If You Want Me I'll be at the Barre

My shoulders are aching and my legs are wobbly. Yes, I took a Barre class this morning. I've done it a few times over the last couple years and decided it's time to try it again!

Barre Beautiful in Toronto

Barre Beautiful in Toronto

So What Is Barre, You Ask?

It's an exercise program inspired by ballet, as well as yoga and pilates. The ballet barre is used as a prop for balance while you perform isometric movements. 

The main benefits are that it helps you build strength & muscles, burn fat, improve posture, and increase flexibility. Amazing for toning your body and transforming it into a long lean dancers body (with a great booty), without actually dancing (which is great if you're rhythmically challenged like me!). 

Because it's not a high impact exercise it's very suitable for pregnant women as well!
It can help increase your balance and stability as those things become difficult with your growing belly.
Plus it strengthens the core and legs a lot which will come in very handy when it's time to push! 

It's very important though for moms-to-be, and really everyone, to listen to your body and only do what is comfortable.
You still want a work out though that's challenging, and boy is it ever! 

My Experiences

The few times I've gone to Barre class it's been at Barre Beautiful in Toronto. I know that there are a few different studios around town but this one is really nice, well sized, and close to where I live. I may try some different ones in the future though. 

I always get a tiny bit of anxiety when I have to workout in front of other people. I can be pretty shy a lot of the time. What helps though is reminding myself that I am there to get stronger and healthier. 
That's why everyone else is there too. No one cares if I look silly. They're all just learning too.

The class lasts 55 minutes and by the end I am drenched in sweat and everything is shaking.

I find that some teachers don't take as much time to explain the movements and what you're doing. They just jump right in like "follow me, and plié, sous-sus, plié", and I'm like "what now??". But it's pretty easy to fall into the rhythm. 

Some exercises, like tiny isometric arm lifts with weights while holding a plié, were so intense I had to lower my arms every now and then. They will be SORE tomorrow. 

Sweaty me after class

Sweaty me after class

Overall

Seriously though, Barre is great. Highly recommend. 5 stars. 10/10. 

I encourage everyone to find what works for them as Barre may not be for all people (the benefits totally are though!). I am tall and fairly lean so my body works well with this kind of exercise. Other bodies are made for running, or wrestling, or high-kicking, or any other amazing type of body movement. As long as you're doing something! Just find what feels good :)

Have you tried Barre? What are your thoughts on it? Tell me in the comments below!

-Lila