The Bar Method
I highly recommend the Bar Method Berkeley daycare (and the workout). Regarding the daycare, its a small room with toys and books, not too many kids, and less germs and chaos as a result:) The providers have always been really calm and gentle with my anxious son. Carrie
If you like barre exercise/pilates type work outs (where there is lots of room for modifying for pregnancy), I highly recommend you consider the Bar Method in N. Berkeley where there is a kids room for your toddler for just $5/class (you do need to register for class and kids room early as it fills up). Membership is expensive, but for me this was a great workout prior to pregnancy, during pregnancy, and definitely post-pregnancy!
The Bar Method in Berkeley has a daycare. I believe it costs an extra $5/class.
Archived Q&A and Reviews
I am interested in taking exercise classes at the Bar Method in Walnut Creek. Can anybody tell me anything about these classes? What you like, what you don't like, what the exercises are, are the classes crowded, are the exercises effective, etc. Looking for a good workout
My tush aches (a good thing!) as I sit here writing this reply! I have been going to The Bar Method since March and I absolutely LOVE it! I haven't stepped foot in my gym since the day I started. I didn't need to lose weight, but really wanted to tone. I still like to get cardio exercise in a couple of days a week (e.g. The Lafayette Reservoir or hiking in open space) but I go to the Bar Method 3 times a week religiously.
The Bar Method combines calanetics (sp?), Pilates, Yoga and ballet type movements concentrating the most miniscule of motions while squeezing, tucking, breathing. If you observed it, it wouldn't look like much. But after an hour you leave exhilarated, and not just a little bit sore, but not in a bad way. You're just totally physically spent. The great thing about it is you don't have to have to be super fit and not everyone in the room is, although there are some bodies in there to envy!
The instructors are great about making sure you are in the right position to get maximum benefit from each particular exercise, they play great music and you are being constantly reminded to tuck your seat and grip your abs. I particularly love Amy and Audrey. The hour flies by.
Although I haven't lost any weight, I look and feel stronger and more toned. (Does muscle really weigh more than fat?!) Just today I ran into a friend and she said ''WhAT have you been doing??? You look great!''
It is definitely worth checking out. They even offer childcare for a nominal fee that you can reserve in advance. Here are a few 'warnings' though. 1. It's expensive. Although your first class is free and you can buy your first month's unlimited pass for $100, after that you are looking at $14 - $20 per class depending on how many classes you prepay, or if you buy the monthly unlimited. There is a summer sale going on now through Aug. 1 so you can save some money by buying a package. 2. Classes can sell out. I have never been turned away, but it's happened at classes I've attended. There's only so much space in the room. Although they have a 2nd room, they haven't opened it yet. However, if you get there at least 10 minutes early you're nearly guaranteed a place. 3. Class times are limited. They start at 6 a.m. and there are 3 other ones until noon, then they are closed until 5:30 and there are only 2 evening classes.
I don't mean to gush, but I've been looking for the right program for me for ages and I've found it at The Bar. Maybe I'll see you there! I'm Karen