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Unique Pilates studio WundaBar finding core support in Torrey Hills

WundaBar studio owner Bri Blonigan demonstrates low-impact, core-focused jumping on their unique machine.
(Bill Blonigan)

The new WundaBar Pilates studio in Torrey Hills is ready to kick off 2015 and help people meet their fitness goals. Carmel Valley resident and WundaBar owner Bri Blonigan just opened her doors at the Torrey Hills Shopping Center for a free weekend of classes on Dec. 6-7.

“The opening weekend was stellar. The classes were all full and we got a lot of good feedback,” Blonigan said. “It has been fun because a lot of people that came signed up for the program and we have a solid crew that is coming regularly.”

Blonigan is only the second franchisee of the LA-born Pilates studio chain, founded by celebrity trainer Amy Jordan in 2011. Jordan invented the unique WundaFormer machine used in the studio’s workouts — a twist on the traditional Pilates reformer with a jump board, a “Wunda Chair” and a ballet bar, designed to give four times the challenge, four times the fun and, of course, four times the results. There are thousands of exercises that can be performed on the Wundaformer.

Torrey Hills is the first San Diego location — the other five studios are all located in the Los Angeles area.

Blonigan discovered Pilates when she was in Orange County, working as a high school and dance teacher. She enjoyed Pilates so much that she decided to leave teaching and pursue a career in the lengthening and strengthening exercise, becoming a certified trainer and eventually managing a studio.

“My dream shifted into being the owner of my own studio because I fell in love with helping people achieve their goals, whether it was rehabbing injuries or changing their physique,” Blonigan said.

In her research, she discovered WundaBar and began taking classes — she knew that this flexible program was the one she wanted in her own studio.

“(The equipment) moves around like a Swiss Army knife,” Blonigan said. “There’s a lot of variety in what you can do; there’s no other machine that offers this much variety. It perfectly marries the principles of traditional Pilates with the intensity of a cardio workout.”

A motto that graces the walls of the new studio: “Where intensity meets integrity.”

In WundaBar class, those used to the traditional Pilates reformer will recognize the carriage of the machine — which rolls back and forth and is attached by a set of springs that offer different levels of resistance. The machine has straps and an adjustable footbar. Making the WundaFormer different is that dance conditioning exercises can be performed on the machine’s ballet bar, cardio can be added with its jump board and the spring-tension based Wunda chair on the back offers hundreds of different exercises.

Each element can be adjusted to be more or less challenging, making it possible to have a class with participants at varying levels of experience.

The Torrey Hills WundaBar has 10 machines and currently Blonigan is offering five to seven classes a day. As with any new exercise studio, she is starting with a lean schedule to see what times the clients most want to see.

Two additional instructors are joining Blonigan this month as the studio will start to add more classes.

Just a few weeks into owning her own studio, Blonigan is already hearing amazing stories from her clients. One woman reported already losing three and a half pounds and said she’s taken inches off her frame. Another 62-year-old client said her husband told her he sees a difference in her body, and a triathlete with tons of injuries said she’s feeling stronger and not struggling to get up out of a chair anymore.

“I love hearing those things. The fact that I’m already hearing that kind of stuff makes it really fun and exciting,” Blonigan said. “I am loving it. I am having a blast.”

The first WundaBar class is always free and right now there is an opening special of one unlimited month for $149. For more information, visit wundabar.com or call (858) 255-1481.


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