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Barre classes look deceptively easy from the outside — what’s an hour of exercise with one- and two-pound hand weights, especially when some of the exercises have you laying on the floor? Well, you’d be surprised — don’t tell us we didn’t warn you when you wake up sore the day after your first class.
But whether you’re a barre skeptic, a barre fanatic, or just somewhere in between, you’ll want to add these SF barre studios to your must-visit list.
Whether you’re new to the barre or a seasoned pro, you’ll find yourself challenged when you take a class at The Bar Method. With multiple San Francisco locations, you have the flexibility to schedule a class wherever you are in the Bay Area. There are showers, towels, and toiletries in their studios, and as if that wasn’t enough, they offer free coffee pre or post class.
First time at the barre? You’ll love The Dailey Method. Their classes don’t get as full as others on this list and run a little slower-paced, so you get more personalized attention and the opportunity to perfect your form. But don’t let that fool you — you’ll still get a killer core, glute, and ab workout. Check out one of their handful of locations in the San Francisco area, and get ready for some serious muscle shakes.
While Burn SF is known for their Pilates classes, they also offer some amazing barre classes at their studios in Russian Hill, the Mission, and Inner Sunset. You won’t hold most poses for more than 30 seconds, and the 50-minute classes will pass by in a breeze. Instructors at Burn SF will also make a move harder for you if they think the cued move is a little too easy for your fitness level. That’s when you say “thank you” through gritted teeth.
It’s not every day that Vogue names you one of the best studios in San Francisco, but Union Square’s Maiden Lane Studios has scored that recognition. The small classes (think four-to-12-students small) are offered in both 45- and 60-minute lengths AND they offer discounts for classes before noon (with a membership). Both instructors AND students are super-friendly, too — no studio snobbery here!
The barre classes at SoMa’s MNTSTUDIO are some of the more challenging ones in the Bay Area. The workouts are fast-paced, but the instructors really focus on form. The studio has amazing vibes, too — light, airy, and they provide all workout equipment needed (including grippy mats if you don’t have grippy socks!).
One of our favorite things about North Beach’s Glow Yoga & Wellness is that you’ll never take the same barre class twice. Instructors are always incorporating new moves and researching how to make their classes even better. We’ve even noticed our posture improving thanks to barre classes at Glow.
We couldn’t possibly put together a list of barre studios without mentioning Pure Barre, with locations in Marina and West Portal. It’s well-loved across the nation for its fast-paced, high-energy, signature barre class, as well as its up-intensity classes. The Pure Empower class takes you into a 45-minute killer workout that integrates low-impact cardio as well as low step for a more challenging barre experience. Meanwhile, while Pure Reform targets, shapes, and defines all major muscle groups through resistance‐based strength training.
Ready to get salty? This NoPa studio will have you working up a good sweat with its choreographed classes designed to connect the mind and body through fluid movements. What’s different about SALT is its bag of tricks: strengthening tools like sandbags, resistance bands, lower-body loops, and balance balls. And if we had to pick one class: Barre Fight. You’ll be dripping sweat in a 60-minute, full-body workout of dynamic flexibility training and high-intensity, calorie-burning drills.
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