We like to think we do Barre a little differently at Soul Pilates! With a fully equipped Barre studio in our Bishopston Bristol studio...owner Nic Lenny tells us a little more about what you can expect from our Bristol Barre classes.
Soul Barre really is suitable for all levels, all fitness abilities and all age. It is a low impact workout that is perfect for working through menopause to build bone density. I love how we see people of all ages and levels in the same class, working at their own pace to push themselves in a supportive way that generates real results, mentally and physically.
So before I start I will admit, I am a major Reformer Pilates lover. And to explain my reason for loving Barre so much, and why I created Soul Barre, I need to first tell you a little story about my personal fitness journey.
I fell in love with Pilates and later Reformer Pilates in my mid 20s. I was a burned out marketing exec. Often criticised for being emotional at work, I was frazzled. Tired, but wired. Always striving to achieve more. But mostly feeling like I failed at everything.
When I decided I wanted to lose weight and tone up to look good, I did what I think a lot of people do. I turned to high intensity workouts. Four times a week at the gym, boot camp classes, body pump. You name it I did it. And I did it regularly, with intensity, just as I was told.
Yet nothing changed in my body aesthetically. Instead I look back and realise I was more tired, I was in more pain, I never listened to my body and my body really didn’t like me very much. I punished my body, never nourishing it.
I discovered Pilates and subsequently Reformer Pilates and realised that a movement experience which calmed my mind, reset my nervous system whilst still lengthen and toning was the key to changing my body.
Because when you are stressed out (and most of us are) your body produces adrenaline and when it’s stressed for a long period of time it produces cortisol. As humans, the only time our body produced cortisol was at a time of famine or war. So biologically our body is communicating “I’m in danger, food is scarce. Hold onto any fat, you might need it! And don’t get pregnant, you’re in danger!”.
When you are in this place, and most of my clients who work in the corporate world are, and you do high intensity workouts such as running, spinning, hiit is you produce more adrenaline and add it into your already stressed our adrenal system. So you move your body more into stress.
This is why so many people find Pilates super relaxing, great for their mental health and they see their body change in a way that never happened before.
When I opened Soul Pilates and brought this concept to our hundreds of clients, it’s been amazing to see the power Reformer has to change so many aspects of health. From digestion to fertility and chronic pain and to simply feeling more joyful about your own body.
But I always wanted to find a way to safely, and holistically, bring some more challenge to your body. To take on the benefits of isometric loading and more dynamic movement but in a way which still didn’t punish your body or frazzle your nervous system.
And Soul Barre was born. The heat of Barre with the mindfulness of Soul Pilates. Still educating you to listen to your body, work at a level which is appropriate to you and your energy levels on that day, but creating a class which will seriously tone, raise your heart beat and let you leave with a massive smile on your face.
Soul Barre works perfectly alongside reformer and is great for Barre beginners too! That’s why our Reformer memberships include Barre too because we see how when clients combine a mix of both classes they see and feel the most amazing results.