Is barre an effective workout? Think it is just for ballerinas? This ballet-inspired workout is great for anyone looking to tone, sculpt and shape their body with an amazing workout.
It’s no secret that ballerinas are in great shape and, as women, we admire and adore their bodies. Their muscles are long and lean, and they can contort their bodies into unimaginable shapes and balance on their tiptoes.
However, ballerinas are not born this way. They work and train hard and spend long hours exercising to get the toned muscles we all crave. We don’t all have to be ballerinas to exercise like them, though, which is why barre is such an amazing workout for everybody.
Given that the ballet barre is the main focus of every class, it’s no surprise that it was created by a professional ballerina. Lotte Berk, a German dancer, combined her dance conditioning routine with her rehabilitative therapy after injuring her back, according to Greatist.
When a student of Berk went to America, she opened the first studio in NYC. We saw spinoffs of the workout come into the game, such as Physique 57, the Bar Method and Pure Barre.
The origins of barre are deeply rooted in dance. Fortunately, you do not need any prior dance experience (or rhythm!) to reap the benefits. Here are five reasons why barre is an amazing workout for everyone, not just ballerinas.
1. You’ll get a full body workout in approximately an hour
A barre class is primarily composed of isometric movements where the muscles tense without changing length. These movements are opposite of typical strength training moves like bicep curls, where the muscle stretches and then shortens. Isometric exercise is a great way to maintain muscle strength.
Check out this 30 min ballet body sculpt for full body definition.
With isometric movement, you get to isolate certain muscle groups. The continuous repetition will fatigue your muscles and build endurance. Because of all the tiny movements your muscles are making in each class, a barre class will work your arms, legs and glutes as well as improve posture, muscle definition and increase flexibility.
With each isometric movement, you’re working your core the entire time. It’s always being engaged with posture and breath work. So, while you’re pulsing and tucking and working other parts of your body, your core is engaged, working your abdominal muscles to the fullest.
2. Burn calories while keeping a blowout
Because barre involves such tiny, isolated muscle movement, you’ll burn tons of calories without sweating profusely. Barre is a combination of strength training with mild cardio, but since it focuses on strengthening muscles more, you can burn more calories.
Muscle tissue burns fifteen times as many calories as fat, so the more barre you do, the more calories you’ll burn. Additionally, because barre exercises create more lean muscle mass, you’ll raise your metabolic rate, which will help you to produce more energy and consume calories.
So, is barre an effective workout in terms of calorie burning? Absolutely.
3. It prevents injury and helps your bones
We can’t say that you won’t be sore after every barre class. But, unlike high-intensity classes with a lot of movement, barre classes can actually help to prevent injury rather than contribute to it.
Because of the small and controlled movements, you’ll reduce pressure on your joints, tendons, ligaments and spine. And, as mentioned before, the tension and resistance placed on your muscles through the isometric movements makes bones stronger, which can help to prevent osteoporosis with age.
4. It’s great for all levels and ages
Whether it’s your first or fiftieth class, everyone can feel and see the benefits from taking a barre class. The instructors are trained to help everyone perform at their individual level. Also, to perfect their form. You will see improvements week over week.
Since the workout is designed with each individual in mind, it can be tailored to each person’s strengths, weaknesses and flexibility level. Barre is so specific.
It can be modified for injuries and pregnancies as well as advanced dancers. it is a perfect workout for anyone looking to build muscle and torch calories.
5. It’s fun and reduces cellulite
Barre is a joyful and exciting approach to exercise since it incorporates dance. You’ll want to return again and again!
The best way to get rid of cellulite is through aerobic exercise. Exercises like barre are great for burning fat. They concentrate on the lower body and are made to make you lose weight.
6. A mind-body connection
Exercise is great. It allows you to experience a connection with your body unlike anything else. Whether it’s breathing through yoga postures or letting your mind go blank in a cycling class, exercise brings awareness to your body.
Barre is no different, and in fact, has a more intense connection between body and mind. With all of the tiny movements to specific muscles, maintaining proper form and posture and remembering to breathe, barre forces your mind to connect to what the body is feeling.
When your legs are uncontrollably shaking and you feel like giving up, your mind will force you to continue. You’ll forget all about that bad day you had at work or whatever else is clouding your mind.
Some people swear by running, yoga or weight lifting. They’re not wrong to think that they’re getting a great workout. But, with barre’s full body benefits targeting each muscle group, the constant calorie burner and lifelong connection. So, is barre an effective workout. Yes, and absolutely amazing.
Barre is a combination of strength training with mild cardio that focuses on strengthening muscles. Here are more types of exercises to do if you hate cardio.