If your ballet dreams were crushed in grade school when your coordination took a turn for the gangly, you can redeem yourself. Well, sort of. You won’t likely be taking the lead in Swan Lake, but with a barre class, the hottest trend in fitness right now, you can take your health to a new and familiar level without the pressure of you know, trying to be a ballerina.
Barre classes are so hot right now, blending good old fashioned aerobics with ballet warm-ups for some seriously sculpted and toned legs and behinds. The trend’s got longtime yoginis converting, and for those fitness lovers who once upon a time also practiced ballet, it’s a welcome return to long stretching and tippy-toe work. Plus, it just works.
The workouts can resemble HIIT training (High Intensity Interval Training) where you work as hard as you can (on your tip toes, of course) for short intense bursts before a welcome, brief break. Some barre workouts can burn more than 500 calories in one hour, sculpting and shaping along the way.
Unlike the gym, where there are dozens of confusing and intimidating machines, barre studios are super simple—a nice wood floor, a ballet barre and maybe some straps or balls. And because barre studios are so bare, they’re easy to pop up. There are more than 700 barre studios in the the U.S.; Pure Barre now has close to 300 studios in the U.S. Pop Physique in Los Angeles keeps popping out new locations like mosquito bites in June.
Looking to mix-up your fitness routine? Don’t let the ballet idea scare you away from a barre class. They’re really accessible for anyone, even if you’ve never donned a tutu. And they’re not just for women, either. While class attendees are mostly women, men do take the classes and enjoy the strenuous workout too. See you on the barre!
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