Step Up To The Barre
When Lea Ranier Warner left the real estate business to create a new venture for herself that embodied positivity on a daily basis, her family suggested she open her own fitness studio. Lea and her daughter opened the Pure Barre Oakley location in Cincinnati, which will celebrate it’s 3 year anniversary on September 12th. And positivity is exactly what you feel when you walk into her beautiful studio on Madison Rd. She nailed it!Being an in-home trainer, I often have a client who would rather work out in the comfort of their own home rather than walk into an intimidating setting like a gym or a studio. When I walked in to take my first class instructed by the fabulous Jen Jura, I was immediately welcomed by name. I was led back to put my belongings away and gather my equipment, and was introduced to Jen, who asked me about any barre experience I had and if I had any questions. If you are a nervous first timer, which many of us have been, the staff will put you completely at ease with their genuine regard for the client and their overall professionalism. When I told Lea this, she was so moved and told me how essential that particular aspect of her business is to her. It is so important to Lea and her instructors that each individual, regardless of age, sex or body type come away from their experience feeling amazing about themselves. Her staff truly embraces her philosophy and her energy is contagious!
Lea and I sat down for tea at the Sleepy Bee across the street and talked for over an hour, focusing on empowering others, especially women, through exercise and support. Let’s face it, women can be critical and we tend to be more sensitive than men. Just a friendly smile to a stranger walking down the street can have such an impact on our mood for the day, and an hour in a judgment-free class can do wonders for the soul. We never know what has happened to someone moments before we come into contact with her or him, so instead of judgment, let’s challenge ourselves to be friendly and open.
Lea’s instructors also bring different things to the table. I sat down with Megan Rothmeeler, another amazing instructor who is also the manager and the director of marketing for the studio. We talked about her Pure Barre experience and she gave me a few tips on how to obtain proper form for that killer pretzel exercise.
Your front leg should be at a 90 degree angle, with your back leg at a 45 degree angle. The first step is simply a rotating forward of your back leg’s hip. Squeeze your glute muscles with each rotation and repeat 15-20 times. For the second set, the back leg is lifted slightly off the ground while tiny pulses and circles are performed to obtain that coveted Pure Barre “ledge.” The classes demand concentration on form and take our focus off of what other people are doing, an hour well spent for your body and your mind. I challenge you to take a class and feel what everyone is talking about, physically and mentally.
Lea talked about one special moment when she, her daughters Chelsea and Danielle (one a tri-athlete and one pregnant at the time), and her mother all took a Pure Barre class together. Three different generations, all being challenged at their various levels. There is something unique about a class that can achieve this. It just goes to show you how anyone can benefit from this style of exercise, and all are appreciated and supported at Lea’s studio.
A class at a studio like Lea’s is a great way to break up a running or gym routine, so bring a friend and share a new experience. Lea makes a great suggestion about making an “appointment” for yourself: carving out that little bit of time in your day to exercise. By doing this, you can regain the energy to give to your children and loved ones, and other human beings. I know I need that daily charge that exercise gives me. I am more likely to be a better mother, wife and trainer if I take that time for myself first. Lea summed up our discussion well. “We need to place the oxygen mask on ourselves before we put it on our children.”
3083 Madison Rd.
Cincinnati, OH 45209