Raise the Barre: 7 Reasons to Try the New Ballet-Based Fitness Trend

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You do not have to be a ballerina.
While barre will help you become more graceful, you certainly do not need to have dance experience to begin. (I didn't.) Barre workouts can be done regardless of your body type, fitness level, dance experience and age. The poses and stretches are done in a way that will help you burn fat while protecting your joints. Your instructor should show the class how to modify poses as well as how to make them more difficult.
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One of the hottest trends in fitness is barre, a workout designed to create long, lean muscle mass much like that of a ballet dancer. Barre studios are opening up across the country and multi-purpose gyms are installing ballet bars so they can host barre classes at their facility and stay on trend. (And for those of you who were curious, it is not advised to hit the bar after the barre.) Barre workouts combine a bit of dance, pilates, and yoga. Though all programs vary a little, barre exercises tend to rely on one's body weight for resistance. Some classes may incorporate more cardio than others. It is important to note that barre is great for sculpting the body, but those seeking optimal weight loss will want to combine barre classes with cardio (to increase your heart rate) and a healthy diet. Though I was never a dancer, after doing semi-private pilates classes for a couple of years I decided to give barre a try and was truly amazed at the intensity of a barre workout. A new studio just opened near my home and I am ready to take that barre by storm. Here are 7 reasons why you too might consider giving barre class a try. - By Jessica Cohen

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