Image via Barre3
For the first time, I recently attended class at a fitness studio that hadn’t opened yet. After hearing about Portland-based barre3 on social media, I was eager to visit their first studio in New York. This city has a competitive boutique fitness scene, but with 72 locations around the world the barre3 team is certainly experienced. The brand also offers 150 online workouts, a mobile app, and nutrition programs. Once I heard that barre3 would be opening in the West Village, I knew success was inevitable. The West Village is home to few other studios but offers the perfect demographic for a barre studio.
The media class that I attended was taught by barre3’s Founder Sadie Lincoln. While barre can be an intimidating fitness genre, Sadie has made her brand approachable for all fitness levels. As the group gathered in the sun-lit studio, Sadie shared background information about barre3 and helped pass out props (balls, light weights, and resistance bands). She continued to talk about the brand’s philosophy, points of differentiation, and other studio locations as she taught class. I was impressed by her ability to both inform and instruct the group at the same time.
The largest point of differentiation for barre3, which combines yoga, pilates, and ballet barre work, is its focus on the lower body. I felt more action in my glutes, quads, and hamstrings than I do in other barre classes. Barre3’s method includes isometric holds, 1-inch variations and functional, cardio-inspired movements. These exercises are performed both at the barre and in the center of the room using the props mentioned above. Recovery stretches are also included throughout the workout. I especially liked Sadie’s approach to offering modifications. While all studios offer them, some instructors make you feel lesser than for choosing the modification. Sadie offered multiple variations to many exercises, reminding the group that everyone’s body prefers a different approach.
Following the class, Sadie and her team welcomed the group back into the lobby area of the studio for green juice and snacks. This area is beautifully designed with pale woods, white walls, and stocked changing rooms. The check-in desk is next to a display of fitness and loungewear in gray, yellow, and orange. A bench stretches along the wall of windows with lockers installed beneath the seating area.
The studio is offering a free preview week starting today (August 24-31), but will be fully open the week of September 1. For a limited time, specially priced lifetime memberships will also be available. I’m looking forward to retuning to the studio soon to take a class with Meegan Gregg, an instructor from Portland who I met at my first class.
NOTE: Barre3 allowed me to visit for a free class, but I was in no way compensated to review it on my blog. These are honest opinions.