The Pure Barre experience is an intense, 55-minute, body-sculpting workout. The studio is simple and elegant with walls of mirrors and a chandelier that channels your inner girly-girl. Classes start promptly at the very minute they are scheduled to begin. Arriving 10-15 minutes early to grab your equipment (hand weights, resistance bands, and a resistance ball) and claim a spot is key! Plan to wear comfortable yoga-type clothing, a supportive bra, and socks with sticky dots on the soles. Socks are available in the retail section of the studio if you need to purchase them.
Class begins with a warm-up that wakes up each muscle group and gently stretches your whole body. Loud music and a fast pace with no breaks in between exercises forces your mind to focus on every muscle and truly tune into your body. The upper body work that immediately follows the warm-up includes a 90-second plank to strengthen your core and several different types of push-ups and tricep dips. Hand weights are also used (a variety of which are available for your choosing). The movements are quite small and even with 2 or 3 pound weights you will feel a focused burn that beckons sleeveless summer fashions.
Next you will move to the barre for a thigh-toning series of isometric exercises that will leave your legs shaking! After a good stretch to reward your legs, you will head back to the barre for seat work. Tiny movements focus on all areas of your rear end and work to lift your butt and give you “the Pure Barre ledge”. Seriously, they call it that, and I have yet to see an instructor without an amazing booty!
The final working section is for your core/abs. This is done both seated below the barre and on mats in the center of the studio. Beginning with “ab sprints” to get your heart rate up and increase the calorie burn, your abs are worked from top to bottom, and side to side. Resistance balls are available to help support your lower back if needed. Polishing off the ab work with a few stretches, class rewinds back to seat work where you spend one final song cranking out some butt-sculpting hip raises. Finally, a full body stretch rewards you for completing this intense workout that lifts, tones, and burns!
Childcare is not provided, but the classes are offered 7 days a week at many different times to fit your schedule. Whether you go early in the morning, during preschool/school hours, or escape in the evening while your hubby wrangles the little ones, you can definitely find a way to fit this workout into your schedule![sws_pullquote_left]Tiny movements focus on all areas of your rear end and work to lift your butt and give you “the Pure Barre ledge” [/sws_pullquote_left] After my first Pure Barre experience, I remember hobbling through the door and telling my family that it was the hardest class I’d ever done. The next day, my butt and thighs screamed in protest every time I tried to sit down to pee. Over the next 6 or 7 weeks I did about 30 classes, and could really start to see a difference in my body. The abdominal muscles that had gone into hibernation 7 years ago were starting to return! One thing I love about Pure Barre is that there is no jumping around and bouncing to hurt your joints. I’ve been dealing with a knee injury from running that just won’t heal and this is the first class I’ve ever done that doesn’t bother my joints.
If you’ve just pried yourself from a dent in the couch cushions, it will be tough at first to keep up with the pace of the class. The instructors do, however, offer modifications for certain exercises based on your fitness level. And once you get used to the quick transitions and know what to expect, you can follow along without feeling like a fool! I definitely would recommend giving it a try. Pure Barre does offer a FREE first class to new customers, but you really owe it to yourself to try it several times before you make up your mind. The price tag can be intimidating, but just in the few months since I first tried Pure Barre, they have offered 3 or 4 different promotions that make the classes quite reasonable. Bathing suit season, which we know is quite long here in Alabama, is coming whether we like it or not, so you have nothing to lose but a few bulges by giving it a try.
Name of Facility: Pure Barre
Locations: 4769 Whitesburg Dr., Suite 201, Huntsville & 14 Main Street, Suite A, Madison
Phone: (256) 655-1544 (Huntsville) & (256) 684-5549 (Madison)
Cost: $20 per class if purchased individually. Many packages and contracts available at lower rates based on total number of classes or length of contract commitment. See website for additional package details and class schedules: www.purebarre.com
The mom of three rambunctious redheads, Meg Nester is a Chicago area native and wannabe crafter extraordinaire. When she’s not tending to her boys (and baby girl) or training for triathlons, you can find her in the garage wielding her beloved power tools or firing up a kiln full of enamel jewelry.