Kickass entrepreneur: Studio Barre
Shannon Higgins has ballet in her blood and a passion for dance and fitness.
It started with ballet performances when she was younger and attending the United States International University in San Diego. After leaving ballet, she became a personal trainer, but after attending just one barre class, which focuses on building core strength, improving posture and creating a dancer-like physique, Higgins was hooked. In 2008 she opened the first standalone location of what would become one of the largest barre franchises in the country.
Higgins then became a master teacher trainer and director of owner relations for the brand. After several years running the flagship franchise for the brand as it grew to more than 100 studios, Higgins made the decision to go completely independent, developing her boutique fitness brand.
In 2012, Studio Barre was born when she opened the doors to its first location in La Costa. Based on popularity and major interest from clients, Higgins decided it was time to franchise. She saw this as an opportunity to share the program with more people, and it resulted in the growth of Studio Barre. It has eight franchises nationwide.
Q: Misconception that people have about barre?
A: People have a tendency to think you need a dancer’s background or that you need to be very fit to do barre, when in fact, barre is really designed for anyone at any fitness level.
Q: Other than barre, what are some of your favorite hobbies in San Diego?
A: When I’m not at the barre, I love going to the beach. San Diego offers everything from Coronado’s wide sandy beaches to La Jolla’s rocky beach cliffs and everything in between.
Q: Best part about doing business in San Diego?
A: San Diego has such a healthy culture and attitude, which I love. Fitness is top of mind for most locals, so there are so many incredible ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle and so many great businesses that cater to that lifestyle.
Q: If you could be any superhero, who would you be and why?
A: Wonder Woman, of course ... golden lasso, invisible plane and a super hot outfit. I loved her because even as her alter ego, Diana Prince, she is a take-charge, intelligent and accomplished woman.
Q: CEO or company you admire and why?
A: I am huge fan of Drybar. The founder, Alli Webb, had a simple idea ... no cuts, no color, just blow outs. She has created a brand with a strong voice and culture that became a nationwide success very quickly.
Q: Motto you like to live by?
A: “Do or do not, there is no try.” To get the most out of whatever you do you have to commit!
Q: Describe your most perfect day in San Diego?
A: Wake up to San Diego sunshine, head to a Studio Barre class followed by breakfast at 101 Diner in Encinitas with my family. Then straight to D Street beach after which I’d grab afternoon coffee and a snack at Lofty Bean because they have coconut milk.
Q: Three things you would take to a deserted island?
A: Music, sunscreen and Ketel One.