By Bekka Oxley, South Bend Tribune
September 28, 2014
Attending classes at barre studios is a continuing trend for women across the country. Studios are being established everywhere and women can’t seem to get enough.
Locally, B Present Studio in Granger has been the rage for not just ladies, but men as well.
A combination of ballet, Pilates and yoga, barre classes are designed to work each muscle group to exhaustion. In these intense workouts, clients use their own body weight to break a sweat.
Tammy Weisweaver, owner of B Present Studio, started barre classes in the basement of her home in 2012 for a small group of her friends. As the classes became more popular and her class sizes continued to grow, she decided it was time to move into a studio of her own. Since then, Weisweaver has expanded her studio into a multifaceted health and fitness business with a team of class instructors, nutritionists and child care workers.
Weisweaver said that her classes are for people of all ages. She has had high-schoolers and 60-year-olds in attendance at the studio. Barre classes are for everyone, not just women, dancers or regular gym-goers.
At B Present Studio, clients can expect to get a challenging, high-intensity workout, burn a lot of calories, and have fun while they’re doing it. Weisweaver said clients comment about the positivity and mental strengthening they get from her classes.
“A huge thing that separates our method from the others is that we are not just about the physical,” Weisweaver said. “It is largely about the mental, too. Our classes are highly encouraging and positive and we really want to help change lives, not just our bodies.”
Elizabeth Schleicher has been a client at B Present Studio for nearly two years, ever since Weisweaver was holding classes in the basement of her home. She is now 39 weeks’ pregnant with her first child and still attends classes at the studio two to three times each week. Schleicher said that she sometimes has to modify her workouts because of her pregnancy, but she is still always challenged.
“The great thing that I always realized, even before the pregnancy, is that you have a lot of support here to be working at your own level.”
Beth Kuminecz, who has been pregnant since January, also attends the studio. She said during the first part of her pregnancy, she lost all her energy. When she hit 15 weeks, she started to get her energy back, so she began doing private training sessions. Since then, Kuminecz has continued her private training and has kept in shape throughout her pregnancy.
Another client, Karley Sasso, started attending classes at B Present Studio in mid-April this year because she wanted to get in shape for a vacation she was planning. Even though Sasso liked to run as part of her regular workout, her friends told her that B Present was different and encouraged her to just try out a few classes. After the first few classes, Sasso noticed something different about the studio.
“It wasn’t just about the body image to me. It was a really supportive place and I think it’s really one of the only places that you can find a core group of women who are nothing but encouraging. I think if you go to other gyms or other places, women are just tough on each other.”
Sasso said she has never felt like she was being judged in her experiences at B Present Studio. Everyone recognizes that each client is at a different stage of their lives and everyone comes to the studio for different reasons.
Stacy Bolser, who has been attending classes at the studio for about eight months, said that when she first heard of barre classes, she was very intimidated because she didn’t know what to expect.
“When I came to my first class, it was a major wake-up call,” Bolser said. “This is really more than I expected it to be. It was a ton of cardio and the next day, I was very sore.”
Bolser said she would encourage people to come and not be afraid of it. The studio is a welcoming environment and is not like a typical gym.
Another key component about B Present Studio is its nutrition department. With two nutritionists on staff, Weisweaver encourages her clients to make healthy food choices to go along with their exercise plans.
“I always tell my clients that you can’t out-exercise a bad diet,” Weisweaver said.
B Present Studio offers group classes, semi-private group classes and personal private training sessions. Online scheduling is available for those interested in taking barre classes. The studio is located at 14500 Indiana 23 in Granger in the Capital Cove shopping center.