Thinking about trying a barre class, but are worried that you have no dance experience?
It’s true that some of the exercises in the class are inspired and drawn from ballet and jazz dance; however, you do not need to be a dancer to enjoy barre classes. One of the many benefits of a barre class is that the class offers a total body workout in less than an hour.
The barre classes that I teach begin with easy to follow cardio dance. I work with light hand weights during the cardio section to tone the upper body.
Muscular strength and endurance
After the cardio section, strengthening exercises are performed at the barre or center floor. Here you will you will find ballet leg positions and exercises that may be performed in, lateral rotation, “turn out” or parallel. Working in lateral rotation will tone up your gluteal muscles and thighs and target muscles that may be missed in traditional weight training. The barre exercises are performed using multiple repetitions to train muscular endurance and sculpt a long, lean body. Core stability exercises utilizing resistance bands are performed on the mat or standing to sculpt further and strengthen your entire body. You will most likely feel a burn and may be sore after your class, but these exercises will not bulk you up.
Barre classes take the body through a full range of motion and will help increase your overall flexibility. Dynamic flexibility exercises are used throughout the class, particularly in the warm-up. Due to a thorough warm-up and muscle work, your body is better prepared for the end of class stretches.
Barre classes can help you lose weight and promote lean muscle gains. The cardio component will help burn calories and the muscle work will build lean muscles creating a slender figure. Barre classes can help increase your metabolic rate due to the fact that they are a comprehensive exercise class.
Exercise has been shown to reduce feelings of depression, particularly aerobic exercise and resistance training. Barre classes not only give you a great physical workout, but are also upbeat and fun contributing to an overall positive mental state.
With all the benefits above, it’s easy to see why a well-designed barre class provides cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular fitness, flexibility, body composition, and neuromotor fitness covering all the components of physical fitness.