Looking to test out a new new trend with your girlfriends, but don’t really know where to start?
Barre-based classes use a combination of postures inspired by ballet and other similar disciplines, like yoga and Pilates. The barre (an actual bar!) is used in class to balance yourself while doing exercises that focus on isometric strength training (holding your body still while you work specific muscles) combined with high repetitions of small range-of-motion movements. You might also join a class that light handheld weights to increase the intensity, as well as mats for targeted core work.
What’s a barre class like?
Generally Set to upbeat music to help keep you motivated, a 60-minute class starts with a warm up and sequence of upper-body exercises, possibly using light free-weights, push-ups and planks. It will target the biceps, triceps, shoulders, chest and back muscles. Then the class might move into a series of ballet barre or floor exercises that focus on your thighs. Generally the class will finish off with stretching and maybe some abs after that.
Is dancing experience required?
Dance experience is not required. All types of people can take barre classes because most will offer many modifications provided by the instructor or classes of varying levels to make sure you are in the correct position and safe.
Can barre help you to lose weight?
Attending barre classes 3-4 times a week, while also maintaining a healthy diet, your will help you lose weight. Barre classes tend to focus on strengthening and lengthening the muscles, which burn calories more efficiently than fat, leading to increased muscles that will ultimately lead to weight loss!
Will barre tone your body?
Barre works the muscles to their fullest potential and then stretches the same group of muscles. People who attend barre classes regularly will usually feel the effects within as little as a week! You can expect to see smaller waistlines, thinner thighs, a lifted bum, flatter abs…. so, yes, barre will tone your body!
Will barre cause you to bulk up?
No. Since most of the exercises use your own body weight, rather than heavy weights, you’ll achieve longer, leaner and stronger muscles.
Step 1: Stand with your feet in first position (heels together, toes turned out about 45°), legs straight and hands gently resting on the back of a chair for balance. Lengthen your spine by standing tall and tightening the abs.
Step 2: Rise up onto the balls of your feet and plié by bending your knees over your toes (only bend about half-way down).
Step 3: Straighten your legs by squeezing your inner thighs together as you extend and lower your heels.
Repeat 20 times.