LOCAL PROFILES: Sara Fusco & Erica Lerner (Xtend Barre) (7.26.17)
If you haven’t noticed, the fitness scene below Canal Street has never been stronger (literally). With more boutique studios, gyms and outdoor options than ever, there’s something for everyone, no matter your interest, experience or health goals.
One of the newest members of the fitness scene below Canal Street is Xtend Barre in Tribeca. The 1,800 square foot facility features 2 bright studio spaces and state-of-the-art equipment and technology. Their classes range from the signature Xtend Barre (a classic barre workout with the Xtend twist) to classes like Xtend Stick (utilizes a Pilates stick with spring-based resistance attached to the ballet barre), Xtend Suspend (utilizes TRX suspension straps and body weight for one of the best total body workouts), and more.
If you’re into barre classes or simply curious about trying something new, we recommend giving it a go. Whit uses barre as a supplement to help with her long runs, and Sara likes to mix up her routine with TRX. The Xtend Barre team even have a great introduction deal for new clients: 2 weeks unlimited for 49$.
We spoke with Sara and Erica, owners of Xtend Barre Tribeca, about how they met to open Xtend Barre and why they chose to do it in Tribeca…
So how did you guys meet & bring Xtend Barre to life?
We actually both came to know Xtend Barre separately, and met through it. Erica was introduced to Xtend through friends, and Sara took a class in Florida at what happened to be corporate headquarters for Xtend. We both happened to be attorneys looking for that next challenge that aligned more with our passions and lifestyles than our previous ones, and were introduced to each other.
Over a few months of what we like to call our “courtship,” we discussed what an Xtend Barre could look like downtown. Erica had been looking at real estate for a long time before Sara joined, but once we came together and worked through the logistics, we were really proud of what we accomplished. For example, we negotiated our agreements and the launch of the business ourselves. We also were able to come together to turn a space into our vision, figuring out how the build and design a space that reflected the Xtend Barre that we wanted and that reflected the neighborhood's needs. We are really proud of what we've accomplished so far, from building the optimal space for clients who want to get in, get a great workout, and get back to their lives, to growing an incredible team of managers and instructors.
Why open a studio in Tribeca?
We have both lived here for 5 years a few blocks away from each other, despite not knowing each other then, and have fallen in love with the neighborhood. It has so much character. The people who live here are really into living here, making it such a warm, welcoming community, whether you’re a resident or a business owner. Even when we first opened, neighbors were stopping by to bring us plants, and clients were stopping by with their kids and dogs to check out the studio space.
When we were evaluating where to open, we realized we lived so close to so many residences and offices, and that something was lacking in the neighborhood. There weren't enough options for an efficient workout that won't take 2 hours to get to, complete, clean up from, and move on with your day. We wanted to offer a workout that could get people in and out in 1 hour. It has been a lot of fun getting to know the neighborhood as business owners and not just residents. Everyone has been very supportive.
What have the most popular classes been?
We’ve gotten great feedback on all of them, but, during the lunch rush, our Xtend Xpress class, which is 45 minutes and features all of the best aspects of the full Xtend class, are very popular. It lets people sneak out of the office, get a great workout in, and get back to work in 60 minutes.
How are you looking to grow in the next 6 months?
RIght now we have a great schedule that reflects the neighborhood’s needs in the summer, with 4 to 6 classes a day between 7AM and 8PM. This Fall, we plan on adding more classes in September that complement the local school schedules and people’s daily needs.
We are also looking into how we can support the neighborhood and give back beyond health, creating programs that partner with local schools and businesses to give back. We just love the neighborhood and want to support it.
What are your favorite neighborhood spots?