Founded by professional dancer Andrea Rogers, Xtend Barre is a new fitness program that is amping up workouts far beyond traditional barre routines. Rogers partnered with Koral Activewear for a summer series of pop up workouts at one of our favorite haunts in Montauk, The Surf Lodge. We caught up with Rogers to discuss fueling up, mind/body connections, and finding your inner Beyoncé.
Congratulations on your new pop up at The Surf Lodge! Are you considering expanding in the Hamptons?
Yes, that's definitely a goal of ours. The most immediate goal is securing a location in Manhattan. But, right now, we want to establish a presence in the Hamptons. For next year, we're actually thinking about having a facility for another pop up.
You were a dancer and a Pilates instructor, so what inspired you to develop this new way of working out?
Actually, you just named what inspired me. I was working professionally as a dancer and choreographer, and I transitioned into classical Pilates. It's such a wonderful technique, and I just love it. However, I was feeling that I was missing some creativity. The dancer in me had to come back out. I started sprinkling in dance moves into private sessions with my Pilates clients, and my students were able to connect to the movements much better. I started developing a workout, and I had waiting lines for my classes within 2 weeks. I realized, hey, I'm on to something!
Most of us are familiar with traditional barre classes, so what makes Xtend unique?
It's hard to put into words, because this is such an experience you need to feel. Overall, this is a full body workout. We incorporate a cardio component, but we are truly a Pilates and dance workout. The foundation of Pilates is there, but you will be dripping sweat when you leave the class. There is a strong combination of that cardio element with a mind/body focus.
With swimsuit season pretty much here, how will Xtend Barre help people tone up problem areas for the summer?
That's something I always pay close attention to with my clients. We work the body from inside out, top to bottom.
You will never leave one of my classes and say, oh, I wish I'd worked my arms more, or I wish they would have spent more times on my abs. You leave, and you're like, yup, they got it. I mean, yes, every class has a specific focus, but when you leave class, you feel it in every part of the body.
What's your favorite pre-workout food?
I think this is so interesting, because it's specific to every person. Some people can't eat before working out, because they get nauseous. And others can't move if they don't get enough protein. Most importantly, you need to be well hydrated. Some people need the extra electrolytes from coconut or watermelon water. Personally, I love acai bowls. If I have a peanut butter acai bowl, I'm fueled and ready to go for my workout.
And, what's your advice to someone who just can't seem to motivate and get to the gym?
My biggest advice is to find something that you truly enjoy. Like, if you were a runner in college, then you might need to find something that gives you an inner challenge for your workout. And, my workout has more of a female following; I feel like most women have wanted to be a dancer at some point in their life. And some of my clients say things like, I feel pretty when I leave this class. It's really about finding something that makes you feel happy and confident. Ultimately, you should enjoy your workout.