Ever wonder what a traditional barre class was like? Curious about what will happen before taking your first class? Below you will find a basic and classic sequence taught in barre classes. This class outline stems from the Lotte Berke method.
Please note that each teacher and studio has variations to their classes, so you will see different classes depending on where you attend!
1. Dynamic Warm-Up
Barre classes begin with a warm up to get your heart rate elevated and muscles warm. Typically a warm up begins with marches, lunges, and squats. These are followed by a variety of plank work, push-ups, abdominal engagement, and core work.
2. Weight Work
Following the warm up, you will grab a set of 2-5 pound dumbbells to strengthen and tone the upper body. The weighted series should include all of the following muscle groups: biceps, triceps, shoulders, chest and back muscles. The lower body is also sometimes incorporated with knee bends & stretches to keep the heart rate elevated. Followed by upper body stretches.
Three thigh targeted exercises are up next. These can be done both at the barre or in the center of the room. The thighs are large muscles, and this is a great time in class to start to reach that shake point! Followed by targeted thigh & leg stretches.
4. Glute Work
1-2 glute exercises are done, and again can be done both at the barre and away. Followed by targeted stretching.
5. Core Strengthening
A signature part of any barre class is abdominal strengthening. Exercises include ab-work underneath the barre and C-Curve. An abdominal series typically lasts about 10 minutes.
6. Back Strengthening
To keep the body balanced, the back body is also strengthened during barre. This includes exercises like ‘superwoman’ or ‘flutter kicks’ while lying on your stomach.
7. Back Dancing or Bridge
Another well-known part of any barre class is back dancing or bridge. Back dancing is similar to a bridge, but the seat is kept closer to the mat. These exercises strengthen your back-body and glute muscles on last time before the final stretches of class.
8. Final Stretches & Closing
The class will end with deeper stretches, sometimes assisted with a strap, deep breathing and centering.
Curious about what language you’ll hear me cue in barre class? Check that out here!
See you at the barre!