Don’t let those braided buns and bodysuits fool you—barre workouts can be as hardcore as HIIT. And in fact, that sweaty, switch-up-change-up class model is exactly where the future of this fitness style is headed, according to Pure Barre founder Carrie Dorr, one of the industry’s OG pioneers.
“I’ve definitely seen [people] wanting more variety, not just that classic barre work anymore,” she says. As a result, starting today, Pure Barre studios (all 450-plus across the country) are offering a new strength training-cardio circuit class called Pure Empower that uses weights and a six-inch platform to create a high-intensity, yet low-impact, total-body burn. Dorr describes it as the start of a bigger trend toward fusion exercise she’s predicting will be the next big thing in designer workouts.
” I think people want more types of training under one roof.”
“When boutique fitness started in the early 2000s, people really wanted to go to a yoga studio for yoga, and spin studio for spin, a barre studio for barre. [But] the industry is changing. I think people want more types of training under one roof. [They’re] coming back to that mindset of: ‘I’d like more. I want more out of my studio.’ So I see the full circle—the consumer still wants that high-quality technique, but they want more of it from one company.”
But the shift isn’t just being driven by client demand, she says. It’s rooted in research, too, which Dorr’s taken into account when creating Pure Barre’s latest classes. (It’ll debut another new workout option in 2018.) “Variety is good for the body, as well as the brain,” she says. “I’m seeing a ton of research coming out right now about the brain and exercise, so I think this is a critical time for us to start absorbing that information and say, ‘Oh, okay, now they’re saying that exercise is the only thing that’s slowing Alzheimers and dementia. So what is that? Is it mixing up the patterns? Is it movement?’ We take all of that research and we bring it into our programming.” No doubt, it’ll be designed to keep you on your toes, one way or another.