What is a Barre class?

BootyBarre® classes are a workout technique inspired by elements of ballet, yoga, and Pilates, that focuses on low-impact, high intensity movements designed to strengthen and tone your body. It is also designed to boost endurance, improve balance, increase range of motion, promote better posture and alignment, and help with weight management. This class is for ALL ages. We have ladies from their 20s to their 70s in our classes!

You don’t need a dance background

While this style of class is dance-inspired, ballet is by no means a prerequisite. Anyone can benefit from it. Barre classes are typically low impact and gentle on the joints. Plus, the moves can be modified to fit your strength and flexibility level. The great thing about this method is that it meets you where you are in life, whether you are recovering from an injury, bouncing back from a pregnancy, new to exercise, or just looking for a challenge.

You’ll probably hear words you don’t recognise

Some of the instructions are borrowed from ballet, like first position (stand with your feet flat, heels together, toes pointing to the sides), relevé (balance on the balls of your feet), and plié (bend your knees). But others may be unique to the studio. Think Bollywood hips, Instagram pose and fancy lady! Don’t worry about the lingo, just follow along with the instructor and the other students around you. Over time, you will come to learn the technique and understand the terminology, but you don’t have to know it going in.

You won’t be at the barre the whole time

Most classes mix in elements of glute and abdominal work, cardio, and stretching that take place away from the barre. A chunk of the class may be done on the floor, and incorporate balls, bands, or light dumbbells to achieve an extra burn.

If you’re shaking, you’re doing it right

Due to the intensity of the workout, you should feel heat in your muscles, and sometimes you’ll shake, which is a sure sign that you are working effectively and achieving those beautiful, long, lean muscles. Don’t get discouraged if you need to relax and stretch out your arms, legs and feet periodically. Even barre regulars need to surrender to their quivering thighs. There might be moments in class where you need to stop because the burn is so intense and that’s OK—it’s not about how many times you stop but about how quickly you get back in.

You may need to invest in a pair of grippy socks

You’ll see most students in class wearing socks with grippy rubber material on the bottom. It’s definitely easier and more comfortable in socks. The grips on the bottom give you great traction when you need it, and the fabric allows you to slide easily during stretches.

It’s best to wear formfitting clothing

It’s helpful to dress in gear that makes it easy for you and your instructor to evaluate and correct your alignment. Leggings that come below the knee or ankle-length are ideal. For the top, something comfortable yet form fitting. If giving up your favourite slouchy workout tee is what’s keeping you from going to a barre class however, wear it. The most important thing is that clients feel comfortable and confident.

Nina teaches barre classes in Ipswich and online which you can try as a pay as you go session, or access via a membership package. You can choose and book barre classes here.

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