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Meet Jennifer Barnes of The Barre Valencia

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jennifer Barnes.

Jennifer, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I grew up in Iowa City, IA (in the heartland!) and took my first dance class at the age of 2. I immediately fell in love with dance and performing and went on to dance up until the age of 18 when I went away to college. I graduated from the University of Colorado in Boulder in Broadcast Production and worked for FOX Broadcasting in Chicago after graduation. Being fit and healthy had always been my way of life but when I started my first job I dealt with stress in some really unhealthy ways that lead me to gain close to 40 pounds. I was devastated and totally ashamed of letting myself go. But I found an outlet in a Mat Pilates class that eventually lead me back to my healthy frame again. After going through that transformation, I felt it was my calling to help others that were going through similar struggles. My first certification in Teaching was as a Mat Pilates Instructor. After moving to LA, I was introduced to Barre Fitness and re-fell in love the same way I did with dance when I was 2! I was chosen to join The Bar Method organization where I taught for them for close to 10 years and became a Master Barre Instructor at their LA studios in Brentwood and West Los Angeles. After having my son in 2013, my body still needed and craved barre class but I began making some modifications and twists on various barre exercises that I felt made my results more effective and beneficial. When I moved to Valencia, CA in 2015, I decided to open my own Barre studio that focused on my own specialized Technique and Program. We opened our doors on January 31, 2016.

Has it been a smooth road?
Ha! I’ve never been on a smooth road!! Do they exist??! If so, sign me up 🙂

My road has been a journey… and it’s been a smooth…bumpy…. curvy… and rocky ride!

The smoothest part of opening my own studio was literally bringing my brand and program to life. I live and breathe what I do. It’s my passion. So, opening my doors, teaching my own classes and sharing what I love with my clients, (and the world), has been THE most joyous and thrilling part of the process.

My husband and I built our studio from scratch and we only chose the BEST of everything, so even though that was expensive and costly, my studio is structurally one of the most beautiful and inspiring places I have ever stepped foot in and that makes me most proud in accomplishing the vision I had for my unique environment.

The struggles and heartaches have come in waves for me. The first obstacle that I felt in the beginning months was in the challenge of building awareness and getting people to open their minds to attempting something new. Barre is still a very new type of fitness and people are still understanding exactly what it is and how it is beneficial as a form of exercise. Obviously, it’s been my lifestyle for well over a decade but not for many of my newer clients and community. So, I had to learn how to present The Barre Valencia in my marketing platforms in a less intimidating way in hopes that people would at least come and TRY it out! I had to put myself in my consumers shoes and look at myself and my studio from the outside in, and that was a learning process for me. But one that definitely helped me and my business grow IMMENSELY!

So, as you know, we’re impressed with The Barre Valencia – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
My company, The Barre Valencia, is a classical barre studio offering safe, effective and inspiring barre classes that reshape people’s minds and bodies.

We have ONE common goal, to: BE INSPIRING.

We are known as the Leader in Barre fitness for Excellence and Inspiration.

My personalized bare technique focuses on reshaping bodies from the INSIDE out.

Most people don’t realize that a healthy, strong, flexible body, first starts with a healthy, strong, and flexible mind.

I don’t believe in heavy weights and intense cardio sessions to build a healthy, strong, body. I believe that crazy, intense, exercising makes the body go into “survival” mode which ultimately makes people gain weight and cause damaging inflammation and sickness. My program is designed to bring students bodies into a “therapeutic” mode. This “therapeutic” way of working out is what my clients like most about my technique.

We are unlike any other studio in the nation in 3 main ways:

1. We are a curriculum based barre studio, so student’s bodies and minds get a proper barre education.How this works is, my program of Barre classes operates on a 10-week cycle. Each week has a specific theme that travels with us throughout class (example; CONFIDENCE, FLEXIBILITY, PERSPECTIVE, etc.). This theme of the week is paired up with specific barre exercises that we master throughout the week.

I designed my program this way so that it is safe and effective. Most barre studios and barre franchises throw too many movements and exercises at students too fast which can comprise a client’s body and be unsafe (and ultimately not beneficial). At my studio, I have set the pace. We take it, LITTLE BY LITTLE. I teach the mind and the body together to be a stronger, more flexible, defined version of itself which in part makes my students stronger, more defined and flexible versions of themselves!

2. I offer 3 levels of barre class and a STRETCH + CENTER class that focuses on Flexibility.Barre 101 – Signature Class, Barre 102 – Execution Class, and Barre 103 – Performance Class. After graduating from each level, a student receives a token of my gratitude for their commitment to the studio and a reward for their dedication to themselves. Some of my most proud moments at the studio have been in rewarding my clients for their hard work and watching them flourish.

3. We call ourselves “FITNESS REDEFINED” because we are the complete opposite of most gyms and studios you will encounter. ALL of my clients are to be tended to as a PRIVATE CLIENT. My Instructors and I know everyone’s name and we are personally invested in our students lives in and outside of my studio. We are a community of WOMEN FOR WOMEN. I am SO proud of this aspect of my company because it is my MAGIC.

My studio is designed to be stress free, drama free and a safe place where women can come and be inspired and inspire one and other. And we do just that! There is one unanimous compliment that I have gotten from every person that has come through my doors and taken class, and that is” “I have never been to a place like this before.” And every time I hear someone tell me that, my heart sings!! Because I have made them FEEL and EXPERIENCE something DIFFERENT! I have INSPIRED them to look at fitness in a new way. We are a WAY OF LIFE at The Barre Valencia, and I am most proud of the way we lead by example in our industry.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
Los Angeles is a city of dreamers and believers, and the PEOPLE of Los Angeles are my favorite part of the city. I have never been to a place that is more welcoming, open-minded and supportive. You could make a new best friend in LA everyday if you wanted 🙂

It’s too small!! I know that sounds crazy, but I need more space. Having grown up in Iowa (and my husband in Ojai) we crave our own space now. Even though LA (and in particular, Brentwood) was my first home in LA County, we migrated to Valencia, CA to get out of the “hustle and bustle.” LA can get a bit “loud and crowded” for me and I love the quietness and space in Santa Clarita.

Pricing:

  • TUCK TRIBE (Unlimited Monthly Class) $99/month.

Contact Info:


Image Credit:
Melissa Goodman
Danielle Determan
Ashley Streff

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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