Heard about trialling barre and want to know more? Or you may be a barre addict, but want to know how barre really works your muscles. Then read on as our in-house Physiotherapist and Head Barre Instructor, Ellie Parnell, provides a run-down on what our Barre.Core class is and why you should try it.
Our signature barre class, Barre.Core, is perfect for toning the whole body and building muscle endurance.
As well as giving the quadriceps (front of thighs) and good old gluteus maximus (the large buttock muscle) a workout, the very controlled and precise movements and positions target key muscle groups.
One of the key parts of our Barre.Core is the burn! By doing lots of small movements, slow pulses and sustained holds we induce muscle fatigue. The burn that you feel is the build up of acidic metabolic by-products and the reduction of oxygen available to the muscles. They’re squeezed so tightly that blood doesn’t easily flow in and out. It might hurt, but we promise it’s a good thing!
Our muscles respond by becoming more efficient and developing the ability to work and hold their contraction for longer. All this happens without a lot of hypertrophy, or growth, of the muscle fibres. This means you develop increased muscle tone without bulking up.
Here's some examples of the different movements in the class and how these work your muscles:
- the “turnout” position during plies targets your deep gluteals so you can have strong hips and a perky butt, even if you aren’t quite at prima ballerina level!
- the single leg standing work and side-lying sequences target your lateral (side) gluteals for a round peachy butt and happy hips.
- working in a releve (heel lifted) position tones and strengthens your calf muscles, improves your ankle stability, and even gives you stronger arches. As an added bonus those strong calves will help you run faster and jump higher if that’s your thing!
- the elongated spinal posture we use helps to reduce pressure on the lower back, strengthens the hamstrings (back of thighs) and the abdominal muscles.
We might use light dumbbells, but we know how to make them work by holding them away from the body, just the right number of repetitions, pulses and holds to guarantee you work your muscles to the point of delicious burn!
Barre.Core is generally a low impact class, which makes it suitable for people with joint or spinal injuries, pelvic floor issues, hyper mobility. It's also ideal during pregnancy, as most of the exercises are done in an upright or side-lying position which is safe through pregnancy.
If you’re looking for a class where you can focus on your alignment and technique, without overloading your joints this is ideal.