Barre Centric reopens fitness studio in downtown Buffalo, adds yoga classes

Three years after closing its Buffalo studio due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Barre Centric has opened a new space downtown. 

The first floor of the Mid-City Apartments building at 1665 Main St., is the new home of Barre Centric. The 1,600-square-foot space can host classes for up to 25 people. 

Barre Centric formerly operated a studio down the street from its new location from 2014 until 2020. Owners Rachael Jarosz and Giavana de Zitter first opened their business in Clarence in 2012 and also have a location in East Aurora. 

The new location of Barre Centric at Mid-City Apartments on Monday, July 10, 2023.

“With more of our members getting back to their office commutes and more and more people moving downtown into newly remodeled living spaces, we see now more than ever a great opportunity to bring Barre Centric back to the downtown area,” Jarosz said.

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The downtown studio also will offer yoga classes, a new addition made possible through a partnership with Raw Renewal Yoga, owned by Megan Ruggirello. 

Ruggirello previously had a yoga studio on Court Street, but had to close after the space she was leasing was purchased. Raw Renewal Yoga will have at least 10 weekly yoga classes in Barre Centric’s downtown studio. 

Raw Renewal Yoga is leasing studio space from Barre Centric, which helps both small businesses offset the rising costs of things like rent and utilities, Jarosz said. 

“(We’re) getting a little bit more creative with business models in the post-Covid era and making the space work for both of us and offering offering a space for her members as well,” Jarosz said.

Barre Centric owner Rachael Jarosz and Raw Renewal Yoga owner Megan Ruggirello pose for a portrait in their studio inside Mid-City Apartments on Monday, July 10, 2023.

Barre Centric and Raw Renewal have collaborated before, hosting barre and yoga retreats in Bahamas, Costa Rica, Belize and Spain. This fall, they will host a trip in Tuscany. 

When Jarosz and de Zitter opened their boutique fitness studio more than a decade ago, they were one of the first local studios dedicated to barre classes, a full-body, low-impact, strength-training workout where participants use a ballet barre to keep their balance.

Since then, dozens of similar studios have popped up around Western New York. What sets Barre Centric apart from those other offerings, Jarosz said, is Barre Centric is one of the only locally owned studios with multiple locations. 

“Having access to three studios with full scheduled classes is really beneficial to members so they’re able to fit classes into their busy schedules and their commute,” she said. 

Front to back, Lisa Epstein, Natasha Panepinto and Yonna Jelly participate in a barre workout class lead by Barre Centric owner Rachael Jarosz in a studio inside Mid-City Apartments on Monday, July 10, 2023. 

Since Barre Centric opened its downtown studio July 5, many former members have returned for classes, Jarosz said.

“A lot of our members have been coming back, like members we haven’t seen in a couple years,” Jarosz said. “It seems like people are really excited that we’re back in the city and we’re just looking to continue to grow and welcome new people.”

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