I’m always up to try a new workout—whether it’s Indo-Row or Equinox’s animal inspired workout, Animal Flow, I like to keep my body guessing. I was first introduced to barre classes through Physique 57 and it was love at first plié. Since then, I’ve been on a quest to try all of the barre classes that I can. That’s when I stumbled upon Pure Barre.
Created by Carrie Rezabek Dorr, a dancer and fitness guru, Pure Barre sculpts and tones your body by using isometric movements— a type of strength training that involves small, static contractions of the muscle. The small movements are followed by a stretching session that allows you to get long, lean muscles without getting bulky.
One trait that makes Pure Barre different from other barre classes is that it’s more musically driven. “We’re almost scientific in the way that they put the playlist together,” says Beverly Hills, CA, co-owner and instructor Kelsey Rood. “The music is there to be a motivator to drive you to the finish line of your exercise.” There’s nothing like a little JLo and Lady Gaga to motivate you to work out! On top of that, what sets Pure Barre apart is that they target the areas of the body that women struggle with such as the abs, hips, seat and arms.
Every workout follows a similar pattern—from a warm-up to arms to thighs to butt to abs—with the instructors changing up the specific exercises. Right from the start, you get your heart rate up doing a combination of abs and arm warm-ups. Your arms will definitely feel sore the next day, even if you use the lightest set weights possible. Two pounds did the trick for me, but if you’re feeling adventurous, there are also three, five and 10 pound options.
The thigh workouts can also be intense, depending on what particular exercises your instructor chooses. Some days my legs were shaking so much from the exercise that I thought they would fall off. But don’t worry, shaking legs are a good thing. The seat workouts can be equally as challenging, but the resulting buns of steel are worth it. As for the abs, I don’t know one person who doesn’t desire a more toned tummy, and Pure Barre knows it! While a couple of the exercises take some practice to get into, you feel a deep burn once you do.
All in all, I really enjoyed my experience at Pure Barre—it sure beats the humdrum of running on a treadmill. Definitely try out different instructors because you might connect with one better than another. As for changes to my body, I’ve noticed that my arms and calves are really toned. The staff is extremely helpful, and sometimes they join in during other instructor’s classes. You should practice what you preach right?
The class is definitely a must-try and with more than 100 locations allover the country, it’s incredibly accessible. If I’m ever out of state, odds are that there is another studio that I can go to. So there’s never an excuse to skip a workout. And even if there isn’t a studio near you, they have a huge collection of workout DVDs to use too. Visit their website to find a location near you.
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