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Secret Physique Raises the 'Barre' With Classes That Strengthen the Mind-Body Connection

By Pamela Sosnowski

Secret Physique has the distinction of being the first barre studio to open on the South Shore, in 2008. Nearly a decade later it's hardly a secret anymore, with four locations spread south of Boston in Quincy, Pembroke, Hingham, and Plymouth. But the name may be a little misleading. As owner Jenny Anania explains, her gym's title was inspired by the best-selling self-help book "The Secret" and the gym's philosophy reflects its message of thinking positively to reach goals.

"My philosophy on life, where 'thoughts become things', is a concept I love seeing spread through our community," she said. "We are a warm and welcoming company. [Clients] feel connected and the support they receive from our staff is personable."

Secret Physique's core classes focus on barre, which is inspired by ballet, Pilates, and yoga and consists of strength exercises that work muscles to the point of exhaustion, followed by stretching to elongate and relax them. The hour-long workout, set to an upbeat soundtrack, begins with upper-body weight training before moving to the barre to focus on the legs. The class then works their abs before moving to the mat to stretch and cool down. Although it sounds intense, instructors ensure that everyone performs in a safe manner to prevent injuries. The workout sequence is inspired by the Lotte Berk Method of barre, which has existed for over 30 years.

The studio also offers an innovative new workout called POUND. Students use lightly weighted drumsticks called Ripstix to drum their way through a full-body workout that combines cardio and strength training. POUND is offered to both men and women that wish to become the music, have fun, and let loose for an hour. According to Anania, there are currently only 40 POUND Master Trainers in the world, and two of them work for Secret Physique.

For members that want semi-private, Navy Seal-inspired training, the studio also offers TRX suspension training. This total body resistance training uses the TRX Suspension Trainer, a piece of equipment that allows its user to leverage their own body weight and gravity, to work several muscle groups at once. TRX training minimizes injuries and is designed to allow seamless transition from one exercise move to another.

Lastly, for those that desire to get in shape via a sexy burlesque inspired workout, the studio offers a Hollywood dance class, a specialty class not offered on its regular schedule at certain, special times throughout the year. At the Quincy location all classes are $15 per person except for the Hollywood dance session, which is $12. Pricing drops for clients that wish to purchase a package, and unlimited packages are also available. In addition to the variety of workouts, there are a few differentiators that set Secret Physique apart from other workout studios.

"Our barre classes are choreographed to music, unlike most other studios, (and) our instructors were all once clients before becoming instructors," Anania said. "Our clients will be the first to tell you how much they feel a part of Secret Physique. It's so much more then the workout. It changes lives!"

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