26 Feb 2016

It’s Barre-y Good: What’s the deal with Barre?

“Barre” is actually a kind of catch-all name for hundreds of ballet-derived programs available today, think: Booty Barre, Pure Barre, Barre 3, Figure 4, and of course PFI’s Barre Attack, Barre Physique, and Pregnancy & Post Natal Barre Attack.

Let’s start at the beginning: the “barre” is a horizontal bar that runs along the outer edge of a room at waist level that ballet dancers use for support during specific exercises, often for warm-up.

If you’ve ever taken a ballet class, you’ll know these warm-ups are no slouch!

Broadly speaking, modern day “Barre” is typically a combination of high intensity, full body ballet/dance, conditioning, yoga and Pilates movements, put to music in a 50 minute to hour-long class.

Of course, exactly what you get in any given Barre class comes down to the program: for example, Booty Barre is a fusion of Pilates, yoga and dance; while Barre Attack, at PFI for instance, has classic Ballet Barre and Pilates influences taught by nationally accredited trainers.

So why exactly are Pilates and non-Pilates people alike going crazy for Barre?

  1. Formats are scalable

Barre programs are typically “scalable”, meaning you can jump into a Barre Attack class at PFI having never done one before, and you can progress your workout in whatever way feels right for your body. This is also why Barre is such a great option for pregnant and post-natal women looking for some safe cardio and strength training.

If you have injuries, limitations or concerns; always speak with your trainer, and just take it one movement at a time!

  1. Get lean

The combination of isometric exercise, functional movement, resistance work, cardio and strength creates long, lean and sculpted muscles. People the world over are loving what Barre is doing for their body shape.

  1. It’s fun!

Some say it’s the magic ingredient and we agree!

Have you ever been in a PFI Matwork class, next door to a thumping Barre Attack class? Sounds like they’re having a great time, doesn’t it? That’s because they are! We call it “sweet pain”: so much fun, you almost forget you’re working out.

  1. Improved posture, flexibility and balance

Enough said?

  1. Burn baby, burn

Barre workouts are that perfect blend of resistance and weight training, aerobics and Pilates that makes for a real fat burner work out (Barre is actually a form of high intensity, interval training or HIIT!).

The icing on the cake: most Barre programs favour movements that affect those “stubborn” areas like the hips, thighs, abs and arms, meaning Barre babes often see results in all the right places.

  1. Baby Got Back

While Barre is awesome for strengthening and sculpting pretty much the whole body; it’s particularly generous to the booty! But you gotta feel the burn to earn it!

  1. Core-s it’s great

Lame word-play aside, Barre is a fantastic core workout. You might think it’s all about the legs, butt and even the arms but done right, Barre is great for building abdominal endurance.

  1. Low impact

Barre programs are low impact. Get your heart pumping, strengthen your muscles, and do it with minimal risk of injury.

  1. All about energy

Energy is one of the reasons so many people love Barre classes: you leave with “Barre Glow”, feeling energised and ready to conquer the world!

  1. Smart, mindful exercise

By focusing on small movements and coordination (add to this, keeping time with the music) you’re training your mind as well as your body. Studies show Barre is great for honing the “mind-body” connection.

Unlike some providers, PFI’s Barre Attack and Barre Physique classes are only led by nationally accredited Barre instructors. They’re expert practitioners, no “ring in” personal trainers, so you enjoy superior quality instruction, mentoring and support every time.

Have we won you over? Check out the PFI timetable to see when you can jump into a Barre class nearest you.




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