Ballet fans swear that this ballet-inspired workout can help you build strength, strengthen your core and create a dancer’s loot.
But if you are accustomed to doing high-intensity workouts that make you sweat, you may think that a bar class – with its slow, controlled micro-movements – can actually be an effective workout.
Short answer: Yes.
Andrea Rogers, creator of Xtend Barre Workout, says, “No other workout combines compassion and athleticism like Barre, and that’s why so many women like it.”
“Combining traditional Pilates methods with ballet and high-strength cardio, the workout is designed to sculpt the body into a lean, toned, dancer-like body.”
And even if you can grind one round of barpi without thinking twice, don’t be surprised if your muscles burn and tremble half the time of your first bar workout.
Here are some great barre benefits – and why you should consider adding bar classes to your workout schedule.
The advantage of a workout at the bar
1. Barre is beginner-friendly
If you have two left legs, don’t worry.
The ballet movement may have its roots – think of Arabesque dal and plz for the day – but there is no complicated choreography and you definitely don’t need to be a dancer.
Stephanie Saunders, executive director of Beachbody Fitness, said: “Barre classes are for all levels, with little to no effect and the option to modify each step.” “Even if you’re getting off the sofa for the first time, you can take classes without the risk of injury.”
2. Barre is a great core workout
Like yoga poses and Pilates exercises, Barre aims at workouts and strengthens your core.
“The bar has a balance element to all the work, which will definitely burn those abs,” Saunders said.
Basic exercises can not only improve your strength and endurance, but they can also work wonders for your posture.
“If you’ve ever wanted a ballerina posture, barre classes will help strengthen the upper back and shoulder muscles, which will help you get much taller,” he adds.
3. Barre increase flexibility
We all occasionally avoid stretching before or after a workout when we have less time. (Guilty!)
But flexibility is an important element of overall fitness – and with a barber workout, it’s built right.
“Each bar class has flexibility movements that extend from a simple twist to full split,” Sanders explained.
It can sound awful if you can touch your toes right now – but you don’t have to be flexible to enjoy a bar workout.
And if you stick to a regular schedule, you will see rapid improvement.
“If you are consistent with the bar class, you will increase your flexibility,” Sanders added.
4. Barre will make you stronger
There are two basic types of muscle fibers – fast-twitch muscle fibers that help you gain strength through sumo squats or box jumps, and slow-twitch fibers that are used in endurance activities.
Barry aims at the latter – and it can be surprisingly challenging, even for serious fitness buffs.
(The feeling of those wobbly feet where the bar’s mantra “hug hug” comes up.)
“You can sculpt and strengthen your whole body,” Saunders says. “The bar uses light weights, resistance bands and a ball to increase total body strength. These workouts will leave your muscles begging for mercy.”
5. Yes, the bar counts as cardio
“Cardio is defined as any movement that increases your heart rate, involving large muscle groups in a rhythmic way,” says Saunders – and examines all those boxes at the bar.
You will be working large muscle groups, and you will definitely feel burned.
And you can maximize cardio benefits by choosing a bar workout that focuses specifically on cardio by increasing the range of motion and intensity of running.
6. Barre can help you lose weight
If your goal is to work out to lose weight, it’s important to push yourself beyond your comfort zone – and a bar workout can certainly do that. It can also help you burn more calories in the long run.
“In addition to burning a ton of calories, the bar also builds lean muscle, which can help increase your metabolic rate of rest, which can help you lose weight,” Saunders said.
7. Fun at the bar
Aside from building muscle and burning calories, the best workout is what you really enjoy doing – and since there are so many workout workouts, you don’t have to worry about getting stressed or losing interest before you see results.
“A good bar workout uses a combination of ballet, pilates, cardio and preventive moves, all at a high-energy pace, to challenge the body in a unique way,” Saunders says. “And there are different types of bar classes, so you can work on your specific goals.”