How To Raise the Barre On Your Workout

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Keeping fit should be part of your lifestyle at any age, but if you’re getting bored with your routine perhaps it’s time to raise the barre.

The Barre Burn is a total body workout that utilizes ballet movements, changes in rhythm, and progressive core training to slim, tone, and strengthen your body. You look better for it, but even more important, you feel and move better after as well.

Equinox Group Fitness instructor and Nike Athlete Eva Redpath walks us through the key moves from the class, as offered exclusively at Equinox.

*Disclaimer: Always consult with your physician before beginning any exercise program.

Move: Superwoman
Target: Back and core
Benefit: Strengthen lower back and posture

Lie flat on your stomach with arms and legs extended flat on floor. Lift torso and arms a few inches off the floor, without overextending your back. Hold 5 seconds and lower. Repeat for 10–15 reps. To increase range of motion and assist this movement, place forearms on Body Bar, then roll towards you as you extend spine. Press palms into the Body Bar to further engage core.

Assisted back extension by placing hands on the floor under shoulders keeping elbows tight by side; press into floor to extend spine and reach chest forward; keep range of motion small

Move: Assisted Triceps Push Up
Target: Chest, Arms and Core
Benefit: Increased muscular strength and endurance

Start with legs extended, toes on the floor, hands on the floor with arms extended underneath shoulders. Place one hand face down, flat on a block. Slowly bend elbows and lower body to floor with the chest almost touching the hands. Remain in proper alignment with abdominals held in tight. Exhale on exertion. Lower body fully and switch arms by walking hands across. Repeat on the other side, alternating hands. 10-20 reps.

1. Regular triceps push up without the block
2. Incline triceps push ups using a kitchen counter as a base (so as not to have to come to floor; changes gravitational pull on body and makes push ups less challenging)

Move: Split Squat with Body Bar
Target: Butt, Hips and Thighs
Benefit: Toned lower body; increased strength and stability

Stand in a staggered with one foot a step ahead and one foot a step behind, making an upside down V shape with both legs. Front foot should be firmly planted on the floor, with the other balancing on the ball of the foot. Place one hand on the hip and the other resting on the Body Bar (or chair) for balance. Bend both knees and lower your back leg until your knee is at a 90 degree angle, almost touching the floor. Straighten your leg and repeat for 20 reps then switch legs for 20 reps.

1. Keep range of motion small and do not goes as deep in the lunge

Move: Reverse Plank on Forearms
Target: Full Body/Core
Benefit: Increased muscular strength and stability

Sit with forearms and palms planted on ground, below shoulders. Squeeze buttocks and thighs. Push up into a reverse plank (on either elbows or straight arms). Hold for 30 seconds and work up to 1 minute. Keep body in straight line- maintaining lifted hip position. Be sure to breath. To add more challenge, lift one leg.

Incline plank by placing elbows on seat of chair with legs extended; allows for more range of motion in the shoulders and less stress on neck

Move: Hip Raise
Target: Glutes
Benefit: Strong and toned lower body

Lie down on the floor with your head, torso and buttocks rooted firmly on the ground with the left foot planted on the floor and right foot on the block. Look up at the ceiling with arms and hands relaxed by your side. You should be in a straight line from the tip of your head to your tailbone. Take a few deep breaths. Exhale, squeeze glutes and engage core to lift your hips and buttocks off the ground. Raise your hips as high as you can without arching your back, making a bridge with your pelvis. To increase the intensity of the hip raise, extend the right leg out in front of your body. This will force you to use only one leg to lift your hips and buttocks off the ground. Repeat for 10 reps the switch legs for 10 reps.

Basic bridge with both feet on the ground and lift and lower hips

Move: Bicep Curl with Balance
Target: Arms and Balance
Benefit: Increased balance and muscle strength

Stand tall on one leg, with or without a block, keeping a slight bend in the knee. Keep the elbows close to your side and palms facing in. Externally rotate the upper arms and bring the dumbbells up to your shoulders. Release down to return the dumbbells to the starting position. Repeat for 10 reps Switch legs and repeat for 10 more reps the on the opposite side.

Biceps curl without balance challenge

Move: Back Attitude Lift
Target: Glutes and Core
Benefit: Strong and toned lower body; increased balance

Hold a Body Bar in your left hand (or use the back of a chair) for support and place your right hand on the hip. Stand on the floor or block, balancing on your left leg. Start with heels together, then externally rotate right hip turning knee out to the side, brace abs and raise right leg into a rear attitude. Squeeze glutes at the top, keep core engaged and stand tall on left leg. Slowly return to start and repeat for 20 reps. After last rep, hold at the top and pulse short range of motion reps for 20. Switch legs.

Back attitude without the block and keep range of motion smaller; less external rotation if there are hip or back issues