We’ve been on a mission to get fit in January. Having set new fitness goals to keep us focused, we’ve been staying motivated by trying different workouts. From early morning rave aerobics to Beyonce dance classes, there’s now a staggering number ofways to stave off exercise boredom in London, and so on a drizzly Tuesday evening I found myself in a stylish studio in Mayfair preparing to try barrecore, a new ballet based barre workout.
Inspired by the exercises that give ballerinas their strong and toned physiques (the majority of barrecore instructors are dancers), the workouts are centred around small, pulsing movements and cardio work.
The class began with a quick – but thorough – aerobic warm-up before we launched into a series of planks which gave me a whole new appreciation for the number of different ways there are to do what I thought was a fairly simple exercise. And each one hurt. Strength exercises were then alternated with cardio work (involving burpees, mountain climbers, jump squats and high knee sprints) before we started on the barre. Here we were taken through a series of pile squats, leg lifts and stomach crunches incorporating medicine balls, resistance bands and plenty of sweat.
The classes are high-energy, low-impact and promise longer, leaner limbs in as little as eight sessions. I can see why. It’s tough but really rewarding. Muscles that I never knew existed – and had clearly never used before – hurt, but the encouragement from the instructors keeps you going, along with the knowledge that you’re working hard. I can’t wait to go back.