By Cool J
After a full Friday night (read about it here) my sister and I needed to work off some of those yummy carbs from Bar La Grassa. Unfortunately, she’s still recovering from a pretty bad IT band injury, so she’s unable to run right now. If she had been able to run, I would have just brought her along for a run with the Calhoun Beach Running Club. Instead, I decided to bring her to her first barre class!
I had a groupon for “Balanced Barre“. This studio has existed for awhile in Wazyata, but a new location just opened up in St. Louis Park. I signed us up (as well as my sister’s friend Angela) online, and we were at the barre at 8:30 am on Saturday!
We took the bootcamp class. It’s similar to their normal barre class with a bit of cardio mixed in. The cardio wasn’t all that intense, but the barre moves? Crazy hard! It was one of the better barre classes that I have taken. The instructor played good music, but more importantly, she gave a lot of good adjustments, and she explained and demonstrated the moves very well. The moves made my legs shake like crazy, and my sister and I were both hobbling around the day after because we were still sore!
How did it compare to Pure Barre, Align Barre, or Barre Bliss?
Honestly, they are all pretty similar, and I think you can get a good workout with any of these classes. Part of the reason that I was so sore after Balanced Barre was probably because it has been a few months since I did a barre class. I was definitely working different muscles than I have been lately with running/kettlebells/yoga. But I did think that the instructor was really good at explaining the moves, and she offered helpful adjustments. The instructors at Pure Barre don’t offer quite as many adjustments, so it’s harder to know if you’re doing the moves correctly. I’m thinking that perhaps I was doing the moves “more correctly” at this class, which is why I felt the moves so much more.
The format of the classes, with arms, thighs, seat work, and core is quite similar between all these studios, so just pick the one that offers class times and a location that works the best for you!
Here are some simple differences:
Align barre, Barre Bliss, and Balanced Barre- barefoot, no socks, cardio included. Bring your own yoga mat to Align and Barre Bliss, but yoga mats provided at Balanced Barre
Pure Barre- carpeted floors, no cardio, wear socks during the class. No need to bring your own yoga mat
And to my sister, who is wondering about the availability of barre classes in the Milwaukee area?
Well, it doesn’t look like there are very many options. I only found one studio that offers barre classes, the Movement Center of Pewaukee.
Hey sister- I suggest you try this studio and see how it compares to Balanced Barre, and report back for a guest post on the Right Fits!
FYI, here is the official description of the BarreAmped method, which is what Balanced Barre follows: