A woman walks into a Barre. It’s called The Workout Barre. She hears upbeat music. She walks down the hall and sees a group of women working in a room framed with ballet barres. They each have two light weights, a small inflatable ball, and resistance bands nearby. She’s skeptical, but as she watches she becomes intrigued, as the women progress through small movements performed in standing and seated positions. The instructor works the room correcting technique, with constant reminders of core engagement, balance, and posture.
She hesitates as she notices the variety of women in the class. Some look as young as their late teens, many in their 20’s 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s but what surprises her is that there are also women in 60s and 70s. This mature age group has obviously discovered this workout feels good on their joints. They looked challenged and were clearly enjoying the class experience.
This looks very different from how she’s always worked out. It looks fun and graceful but tough so she stays and continues to watch. The instructor addresses core stabilization and proper body alignment, while providing precise and constant instruction on how to reposition and transition gracefully to the next move.
She intently listens as the instructor thoroughly explains how to isolate a particular muscle group and its stabilizers, which she says ‘lie dormant during most of the exercise formats you are used to’. Maybe that’s why many of these women look so sculpted and toned!
Everyone looks like they are having so much fun! But she can tell they are really working by the way some of their legs are shaking and by the group expression of gratitude as they stretch the muscles that were just exhausted during the preceding set of high repetitions of small range of motion movements.
She notices the movements are subtle, the technique demands attention, but the results are huge! She observes elements of Pilates, Yoga, and Ballet. They continue to focus on areas of concern for women: the hips, the seat, the abdominals, and the upper arms. One thing she realizes is that there is no jumping or bouncing. This class must be safe and easy on the joints!
Now the mood and music changes as the class moves into a time of relaxing deep stretches. This class was impressive and the studio feels so comfortable and welcoming. The instructor is more like a coach giving support and teaching how to recruit and engage the targeted muscles quickly and precisely. She is delighted to see this environment is not like others. This is what she has been looking for!
She’s excited to start taking classes at The Workout Barre. After class she asks the instructor if Barre helps with spot reduction and she explains that’s a physiologically impossible myth, but that spot toning is not a myth. The instructor explains that for best results it will take that three-to-five classes a week. She knows this is just the beginning! She is excited to know she will not only get a workout each time she is here but an education in how to safely and properly work out for results and well being.
She can’t wait to begin! And the team at The Workout Barre is ready to welcome her.
By Joni Hyde
President, Workouts For Women, Inc.
Owner, The Workout Barre