Barrecore - ballet inspired training comes to Alderley Edge

Barrecore Instructor, Gabrielle Taylor with Rachel Isherwood, Carly Bakeman and Rebekka O'Grady

Barrecore Instructor, Gabrielle Taylor with Rachel Isherwood, Carly Bakeman and Rebekka O'Grady - Credit: Archant

Gwyneth Paltrow is among the A list celebrities who are said to be fans of Barrecore, a fitness regime from the USA which has just opened its first studio outside London in our very own Alderley Edge

Sarah Emblow

Sarah Emblow - Credit: Archant

They say if you attend a Barrecore class four times a week for six weeks, you will begin to dramatically transform your body. Say that to any man or woman, especially after Christmas, and it’s likely they will be queuing around the block with their non-slip socks and bottled water in hand, ready to sweat into shape.

I was invited to try out this new style of ‘boutique fitness’ at the new Barrecore studio in Alderley Edge. This is the first branch outside London, where there are slick studios in Mayfair, Chelsea and Wimbledon. This idea to launch up north was developed by Bramhall resident Sarah Emblow, who runs the Alderley Edge studio, and Barrecore founder, Niki Rein. Seattle-born Niki, protégée of personal trainer to the stars Tracy Anderson (who is said to be responsible for the lithe, lean bodies of Gwyneth Paltrow and Victoria Beckham) began teaching the ballet-pilates hybrid class when she moved to London from the US in 2009.

So what exactly is Barrecore? This fitness regime is a full-body interval training programme with elements of dance, pilates and yoga. It was inspired by the barre exercises that give ballerinas their strong, toned physiques. You can experience the workout in a 30 or 60 minute classes. The focus is on isometric movements to trim fat, tone and strengthen muscles while increasing flexibility and perfecting posture.

Already passionate about barre and dance based fitness, on her move to London, Niki was surprised by the lack of barre and boutique fitness studios in the capital. So while working as a personal trainer, she began teaching barre fitness to clients before opening her first Barrecore studio in Chelsea in 2011.

Barrecore class

Barrecore class - Credit: Archant

It was at this studio that Niki met Sarah who was working in London in HR at the time. Sarah was already fanatic about working out, but it wasn’t until her first Barrecore class that she realised how much further she could improve her fitness and appearance.

‘I just loved the studio,’ said Sarah, aged 32. ‘It had such a nice vibe and felt like a good community to be a part of. After a few classes I noticed the difference in my inner thighs, hamstrings and arms. I got talking to Niki at the start of 2014 about opening a studio in the Manchester area and the idea just developed from there.’

The Alderley Edge studio on London Road reflects the chic look of the London premises, complete with a changing room equipped with dry shampoo, hair straighteners and other beautifying objects to rectify a bedraggled post-workout look. The studios are bright and airy, complete with mirrored wall. Sarah is also planning to open a private training room in January as well as their own barreBAZAAR, a small retail section where you can buy all the equipment needed to perfect your barrecore technique.

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I was put through my paces by trainer Gabriella Taylor during my first class, and there is no escaping the fact that at the start of your new fitness journey, Barrecore is pretty challenging. However, the promised results are worth the grimacing faces that you pull and the ache in muscles you didn’t even know existed!

If you keep up the classes, the exercise essentially shrinks your body, dissolving fat and toning areas previously thought un-toneable such as your inner thighs, glutes and lower abs. Upbeat music and encouraging instructors will take you through isometric exercises (which are small and concentrated pulsing motions repeated at intervals) such as single leg plie squats and stomach crunches to achieve long and lean muscles with no bulking.

‘It’s such a pleasure to see clients transform,’ said Sarah. ‘Barrecore is a high-end luxury product but it’s open to every age, weight and gender. It delivers results that I have never seen before, in a supportive environment. If you visit four times per week, you will increase results by 30% in your fourth session – which is a major amount!’

Sarah also said the Barrecore method doesn’t involve weighing, but rather measures development by inches: ‘There is nothing more demoralising than standing on the scales and we firmly believe in a very healthy approach. With Barrecore, you become toned, stronger and leaner, which is something you don’t get from just dieting. It’s very exciting.’

The details

Classes aree £28 and a variety of packages are available, including the New Year, New You six week challenge. For more information and prices visit

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