As soon as I walked into Trés Studio Barre I felt energized. The space is open, light-filled and bursting with positive energy, just like owner Kara Martin. There are motivating notes written on the mirrors, leafy green plants, her dog is sometimes lying around looking very adorable and the chandeliers add a touch of glam. The music she plays is amazing, and each class only takes an hour so I don’t feel overwhelmed. I started taking barre classes a few months ago, twice a week, and very quickly felt my body and mind change. I have lost a few pounds, my muscles feel stronger and most importantly I burst with joy while I plié! Who doesn’t want to feel like a ballet dancer?
Captivated by Kara’s energy and laid back but motivating teaching style, I needed to find out more about her and Très Studio Barre!
Kara has very kindly offered five free dance classes to a lucky winner! For a chance to win just go on Twitter, post a selfie of you doing ballet (at home, at the gym, wherever) and mention #tresconteststudiobarre and @cozysweatercafe, or share this blog post on Facebook. I will announce the lucky winner on May 29th!
The Space Kara is attracted to taking risks and opened her first Très Studio Barre & Pilates on St. Laurent street a few years ago but soon had to move to a bigger space as business took off. Kara found this new studio on St. Denis through a client and immediately fell in love with the light and energy. She found it on the 29th of the month on her 29th birthday. It was meant to be. She loved the tall windows, it was on the right side of the street, and the brick wall made the space feel warm. She signed right away. Kara loves the budding community and the clubhouse feel. This summer she plans to open a juice bar and café on her terrace. I can’t wait!
About Kara Kara (in the pink tutu of course) could dance before she could walk according to her mom. She was a figure skater and did her undergraduate degree in kinesiology at Laurier University in Ontario. When she isn’t running her studio, she coaches the MUHC program at McGill where she got her masters in Exercise & Health Behaviour Psychology. She got the job after hitting it off with her boss whom she met while still a student. She believes that chemistry is extremely important with those she works with and having fun! She started pilates in high school and it changed her body. Eventually she was looking for a way to make it more interesting and discovered barre, which is based in pilates and dance. Barre will help you change your body but it is really about feeling good through physical self-discovery and meditation in motion. As Kara says, the best thing you can do for yourself to prevent chronic illness is to exercise regularily and maintain a healthy diet. It is not about being competitive or perfect. As she says to students before they start the “Crazy Sexy Diet” cleanse for 21 days “we are all going to cheat and that is ok”. (A friend got her into the book written by cancer survivor Kris Carr).
When doing barre and pilates, it is important to have proper form so you protect your knees and back. Pilates and barre are about practicing patience, strength and control in a fun environment. There is a maximum of 20 students per class because she believes in quality over quantity. She likes knowing all of her clients!
The studio offers barre, barre bootcamp, restorative yoga, pilates, mommy classes and a new class: Barre Hop! This Saturday May 10th at the Grand Opening, you can try as many free 20 minute long classes as you like throughout the day. Mommy classes start at 10:45 am to 11:30am, and at noon regular classes continue all day with a wine and cheese 4pm-7pm for the barre & bar!
For more information about Trés Studio Barre:
To sign up for classes click here.
UPDATE: New Address (as of September 1st, 2018)
1744 rue William, suite 100, Montreal, Quebec, H3J 1R4
Metro: Georges-Vanier or Lionel-Groulx
I hope to see you at the barre!
P.S. Kara’s philosophy about happiness and success…it’s all about perspective.
“Happiness and confidence are perceptions we have that translate into how we feel and act, they are traits (or behaviours) that can be learned. It’s all about perspective, and we have power over our perspective, which is pretty cool…meaning you can teach yourself by performing behaviour change routines to be both happy and confident.”
Watch her favorite Ted Talk here.