gym hopping: barreworks
A friend of mine introduced me to this gym this past summer and I fell in love (after my body stopped aching).
Barreworks is a gym that helps you achieve the body of a dancer by blending fitness training, core conditioning, and yoga and pilates to form a whole body workout. This gym offers a wide array of classes, and I have personally tried mixed level (cardio-oriented), barre basics (the intro to mixed barre), and open barre (yoga oriented). Most of the classes use a resistance band, hand weights, and the barre to complement the exercises.
If you’re a beginner and have two left feet (like me), I would suggest starting with barre basics first – so you can get the moves semi-mastered, and then move into mixed level. I didn’t know this, so I just threw myself in there and spent about 25% of the class figuring out how to do a two-step. No lie.
So far, I like mixed barre the best (I’m able to do 80% of the moves now!) and have found that it does depend on the instructor. Johnny and Gerry lead really great classes, and I particularly like when Johnny makes us count down or makes the class yell out a word when we’re tired of the exercise (lunge pulses anyone?). The class itself was a great combination of cardio, resistance/weighted exercises, with a nice touch of yoga to bring the body back to a peaceful state). Not to mention that the music is great!
Open barre was my least favourite. I was expecting more barre and less yoga. The class felt like a good stretch – which I wasn’t very pleased with because a) I brought my friend there for a serious workout and b) I could have paid $7 at my yoga studio instead of $21 for this class. (Side note: Moksha Thornhill has an amazing yoga barre class – it was exactly what I was envisioning and you must check it out!)
Nevertheless, this studio is great, and you can feel the results during and after class! I would highly suggest checking out one of their classes by yourself, or with a friend – it’s worth it!
Update: According to their blog, Barreworks is initiating new discounts for students! Sweet! This definitely makes these incredible classes that much more affordable! I still need to purchase my ‘reward’ from my personal challenge, and now with this discount, I couldn’t be more excited!