Know what Barre workout is all about!
Have you heard about Barre Workouts? Well, if not, then let us tell you about this workout trend which helps to develop lean muscles without bulking. The claim is that it is very effective for body sculpting, improving balance and flexibility. More enticing is that age, fitness level and weight does not matter at all in this workout.
Let us dig in a little deeper and find out whether Barre Workout actually works or not!
The story behind Barre workouts
Since most of the moves in this workout are based on ballet and the basic equipment is a ballet barre, there are no prizes for guessing that a ballerina started this workout. Yes, it was Lotte Berk who opened her first studio in London way back in 1959. With passing time, it branched out and the original studio was left behind and got closed in 2005.
However, in the last decade, the barre studios have started to spring up everywhere.
The barre workout
The class starts with a warm-up with planks and push-ups followed by a series of arm exercises. Next, you need to do a lower-body workout at the bar and work your glutes and thighs. You finish up with moves that focus on your core or a short mat session.
This workout has body weight moves only but you can use light weights of about 2 to 3 pounds or even resistance bands. To engage leg muscles, an exercise ball is enough. Unlike other workouts, you are allowed to do barre barefoot (pun intended 😛 )
Difference between Barre and strength training
Barre has tiny movements called isometric movements whereas a strength training class has more of larger movements like shoulder presses and squats. Most barre teachers will say ‘Up an inch, down an inch’.
Those who are used to regular strength training or HIIT will feel that they are not working out hard enough. However, it is no so! Barre is in fact a great workout as its tiny movements are sufficient to work up your muscles and make them flexible without tearing them.
Benefits of barre workout
1) Tiny movements make you stronger
The one-inch movements are great as you can hold a particular posture longer and engage your muscle continuously along with getting a mini-recovery. With these isometric movements, there is less risk of injury and as the ligaments and tendons are not strained.
2) More muscle groups will be targeted
The workout is an efficient one as you are doing 2 to 4 movements at a time in every move.
3) You can see your body shake
Shaking during a workout means that your muscles are actually getting worked up. When taught and done the right way, it is a good thing.
4) Improve your mind and body connection
Barre can help improve muscle activation and strengthen the mind-body connection.
5) It may help in weight loss
Barre is good at helping you lose weight but it varies from individual to individual. What matters more is the diet you follow and how much you eat. Depending on the body type and fitness level, you will be able to see changes anywhere between a time span of 3 weeks to 3 months. You can revamp yourself and turn into a more youthful, graceful and powerful person.
Cons of Barre workout
1) Unable to gain functional strength
Barre lacks movements like lunges, squats, presses that involve bigger muscle groups. These functional moves are important to carry out everyday tasks like carrying your bag of groceries, lifting boxes or climbing up the stairs.
2) Heart is not getting exercised enough
Barre class cardio is not enough for your cardiovascular health. You will work only at a 40% to 50% of your maximum heart rate in this class.
3) You may hit a weight loss plateau
You will lose weight initially but then hit a weight loss plateau. And you don’t want that to happen, right?
You need to decide whether this workout is for you or not!
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