If your children have got boundless energy, encourage them to burn it off while developing their physical and mental skills at the same time.

Shoppers walking past Gymboree, in Churchill Square, Brighton, who hear the excited squeals of children from beyond its walls, might just think they are enjoying the fun of a creche.

But for those who don't know, Gymboree isn't somewhere for mum to leave the children while she goes off shopping it is a parent and child interaction centre where parents stay with their children to enjoy structured classes of fun and games where youngsters will learn, develop and get active without realising.

Gymboree in Brighton, which is under the new management of Guy Lewis, is part of a world-wide network of Gymboree groups.

Children from newborn babies to five-year-olds, who are accompanied by their parents, can take part in the various classes which are split into sessions for different age groups.

The main sessions are the play classes.

Here young babies can develop their sensory awareness with the use of lights,colours, sounds and textures to stimulate their senses.

They can even develop their physical strength with a simple exercise a towel rolled into a bolster is put under baby's chest as they lie on their front which encourages them to learn to hold their head up.

Guy, who is an experienced Gymboree teacher and qualified fitness instructor, says: "A baby at this age has very little body strength. If you put them on their front, they have to use their neck muscles. As soon as baby looks uncomfortable, we advise mum to pick him up."

Older children can play a game where they take balls of different sizes and weights to the top of a ramp and drop them in a hoop.

Guy says: "As far as they're concerned, they are just carrying the ball but they are using their strength to carry it up the ramp and they are working on their balance because they've got their hands full."

One of the most popular activities is the parachute games.

With the help of parents, the massive 24ft parachute can become a merry-go-round or a giant tent which they sit under.

It's also where bubble time takes place.

As bubbles are blown in the air, newborn babies are encouraged to focus and follow the moving object while older children try to catch them without popping them, developing their handling skills.

Guy also organises sports skills courses the next course will be in September and there may be one during the summer.

An art class runs on Thursday afternoons to help develop motor skills and physical development as the children get stuck into modelling dough, block building and wall painting.

Music classes introduce them to a new style of music every two weeks and teach rhythm, repetition and simple beats.

And every day, there is an hour-long open gym session where children can really let their hair down.

As well as encouraging children to interact with each other, Gymboree is a great chance for mums and dads to socialise and meet other parents. Mums can also join the postpregnancy fitness classes.

If you are planning a birthday treat, Gymboree will host birthday parties at its centre or bring them to your home.

In the future, Guy plans to introduce baby yoga and baby massage but his next big plan is Gymboree On The Go, where an equipped van will take the sessions across Sussex for children and parents across the county to enjoy.

Information: Gymboree is based in Churchill Square, Brighton, in the corridor next to Virgin Megastore.

It costs £52 for an eight-week term, which allows you and your children to join one class a week(which amounts to £6.50 a session) plus as many open gym sessions as you like.

You can sign up for a term of play classes, art classes or music classes.

The separate sports skills course, when it runs, is £40.

The next term starts on July 11 but parents can join midterm and pay for the remaining weeks.

New members can get a free trial.

For more information, including details about post-pregnancy fitness classes and parties, call Guy or one of his team on 01273 772900.