Saturday, March 21, 2015

and while I'm reviewing things...Pure Barre

My opinion on Pure Barre is as follows:

First of all, I will say the classes are a little bit expensive.  I like to change up my routine when it comes to staying active so I don't get bored, so I currently have my Y membership on hold and am snagging classes here and there with the money that would have gone to monthly membership fees to a gym and running since -hello Spring- it's warm enough all the sudden for that now. :D

The tagline for Pure Barre is Lift Tone Burn.  and It's pretty much what you will do...although a more accurate description would be to add the word Shake in-between like this: Lift (shake) Tone (shake) Burn (shake more).  It's based on ballet techniques but no dancing skills required...just the mental space to not mind holding planks and squats for longer than 2 minutes at a time without crying (after doing some other squat posture right before that).  Participants are required to wear socks but they don't have to be sticky socks (although planks are easier with those sticky soles).  Beyond that, just bring yourself and some black pants as that seems to be the going color for barre.

Classes are 55 minutes
It's hard to describe how little movement there is during reps but how much it burns anyway.  The goal is to move about an inch back and forth but about a minute or so in, everything gets fatigued and then the real work begins.  Once muscles are shaking like crazy, you know you've squatted far enough and held your abs tight enough to challenge yourself.  I think it would be impossible to breeze though a class the first time or twentieth time, but if you didn't break a sweat, it would be worth talking to an instructor to make sure your postures are correct.  The instructors are really good about fixing form during the class though...so you get your muscle shakes worth.  The life long goal for barre is to get the correct "tuck" form and to lift the "shelf".  So there's your vocab lesson ;)  
I think that it would be hard to injure anything which is great for longterm participation.  I do put the red ball on the small of my back for some of the core work because I have curvature of the spine and notice my posture can be unsupportive of my neck if my back bends out when I'm doing crunch like motions.  After about four or five classes I did notice a bit of difference in my leg muscle shape along the calf.  That's fast for noticeable form change so, this technique is legit based on that.  I'm not tracking weight loss and don't participate often enough to use this class for that.  Also, Even though you can do most of this work with a chair or stair banister, I don't think a movie at home could replace the instructor and class positive energy that makes you shake a little more and not stop. That's just harder to do in your living room with no one else telling you to keep going. :)  Also, instructors are very tuned into when to turn the music up for intense reps which helps a lot.  For hard core work they dim the lights down too which is nice when your nearly spent.

Final verdict:  I really like it and will probably continue to show up for this class when time allows.
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