Photos by Cici Liu
Dancer and celebrity trainer Simone De La Rue, who is currently on the show “Revenge Body with Khloe Kardashian,” on E! network, came to Pepperdine Thursday, Jan. 25 to lead a morning dance cardio class for students at Alumni Park.
“I wanted to give all the girls a break from their studies, refresh them and make them feel motivated and full of endorphins,” De La Rue said. “And then just spread the message of self-love and female empowerment.”
Freshman Eve Gay, one of the attendees, said she thought the dance cardio session was a really fun and great workout but was also challenging.
“[De La Rue] was so nice and full of energy [but] it was kind of hard for me because I’m not that good at dancing,” Gay said. “I was pretty sore after.”
Junior Taylor Spencer agreed. “The workout was a lot more difficult than I thought it was going to be,” Spencer said. “I thought it was amazing, and it was actually really fun. It wasn’t like anything I’ve ever done before, and I think that’s what makes Simone’s classes so unique.”
De La Rue was a professional dancer for 18 years on Broadway, in the West End of London, and in Australia. Although she is a classical ballet dancer, De La Rue said she likes to base her workout sessions on relaxed dance aerobics like jazz or cheerleader music.
“I stopped dancing after 18 years, but I wanted to do something else still with my body,” De La Rue said. “And I think it’s a natural progression for people who are performers to do something in the fitness world. But I also wanted to share my love of dance with people.”
De La Rue said she wanted to create a class where people could learn dance moves and get a great workout in without feeling intimidated.
“You don’t have to be a dancer to do these classes,” De La Rue said. “I think people get intimidated and say ‘I can’t dance,’ or ‘I can’t sing,’ or ‘I can’t do it,’ so I wanted to provide a class where people could feel comfortable and safe.”
Body By Simone (BBS) is an eight-week workout program, which can be done at home or in the studio, De La Rue said. The program goes along with De La Rue’s 14-day cleanse that eliminates dairy, gluten, sugar, caffeine and alcohol.
“It cleanses out your system,” De La Rue said. “And in the process you lose weight.”
De La Rue said she created the BBS program to encourage people to be more active and teach them how to buy proper meals and how to eat well.
“We are now a generation of people that are on our phones all the time,” De La Rue said. “We don’t become active and so […] obesity is rising in America because people are just not exercising anymore.”
De La Rue said she thinks it’s the effectiveness of her program that attracts famous clients. She said working with celebrities like Khloe Kardashian is a “part of the business” for her.
“We live in a country that’s obsessed with celebrities,” De La Rue said. “But I don’t treat them any differently than anybody else. They don’t want me to treat them any differently; I just want them to work hard and to see results.”
De La Rue has two BBS studios in LA, one in Brentwood and one in West Hollywood. Classes cost $28 but if customers buy a pack of 10 the price drops to $25 per class. De La Rue said membership is not required, and customers are welcome to come in anytime and try a class.
After the session, De La Rue raffled a BBS class pack at her Brentwood location along with a workout tank top and her workout tapes. The winner was Senior Shannon Hansen, special edition editor at Pepperdine Graphic Media.
“I also have online BBSTV, so you could actually do the workouts in the dorms,” De La Rue said. “They’re 20 minutes in length. And I’m working on [a BBS] app at the moment as well.”
De La Rue said she hopes her program helps young women celebrate their strength.
“I think it’s very important for young women to feel empowered,” De La Rue said. “I think it’s important for young women to take care of themselves. I think there’s something incredible about physical strength inside and outside.”
Update made on Feb. 6 at 12:26 PM: The class took place on Thursday, Jan. 25.
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