What is Barre?
Barre is a dynamic blend of pilates, yoga and ballet barre exercises. The combined elements of the different methods fuse to form a challenging and exciting workout, which stretches and sculpts the muscles, whilst burning fat. Balance, strength, stamina, power, flexibility and motor control all improve. This workout produces dramatic results that sculpt and redefine the entire body, without even being a dancer.
This low impact but high intensity total body workout lifts the buttocks, tones the thighs, flattens the abs and sculpts the arms, whilst protecting the joints. Small isometric contractions are performed and integrated with an interval training approach that burns fat and improves cardiovascular fitness. Watch your body change in just ten sessions as this workout quickly reshapes the entire body in a way that is fast and effective. Posture, flexibility, stamina and core strength improves. The result is a body that is realigned, rebalanced and works harmoniously and efficiently.
Stretches are performed after each strength section of the class to ensure the muscles are re-lengthened to create a body that is strong without the added bulk of other regimes. This workout is suitable for everybody as various adaptations are given throughout the class to suit the abilities of all students.
What to Expect
Classes last one hour and are set to upbeat music with a typical session involving bands, toning balls, hand and ankle weights as well as utilising the ballet barre. This low impact workout delivers profound results. Sessions begin with a warm up followed by ten minutes of upper body exercises, 20 minutes core conditioning and then 20 minutes of butt and thigh work, finishing off with a 5 minute cool down and stretch sequence. The pace is vigorous and is sure to make you sweat. The principles of Pilates are incorporated into the workout with most exercises being performed with a neutral spine and a firm emphasis on breathing and alignment and correct posture. Individual muscle groups are targeted using small but intense movements that result in an entire body workout, leading to a toned, lengthened and sculpted body.
Quality over Quantity
This is not Insanity; this is not Cross Fit. We're not about how many reps you can do in a minute or how many pounds you can lift. Rather, the focus is on precision and proper form; you'll do smaller, slower movements, but you'll definitely feel them because you're isolating specific muscle groups you're not used to using. If you're doing it right, then you're going to shake — and feel that burn. You're not going to look super graceful doing these moves, and it's not going to feel easy — even if you think you're in good cardiovascular shape. (Don't be fooled by those tiny little hand weights; they really do get heavy!)
Do I need to be a Prima Ballerina?
You don't need dance experience or prior knowledge to take a barre class, and you don't even have to be familiar with the ballet barre. Although Barre is ballet-inspired, it's not ballet. It's great cross-training. Barre classes are all about strength, balance, and flexibility, and if you're weak in any of those areas, it will be challenging. If you go to the gym on your own, you're probably just going to do the things you're good at. In class, we focus on the areas that you're probably not working otherwise — and that will make you stronger and less prone to injuries.