I am so excited to share with you a profile interview with the amazing Brett Dunevant, who is the creator, owner and lead instructor of Barre South, a local barre studio located in Mt. Pleasant, SC.
For quite some time, I have been happily following Barre South on social media, and have been dying to take a class at their very open and rustic studio on Coleman Boulevard. As someone who thrives on watching people living their dreams, especially local women, I was thrilled when Brett and I were finally able to connect so I could get to know more about her and the new studio.
Read on to learn more about Brett and her fantastic local studio Barre South. I guarantee she will reduce any anxiety you may have about this fun and transformative workout.
Meet the Talented Brett Dunevant of Barre South
Tell me a little about yourself.
I was born in Charleston but grew up in Lynchburg, VA. Graduated from James Madison University with a major in Public Relations and minor in Dance. Lived in Charleston for a year after college, and then moved to Richmond, VA where I taught and managed a barre studio. I’ve been married to my middle school sweet heart, Brandon, for over 4 years and we have a big white 120 lb fur baby named Brooklyn. We moved back to Charleston a year ago and opened up Barre South in May of this year!
Since you recently opened Barre South in Mt. Pleasant, what led you to take on this opportunity?
As soon as I discovered barre it quickly became my greatest passion. Not only was I turned on by the mental and physical challenges of the methodology, it was even more rewarding to work with clients and push them to work towards their best self. After one of my Charleston vacations it just clicked – I knew that I was ready for a change and could bring something a little different to Charleston – I was excited to offer my method of barre in my favorite place in the world.
For someone who has never taken a barre class before, explain what type of exercise or workout it is.
Barre fuses ballet, pilates, and yoga together. It is a low impact full body workout that strengthens and tones muscles by using small isometric movements to target specific muscles throughout the body.
Barre South is unique because we’re an independent studio and that allows us flexibility to change things up as we please. I like to keep people on their toes – no two classes will ever be the same.
What is one misconception people often have about attending a barre class? How do you help change that?
Number one misconception: Do I have to be a dancer? You do not have to be a dancer. Yes barre was created be a German ballerina, yes we use a ballet barre… NO, barre is not a ballet class. Our barre classes are open to all levels, ages, shapes, and sizes. We even have men come to classes. We offer modifications and challenges throughout class so that it’s something that works for everyone! It’s not about grace or flexibility. For the safety of our clients, we do focus on form and alignment by offering verbal cues and physical adjustments. Our goal is to provide you with a fun upbeat class that challenges and changes you both mentally and physically.
Ok, since barre is usually thought of as a ‘woman’s workout’, what do the men usually say or do after taking a barre class?
(Laughs) They all say, ‘That was hard! I didn’t realize how intense barre really is!’ They have a whole new respect for us barre gals!
Some men come by themselves or with their wives. I have one male client who supplements barre with Crossfit because it helps with his alignment and balance. It also targets other smaller muscles that they don’t normally work.I like to keep people on their toes – no two classes will ever be the same. Brett ~ Barre South… Click To Tweet
What should someone wear for a barre class?
Yoga pants or leggings. We do not recommend shorts due to some of the positions we work in. Because we have hardwood floors we do not require sticky socks – bare feet are welcome!
Are there any other workouts or exercises you recommend in addition to barre?
I think yoga complements barre well – it’s a nice way to stretch and lengthen out the muscles. I also love spin classes – a good way to get in some cardio while also being low impact on the knees.
What’s the best feedback you’ve ever received from one of your classes or clients?
It always feels amazing to have someone tell you ‘I’ve been to a lot of studios and this was the best barre class I’ve been to.’
It’s also so great to hear when clients are seeing significant results! In just a couple of months we’ve had clients remark on how much stronger they feel, how many pounds or inches they’ve lost, and just how much healthier and better they feel all around. That’s a win in my book.
How has your degree in Public Relations helped you as a business owner and/or barre instructor?
On the business side, it has helped me with the advertising and marketing aspect as well as reaching out to other businesses. I’m usually not comfortable speaking in front of a large crowd, but it doesn’t scare me at all to teach barre to a room full of people.
Having a previous dance background helps with the instructor part of my job when it comes to technique and musicality. It is important for the instructor to be a great role model.
What are your future plans or goals for Barre South?
We’ve only been open for a few months so right now I’m focusing on continuing to build the business – training new instructors, adding class times, planning fun events, etc. Really focusing on the present. So far the business has been everything I’ve hoped for and more!
Ok Brett, now for some personal questions:
How do you start your day?
Roll out of bed, brush my teeth, and head to the studio! I teach every weekday morning J
How to you keep a healthy work/life balance?
I’m really lucky to be doing what I love, but I think it’s very important to take time to spend with friends and family and clear your mind from any stresses. While it seems like I hardly get away from the studio, I make sure that I still get out for some fun when I can!
What is most rewarding about your job; what makes it all worthwhile?
This whole experience of opening my own studio has been the most rewarding and exciting thing I’ve ever done.
The most rewarding part about my job is working with the clients. Seeing how hard they work inspires me to be a better instructor and business owner. It’s my goal to provide them with an environment where they feel comfortable, a workout where they feel challenged, and a mental state where they feel accomplished. Each and every client has shown so much improvement, and it’s awesome to hear them talk about the results they’ve seen!
Your favorite quote?
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams, live the life you’ve imagined – Henry David Thoreau
What’s the one food or meal you just can’t live without?
If I could eat Mexican for every meal, I would!
Any advice you’d like to share for someone who wants to follow their passion?
Don’t let the fear of failure hold you back. If you have the means and capability to do it, do it! Otherwise you may regret not trying.
Willing to share your guilty pleasure?
(Laughs) I was just asked this in another interview and I’ll give you the same answer – wine and the Bachelor (tv series) – well right now, Bachelor In Paradise (tv series). 😉
Thanks Brett for the interview!
Now that you have a learned a little bit about the talented Brett and her new studio, Barre South, I hope you will take the opportunity to contact them and take a class.
And if you’re not already motivated enough, luckily, Barre South offers employee discounts as well as student and teacher discounts. Just ask. In fact, right now, Brett and her team are offering an incredible deal – new clients can get a month’s worth of unlimited visits for $50!!! Hello?? Call her now and grab this!!
So, do something amazing for you mind, body and soul and join me at Barre South. Brett and I promise you, this won’t be like your childhood ballet classes with pretty pink tutus and ballet slippers. Think – the best hour of your day spent doing the most challenging, rewarding thing for your body!!
PS: Grab the latest edition of the Mt. Pleasant magazine for a special treat from Barre South.
All photos courtesy of Barre South