Saturday, November 17, 2012

Studio Review: Refine Method

I finally got around to trying my second Refine Method class today! I met Dori for a 10:45 AM class this morning to give it a go when I wasn't semi-paralyzed from just running a half-marathon.

I've taken two classes at the Refine Method's Upper West Side studio, and I've really enjoyed both. An interesting feature of Refine is that each class is different from the last, but they all incorporate props and the pulley system on the wall, and they all revolve around the same basic building blocks of foam rolling to start, circuit-style exercise, and stretching at the end. There's a reason for that: "First, we focus on large movements, stoking the metabolism and stripping the fat. Then we move to targeted finishers to activate and attack the smaller problem areas, leaving an attractive, balanced physique" (source).

Brynn, the founder of Refine Method
That means that all areas of the body are targeted in each of the circuits, which are repeated at least two times and sometimes more. Today's class involved rows, chest presses, planks, box step-ups (these scare the shit out of me -- I'm always afraid I'll fall off and kill myself!), box squats with kettlebells, planks, and lunges with kettlebells. For the cardio parts, we did jumping jacks, pretend jump roping, and sprinted with high knees in place.

the pulley system used in classes
Classes are not too large, since the number of students is limited to the number of pulley systems, which I think is around 20 or so in the room. That means the instructor can really get around and help with form, which I found necessary on some of the work using the pulleys since I was new to the class.

My first love for these kind of cardio-strength interval circuit classes is still Uplift Studios, since I know and love the ladies there, but Refine Method is going to be a wonderful option for me when I can't make it down to Gramercy. I bought a $80-for-4-class pack that's available for new clients, and I'm looking forward to the three classes I have left!

Length - 1 hour
Cost - $32 (50% off your first class)
Location - Upper West Side (117 W 72nd St between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues, next to Juice Generation). There are also locations on the Upper East Side and in Union Square, although the US location is closed for now due to Hurricane Sandy damage.
Skill Level - Anyone, the classes are measured by time not reps so you could do as little or as much as you're capable of.


  1. Great review! So happy you liked the class and I hope we can take it together again. Also, I may have bought the exact same hot pick Cool Racerback you had on as soon as class was over.

    1. I love that hot pink, it's my favorite of the cool racerbacks I have! I already booked another class :) I'm going on Friday if you'll be in the city!