Barre workouts: fad or fab?
(Image courtesy of Barreworks)
Keeping up with current fitness trends is almost a workout itself with so many different fitness fads on the rise, each promising to yield notable results. This month Team Inava Pavani tried out Barre classes at both Washington DC’s Equinox Fitness Club and Montreal’s Ensō Yoga Studio to find out whether the hype is real.
What is Barre Anyway?
Combining ballet, yoga and Pilates, Barre class is a non-impact workout aiming to tone and sculpt muscles. Through a series of high reps of small range movements each targeting a specific body part, this intense ballet-based workout focuses on your core and strengthens your overall physique. The fusion of stretches, short bursts of exercise and dance moves such as pliés provide a holistic full body workout.
Equipment for this fitness class typically includes a ballet barre, small toning balls, resistance bands, a Pilates ball and yoga blocks. Incorporating this gear adds an extra challenge to the high-intensity reps and promotes muscle engagement. A yoga mat is also needed for stretching as well as for exercises done lying down. Apart from the ballet barre, all of the equipment needed is small and portable, so Barre workouts can also be done from home.
Barre: Yay or Nay?
After a few classes, Team Inava Pavani can confidently say that Barre workouts are a must try! In just three weeks we noticed a considerable increase in flexibility, endurance, balance and overall strength. Using your own body weight to perform the exercises is highly beneficial as it serves as resistance, while the tiny isometric movements effectively help build muscle strength. Additionally, classes usually only last 45 minutes to 1 hour, making it easy to integrate them into your busy schedule. Challenges of the workout include keeping your stability and ensuring you have the right posture throughout exercises.
We also tried hot Barre, which is a whole other ball game. This workout is done in a heated room between 38°C to 39°C, making you work harder, increase blood flow and burn additional calories. Practicing Barre in a heated environment takes your workout to a new level and leaves you feeling detoxified from sweating so much. Just make sure you always come prepared and drink lots of water to avoid getting dehydrated!
Team Inava Pavani officially confirms the Barre craze is real. We highly recommend this workout to anyone seeking to get in shape through strength training or simply for those wanting to try out a fun new way of exercising. While you can do Barre exercises on your own at the gym or at home, we also encourage you to try a Barre class as we find we tend to push ourselves more during group classes. This hybrid workout will leave you feeling tightened and sore the next day.
So, give Barre class a try next time you feel like challenging yourself - and let us know if you can sit down the next day without shaking! Keep following Inava Pavani for more reviews about the next fitness trend.
The Inava Pavani Team