By Jenn Seracuse | photo credits Jay Sullivan
FLEX Studios was born out of what our owner, Jeanette Simon, saw as something missing in the NYC boutique fitness scene — group Pilates classes that are fast paced and intense, but also exacting and form-focused. Coming from California, and being a devotee to this kind of workout herself, she believed it had potential to be a big hit here in NYC. Jeanette also recognized the importance of cross-training, and how valuable a one-stop workout shop could be in a city where time is money, so she knew FLEX needed to offer more than just Pilates.
FlexBarre and FlexTRX were added to the mix, creating three intense workouts that complement each other both in their similarities and also the differences they bring to a fitness regimen. You have the resistance training and lengthening of Pilates, the conditioning and toning of Barre, and the endurance and cardiovascular benefits of TRX. What’s more, each of these disciplines helps you to become better at the other. For example, performing pikes on the FLEXformer helps you hone your form and build core strength for pikes with your feet suspended during a TRX class. Since every method is essentially rooted in the art of Pilates, core strength and alignment are always improving.
Also, because Flex offers three different methods, we are able to include combination classes on our schedule, which we call our “Flex30/30s.” These classes offer a chance to see just why and how these methods work so well together, and provide guests with an opportunity to get a taste of everything we have to offer. Flex30/30 has become a favorite among clients!
On top of our killer workouts, we’ve created an environment not only of intensity, but also community. We like to think FLEX Studios is something of an oasis for busy New York fitness enthusiasts, to escape the madness of their lives for an hour. We pride ourselves on being welcoming, friendly, and 100% invested in everyone who walks through our door. Our clients will tell you that we are like a big happy family. While we do offer private sessions, we love the dynamic of group fitness and the sense of community it breeds. Everyone supports, challenges, and motivates each other.
Another factor that sets FLEX apart is our unique attention to form in all of our methods. You can expect hands-on corrections and major attention to detail. It’s important to us that our clients not only leave having worked up a sweat, and with muscles shaking, but also with a better understanding of how their body works. It’s not just about how long, how many reps, how fast — but HOW. To put it simply, proper form and a strong mind/body connection lead to better, faster results and overall health. There is no better feeling than what I like to call the “lightbulb” moment, when an exercise just clicks, and you understand what your body is supposed to be doing and how to make it happen. We strive for every client to have that moment in every class.
We keep class numbers small so our team of certified, highly qualified instructors can provide individual attention and give clients the best workout experience possible. The goal is to present a workout that is intense, high energy, and fun, but also educational, intelligently designed, and most importantly, effective. The idea that a class can be both intense and form-focused is at the core of our DNA at FLEX. You don’t have to sacrifice one for the other.
My personal involvement with FLEX started after I met Jeanette at another studio where I was teaching. We were actually friends for a while, before she approached me about directing her Pilates program. Little did I know that from Day One of meeting her, I was on one long job interview that would completely change my life. At the time, I was bouncing around from studio to studio teaching as much as I could, but it was exhausting and starting to wear on me. I was looking for a home, a one-stop shop, if you will, so for me starting this journey with Jeanette was a no-brainer, and continues to be one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Working with her and Jackie Dragone, the director of FlexBarre & FlexTRX, to build and cultivate FLEX Studios, is a dream job. Sometimes I can’t believe I am so lucky to get paid to do it!
So far, 2015 has been a big year for FLEX. For one, we are thrilled to introduce our brand new, exclusive FLEXformer, combining the best of a Pilates reformer and chair into one sleek machine, taking the FlexPilates method to the next level. The addition of the chair means more than 30 new exercises, and an even more intense and effective workout. Over a year in the making, Jeanette and myself worked very closely with designers The Villency Group (the masterminds behind the quintessential SoulCycle and Peloton Bikes, as well as other fitness and wellness products), on every detail to create a machine unlike any other. It has been a true passion project, and it’s extremely rewarding to see them being put to use in the classroom.
We are also thrilled to be opening our second location in NoHo in June! We always knew we wanted to grow, and share this unique workout experience with more of NYC (and beyond), and believe NoHo is the perfect place to start. The area is quickly becoming the city’s newest boutique fitness mecca, and we can’t wait to open our doors to more clients to give them a glimpse into what makes this studio so special.
Jenn Seracuse grew up singing and dancing, and discovered Pilates while studying for her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theater. After performing in NYC and touring around the country, she paused and underwent colon resection surgery due to her Crohn's Disease. Using Pilates to rehabilitate and cope with the surgery, she fell even more in love with it, and is now stronger and healthier than ever. Pilates became not only body altering, but also life altering for Jenn, when she realized her passion for doing translated into a passion for teaching. This ultimately led to a transition from Musical Theater to a successful career in fitness, and she is now the Director of Pilates at FLEX Studios.
Jenn is certified in Pilates Mat and Apparatus, as well as TRX suspension training and Prenatal & Postnatal exercise. Jenn has been featured in several major publications including Glamour, SHAPE, Women’s Health, MAXIM, People StyleWatch, and New York Magazine. She has appeared in segments on NBC’s TODAY, FOX News and Telemundo. She is an ambassador for Lululemon, Essentia Water, and the new fitness social media platform, Fitmoo.
Jenn trains a wide range of clients from top models, like Victoria's Secret Super Model Alessandra Ambrosio and Sports Illustrated swimsuit models Kate Bock and Lauren Mellor; to professional athletes like Tristan Thompson of the Cleveland Cavaliers. She also works with other film, television and Broadway stars, dancers, marathon and Ironman competitors, NYC socialites, and of course new and expectant moms. Jenn loves transforming bodies by adding a modern spin to classic Pilates exercises, and is a stickler for form and precision. This adds to the intensity of the workout, and ultimately leads to faster results, leaving you feeling leaner, longer, and stronger!