Get moving: How The Ballet Burn makes dance for everyone

Mar 26 2020

We first met Margot Martin, founder of The Ballet Burn, a few years back. Our editorial director fell in love with Margot’s dance-based workout method, which combines easy-to-learn elements of ballet with high-intensity cardio intervals and strength exercises, set to an energizing playlist of hit music. Margot developed her method while she was a professional ballet dancer, looking for ways to stay active while recovering from injuries. Since then, her brand has grown tremendously, with a large following at her Dallas-based studio — and an all-around uplifting vibe that starts with Margot’s mantra, “Where strength meets grace.” The best part? The Ballet Burn is all about community — and creating a judgement-free zone where acceptance, encouragement and self-confidence are top priorities. We recently picked Margot’s brain, asking her to share with us the songs that inspire her and the people she admires.

Q.
Tell us about your day job.
A.

Day job, weekend job, evening job...I have a few of those. In addition to owning and operating The Ballet Burn, I recently accepted a new position with AMLI Residential. As the Resident Service Coordinator in Dallas' newest skyscraper, AMLI Fountain Place, I will be a liaison for residents, cultivating a sense of community, working directly to support the arts district, curating events, and overall cultural enrichment for the building. I also run Dallas In Home Yoga, a custom tailored in-home service providing yoga to clients throughout the Park Cities as well as corporate offices downtown.

Q.
Where is home for you?
A.

I live in the Turtle Creek area currently but will be relocating downtown at the beginning of the summer.

Q.
Great obsessions?
A.

“The Good Place” … best show ever! I am a little obsessed with all things Trader Joe's and their fabulous wine selection. I suppose my greatest obsession is my French bulldog, Squirt. Spoiled rotten!

Q.
In one sentence, what do you hope people gain from The Ballet Burn?
A.

I hope that my clients gain a sense of accomplishment and confidence from my classes. It is a tough workout and when it’s over you have truly completed something that will make a difference in your life. (Sorry, two sentences.)

Q.
What was your goal when you started your business?
A.

The initial goal was recovering from two knee surgeries. Once that was achieved, I set out to share my creation with anyone and everyone, dancers and non-dancers. I experienced the change in myself physically and mentally and wanted others to have access to that.

Over the years my mission has continued to define itself. I am passionate about creating a sense of community for my clients and ensuring that everyone feels welcome and included. In a time of fierce body image issues, I want to provide a space where all of that gets washed away. Rather than seeking a socially dictated version of perfection, I promote honest, hard work that honors and celebrates each individual's abilities.

Q.
Piece of advice for people trying The Ballet Burn for the first time?
A.

Don't worry, be happy. (That was an inevitable answer following a music question!) Allow yourself the space to try something new without the pressure of having to get it all perfectly. There is joy in movement and that is what this class is all about. Come to learn, explore and sweat!

Q.
Your classes famously have a great soundtrack. What are three songs you would put on every playlist?
A.

This is a tough one. I am going to go with artists here instead of songs. Prince, Missy Elliot, and Bob Marley. More recently it has been a lot of London grime, Lane 8 and TroyBoi. If only these artists knew that one day people would be doing ballet to their songs!

Q.
Favorite places to hangout in the DFW area?
A.

My go-to spot is Mutts Canine Cantina. On a beautiful day it doesn't get much better than that. I also frequent my fave Mexican restaurants, always in search of the best queso in town.

Q.
You're also a yoga instructor, what are your favorite poses for stretching out after a long workout?
A.

Kapotasana (Pigeon pose) to give the glutes a break. Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Dog) for the calves, hamstrings, and shoulders. Prasarita Padottanasana (Fan pose) great release for the spine.

Q.
Fun fact we can't Google about you?
A.

I am a fierce card shark and know my way around a pool table.

Q.
Who do you admire?
A.

Pardon the non-specific answer... I admire those fighting to cure cancer. It seems that nearly everyone's life has been affected in some way by the disease. It is time to end that. I admire my community. These are dedicated, encouraging women who show up to support each other. It so moves me to watch them succeed. I admire my parents. After 40 years of marriage, they continue to build a happy life with each other.

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