Barre is a form of exercise which combines elements of ballet, yoga and pilates, which focuses on strength-training, cardio and stretching. Unlike regular ballet, Barre is about moving your body in a way that benefits you rather than perfecting specific moves.
Suitable For All Abilities
Barre is suitable for all abilities, including complete beginners, as it is a low-impact exercise and moves are very basic to begin with. The workout can be adapted depending on your level of expertise but anybody can take part. The hard work lies in the very small movements and the ability to hold poses - something that will become easier as you gain more experience of Barre.
Targets Key Muscles
Barre workouts effectively target key muscle groups such as arms, legs, glutes and core. Movements are minimal but with high intensity and often very light weights are incorporated into movements. Even though the weights are small, the tiny, repetitive movements still have a big impact - which most Barre lovers will tell you! Shaky arms and legs are a pretty common occurrence in Barre and many instructors will encourage you to embrace the shake.
Long List of Benefits
As well as improving strength and building muscle, Barre can also help to increase flexibility and better your posture. It increases endurance and is great for toning and sculpting, if that is your aim. The core workouts especially target the abs and can create a much more defined midsection if you stick to it! Most Barre classes also incorporate a yoga-inspired cool down or meditation section, which can be really beneficial for your mood and mindset.
Great For Cross-Training
As Barre is lower-impact, it’s great to incorporate into your routine along with other forms of exercise such as running or circuit-training. As it’s focus is strength-training, you can do these workouts alongside more cardio-based exercise to get the best of both worlds!
As Barre workouts are low-impact, it is a great choice for anybody who may be recovering from an injury and can’t participate in higher-impact exercise. Depending on the individual class, it can also be suitable for pregnant or post-natal women who are looking to stay active - but always consult your instructor first if you are pregnant or postpartum!
You can attend local classes in a dedicated Barre studio if you wish or there are plenty of virtual options. This is ideal for someone who may be lacking the confidence to attend a class and virtual classes can be used to build confidence and work towards attending a class in-person when you are ready.
Online classes can be found via YouTube or there are high-quality paid classes which are both pre-recorded and live - these may be more personal and offer a better community feel. If you do want to try online first, you may need to invest in some basic equipment such as a yoga mat or small weights. Don’t worry if you don’t have a ballet bar in your home - many household items such as a dining chair or a kitchen counter can double up as your bar. With so many options, there is something to suit everyone!
Statistics show that, in 2020, over 3.5 million people participated in Barre workouts and we have no doubt that this figure is even higher today! With so many benefits, this low-impact exercise is ideal for anyone just beginning their fitness journey or anyone seeking an exercise which will make them feel great.