Raise your hand if you’ve ever been torn between taking a Pilates class or a barre class? While the two exercises are similar, in the way they will both help to sculpt and tone your muscles and improve your overall health – they also have their differences.
Pilates is a series of vigorous physical exercises practiced either on a mat or reformer machine, which targets posture, co-ordination, balance, strength and flexibility – with a particular emphasis on the core. Props, like bands, dumbbells, balls, and rings, can be introduced throughout class to diversify the moves.
Barre is similar in the sense that it uses your own body weight for resistance and focuses on small, deliberate movements that target specific groups of muscles – however it also fuses in elements of ballet, dance and yoga. Barre derives from the Lotte Berk Method founded in 1959 in London by a German dancer looking to stay fit while nursing a back injury. Unlike Pilates which focuses on your core, Barre classes in Melbourne tends to focus both on your core and your legs
Barre workouts require minimal equipment. You’ll need a free-standing or wall mounted bar (the same bars you will see in a ballet class) and a mat. Sometimes a soft exercise ball may be used during leg workouts. While you don’t need any experience in dance to participate in Barre classes in Melbourne, the class does use simple choreography with upbeat music – making it a really fun atmosphere to work out in!
If you’re trying to decide which fitness method is best for you, or you think a mixture of both would be ideal – then give Barre a try! Unlike yoga and Pilates, which can sometimes take weeks and even months to see visible results, barre participants usually start seeing results in as little as eight workouts. Another reason people like to choose Barre is because of how upbeat and fun it is. With the blasting music, and simple choreography – it can almost feel like you’re in a dance class – except with more burn!
Barre classes in Melbourne also tend to be more aerobic than Pilates, helping you shed a few extra calories! Barre’s ability to give you an intense cardio workout while remaining low-impact is another desirable benefit of the program.
If you’re wanting more slow, controlled movements and quiet concentration – go for Pilates. The class is generally slightly more relaxing despite the muscle movements that are working your body from head to toe. There is more of a focus on introspection and breathwork.
Both Barre classes in Melbourne and Pilates are great workouts – and the good news is, you don’t have to choose! At Kaya, we recommend incorporating both barre and Pilates into your lifestyle as both practices complement each other. Practicing one will provide results that will only strengthen your relationship with other, so combining them together is an amazing way to transform your daily routine.