Say hello to ClapHandies

ClapHandies was formed in 2006 and currently runs over 70 classes every week across Dublin and Wicklow.
Our instructors are a group of early child developmental experts, montessori teachers, infant massage teachers, healthcare professionals, sports experts and music teachers (to name but a few of our talents!), and of course many of our instructors are also Mums.

How we got started…

Liza Crotty “Having had my first child Mia, I was determined to be the best parent I could be… I was surprised and disappointed by the limited choice of fun developmental and educational activities there was for us to do, so I talked to all my friends and then their friends (and even some strangers on the street!) and everyone seemed to be in the same position – there was very little on offer for very young children and parents / nannies / expecting parents.

I was looking for something both educational and fun, I wanted to have a social outlet for both of us, if I was going to join a group it had to have something that would interest me as much as my daughter. It definitely needed to be in a clean, comfortable and visually interesting space, but most of all I wanted to enjoy playing with my daughter and to meet other parents. So I set about collaborating with the people and experts who could make this happen.

A little about me… I graduated from the Samuel Becket Centre of Theatre Studies in1990 and having worked for many years in the theatre, film and television worlds (both in front and behind the scenes) I crossed over into the corporate world of IT and Business Information Systems. For a while I was very happy living in the high flying business world but having given birth to my daughter Mia, my creative side was reawakened!

We developed the PlayLabs with our customers, and work-shopped the PlayLabs with more than 50 families over a six month period – watching, listening and learning, seeing what interested the little ones, what worked, what challenged and engaged them, and more importantly what didn’t work!

Shortly after launching our PlayLabs we were asked by our customers to start running First Aid Courses for parents, so we joined forces with Responder Training to deliver our First Aid courses. To date we have trained over 3,000 parents in First Aid.

And that’s the story so far, we now have over 15 fabulous and enthusiastic PlayLab, PlayFit leaders who are out there playing every day (someone has to do it!).

Our customers (both big and small) are our inspiration, so if you can, why not come to one of our PlayLabs and be inspired to play more.

Thanks to all our 5,000 customers so far for all the support, companionship and fun.

Liza and the Team

0-3 years

Fun, creative weekly classes forbabies, wobblers & toddlers with parents / minders. The PlayLabs offer a wonderful start in social play, with activities such as rhyme time, music, movement and age appropriate educational and fun activities.

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From 6 weeks

A wonderful experience shared between you and your baby. Benefits include relaxation, relief, stimulation, bonding and communication for parents and caregivers. It’s also a great a great way to spend quality time with your baby and to meet new mums. 6 weeks to 9 months. 4 week course.

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Essential training

Essential training for parents and carers of babies & young children. First Aid courses covering all essential life saving skills, choking, CPR, drowning, head injuries etc. Half and full day courses held on Saturdays, private courses in your own home also available

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3-8 years

PlayFit weekly classes are designed to aid the development of fundamental movement skills (tumbling, running, hopping, leaping) and ball skills (bouncing, kicking, throwing, catching) while building self-confidence in a non-competitive, supportive environment

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