is hard for me to answer because i truly love my life as is. However if I had to choose, it would be Carrie Underwood for her singing ability, beautiful hair and extensive cowboy boot collection.

5. If you could time travel, would you go to the past or the future?

I would go back in time so I could see my beloved great grandmother again.

6. What is your proudest accomplishment?

Personally, my proudest accomplishment is my family. I am blessed to have a wonderful husband and three amazing children. Professionally, I am so proud of how far the NAC Kids Club has come in the last few months. All of the recent changes have made the kids club not only better for the kids, but a more fun and rewarding place to work.

7. What is the best vacation you’ve ever been on?

The best vacation I have ever taken is definitely when we took my boys to Disney World. Seeing the wonder in their eyes was truly amazing.

Want to nominate a member of the Youth Programs staff for #TeamTuesday? Enter your nomination below!
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A Healthier Halloween

Halloween is right around the corner and that means spooky decorations, creepy costumes, and a whole lot of unhealthy snacks. For parents trying to encourage healthy choices for their children, Halloween can seem like an overwhelming challenge. While trick-or-treating focuses primarily on the consumption of candy packed with sugar, calories, and fat, there are ways that parents can help their children choose the right snacks without sacrificing the fun.

Youth Programs teamed up with NAC RD, Kelly Jones, to find some healthy whole food alternatives to the sugary snacks that are common around Halloween. Additionally, Kidfit Coordinator, Meredith Deal, has added some spooky ways for kids to get active while showing off their Halloween spirit. Check out the following ways to turn this frightfully unhealthy holiday into a fun, family event!

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Source: Spaceships & Laserbeams Blog – http://bit.ly/200oesV

Trick or Treat, What to Eat

  1. Banana Ghosts: Cut one banana in half. Take three dark chocolate chips and stick into the pointed end to make a face with two eyes and a mouth. Stick a popsicle stick in the bottom for easy eating. Bonus idea: Stick your banana ghosts in the freezer for 4 hours for a frozen dessert treat.
  2. Clementine Pumpkins: This snack is easy and delicious and can even be packed in your child’s school lunch. Peel the rind completely off of a clementine. Then cut a piece of celery to about 3 inches long. Stick the celery in the middle hole of the clemetine to create a mini pumpkin. Kids will love this naturally sweet treat and won’t even miss the candy.
  3. Ghoulish Pizza: Pizza doesn’t have to be a frightful food! Grab some low fat mozzarella cheese, whole wheat dough, and a pizza sauce not loaded with extra sugars and additives. Roll out the dough and add on the pizza sauce. Bake in a 350°F oven for 10 minutes. Use a ghost-shaped cookie cutter to slice your cheese to add some Halloween spirit. Add the ghosts onto the pizza and bake for 5 more minutes.

Check out Kelly’s “Eat Right Kids” board on Pinterest for more holiday-themed snacks that kids will love!

Fun & Festive Fitness

  1. Musical Pumpkins: An old favorite with a new twist. Placing a series of pumpkins around a large area turn on the music, have each kid hop over pumpkins one at a time, leap from style, while the music plays. There should be one less pumpkin than there are children so that when the music stops, anyone without a pumpkin is out.
  2. Freeze Dance Monsters: Turn on the Monster Mash song and have the running around like their favorite monsters: Frankenstein, Zombies, Dracula, etc. and when the music stops they have to freeze in whatever position they’re in.
  3. Vampire Tag: We start with one vampire who is “it.” The other players are running around trying to avoid being “bit.” In order to bite another player, the vampire gently squeezes the arm. If you get “bit” than you become a vampire and help tag others. The last person standing without a “bite” becomes the vampire in the next round.

 

Interested in Youth Programs at the NAC? Fill out this inquiry form to be contacted for a FREE trial class!
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Healthy Snacks Kids Will Love!

It can be a challenge to find healthy alternatives to your everyday snacks that still taste great and appeal to children. However, with so many children lacking important nutrition in their diets, it is important to find easy ways to incorporate fruits, veggies, and quality ingredients into your every day life. The NAC’s registered dietitian, Kelly Jones, shared some healthy snacks that are just as easy as grabbing a bag of chips or cookie, but provide much more nutrition.

DIY Snacks

There are so many different snacks that you can make at home that are simple and easy.

1. Fruit Kabobs

You can’t beat fresh fruit in terms of whole foods. The key to picking healthy snacks it to look for foods that are as minimally processed as possible. The more processed your food is, the more it loses its nutritional value. Putting fresh fruit on a skewer makes it fun for kids to eat and also helps when you’re on the go.

2. Trail Mix

For a quick and easy snack on the go, pre-make your own protein-packed trail mix. Combine various nuts, dried fruit, granola, and dark chocolate and store measured portions in Ziploc bags. Many times store-bought trail mix has unnecessary added sugar and salt, but making your own is even better! The kids will love having a hint of chocolate in

3. Homemade Applesauce

Making your own applesauce is really simple and easy. This is great for packing in lunches and for an after-school snack. Store-bought applesauce contains added sugars and preservatives that you can avoid by making it at home. Check out a recipe here that contains no added sugar.

Pre-packaged Snacks

If you’re looking for something more grab-and-go that requires no preparation from you, these brands of pre-packaged foods are a great option that kids will love.

4. Late July chips

This company offers organic, non-GMO tortilla chips. Their “Dude Ranch” or “Mild Green Mojo” flavors are very similar to Cool Ranch Doritos, but without all the extra chemicals and processing. This brand is becoming very popular and is available in local supermarkets.

5. Peanut Butter & Co 

Peanut butter is a great snack because its protein works to keep kids full and active. Instead of choosing brand with extra oils and preservatives, try choosing one of the yummy flavors created by Peanut Butter & Co. With flavors like Dark Chocolate Dreams, Pumpkin Spice, Cinnamon Raisin Swirl, and more, kids won’t even realize it’s healthy. The best thing about this brand is all of their products are kosher, gluten-free and vegan.

6. Dry Roasted Edamame

Seapoint Farms carries pre-packaged 100-calorie packs of dry roasted edamame. This is a crunchy snack that is packed with a healthy balance of protein and carbs. The snack packs are great to grab on the go or send to school in your child’s lunch.

There are so many easy options for parents to choose from when it comes to healthy snacks for their children. In addition to eating a wholesome diet, encouraging kids to be active is just as important for overall wellness. For more ideas for healthy snacks and brands that you can incorporate into your family’s diet, visit Kelly’s blog at http://eatreallivewell.com/

 

Need a way to incorporate fun fitness into your child’s day? Youth Programs classes at the NAC are a great way to get kids active!

 

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