Best Barre Studios Around NYU
Barre, one of the fastest growing fitness trends, incorporates classical ballet moves and positions into cardio, strength training and pilates exercises. Although barre does not burn as many calories as a steady-state cardio workout, it is great for toning muscle and improving posture. After getting tired of hour-long workouts on the spin bike, I decided to change it up by trying out barre at several different studios near campus.
There are countless Pure Barre locations in NYC, but the one closest to campus is located in the heart of West Village. The 50-minute Pure Barre Classic class consisted of very traditional high intensity, low-impact movements. The intensity of the class was very manageable – I wasn’t sweating immediately following the class, but I was sore the morning after.
Location: 554 Hudson St., New York, NY 10014
Perfect for: Those who are new to barre
Freebies/Discounts: Free one-week trial when you sign up
Level of Difficulty: 6.5/10
Barre3 has three locations in New York City, including one in Greenwich Village. They also offer an online program with over 300 barre workouts that anyone can take part in from home. The Barre3 studio appeared the most like a ballet studio - once I stepped in, I could feel my inner ballerina starting to take over. Pliés, the ballet version of squats, fused with rhythmic cardio and weight exercises formed a barre routine so rigorous that I was barely able to walk home after class.
Location: 63 W 8th St, New York, NY 10011
Perfect for: The cardio lovers of the world
Freebies/Discounts: Fifteen-day free trial for the Barre3 online program
Level of Difficulty: 8.5/10
Flywheel, a studio known for cycling classes, offers several different types of high-intensity barre classes at Flatiron and other locations. The Power 45 class implemented many different strength training exercises. The standard equipment for a barre class is a pair of two or three-pound weights. However, there were several times in class where I had to do exercises that required pulling back a resistance band or raising a five-pound weight above my head, making me feel like I was conditioning to be a bodybuilder rather than a professional ballet dancer.
Location: 39 W 21st St, New York, NY 10010
Perfect for: The weight lifter
Freebies/Discounts: Free first class when you sign up
Level of Difficulty: 8/10
Shaktibarre offers unconventional classes that combine yoga and barre movements, while implementing the chakra system throughout the entire class. I got to take my Shaktibarre class with Corinne, one of the co-founders. She constantly made sure everyone in the class was comfortable regardless of fitness level and gave us the freedom to add a bit of our own variation to the movements. She also kept the class dynamic - one second sweat would be dripping down from my face as I got down into a push up, the next I would be sweat-free and calm in the middle of a downward dog.
Location: 449 Keap St, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Perfect for: Those who love both yoga and ballet
Freebies/Discounts: $45 for unlimited class for the first week
Level of Difficulty: 7/10
After taking these barre classes, I can say that barre is very different depending on the studio and the instructor. These two factors can really impact whether or not you like barre itself, so I would advise anyone who is curious to do some research before heading to a barre class or to try out more than one studio.
Written by: Camilla Zhang