So what exactly is “the barre” and how is it supposed to give you a workout? The ballet barre is what dancers, mainly ballerinas, use to warm-up and practice their technique & balance.
Barre (and no, it is not spelled “bar”, “barr”, “baree”, or whatever other creative version you may have seen) workouts can vary in intensity, movement, and style, some barre workouts being a mix of pilates, ballet, cardio, or even strength training. However, all barre workouts stem from the foundation of dance movements, technique, precision, and balance to give you a full-body, muscle-toning workout.
Due to popularization by celebrities such as Natalie Portman, Zooey Deschanel, Madonna, and Miranda Kerr, ballet-inspired barre workout studios such as Pure Barre, Barre3, and The Barre Method have sprung up left and right.
However, if you are unsure about barre workouts, why spend money on studio classes or DVD sets? Here’s a wealth of barre workout resources to get you started, or keep you going if you have already familiar with the barre.