Dance Teacher / January 2005

Dance Teacher – Bringing the Gym to the Studio

How to add a dance fitness class to your studio’s schedule

Selling the Studio Setting

Many People who gravitate toward dance fitness classes at health clubs belong to the gym specifically for these classes: They spend money on costly memberships without ever using the cardio equipment or free weights. These men and women are a dance studio’s perfect client.

“They don’t like the gym atmosphere, and would probably prefer a studio setting,” says Jim Cooney, a faculty member at NYC’s Broadway Dance Center who teaches CARDIO BARRE®, and hour-long fitness class that blends ballet barre with cardio training. “[Dance studios] offer classes with no initiation fee and no commitment, and that’s something most gyms can’t do,” he says.

Pay-per-class plans, Cooney notes are especially attractive to professionals who travel frequently or people simply too busy to take class frequently. For students with a real passion for dance and fitness, a studio setting allows them to interact with people who have the same interests.

Class Sampler – CARDIO BARRE®
Taught at: Broadway Dance Center, NYC; CARDIO BARRE®, Studio City, CA
Class description: An hour-long, full body workout that blends ballet with high-repetition strength-training exercises using light weights. Class begins with plies (in single and double time) and releve plies. Both are done in first and second position at the barre to warm up. Class then moves on o a mixture of ballet movements and weight training, an ab workout (the only time students leave the barre) and a cool-down period.
Teacher’s take: “We teach a standard ballet repertory, but with fast repetition to lengthen and strengthen the muscles,” says Jim Cooney of BDC. “The purpose of this class is to make the body, heart and mind stronger.”
Music: Upbeat, popular tunes mixed by a professional DJ.