Emily Johnson says she discovered the Pure Barre franchise when looking for a way to keep herself in shape.
Johnson, a 28-year-old Michigan native who was on the varsity cheerleading squads at Central Michigan University and the Ohio State University, said she wanted to keep herself lean, without gaining bulky muscle.
"After I graduated, I was looking for something to stay in shape and I found Pure Barre, which is very different from what most workouts were at the time," she said.
Pure Barre is a low-impact workout, with no bouncing or jumping, that includes some cardiovascular work to increase the heart rate and provides an entire body workout in one hour, Johnson said.
"It creates long and lean muscles, rather than bulky muscles," Johnson said. "I thought this workout in particular is perfect for me and perfect for busy women.
"It's great, too, because we have every fitness and body type and age in one class so we can create modifications for anyone who needs that."
The Pure Barre system primarily uses a ballet barre.
"Anyone can do it as long as you can hold on to a ballet barre," Johnson said.
Class member Debra Lyons Lowery attended a free class when the studio opened and started going three days a week after that.
"I like that you can feel that your body is changing in only a few weeks," she said. " I am leaner, stronger and more flexible.
"The instructor constantly moves throughout the studio during the class making slight adjustments to our form to help us get the most out of each exercise. The approach is a very affirming combination of individual and group praise given over the microphone coupled with private technique correction offered off the microphone. I feel like I am getting both the benefits of personal instruction and the camaraderie of being in a group."
Johnson said she opened two other locations in Columbus, at 960 W. Fifth St. and 3650 W. Dublin-Granville Road, prior to choosing New Albany for her third studio.
She opened Pure Barre at 180 Market St. in New Albany at the end of 2013 and now has four to five classes daily.
Classes are capped at 20 students and Johnson said her evening classes in New Albany have a waiting list.
Johnson said New Albany seemed like the right area for a franchise.
"Obviously I liked the community aspect of New Albany and I wanted to get involved not just with an every-day workout but also with events," she said.
Johnson said she has donated to New Albany Women's Network events and will continue to support events that benefit women.
Single classes at Pure Barre range in cost from $5 to $50, depending on the number of classes purchased. Johnson said monthly memberships, which cost $225, allow students to attend one class a day and can be used at all three studios.