Several years back, while watching the critically-acclaimed movie called The Black Swan, I couldn’t help but to feel fascinated by all those beautiful ballerinas. All of them look so poise and exclusive, I wish I could be one of them. But of course, me already being in my late 20’s, felt that it is a little bit too late to try ballet since it requires early-age intensive practice.
Then, a friend of mine told me about a workout called barre. Barre literally means the handrail commonly used in ballet. For the workout, she told me that barre is a workout that incorporates movements of ballet, yoga, and pilates. And I thought, interesting. It may not make me a ballerina but maybe I can feel like one.
Barre is actually founded in London by Lotte Berk, a ballerina who got injured. In 1959, after recovering from the injury, she created a workout which combines the ballet barre routine with movements she learned from the rehabilitative therapy. This unique workout was brought to America by one of Lotte’s students, Lydia Bach, in 1972.
Have you ever taken a good look at ballerinas? They are not simply skinny. Those ballerinas have strong muscles. Those are the result of low impact, high intensity movements, which is the main principle of barre. Movements in barre are slow and graceful but boy, it burns. Being a full
body, muscle resistance workout, practicing barre will strengthen muscle, boost endurance, improve balance, and promote better posture.
San Diego locals can check out these studios to try barre.
- Pure Barre, Eastlake/Carlsbad/Delmar
One of the most prominent barre studios in the United States, Pure Barre has 4 types of barre classes which are Fundamentals, Classic, Pure Empower, and Pure Training. The Fundamentals class is for the beginners to learn basic barre movements and Classic is a 50 minutes full-body barre workout. Pure Empowerment is a 45 minutes workout that combines barre and interval training while Pure Training puts together barre and resistance-based training that goes on for 50 minutes. Newcomers are welcomed with a free introductory class.
- Xtend Barre, Poway
Former professional dancer and founder of Xtend Barre, Andrea Rogers, describes barre as a combination of strength, power, cardio, and confidence. This studio has a variety of barre classes for different levels and outcomes which are Xtend Barre, Xtend Suspend, XTend Stick, and Circuit 7. At Xtend Barre, fees start from USD30.00 and offer a free introductory class.
- BARRE + bay wreath, La Jolla
As a barre studio and marketplace, BARRE + bay wreath is a lifestyle hub that offers many interesting services such as fitness, florist, retail, and community activities. Founded by Erica, a dancer, designer, branding, and lifestyle content creator, the goal of BARRE + bay wreath is to nourish the mind, body, and soul. Hence, the barre classes here are more holistic as it combines the elements of being rooted and spiritually connected with physical fitness.
Just like ballet, there is a public impression that barre is more of a women’s workout, most likely due to the slow movements and grace. But the truth is, barre does not practice gender discrimination. All genders and sizes are welcome to practice barre.
Sign up at Sporforya to book for a barre class today!