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Madonna picks barre3 by Sadie Lincoln. Which barre workout is right for you?

Fitness - Trending

- This is a guest post by Erica Chapman -

 

Barre fitness is an oldie but goodie.

Lately it seems like everyone and their mother has tried a barre fitness class and raved about it in a tabloid. But the barre method has actually been around for ages.  What's with the sudden surge in popularity? And with all these new studios and DVD's popping up, how is a girl to choose which barre to do her plies at?

Differentiating between barre workouts.

For answers, I tested out 3 different barre workouts--two classes and one DVD--to get a sense of the differences between the brands. First, though, the common ground: a barre workout is simply a series of strengthening exercises using very small, repeated movements and the body's own weight resistance, mostly performed at a ballet barre for balance, and alternating with periods of stretching to keep you long and lean. It is NOT dancing (girls with 2 left feet, rest easy--I was joking about the plies back there). And it's not cardio per se, but you'll sweat with the pure effort of maintaining those graceful (or not) extensions!

The original barre workout was developed decades ago by the ballerina Lotte Berk. The Lotte Berk Method has inspired most of today's iterations, though everyone has put their own unique twist on the regimen, giving you plenty of room to get picky! The main players in the barre studio arena are: The Bar Method, Physique57 and barre3. They're all great, fire-in-the-muscle workouts but one might be better for you than another based on your preferred intensity level. Find out the differences between them below.

 

STUDIO 1: The Bar Method

The Bar Method Soho NYC

Relatively new to New York, The Bar Method has one studio in the Soho neighborhood of Manhattan. But as a workout, it's been around since 2000 and is franchised all over the country, meaning you could attend these classes from Miami to Boulder and get a familiar workout.  The departure from the Lotte Berk method here is more of a focus on muscles, away from exercises that are hard on the joints. At the Soho studio they only offer one kind of class (mixed level), which means that anyone is welcome and more than capable of getting through the hour, but if you go more than a few times, you may plateau pretty quickly.  My sense after one class is that it's a great weekly commitment for toning up--you won't get Fergie's washboard abs from a few weeks here, but you will probably notice a difference in the shape of your muscles over time.  

Pros: The studio is PRISTINE.  It's like walking into a spa.  And the staff is SUPER friendly. Since they're new to the city, they're bending over backwards to make sure everyone is educated and prepared before they come, adjusted and encouraged during the class, and consulted about any questions they may have afterwards. I felt so taken care of!   
Cons: While I definitely felt the burn a few times, I didn't feel terribly challenged. However, take this with a grain of salt, because I'm the type that only feels like a workout was worth it if I'm close to puking....and I readily admit this is extreme and/or unhealthy. I have no doubt I would see results with this class, especially if I made it a regular part of my routine.
Bottom Line: A gorgeous space with cheery people that will guide you through the "barre" experience.  Seems like a great springboard into more intense workouts, and a great place to keep coming back to for maintenance and nice muscle definition. Or for a glass of filtered water, the latest issue of US Weekly and plush towels, if you're REALLY going to milk your Bar Method experience.

 

STUDIO 2: Physique57

Physique57 Soho NYC

With only 4 studios total, Physique57 hews much more closely to the original "barre" method. This is the workout you've heard Kelly Ripa tout for years; she's claimed on more than one occasion to love it as much as her husband (Mark, don't feel bad--the workout's that good). Even though it's almost the same collection of exercises as The Bar Method, Physique57 classes are more intense. The positions go a bit deeper, the transitions are a bit faster, and the motions a bit more complex. For a single class, it's the same price as The Bar Method ($35), but the multi-class packages here are a little pricier.
 
Pros: You leave feeling like you got more bang for your buck. You'll feel like your glutes are going to burst into flames more than once per class but that means you'll see results.
Cons: The studio (at least their downtown location) could use a bit of an update. This workout (and The Bar Method workout too) is performed on carpet for reasons I cannot fully understand, and theirs is a garish shade of blue that's getting to look a little like my grandparents' rec room, which was probably carpeted in 1960. They also have you doing a few exercises on foam mats that are looking a tad shabby. At $35 a class, I think it's time for new mats.
Bottom Line:  You will work hard here, and that's in the beginner class.  Seems to me like the sky's the limit in terms of how ripped you want to get with this workout--you could be challenging Kelly Ripa to a bikini-off in no time!

 

STUDIO 3: barre3

Barre3 studio Sadie Lincoln

Of the three workouts I tried, this was the most distinctively different. Many of the same exercises are incorporated, but the barre3 method really focuses on posture and elongation more than the other two. All poses are performed in a "neutral spine" position, as opposed to the pelvis "tucking" you do in The Bar Method and Physique57. Barre3 founder Sadie Lincoln has taught yoga for years, and really draws on that experience in her philosophy. It's definitely still challenging, and you will still feel the burn, but you will feel much more grounded and open as you do it.  Though I only experienced the 40-minute barre3™ Total Body Lift Workout DVD and not an actual class (barre3 has yet to hit New York, but fingers crossed, one day soon!), I had the opportunity to speak with Sadie and confirm that the classes still involve an upbeat playlist, lots of hard work, and an intensity that produces results. It's not a relaxing yoga class; it's a great toning workout with attention to standing and living tall.

Pros: If you're into yoga and pilates, you may really enjoy this DVD. You'll still get a fierce workout (especially in the seat and the abs), but you will feel very calm and deliberate while you do it.  As for the barre, that is replaced in your living room by the back of a chair, and all you need is a yoga mat or some carpet and a rolled up towel.  Easy.
Cons:  The obvious drawback for New Yorkers is that there's no studio--the DVD is great, but sometimes you want the added motivation of a teacher and fellow students to really get you going.  Aside from that, the DVD workout itself is more of a maintenance tool; it would be great for travel or a busy day when you need some muscle exertion but don't have the time for a class.
Bottom Line: This is Madonna's new workout of choice, and let's assume Ms. Ripped-and-Fantastic herself knows what she's talking about when it comes to effective workouts.  My personal take is that this DVD will give you a great introduction to the barre workout world and help keep you strong while you wait for Sadie to get from Portland out to the Big Apple!

Or you can barre3-it-up right now by watching Sadie Lincoln share her top 3 barre3 moves in this Fashionably Fit With MizzFIT Video. All you need is a kitchen counter!

My final thoughts on these barre studios and why you should go.

These classes, while not extremely taxing at the beginner level, gave me a great workout. If I could've taken advanced classes from the get-go, I know they would've kick my butt. Part of the appeal of small movements is that they target your smaller muscles--your stabilizers. Your body will be shaking with the exertion, and that's a good thing--it's the reshaping of those tiny muscles that will really give you the definition you're craving. Plus, instead of making you huff and puff, tiny movements allow you to really concentrate on your form and get it right for maximum results.  

My only complaint with NYC's barre world: What's with the carpet?? It is the most unhygenic surface I can think of for a workout, and there doesn't appear to be a purpose for it. This workout could easily be done on wood floors with a yoga mat. In fact, barre3 studios are made with cork flooring, which is sanitary and also very green. Even though you're required to wear socks in the carpeted studios, I still couldn't help but get the heebie jeebies when we laid down for ab work and I had to rest my head on a carpet that no doubt thousands of other sweaty heads have graced. That's not to say that the studios are dirty--they're both immaculately clean (I even saw a girl Dust-Bustering the hallway at Physique57), and The Bar Method's carpet looks brand new. But seriously, what's the point?

If you're not a germaphobe like yours truly, this will not stop you from enjoying yourself (and actually, it didn't stop me either). The revolutionary concept here is micro movements that create lean and sexy muscle tone for a feminine physique. Pick a studio that appeals to you or grosses you out the least. Or if you've got the dough, Sadie Lincoln makes house calls...just ask Madonna.

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment below with your thoughts on barre fitness and you'll be entered to win a barre3™ Total Body Lift Workout DVD. THIS GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED.

 

About the Author: Erica Chapman is a connoisseur of team sports & gourmet food. She lives and works out in New York City.

written by Bianca Jade a.k.a Mizzfit

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66 comments
meg July 23rd, 2010 6:43AM

great guest post erica! you did a great job of defining the differences between the styles of these barre classes. being a former ballet dancer and current pilates, yoga and ballet barre insructor i love the increasingly widespread interest in barre classes. i teach a ballet pilates class that incorporates ballet barre work and centre work (think plies and cardio bursts) mixed with the core principles of pilates. i vary the class each time a bit to prevent clients from hitting a plateau. clients see continued results and learn basic ballet and Pilates movements. it's a great way to target your glutes and core while lentghening and stregthening your arms and legs to the dancer's physique.

robyn July 23rd, 2010 2:52PM

this is a great article about the real specifics of the different classes. i love taking barre classes whenever i can, some are definitely better (and tougher) than others. great info!

MizzFIT July 24th, 2010 4:48AM

Erica truly rocked NYC's barre scene! I had the pleasure of being on the call with Sadie Lincoln and Erica and it's cool to hear that barre exercises are NOT all the same but taking on difference forms for different results. There should never be just 1 way of doing something and Sadie Lincoln is championing this way of thinking. She even intends to build a fashion/lifestyle line for barre3 which I'm super excited about and hope to feature on mizzFIT.com! I'm hoping more barre enthusiasts will reach out to me and let me know how they're giving the barre their own spin.
Thanks for your comments Meg & Robyn!

Sadie Lincoln July 24th, 2010 7:13AM

Thank you so much for bringing more awareness to barre based programs. I am honored to be featured in this story. And, your interest in fitness fashion/lifestyle is so spot on. Love it!!!

Krissy Engle July 24th, 2010 8:32AM

I take Sadie's classes in Portland and I am absolutely obsessed. It's the only work out I've ever done that I never get sick of! She has awesome instructors, great music and the spaces have a great, modern vibe. I've been doing it for about a year and have seen tremendous results! Yay Barre3!

anonymous July 24th, 2010 8:51AM

This is a really comprehensive assessment. As someone who has taken all 3 methods, I really could not agree more. All studios have their strong points-and points of difference, which is great.

The push-up series done at the barre offered at barre3 studios is a killer...after 2 years of taking class religiously, I still feel challenged each and every time I do these. And the variety in class, and in MUSIC is key. Every class is different.

Thank you Bianca and Co. for shedding light on barre-work!

Lisa July 24th, 2010 9:29AM

Wow, you found a fantastic way to describe all three workouts. While I have not tried Bar Method yet, I have experienced both Physique 57 and Barre3. They are both fantastic for very different reasons. However, what I love about Barre3, it is not only about the physical results, but about being true to your body. I love the grounded and holistic approach to this amazing workout. Also, the instructors all are so different, but in a good way.

Sadie has done an amazing job with creating a warm and inviting environment at Barre3. Definitely give it a try if you are in Portland (or the other locations!)

Kaitlin July 24th, 2010 7:59PM

I appreciate your insights to the barre workouts. I'm a Barre3 Lover - it's the only strength workout I have stuck with and get excited about. I highly recommend you get out here to Portland and check it out! The DVD is fantastic but doesn't do the class justice. The instructors are very motivating, classes are fun, and the studios are gorgeous. Plus, because every class is different, workouts hold my attention and continuously challenge me. Barre3 is a great outlet to blow off some steam and release your competitiveness. In addition, you'll meet a ton of positive interesting people in the process!

Jennifer July 25th, 2010 8:42PM

This couldn't have come at a better time!! I have been so on the fence about what to try. Everybody says a lot about Bar Method, but I had the original DVDs several years ago and just could not get into them- no matter how much I tried. My rear-view says its time to give them another chance!! Thankyou for the article!!

Luke July 26th, 2010 8:21AM

Well,
In 80s-it was aerobic
90s-lots of elliptical, jogging and gym
00s- yoga and pilates
10s- its a new era of workouts what incorporates ballet.
I really like the idea of the barre 3.
It is mix of everything and its using all muscle groups.
I just saw a preview of dvd and i must buy it.:)

MizzFIT July 26th, 2010 8:39AM

If you're in Oregon or Washington I highly recommend trying out a class over buying the DVD but if you can do both, GO FOR IT! The DVD is definitely more of a maintenance workout. Plus, barre3 is male-friendly. When Erica & I interviewed Sadie, she mentioned that she has a growing male following. Also, for all the moms out there, there's also child-care! How cool is that. Now, I just wish barre3 would get out to NYC soon. Let's work on that, Sadie!!! Thanks to everyone for commenting on this post. I love reading your thoughts!

Jennifer July 26th, 2010 12:41PM

Mizzfit, is there any signs they may be coming to the south any time soon? We recently got a Pure Barre place, but even it is too far. Why does it take so long for things to catch on down here!!, LOL.

Krystal July 28th, 2010 7:04AM

Great article! I really enjoyed learning about all the different barre workouts! I have tried The Dailey Method here in Chicago and love it!

MizzFIT July 30th, 2010 2:09AM

Jennifer, tell me about Pure Barre. Have you tried it out yet? Where in the South are you located?

MizzFIT July 30th, 2010 2:11AM

Hi Krystal! Glad we could shed some light on a few different Barre workouts for you. How do you think The Dailey Method is different and what makes it worthwhile to your fitness regimen? Thanks for commenting!

Jennifer July 30th, 2010 7:03AM

Hi again Mizzfit! I don't know anymore about Pure Barre than looking for info online about the DVDs. I came across information about them on their website, Videofitness, and here. The other 2 websites said there were now classes in Alabama (Southside I think?) but that is too far for me right now. :(

Marie July 30th, 2010 5:53PM

I've tried both Barre3 and Bar Method. While they are both awesome, low impact, high value workouts, Barre3 definitely is more inline with the vibe I'm looking for. Starting with the eco-decor of the studio, the down to earth energy of the instructors and the natural form of the movements it is a welcomed break from the high intensity cardio I've been doing for the past 15 years.

The curved spine of Bar Method felt very unnatural to me, the instructors put me on edge, the class lacked flow and seemed to jump between the bar, the middle of the room, back to the bar. I didn't get any sense of the whole body wellness I would expect from this type of workout.

Leigh July 31st, 2010 7:37AM

A friend's wife was doing barre classes in San Francisco before moving to DC. She can't find any here, and is bummed. I am, too, because I'd love to try them with her! Maybe soon ...

MizzFIT July 31st, 2010 9:37AM

Leigh! Are you in DC? I'll be checking out the scene this weekend and see if I can locate some barre fitness for you. Seems like DC should have some.

MizzFIT July 31st, 2010 9:50AM

Leigh,

I believe there's a Pure Barre in DC. Check it out...
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/07/AR2008020703811.html

Let me know if you need me to find something close to you and give me a holler this weekend!

MizzFIT August 3rd, 2010 3:48PM

Congrats to Jennifer for winning the barre3 DVD! Thanks for all your great comments. Please keep 'em coming!

Jennifer August 3rd, 2010 4:02PM

Yay!!! I'm so excited! :D
Thankyou!!
Jen

Nicole August 4th, 2010 12:44PM

I LOVE the barre workout! There are a few other franchises that you missed though. Pure Barre, Cardio Barre & the Xtend Barre Workout. I used to teach at Pure Barre and I've taken almost every barre method out there. I agree...they are all very different. I can't really say which one is my favorite because I like them all for many different reasons. I am a Pilates instructor and have taught many dance-fused formats throughout my group fitness career.

While I'm so excited that this workout is gaining popularity, it seems like there's a barre studio opening up every 5 miles away from each other in Orange County, CA. It's becoming so saturated down here and I feel it makes the workout loose it's appeal.

But I still LOVE the method and will continue to attend and instruct it for many more years to come.

MizzFIT August 4th, 2010 2:11PM

Nicole,

You sound like a barre expert extraordinaire! You're right, Erica and I did not cover every barre workout in the US because there are too many to write about. I'm glad we share a love of barre fitness and yes, it's a bummer that they're now popping up like frozen yogurt shops, but what can you do? At least it's getting women into the studio and motivating them to get fit. The results speak for themselves which is why The Bar Method franchise is so successful. Remember, barre workouts have been around for a long time. You can find them on NYC's Alvin Ailey class schedule and you can get more legit than that! You mentioned that you're a Pilates instructor...have you seen other types of workouts that integrate Pilates exercise like the barre studios mentioned? I'd love to hear about your take on new Pilates fusion trends. Thanks so much for commenting.

Nicole August 4th, 2010 2:29PM

Totally agree! As long as the method gets and keeps women in the studio making healthy choices for their body...that's all that matters.

There's two other Pilates/Yoga/Ballet fused workouts that I really enjoy teaching: Balletone & BalleCore. They are both very unique and a lot of fun. These two methods take you off the barre and into the center of the room. It's definitely challenging and increases core strength through balance. These formats both use instrumental music so the classes have a different feel than the typical barre workout. And they can be taught in any gym or studio.

Judy Robb September 14th, 2010 12:18PM

Sadie -- I live in rural wisconsin and your workout was the mssing link in my outdoorsy activities -- thank you!

Sadie Lincoln September 14th, 2010 12:26PM

Judy, so happy you are connecting with barre3! As a Pacific Northwest gal, I love my outdoor activities too. So glad you are appreciating the relationship between both workouts!

Susan Thomas September 25th, 2010 10:44AM

Thank you so much for these descriptions. I suffer from a few different muscle and joint illnesses and have been looking for exercise that I can actually do. The Barre3 sounds like it is enough of a mix that I could handle it and still see and feel results. Am finally looking forward to something physical! Thanks.

MizzFIT September 25th, 2010 1:08PM

Hi Susan,

Sorry to hear about this condition of yours. I'm really impressed by your desire to find a workout that will help you become more active. It's really hard to get into the swing of working out but once you take the first step you never have to look back...just remember not to overwhelm your body and to take baby steps in whatever form of exercise you choose. Each time you work out you'll feel like you have a better grasp of the exercises and mastery of them is soooo rewarding! Sadie has worked with all kinds of clients at barre3 and has seen it all in terms of injuries and physical limitations. I wouldn't put it past barre3 to coach you through their program. I'm sure they'll be able to offer lots of advice and stretching exercises for you to keep up with at home. If you're not in a barre3 city, the barre3 DVD is an awesome workout and you can always modify your intensity level. The ball it comes with can also be used as padding for some exercises. You should definitely check it out and contact the studio for more information. I'm a big fan so I really can't stress the amazing-ness and therapeutic qualities of this workout enough. Have a wonderful weekend and thank you for commenting!

jennifer September 25th, 2010 9:25PM

Before I purchase the Barre 3 DVD i would like to know if it is advanced?? I have purchased a pure barre DVD and find it to be not so challenging. I do yoga, hike, run, weights, barre method, bike, at least 5-6 days a week....so I am looking for a challenging workout.

any chance Honolulu will see a studio??

kathy levin insurance September 26th, 2010 2:29PM

Jocelyn, I don't think so :D

MizzFIT September 27th, 2010 5:47AM

Jennifer, it is not what I would call an "advanced" version of barre3's workout. I consider it A) a great intro DVD for women who have not yet experienced a barre workout before OR B) a great maintenance DVD workout to do in between days of more challenging workouts (or in-studio barre workouts). If you're looking for a DVD to step up your barre game, I would research ADVANCED BARRE WORKOUT DVDs. If you need help just contact me via my contact page and I'll help you find something more tailored to your needs. The cool thing about Sadie's DVD, even though it might not meet your advanced-level needs is that it comes with a resistance ball. Thanks so much for commenting!
Kindly,
MizzFIT

cindy September 29th, 2010 2:50PM

Wow, it sounds like I need all of them !!!

MizzFIT September 29th, 2010 4:26PM

Cindy,

Hopefully there's a studio near you so you can get started!

MizzFIT

Nikole November 4th, 2010 3:05AM

I would check out Pure Barre. They are all over the country. Surprisingly, not in OR yet. I take them in Seattle and am obsessed. It's the things you enjoy about Barre3 with a more challenging, more effective, up beat workout with super motivating music, which is important. I've had a number of friends try The Bar Method, Barre3, and Pure Barre and all agree that Pure Barre absolutely gives you the best, most effective, and fun experience. I think everyone should check it out!

MizzFIT November 4th, 2010 4:09AM

Hi Nikole,
Thanks for telling us all about Pure Barre. I just saw a promotion today that if you buy the Pure Barre DVD you get entered to win a fitness outfit at Splits59 and thought that was very cool. I definitely need to check out Pure Barre soon. I love that you've tried so many barre workouts! Good for you! Next time you're in NYC, you'll have to experience Physique57. Crazy how that class never gets any easier for me! Thanks again for your comment and I look forward to reading more of your thoughts on Fitness & Fashion.

-MizzFIT

Nicole November 4th, 2010 10:01AM

I agree MizzFit....Physique 57 is definitely one of my favorite barre workouts out there. I just wish they had one in Orange County, CA. Exciting that they are in LA now, but I heard that the creator of Physique 57 isn't planning on opening up anymore studios on the west coast. Bummer.

I just tried the Barre3 DVD. It was definitely unique and in a league of its own in comparison to Bar Method and Pure Barre. I wasn't a huge fan of the DVD workout, but would be interested in trying a live class. I have a feeling it would be a lot of fun.

Has anyone tried the Xtend Barre Workout?

MizzFIT November 4th, 2010 1:49PM

Xtend Barre Workout? Never heard of it! I'd love to hear peoples' thoughts on it.

Nicole November 5th, 2010 2:56AM

There are a few Xtend Barre Studios out there. There's one in Boca Raton, Florida and Carlsbad, CA.

MizzFIT November 5th, 2010 3:43AM

Thanks, Nicole!

porkchop December 9th, 2010 6:14PM

after some quick research i found that pure barre is well-established around the country and has been around considerably longer than barre 3...wondering how their classes, techniques and philosophies compare/differ? after a scan of both websites, pure barre looks to be a more home-grown company while barre 3 was co-founded just last year by the same marketing entrepreneurs that established 24 hour fitness worldwide and other 'concept' gyms...seems mildly suspicious, which is why i am so curious about how they stack up.

MizzFIT December 10th, 2010 8:34PM

PC,

I've never tried Pure Barre but I hear excellent things. Yes, Barre3 is relatively new to the world of barre fitness but in my opinion it doesn't affect the quality of the workout, which is great and VERY DIFFERENT than other barre workouts I've done.

Barre3 incorporates a lot of multi-joint movement (exercises that involve activating several body parts and muscle groups at once). Multi-joint movement workouts will give you a lean physique and you don't need weights to make it challenging (which I find cool since I was conditioned over the years to use weights and now realize they're not imperative for muscle tone).

Sadie and her team are amazing and very warm people. They are a snapshot of the future of fitness. You're probably wondering what on earth I mean! Well, they're driving a movement of women who AT ANY AGE want to look great and feel great without overdoing it at the gym (since they clearly have other things going on in their lives). In essence, they're modern day women who value health & wellness and are using it to help and empower other women. For example, Sadie is a super-mom and entrepreneur. It's so cool and very inspirational to me. I wouldn't be suspicious of Barre3.

So, if I were you, I'd try it out and see if you like it...especially if you're into yoga and pilates. Barre3 works a lot of yoga and pilates moves into their classes. Stretching is critical to muscle health and it shocks me how many people skip this. Anyhow, I could go on and on about Barre3. Obviously I'm a fan and encourage you to try it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and let me know about your first Barre3 experience when it happens.

MizzFIT

Breast Augmentation December 29th, 2010 5:29PM

I have never heard of the barre workout, but now I really want to try it! I'm always looking for fun new ways to work out so I don't get bored! After the holidays, I'm going to try this!

Leah January 10th, 2011 12:24PM

So glad to hear Pure Barre mentioned throughout the comments! I was wondering why it wasn't coming up. It is an AMAZING workout that really tones your muscles, and you can most definitely feel the burn!

I teach ballet, and have danced for over 20 years. In addition, I love yoga, spinning, hiking, and pretty much any other workout you can think of. I have just started teaching Pure Barre, and it never becomes easy! As soon as it gets easier, you realize how to improve your form, and it's hard again. I would recommend it to anyone out there. I really want to try Barre 3 because I've heard wonderful things. Hopefully, we'll get a studio, or maybe I should just buy the DVD!

So glad that the world is starting to recognize the power and beauty of ballet and ballet-based workouts.

MizzFIT January 11th, 2011 6:29AM

Hi Leah,

I share your same love for any and all workouts. Sadie is actually coming out with some new DVD's soon from what I hear through the grapevine. Hopefully you'll have a selection to choose from. Are there any Pure Barre workout DVD's that you like, if any? How often do you do the Pure Barre workout?

Thanks for commenting!
-MizzFIT

Leah January 11th, 2011 10:24AM

Hi there!

Hooray! I'll have to keep an eye out for them. I have a couple of the older, original PB DVD's, but can't say I've tried the newer ones. I pretty much just throw on some inspiring music and do the exercises at home, if I can't make it into class. It's a shame you don't have one in NYC. I've heard the Lowry Lofts DVD is a good one.

As far as frequency of PB workouts, it really depends. Some weeks it has been my main form of exercise, and I've gone to 4-5 classes a week. Other weeks, I'll just do 2-3 classes a week and mix in other workouts. Generally, it's the latter. Either way, it's always challenging. Some days more than others.

MizzFIT January 12th, 2011 6:18PM

Leah, you must be a Barre pro considering that you're so consistent! I'm impressed and I think you've inspired me to take a Physique57 class tomorrow. It just snowed a ton here in NYC so I'll prob have to wear my snow boots to get there but that's OK. Your enthusiasm for Barre fitness has definitely motivated me to get back into it. I guess I've been on a little bit of a break as I was doing lots of yoga during the holidays (to stay calm). Thanks so much for sharing your workout schedule and I'll see if I might have a Barre3 DVD to send your way.

Take care!
-MizzFIT

Leah January 14th, 2011 5:52AM

Yay! This makes me happy :) It's so hard to fit everything in. I would love to try the exercise with the boots that you did a few days ago- looks awesome! I'm just going to have to move to NYC and check it out. Also, you've inspired me to get back into yoga. I've been doing it consistently for 6 years, but I have slacked recently. I had several injuries (plantar fasciitis, broken toes and ripped off toenails) months before my wedding (October), so as soon as I was healed, I craved exercises where I felt like I had gotten an amazing workout. It's been 4 months since I've taken a yoga class, and I keep telling myself this will be the week I do. You've inspired me to step up and step back into yoga.

I've been snowed/iced in my house for 4 days now, and have a bit of cabin fever. I've been exercising at home, but as soon as all this melts, yoga here I come!

MizzFIT January 17th, 2011 8:49PM

Leah,

"YOGA HERE I COME!" - I love it! You made me smile, girl! I do yoga almost everyday and really love the way it makes me feel, mentally and physically. Sometimes it's the only thing that relaxes me and reminds me to take life as it comes (I tend to stress out and get overwhelmed quite easily). But Yoga has seriously changed my life. Shoot me an email through my contact page with your address so that I can send you a Barre3 DVD for you to enjoy!

Hope the snow melts soon so that yoga can welcome you with open arms!

-MizzFIT

Leah January 20th, 2011 3:47PM

HA! I am right there with you. I tend to have A LOT of energy, and if I don't get it out, it turns into nervous energy and anxiety, which causes me to stress out about things. Maybe that's why certain people like to exercise more than others? We have to in order to stay sane, and yoga helps so much. I'm messaging you my address now-you rock!

MizzFIT January 20th, 2011 6:58PM

So true, my friend. Restless energy is best expended in the form of exercise. Took an I.AM.YOU. yoga class tonight and feel so relaxed. Got your email and will send this weekend. But you have to promise to tell me what you think! Thanks!

-MizzFIT

sabrina March 24th, 2011 6:12AM

Thanks for sharing this info! I am a newcomer to this site but I am very excited! I definitely need to try some of these workouts. I live in OKC and have been doing yoga for about 4 months. I am going to my first barre3 class tomorrow. I can't wait!

MizzFIT March 24th, 2011 3:16PM

Hi Sabrina! Welcome to MizzFIT! And how exciting about barre3. I'm really jealous. Really hoping Sadie will open a studio in NYC soon. Isn't yoga so wonderful? I've been doing it for years and my body honestly yearns for it when it's been more than 2-3 days since my last class. I think I'm addicted. Well, actually, I know I am. LOL! Have a good one!

MizzFIT

Nikita March 25th, 2011 8:33PM

I am located in Beaverton, OR and I have been researching on the barre methods. I am confused between barre3 and Barmethod. My objective is to loose weight, strengthen muscles and get a lean body. While barre3 meets my later two objectives, I am not getting a definite answer on the former - loosing weight? Would it help me loose weight too? If yes, How soon can one see the results if say, we attend 3-4 times a week? Loosing weight is primary objective for me and I see on the Bar method site that it has intense Cardio. However, I do not see the same on barre3. Could someone help here?

Nicole March 26th, 2011 2:56AM

I have taken barre classes at many places/franchises and the only barre class that I feel is true cardio is Cardio Barre. Their class is super intense! I know someone who lost 30 pounds just by doing Cardio Barre classes 4 times per week. The other barre classes (i.e. Pure Barre, Bar Method, Barre3, etc.) are awesome too, but I would not put them in the "cardio" category.

Nikita March 26th, 2011 3:11AM

Thanks a lot Nicole. I believe Cardio Barre isnt located in Oregon. :(
Would you then suggest I do Cardio, separately from Barre? I was hoping to catch just 1 workout which can help me achieve all my 3 goals.

Nicole March 26th, 2011 3:19AM

I would suggest trying out the barre formats first and if after 2 months of taking classes at least 3 times per week, you aren't seeing your desired results, then try to fit in at least 30 minutes of cardio 2-3 times per week. You will definitely see changes to your body doing barre though. . . no doubt about it.

amy leclerc March 28th, 2011 4:49AM

Hi Nicole,


I'm Amy Leclerc, with barre3. Weight loss is one of many benefits our clients see as a result of a regular barre3 practice. We hear over and over again from clients how they are shedding pounds and feeling great about their bodies. We suggest coming to class 3+ times a week for maximum results. A big objective for us, as instructors at barre3, is to encourage our clients to work within their own truth level. This is a connection one makes after coming to class regularly and understanding their body, from both a limitation and challenge standpoint. It is a powerful tool to be able to get that deep within yourself both mentally and physically and we hope that this awareness carries over into the rest of their day, when they are making decisions about how to take care of themselves in every aspect of life.

Shanda Ross April 1st, 2011 1:58PM

Hello, I live in Omaha, NE and have just discovered after years of back pain that I have Degenerative disk disease. My lower disk is completly gone and I am in pain on a daily basis. I love to workout but this has slowed/limited me as to what I should/can do. I have been doing yoga with my regular cardio which is walking on the tredmill and/or a core strength workout. I tried the barre 3 on the fitness channel in demand and i loved it, it incorporated streching, core and all I need and desire in a workout. I was just wondering how often I should do it and if I should skip a day between. Right now all they have is barre 3 on there and i am bored with workouts easily where can I find more. This workouts incorporates all I should do to keep my back pain from increasing and it truly was a wonderful stretch and all rolled up in one. I love your website it has been encouraging for me and i hope this workout helps with my core and pain. Due to my busy work schedule as a RN doing this at home is very convenient I just want to keep challenging myself and again not get bored.

MizzFIT April 11th, 2011 8:18PM

Hi Shanda,

I don't know much about degenerative disk disease but based on what you're experiencing, I wouldn't wish it on anyone. It sounds like you're still able to engage in moderate exercise which is AMAZING and I commend your strong will. As far as how often you should be doing the barre3 workout, well that depends on which workout you're doing? Are you doing Sadie's barre3 chair workout (the one that's about 20 minutes long)? I find that one to be soothing and not too strenuous, so I would tell you to do it 2-3 times a week as long as you're not experiencing pain from it. Just listen to your body and definitely consult your doctor since he/she knows your condition best. Also, I'd like to recommend taking some classes outside your home. I just don't want you to burn-out on dvd's and it would be a shame if you got stuck in a rut on barre3. Make sure to vary your workout day to day. That way you'll enjoy your favorites like barre3 instead of getting sick of them and never wanting to do them again. If you're looking for a challenge, the first step is to do some research and see what kind of pilates and mind-body-fitness studios/classes are happening in your area. Then check out reviews or call up the studios and tell them about your situation. Fitness people are generally really friendly and wellness-focused so they'll be able to tell you whether their classes/approaches are good for you. Do you know about any barre-fitness classes in your town? I hope this advice helps and feel free to contact me with additional questions. Thank you so much for sharing about yourself and for visiting the website. I built it for women like you so I'm always happy to get these kinds of messages. THANK YOU, Shanda.

MizzFIT

MizzFIT July 31st, 2011 6:53PM

Just wanted to tell you all of the beautiful fitness ballerinas who've commented on this article about a very cool program I just found out about. It's called Ballet Beautiful, a traditional ballet and strength training program that's taught by Natalie Portman's "Black Swan" ballet trainer (Mary Helen Bowers), online via Skype. Yup, SKYPE!

Kinda weird to learn ballet via Skype but it's intriguing, right? And maybe worth a shot if you don't live anywhere near a barre-fitness studio. Ballet Beautiful promises the lean limbs and graceful carriage of a true ballerina. So I'm sure it's somewhat similar, although just a bit more traditional, than most barre studios.

Check it out here: http://www.balletbeautiful.com

sarah April 25th, 2012 9:48PM

Hello. I am new to this Pure Barre hype! I just ordered the DVD pure barre3 and am hopeful it will get my motivation back! I was wondering if anyone knows if this workout is okay to do with moderated/severe scoliosis? I have a pretty defined "S" curve and I do a lot of Yoga to maintain it. So was just wondering if this workout would help my back issues and if it is safe. Thanks so much!

MizzFIT April 30th, 2012 11:08PM

Hi Sarah,

My best advice is for you to contact a physician with your questions related to scoliosis. I do believe that barre-fitness can help your body rebound from injury or ailment but I'm not sure that it is the best option for your specific condition. Definitely contact your doctor or look for more professional medical advice online. Sorry I could not be of better help but I hope you find the answers you're searching for.

Thanks for leaving a comment and best of luck with your new barre dvd!

MizzFIT

Liz S. June 1st, 2012 6:36PM

I can't believe I missed this review - I apologize! Thank you for sending me the link :)

I agree, the carpet is weird to use in a fitness environment.

But I'm very intrigued by Barre classes, especially since my trainer and I just took a Barre class this past Tuesday. I would like to try Physique 57 in NYC next :)

MizzFIT June 6th, 2012 3:34AM

Hi beautiful Liz!

I'm here to make sure you get all the answers to your fitness questions, love. The carpet is totally inconvenient but I put up with it because I love the workout so much. You really do have to choose the right instructor though. I've gone to PHY57 before and been far from pleased with the class simply because the instructor was more focused on seeing her reflection in the mirror than making sure her students had the right form. When you come to NYC and take PHY57, make sure to check-in with me so I can recommend someone good!

Thanks for the comment!

MizzFIT

Liz S. June 7th, 2012 2:12AM

Will do, thank you! :)

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