business review · fitness

Pure Barre Hillcrest Review

Earlier this month, as part of my having a ClassPass, I finally got the opportunity to try barre.

It’s something I’ve heard people rave about – it’s challenging and works your body in a really unique way that helps you tone up. I also know several runners who do it and they feel it’s a strengthening activity that really complements the muscles you use during running. So, after months of wanting to try it out, but not being sure where to start, my friend Kayla and I signed up through the ClassPass dashboard (which is super easy to do), and made our way to Pure Barre in Hillcrest (3650 5th Avenue, Suite 102) on a Sunday morning.

I’m going to keep this short and simple…

Here’s what I liked:

  • The studio was located in a really awesome location, near several brunch spots (which was great, since we fully intended to drink mimosas and eat good food after this class).
  • Parking is probably a pain for some people but we were able to find a spot on the street around the corner.
  • The woman at the front desk was really friendly. She asked us to fill out a basic form and asked if we were new; when we told her that we hadn’t done barre before, she excitedly introduced us to the instructor who had just walked in. She also helped get us set up.
  • The cubbies for us to put our stuff in had fabric drawers, which I liked because then people couldn’t just see my bag or cell phone laying around. These were also in the same room as the studio, as opposed to unattended in a hallway.

pure barre hillcrest cubbies

pure barre hillcrest weights

  • The studio was clean and looked newish.

pure barre hillcrest inside

  • The class was definitely challenging, and I can see where this would be a great workout for your legs, particularly your inner thighs.
  • When we were done, the nice woman at the front desk asked how we liked the class and if we had any questions.

Here’s what I didn’t like:

  • Remember when the woman at the front desk introduced us to our instructor and told her we were new? Our instructor couldn’t care less. When we were introduced, she immediately proclaimed that she was going to get coffee. Not quite what I’d hope for when being new to a class, and new to a studio.
  • The instructor didn’t fully demonstrate what she wanted, nor did she offer any sort of modifications. As someone who has never taken barre before, I really would’ve benefited from modifications or ways to adjust my form since I’ve never worked out in that way. Her lack of instructions was also confusing for me…and let’s be honest, I still have no idea what “tucking” is.
  • There was only one kind of band. I would have liked to see more options that offered various levels of resistance.
  • When we were done with class, the instructor just left; she didn’t ask how we liked our first class or if we had any questions (something I’ve noted other instructors do at other studios). Quite honestly, she wasn’t very friendly and I didn’t feel comfortable in her class.

Fortunately, ClassPass does offer barre classes in San Diego at several other locations, which is something I’ll consider based on what Kayla said about her experience at another studio. I’d also consider returning to Pure Barre in Hillcrest, but if I do, I won’t take another class with this instructor because I didn’t feel welcome in her class, and I felt that she was getting frustrated that I was having a hard time with some of the movements, despite it being my first barre class.

Have you ever done barre? Do you recommend I try a different studio?

Disclosure: ClassPass provided me a complimentary month of service in exchange for sharing my experience with it. All opinions, as usual, are my own. 

5 thoughts on “Pure Barre Hillcrest Review

  1. Gloria that sounds awful, I can’t believe the Pure Barre Studio held themselves in such a low standard. These are all franchises and they are all the same everywhere, even down to the carpet. Our Pure Barre Studio opened a year ago in Sonoma, CA and it is really great. I think there might be one or two instructors I stay away from, but in general they are very helpful and explain the “tuck” before each class {in case we have newbies}. I have been doing Barre for about a year {took some months off} and am now back full time.
    It really changes my body and leans the heck out of my thighs. I want to share your experience with the Pure Barre People and you should also. Hopefully you will have the chance to try another in a different location and have a better experience.


    1. Hi Lynda, thanks for your comment! I was really surprised about this too, because I’ve heard good things about it otherwise. It’s good to know that most instructors will actually take the time to explain things – that’s definitely something I could have used prior to going into the class. I’ve heard it greatly affects your lower body so I’d like to give it another try.


  2. Hey girly, I think I miscommunicated about the different bands. The other studio I went to had different bands, as in they were more stretchy- not various sizes to choose from. Either way though, the other studio was really great! I think you’d love it 🙂


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