Barre none

Here’s what you won’t find at Lauren Truslow’s new fitness studio on Rosewood: backbreaking barbells, rows of treadmills or in-your-face personal trainers demanding five more reps.

Truslow, an ’05 University of South Carolina graduate, and her husband, Neal, ’06, ’09 law, opened Barre3 earlier this month with the hope of offering something fresh and different to Columbia’s fitness scene. It’s billed as a place where ballet barre meets yoga and pilates.

“Barre3 is a low-impact total body workout. We don’t need all those machines you see in most gyms,” says Truslow, who taught group fitness classes for six years before opening Barre3. “We can teach this and participants can do this for a lifetime.”

She was a pharmaceuticals representative for Eli Lilly after completing her marketing degree from the Darla Moore School of Business but wanted to do more with fitness after the birth of her daughter. The Truslows, who took a business entrepreneurship class together at the Moore School, flew last December to the Portland, Ore., headquarters for Barre3 and liked what they heard.

“Barre3 is about cultivating a community of people with a similar goal — becoming fit and having some fun in the process,” Truslow says. “It’s for clients on the go. We have them for one hour and make them fit for the other 23 hours in a day.”

The Truslows looked for existing spaces for the studio but decided to build a new facility to get exactly what they wanted. Located at the corner of Rosewood and South Holly, their studio has plenty of natural light and enough room for 27 in a group class. It also features on-site child care — “My daughter is 2, and she loves it here,” Truslow quips — with a supervised, large open play area.

Truslow’s marketing background, which helped make her successful in pharmaceutical sales, has been especially useful launching Barre3. With some social media effort and plenty of word-of-mouth advertising, Truslow sold the first 105 memberships in just a few hours. The studio offers no-monthly-contract memberships and a la carte pricing for classes.

“Once we said we’re going to do it, we never looked back,” she says. “We just decided to pour all of our love and energy into this studio. We’re going to do it 100 percent.”

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