My first tryst with barre happened to be at a GuavaPass event and DAMN IT HURT. I’ve never found anything else to be more effective and yet with minimal impact on my joints. So when I sat with Yoga La Vie’s Barre instructor Lexi Morales to figure it out, I wasn’t too surprised as to why it’s just so effective and what makes it a superb workout.

First of all, it makes sense to talk about what barre is…it’s a type of exercises that uses something called ‘isometric strength training’ – which means you tend to isolate a set of muscles by making it do small movements while keeping the rest of the body still. It uses a minimal amount of equipment, which makes it possible to do even at home. I also put in some really awesome gifs for you to practice over at home!

Yoga La Vie Dubai|Try this simple barre exercise first!
Try this simple barre exercise first!

ONN: What makes barre so effective?

Lexi: Barre is a combination of pilates, yoga, and ballet conditioning. Putting all of these together based on upbeat rhythmic music makes it a great high intensity class.

ONN: How long must one workout to see results during these barre classes? 

Lexi: You will notice changes in your body as soon as your 5th or 6th session!

ONN: As part of a fitness routine, how often do we do barre?

Lexi: Barre is low impact on the joints and a very safe exercise, you can do it as often as every day! There is low risk of injury. But in junction with your current routine I recommend a minimum of twice a week for optimal results.

ONN: Can men do barre? I often see only women at these classes..

Lexi: Of course! I have had many men take my class, they typically love the killer arm section. It is a stereotype that has been created in people’s mind. I highly recommend all men to try out a Barre class at Yoga La Vie, and I guarantee you they will fall in love with it.

Build arm strength with this simple routine|Yoga La Vie Dubai
Build arm strength with this simple routine

ONN: Often when I start an exercise regime, I run into this ‘plateau’ where I don’t find the same type of exercises as tough anymore and my body gets used to it. Does barre have the same effect?

Lexi: Fortunately, with barre you will never come to the same class twice, you’ll do some of the same exercises but it’s always changing this helps prevent the plateau and boredom. It’s always challenging, and fun at a Barre class.

ONN: Would barre be considered more of a toning exercise than one that helps you lose the pounds? 

Lexi: Actually, it’s a perfect mix of both. Because is so musically based there is a substantial cardio aspect as well as interval training similar to a HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) class we have high and low intervals.

Yoga La Vie Dubai|Turns out barre is just not for girls!
Turns out barre is just not for girls!

ONN: Is barre suitable for all ages? In terms of injuries, which type of poses/exercises should one avoid?

Lexi: It was designed to be low impact high intensity so it’s safe, or can be modified for pretty much anyone, even during pregnancy. There isn’t any running or jumping, the exercises are all very small and very controlled movements.

Yoga La Vie Dubai was also kind enough to do this short video for me here:

Barre exercise from Aneesha Rai on Vimeo.

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