The Sculpt Society by Megan Roup Review 2022
Photo: Chloe Anello
I never thought of comparing my butt to anyone else’s until the popular girl in my middle school class, who was unfortunately already ruthlessly finicky about her body, stood on the benches from the girls’ locker room and tell us that she had buttocks that looked like Snooki’s. “I have the best butt in our class,” she added. As a confused 13-year-old kid, I wondered what celebrity my ass looked like. (I barely had one.) The more I thought about it, the more I stopped dreaming of the day my device would come off and instead wished for booty like the pop stars I loved right now: Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Rihanna, Gwen Stefani, even Jennifer Lopez.
As I got older, I learned how mundane this comparison game was. And I probably don’t need to tell you how harmful this mindset can be, especially when it starts at such a young age. It took me years to get out of that mindset, and part of that came growing up. My body started to change: My hips widened, so eventually my butt got bigger. I was no longer the shapeless teenager who once wanted curves. Even through all of this transformation and acceptance, part of me still yearned for that “pop star” booty: a perfectly smooth shape that was as firm as it was lifted, no matter how big. I didn’t want it to look like anyone’s butt in particular, I just wanted my butt to look like it was, only better. My goal was for him to visibly say, “Yes, I’m squatting.” And it wasn’t until I started using the Sculpt Society, a subscription-based fitness app, two years ago that I started seeing the results I wanted.
I had used subscriptions like Ballet Beautiful and Down Dog, plus a few free trials here and there, but I got bored after a while – they all repeated the same moves so regularly that it was hard to distinguish the difference between each video. A fitness-obsessed friend posted a photo of herself after a Sculpt Society workout, singing her praises for being fun but actually empowering. When I asked why she liked it she said, “Megan just isn’t like the other instructors, I can’t explain it, you really have to try.” She loved the tone in her back and arms, but most importantly, her butt was “literally so firm.” I wanted a “literally so firm” ass, so I signed up.
Photo: The Sculpt Company
Megan Roup, the founder of TSS (as she calls it), danced for the Brooklyn Nets and even taught at other well-known workout subscription services before striking out on her own. She’s cool and relatable and extremely fit. Plus, because she was a former dancer, she has the aforementioned pop star booty herself. Her no-equipment routines center on a combination of dance cardio and sculpting. It’s not easy (after a 45-minute workout, I’m dripping with sweat), but somehow Megan makes it fun – she’s like a modern-day Jane Fonda. As I’ve written before, she’s best described as that active best friend who persuades you to train with her. She’s not too energetic and has nothing to do with a drill sergeant; she hits that sweet spot of an informative trainer who pushes you to do your best without making you feel down about your abilities.
His workouts aren’t about losing weight either. It focuses on toning muscles, like the glutes, to make you stronger rather than trying to burn calories and fat quickly. Her full-body routines include a fair amount of glute-enhancing moves, but her butt-specific options are really what make the difference. She has an entire category of over 30 different butt specific workouts called “quickie butt”. Most of them last around 10-15 minutes, but she packs a lot into that short amount of time: multiple sets of leg lifts, leg pull-ups, pulses, squats, and moves I couldn’t even name, which tone all of your glutes. (and hurt you incredibly). She also constantly reminds you to squeeze your glutes to maximize results.
And even though these are videos accessed by thousands of people (just subscribe to use its content), it feels like a personal experience. Like a social media algorithm, sometimes I think Megan is listening to me (she’s not), because as soon as I feel like I want to give up or skip the last four leg lifts, she encourages me to keep going as if she knew at that exact moment, I would quit. Because I don’t want to disappoint her, as ridiculous as that sounds, I keep going, and generally, I’m glad I did. Her big saying is, “Do what feels good,” so when a move feels too advanced, she shows you how to modify it based on your skill level and encourages you to slow down if you’re feeling tired.
To this day, I train with Megan at least three times a week. My stomach definitely isn’t two sit-ups away from a six-pack, and I really haven’t lost any noticeable weight (not that that’s the starting point), but I feel so much stronger and toned in all . And I finally have my holy grail butt: firm and lifted with a plump, curved shape that looks great in everything from sweatshirts to high-waisted jeans to leggings. Best of all, though? I now also have the pop star type confidence that comes from feeling really good about myself in a way that I would be proud of at 13.
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