What's It All About...Barre?

My friend decided she really wanted to go to Cardio Barre classes "You're coming with me right?"  I wasn't really sold, I hated ballet when I was younger and I hate cardio now so why combine the two when as an adult I actually have a say in the matter? There was however a great Groupon-y type special going on (10 classes for under 50.00) and if you know me, you know I can NOT pass up a good Groupon! So what the hell are Cardio Barre or Barre classes anyhow. How do they work? Do we like them? Let's check it out with a quick look at the general definition of the class and a review of my experience at Cardio Barre.

 Currently there are few different franchises teaching Barre classes as well as classes in smaller studios and gyms. For example Cardio Barre describes their class as a high energy/no impact exercise class that combines barre work & light weights. Pure Barre describes their workout as utilizing the ballet barre to perform small isometric movements set to fantastic music. I'm going to sum it up as a ballet inspired, Barre/Pilates/Stretching/Light Weights Mash Up. The good thing for me is that the ballet portion really isn't that daunting. Please don't be afraid to go to one of these classes if you have never taken ballet because anyone can do it. Which is not to say the class was easy. I also have to add this is just a review of one franchise studio, I am sure classes and structure differs from place to place.

I show up at the studio which is airy and bright which I love. With a wall of huge open windows to the street, which I hate, seriously does all of Beverly Hills need to see me sweating during multiple grand plies? Everybody grabs some weights (1, 2 or 3 pounds ) and we start to do the routine. 



The workout itself is pretty fun, a lot of releves, plies, leg lifts, squat type movements, isometric movements and such. But it is at warp speed. The teacher did walk around the room and correct people a few times but honestly there is not a whole lot of form going on here. Regardless I must say once I got past the slightly 80's aerobics "let's get physical" feel and horrible "thumpa thumpa" music I kinda liked the workout.  I sweated up a storm and I actual felt it the next day.

So, will I become addicted to this - nope. Is this a class to go to if you are truly into ballet or a classical dancer - nope. Is it fun and does it get your heart pumping - yes. Will your legs benefit from it - most definitely. Will I go back and use the rest of my 10 pack - yes...and maybe I will even get a few extra classes.