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Raising the Barre


Each year, more and more clubs incorporate barre programming into their class schedules as a great option for members seeking to tone and strengthen their muscles.

Ann Marie Barbour, the co-founder of SoulBody, explained there are two avenues clubs can take when it comes to offering barre. “The first is create a proprietary, in-house barre program; and the second is to bring in an outside, branded program — allowing clubs to do what they do best, which is running the operations of the gym,” she said.

Going the Proprietary Route

According to Barbour, if you go with option one, it’s important to staff an in-house team that is fully versed in creating programming and education to develop your in-house barre program. And, that should be their only job. “It can’t be a part-time gig, or the programming will pale in comparison to the top-tier experiences out there,” she said.

Going with a Branded Option

If you go with option two, Barbour advised doing your homework. “See and experience the different barre programs out there,” she said. “Ask for a master class for the team and members to experience. Poll members to see what type of barre classes they’d like to take. Not all are created equal.”

In addition, Barbour noted it’s important to partner with a barre program that’s culture and vibe matches your club’s. “Bring in the creators and their team for a meet and greet, and take the time to interview and get to know your potential partners on a personal level, as they are going to be an integral part of your club-within-a-club experience,” she said.

No matter which route you take when it comes to launching a barre program or class, Barbour advised clubs do plenty of research to ensure they make the right choice. “Both options work; clubs just need to vet, prioritize and fully commit,” she said.

Rachel Zabonick is editor-in-chief of Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at rachel@peakemedia.com.

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko

Rachel Zabonick-Chonko is the editor-in-chief of Club Solutions Magazine. She can be reached at rachel@peakemedia.com.

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