Barre Classes at HIP Studio | Get to Know Your Trainer

Have you been debating taking a barre class? Are you addicted to the burn Suzie & Kayte inflict on us every week! We asked these two Barre aficionados how they get their killer moves and why they love Barre so much! TRAINER: Suzie Collis

suzie collis barre classes

How long have you been at HIP Studio?

From the beginning!!!

How and when did you discover Barre?

I LOVE to workout & try new classes. About 10 yrs. ago I took a Bar Method class back when there were only 2 Bar studios around, the Bar Method on Sawtelle & the one in West Hollywood, if you can imagine that! I didn't fall in LOVE with it after my 1st or even 2nd class. It was when I went home to Michigan to visit my family, that I got hooked. I saw that there was a Pilates/Barre studio by my sisters house and since everyone was working I decided to check it out. I ended up going 2x's a day for the week that I was there! It was a little different then the Bar Method, faster paced, the teachers were great and the music was a lot of fun! I think I went home to visit so many times that year just to go to the classes! ( don't mention that to the family) I got to know the co-creators of the class & we kept in touch because I wanted to bring the workout to the Southbay. They ended up going their seperate ways. Tonya Becker is co-owner of Physique 57 and Carrie Rezabek Dorr is the founder of Pure Barre. So I learned from the best in the business! Back in California I ended going back to Bar Method and became a regular. I also started giving some of the exercises to my pilates clients and they loved it. What is it about Barre that you love?

I love the barre workout because it changed my body like no other workout has! If they had rooms to rent at the gym, I would have lived there! I taught spinning, aerobics, was a personal trainer, cardio queen, runner but never liked the way my legs/butt looked. After taking barre classes along with my Pilates workouts my body transformed and I haven't stepped into the gym for about 8years. Tell us about your class? How do you incorporate your personality into your classes?

I love teaching Barre! I love music & to sing! (sorry gang,can't help myself) My class moves fast and has a lot of thigh and seat work in it. I love to make you feel your legs like no other workout you've done. We start with arms then move on to thigh work...& more thigh work. Then stretch to lengthen the muscles we just worked, which is one of the secrets to changing the shape of your thighs. Glute or seat work then abs. another stretch and you are done and walking out with a little quiver to your step. What makes your class different than Barre classes taught by other trainers at HIP Studio?

What's great about ALL the classes at HIP is that we all teach a little differently so the clients can never say they got bored from the classes at the studio.

I am a stickler when it comes to form. I want everyone to leave the class feeling better than when they walked through the door. What are common mistakes made by students or beginners in Barre classes?

During the seat work it's important to make the movement small and use the glutes and hamstrings to do the movements as opposed to throwing the leg up with your back or momentum.

Take a break if you can't "squeeze" one more time-but not too long! Then come back into the position. Do you have any tips for your students on how to make the most of their Barre class?

Have fun! Challenge yourself! Take yourself to your edge. Go a little deeper in thigh work. Tell yourself it's only 3-4 minutes long, I CAN DO THIS! There's nothing like "the barre shake". You will HATE IT but LOVE IT and look for it every time you come to barre and do the thigh work.

TRAINER: Kayte Walsh

Kayte Walsh Personal Trainer

How long have you been at HIP Studio?

Over a year! How and when did you discover Barre?

I discovered barre 7 years ago when I moved to LA. There was a Cardio Barre down the street from me. My roommate and I, both former dancers, became obsessed with the class, we called it "hyper ballet." My body was in it's best shape when I was taking 3 ballet classes a week (granted, I was 19). Barre class offered me that same ballet body in half the time without some Prima Ballet teacher barking at me to get my leg higher. Even after I moved to Venice I still drove well out of my way in LA traffic to take class whenever I could. Just last year I picked up a different barre class and started teaching at Pop Physique in West LA which focuses on the Lotte Berk Method like Bar Method. What is it about Barre that you love?

Barre whips my body into shape faster than any other class. There were plenty of stints in my producing career when I fell out of my workout routine, but a month of regular barre classes and I was back. Tell us about your class

My Barre class is a fusion of the "hyper ballet" I grew to love at Cardio Barre with the Lotte Berk thigh shaking, arm burning, seat clenching which is signature of barre classes. I start with a warm up with abs and arms and then we head to the barre for thigh work followed by a low impact cardio series to get the heart rate up. Then we go back to the mat for Pilates abs and glutes.

I always make sure to vary it up from week to week. Being too repetitive is my one pet peeves when taking classes at other Barre Studios. I make it a priority to choose from a wide array of exercises, mixing new ones in with old faithfuls.

How do you incorporate your personality into your classes?

It's fast paced, I crack jokes about buns and thighs and I always try to incorporate some 80s music. Also, I love feedback! I love when clients tell me what exercise they loved or were sore from the next day. Or the one they hated and made them feel uncomfortable. I'll make sure to deliver what you like if you tell me about it. I'm a people pleaser that way. What makes your class different than Barre classes taught by other trainers at HIP Studio?

At the barre you can expect a little more cardio in my class. You'll still get the shaking, make-it-stop portion, but not for as long. What are common mistakes made by students or beginners in Barre classes?

Beginners often have trouble stacking their shoulders over their hips. I like to use the imagery of being in a toaster. If you stick your rear back or your chest forward you aren't going to get toasty, you're going to get burned. We want to be toasty. Once the shoulders and the hips are stacked all the other joints can align easily. Do you have any tips for your students on how to make the most of their Barre class?

Listen and watch! Don't check out because we are pulsing for a while and it hurts. Check the mirror to see if your form looks like my form and keep your ears open for cues to transition exercises. Just like in Pilates, you will receive the full benefits of your workout by connecting your mind to your body.