And Why it Will Soon Be Your Favorite Go-To Fitness Class
I have always struggled to find a fitness class that is a full body workout. While my favorite classes, yoga and Zumba are great ways to stay active, and manage stress, they lack in some of the core strength training that is so essential to staying toned, and healthy. A few years ago, I heard about barre from my yoga studio and I decided to give it a try. I was completely hooked almost right away! The music was engaging and fast paced, which I always love! But it is also easy to keep up, even for someone new to class. But what exactly is barre if you haven’t heard of it?
Barre is a medium intensity that combines cardio, strength training, and flexibility that targets your your hips, glutes, abs, and arms. This is a great class to do about 2-3 times a week in addition to your other workouts, or to add to your fitness plan. In terms of equipment, if you attend class at a studio or gym, they will provide you with weights, balls, and stretch bands, depending on what equipment the instructor likes to use. The only piece of equipment I suggest you consider are barre shoes or socks. Of course socks are going to be significantly less expensive, but my personal favorite are the Nike Wrap Shoes. I am a true size 8 and their sizing fit me perfectly. Some people prefer socks but personally I like something a little more breathable (let’s be real you are going to sweat). However, many people go barefoot for class and I did for a long time, the shoes or socks just give you an extra bit of stability.
Thinking about giving barre a try? Here are some of the reasons why I like barre:
1. It’s easy to follow
Although the music can often be fast and upbeat, the movements and motions are repetitive, so you know what to expect. Also classes are set up in a way that it is easy to see the instructor, and the movements are repeated in different sequences.
2. There is good variety
Sometimes you will be on the mat doing push ups, other time you will be doing weight work, or maybe you will be at the bar. Even if there is a certain part of class that isn’t your favorite (plank and push ups are the worst for me) it will be over before you know it. Most segments last anywhere from 3-10 minutes depending on the work you are doing. I have done barre at a few different places and instructors have a unique style depending on where you go. For example, if you go to a yoga studio, there will probably be more of a yoga emphasis, however, at a gym, there will likely be more of a pilates or ballet emphasis. My Zumba instructor teaches barre and she even will incorporate some dancing.
3. Most importantly…it’s fun!!
If you sit at a desk all day, I am sure you are always looking for a way to get out and meet people, but also get a great workout in! Barre is perfect for you! People who come to barre class often are social and active individuals. You might feel sore after your first few classes, but I promise you will want to come back for more! Many people start to notice a difference in their flexibility, and strength within a few weeks (hello toned arms). And soon you will be on your way to having the dancer’s body you always wanted!
Have you given barre a try? What’s been your experience? Let me know below!