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Optimized Performance Through Mobility (Studio Three Review)

Optimize performance with mobility at the new Performance Stretch class at Studio Three! Then link up with Running Coaches Corner!

Studio Three offered me a few classes for the purposes of review. All opinions are my own.

Studio Three is a boutique fitness facility located in the River North neighborhood of Chicago, IL. Even if you don’t live in Chicago, the concepts that Studio Three employs in the creation of its workouts and programming are applicable in your own fitness program! Learn how their multi-faceted, stackable workouts can help you become a better, more complete athlete and runner!

Optimize performance with mobility at the new Performance Stretch class at Studio Three! Then link up with Running Coaches Corner! @suzlyfe

Three Fitness Disciplines = Complete Athlete and Total Wellness

Studio Three offers 3 unique environments Interval Training, Peloton Cycling, and Yoga/Performance Stretch to help you revolutionize your training:

The classes are designed to create balanced, full-body workouts for our clients. From cardiovascular conditioning to intense strength and interval training to energetic shifts and a mindful practice in yoga: Studio Three offers a variety of classes tailored to your changing needs presented by the industryโ€™s top instructors. (From the Website)

There is variety within each discipline, as well: there are different interval training classes, different types of yoga classes (from hot to gentle), and different lengths of cycling classes (remember how I tried out Peloton cycling at Sweatworking?). The classes are scheduled so as to be stackable–so that you can go to a cycling class and then follow up with a yoga class or Performance Stretch, and completely new and unique class concept that I am really excited to tell you about.

I got a taste of Performance Stretch at Sweatworking, but I wanted to talk to Caroline, the head of the yoga and mobility program at Studio Three, a bit more in-depth about the new class and how she thought it fit into building the complete athlete.

Performance Stretch : Optimize Your Performance

Though Performance Stretch was created as a follow up class, it has quickly become a class that stands on its own. I loved when Caroline said that she views this class as bringing the gym full circle, that it is just as important as the classes where you come and the sweat drips down into your eyes. In her words, this is the perfect class to “Optimize your performance” by improving your mobility, improve posture, increase mind-body connection and awareness, and release those knotted muscles. 

Classes begin with yoga-based moves that go through the 6 directions of the spine and begin to activate the muscles. Next, the instructor leads participants through muscle release and self massage using the therapy ball. Each class has a focus, though all classes work on the whole body. The final part of class returns to recheck the mobility of the the target area with more passive stretches.

As someone who sits on the floor with a lacrosse ball underneath her hamstrings every morning, I LOVE this idea! Anyone can utilize the class, but it is particularly helpful for those of us who are endurance athletes who then have to sit at a desk, or in the car, or what have you (or for those triathletes who spend a lot of time on the bike!). A great deal of time is spent opening up the hips and shoulders and then releasing the quadriceps and hamstrings.

My Performance Stretch Experience and Review

Optimize performance with mobility at the new Performance Stretch class at Studio Three! Then link up with Running Coaches Corner! @suzlyfe

I had two experiences with Performance Stretch, and two completely different (but equally beneficial) experiences! I took both the Performance Stretch 60 and Performance Stretch 45 classes (I took the 45 minute after a spin class to see how it helped me recover). The heated room, on a very cold day in Chicago with chilly muscles, was instrumental in getting the most from the class! I also loved the aesthetics of the space (exposed brick and large windows).

Monica, who led the 60 minute, prefers the use of yoga tune-up balls, which are a bit softer on the outside than lacrosse balls. We used a yoga strap to stretch our hamstrings, calves, and hips, then we stretched out our side bodies and finally our shoulders and necks. I thought the neck stretching was really interesting–I have several clients who have major neck issues, and there were a few variations on our typical neck stretches that I want to incorporate. 

After our stretches and a “control” pose (to be compared before and after the myo-fascial release with the tune up ball), we used the wall so that we could control the amount of pressure against our soft tissue. We then used different types of pressure to loosen up muscles in and around our shoulder blades (the focus for this class). Finally, we compared with the control pose (in this case, reverse crucifix) and then used the bolster underneath us to allow the gravity and relaxation to help keep the muscles from going back to their previous tightness (due to muscle memory).

My 45-minute class with Stephanie was far less structured, and much more based on our needs at that time. I mentioned hamstrings, someone else wanted to work on hips and hip flexors, and so we focused on both of those areas with lacrosse balls. I loved this class because, once again, even though I might not have felt that I needed help on those hip flexors or calves, but by the end, I was so glad that we had worked on them! And yes, my hamstrings felt MUCH better after ๐Ÿ˜€

EVERYONE needs mobility work from classes like @studiothreechi Performance Stretch! #runchat Click To Tweet

Bottom Line

Through my experience with Performance Stretch, I completely understand what Courtney meant by the purpose of the performance stretch class–this is a class for and benefiting EVERYONE–athlete, couch potato, young, mature, existing injuries, never been to PT. The only way to make it better would be more classes and knowing what they would be working on beforehand (so that you can make sure to go to a class that worked on an area of the body that you needed work on) but I also love that I went to a class that worked on areas of my body that I wouldn’t have said needed work! And while some instructors come in with a set plan, others like a bit more of a free-flow., which would make it a bit more difficult to “schedule.” Regardless of which type of class, there is a great benefit to incorporating any sort of mobility work into your day, and Performance Stretch is a great vehicle for that education.

Optimized performance, indeed!

Do you take the time to do regular mobility work?

What is your tightest and most troublesome area? Don’t forget that the massager giveaway is still active!

I am linking up with myself, Rachel, Lora, and Debbie for Running Coaches CornerPatty, Erika, and Marcia for Tuesdays on the Run, Nicole, Annmarie, Michelle, and Jen for Wild Workout Wednesday, and Ilka and Angela for Food and Fitness Sunday. 

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  • Reply Stacey

    Sounds like a really great class-I think we can all benefit from better mobility, athlete or not. I have been doing at least 5 minutes a day of Jasyoga which has helped me realize where I’m tight–my hips are the worst!
    Stacey recently posted…Conquering the ColdMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 5:09 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I will have to look into that–I feel like I’ve heard of it!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:56 pm
  • Reply Lisa @ Mile by Mile

    This sounds like a great class! I wish we had something like that. I think you could learn alot from actually having someone show you how to do different types of mobility work. I sort of know what i am doing but Im sure there is alot I could still learn. I also think it would be much more beneficial to have someone walking you through it and telling you want to do!
    Lisa @ Mile by Mile recently posted…Cold Weather Gear for Winter RunningMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 5:49 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      It was great because it was immediately applicable, but also educational for the future.

      January 19, 2017 at 1:54 pm
  • Reply Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner

    I definitely do not do enough of this type of stretching. I would love a class like that after a spin class or a run. Sounds amazing!
    Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner recently posted…What does fitness mean to you?My Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 6:00 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      If you have the time, it is totally amazing!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:54 pm
  • Reply Lacey@fairytalesandfitness

    Sounds like a great studio that has a lot to offer. And you are so right, every one can benefit with more stretching. I am so bad at doing that after workouts.
    Lacey@fairytalesandfitness recently posted…Hawaii- KoKo Head trail stairs in OahuMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 6:27 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      There are few who are really good about it!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:53 pm
  • Reply Anna @ Piper's Run

    I try to stretch most days and have started using a yoga strap. This sounds like a great class! Nothing better then going to a fitness class and having it be warm. I’ve been at a few were the cold seeps through the doors so you have to get their early to avoid that spot!
    Anna @ Piper’s Run recently posted…Nuuninโ€™ It Up AgainMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 6:48 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I can’t handle it if you are supposed to be stretching or something and it is chilly. Not how it works!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:52 pm
  • Reply Kimberly Hatting

    I’m trying to keep up with my PT stuff and stretching/yoga/rolling…but I’ll admit those are the first things that get postponed if my day gets away from me….. #mybad
    Kimberly Hatting recently posted…An ode to the Puffer VestMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 7:11 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      You are doing better than me!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:51 pm
  • Reply Laura @ This Runner's Recipes

    I need a class like this so I don’t call it good after 5 minutes of foam rolling. Right now I am trying to spend one day per week doing mobility exercises.
    Laura @ This Runner’s Recipes recently posted…Tempo and Interval Combo WorkoutMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 7:17 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      You are still beating me ๐Ÿ˜€

      January 19, 2017 at 1:49 pm
  • Reply Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home

    Do you feel like this was any more beneficial than yoga? It sounds fantastic.
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…Staying Upright While Running on the IceMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 7:41 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I feel like it was different. Yoga can be a workout as well, this was more like a pT session

      January 19, 2017 at 1:47 pm
  • Reply Kimberly G

    I could REALLY use a class like this in my life! I’m still working on my flexibility as I think it would help with my IT band injury when it flares up
    Kimberly G recently posted…My StrideBox ReviewMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 7:43 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Make sure you work on strengthening those glutes as well!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:47 pm
  • Reply Kelli @ Hungry Hobby

    OHHHHH MOBILITY! I’m so bad at stretching – I was hypermobile from dance for so long I was instructed to stop stretching. Now it’s been about two years and I’d probably benefit from it but I still don’t. I can use the foam roller though, can being the key word there.
    Kelli @ Hungry Hobby recently posted…Broccoli & Cauliflower Rice QuicheMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 8:14 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      lol. Can and not do ๐Ÿ˜€

      January 19, 2017 at 1:46 pm
  • Reply Annmarie

    Oooh Performance Stretch sounds awesome. Thankfully, I have my own biomechanics expert in the house to keep me mobile ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Annmarie recently posted…DVRT Ultimate Sandbag Cone to Cone Carry FinisherMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 8:31 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Sure, rub it in, will you!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:46 pm
  • Reply Patricia @Sweet and Strong

    Oh I love the stackable workout idea! And this studio sounds perfect for someone like me who is pretty much willing to try anything, I love a good combo of cardio, strength training, and flexibility. And I am always tight in my hips. Even after yoga I still feel tight, trying to look into some different things to try. I thought about at least trying to do a 10 minute yoga session before bed.
    Patricia @Sweet and Strong recently posted…[Solidcore] Workout Class ReviewMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 8:42 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      You are par for the women of our generation–we all carry that hip tightness!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:45 pm
  • Reply Erin @ Erin's Inside Job

    Definitely need that class in my life haha
    Erin @ Erin’s Inside Job recently posted…What Makes You A Warrior?My Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 8:46 am
  • Reply Tiffany @ The Chi-Athlete

    I LOVE this review! That sounds like an awesome spot, and very relatable to most of our goals.
    Tiffany @ The Chi-Athlete recently posted…When My New Year REALLY Starts!My Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 8:50 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      We all need this in our lives. EVERYONE needs it!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:44 pm
  • Reply Suzy

    Ahhh I really need to stretch WAY more than I do. I used to do it a bit and then it’s always the first thing to get omitted when I’m in a rush!
    Suzy recently posted…Settling Into the CrackMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 9:00 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I omit it because my dog like to attack me.

      January 19, 2017 at 1:44 pm
  • Reply Laura

    This sounds awesome! I know I need more mobility work but struggle to fit it in… until I’m injured of course. A class like this would be awesome!

    January 18, 2017 at 9:02 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I know right… we always do EVERYTHING once we are injured!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:43 pm
  • Reply Ilka

    This sounds like a great class and yes, I’d love to take one!! You can never go wrong with more stretching and mobility!! Bring it on!!
    Thanks for the link-up Susie! Have a great week!!
    Ilka recently posted…Training for the Treasure Coast Marathon and metatarsal foot painMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 9:04 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you for joining, Ilka! And I want to go back so badly!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:43 pm
  • Reply Nicole @ Fitful Focus

    Hmmmmmm I wonder if there’s a class like that here in Austin…
    Nicole @ Fitful Focus recently posted…The Wedding WorkoutMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 9:20 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Now that I couldn’t tell you, but I bet you of all people could find one!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:42 pm
  • Reply Emily

    Oh boy, this sounds like something I need. I am so inflexible, and focusing on stretching is something this girl needs to not look like she’s about to rip apart when she tries to stretch.
    Emily recently posted…Recent Post: January 2017, Huskies, Peanut Butter, and HANGERMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 9:48 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      OH JEEZ. Well please don’t rip apart! That would be most unfortunate, lol!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:41 pm
  • Reply Christine Cassar

    I need a Performance Stretch here in DC! That sounds awesome! I try to stay on top of mobility work but having to actually go to a class would hold me more accountable.

    January 18, 2017 at 12:01 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Isn’t it genius! I totally agree–I need this to keep me doing things!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:38 pm
  • Reply Alicia @Bridges Through Life

    I really need to work on mobility more. I was introduced to the yoga tune up balls a few years ago and love them. I have my own set and use them on my shoulders, neck and legs. Sometime I want to take the training so that I can incorporate them into a yoga class somewhere.
    Alicia @Bridges Through Life recently posted…Hobbiton and Waitomo GlowWorm Caves TourMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 12:19 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I would love to do that as well, but you know that Ridley would eat them.

      January 19, 2017 at 1:37 pm
  • Reply Jo @ Living MInt Green

    I would LOOOOOOOVE to do something like this. I’ve taken similar classes at my old yoga studio called ‘restorative yoga’ or something. We’d use little rubber balls, tennis balls, bands, blocks, wooden dowels to stretch and beat the shit out of ourselves and partners.
    Jo @ Living MInt Green recently posted…Weekend: The importance of rest days, hormones & date night!My Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 2:10 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      BAhahahahahahahaha SO restorative lol

      January 19, 2017 at 1:30 pm
  • Reply Ange // Cowgirl Runs

    I always find those control poses so eye opening! Stretching and release really does make a big difference!
    I definitely need to make a point of including more mobility work in my life.
    Ange // Cowgirl Runs recently posted…Why I Stopped Using a Fitness TrackerMy Profile

    January 18, 2017 at 2:12 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I used to be so on it, but since I’ve gotten Ridley, honestly, I’ve really slacked (it is hard to do it with her, lol)

      January 19, 2017 at 1:29 pm
  • Reply Rachel

    Sounds like a fun concept!

    January 18, 2017 at 7:03 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I really think that it benefits everyone!

      January 19, 2017 at 1:28 pm
  • Reply Michelle @ Fruition Fitness

    That sound so awesome! My best shape was when I focusing on mobility (hot yoga to be specific!), so I know it makes a difference!
    Michelle @ Fruition Fitness recently posted…5 Tips to Make the Most of Your Nighttime WorkoutMy Profile

    January 19, 2017 at 4:47 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I am trying to do what mobility work that I can while I am out of commission!

      January 20, 2017 at 2:14 pm
  • Reply Janelle @ Run With No Regrets

    Mobility is definitely an area that I need to work on. This looks like a great class!
    Janelle @ Run With No Regrets recently posted…Run Safely in the Dark with Knuckle LightsMy Profile

    January 20, 2017 at 2:42 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      It was so helpful–both effective and educational!

      January 21, 2017 at 1:47 pm

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