Kelly Osbourne, Darcey Bussell, Alesha Dixon and Demi Moore, there’s something these celebs all have in common – awesome bodies. And ask any one of these lean, muscle machines their secret and you’ll not get some spiel about superfoods you’ve never even heard of or weird exercise rituals that start at 4am. It’s all down to dancing, which fortunately has a winning combination of being enjoyable as well as working every muscle in your body! So when I was invited to try out a new dance-based fitness class BarreDANCE I jumped (or jetéed should that be) at the opportunity to achieve my own ballerina body perfection.
A quick online search revealed that the barre method began in New York (hurrah, I’m going to look like the SATC girls before I know it) and that it’s a combination of pilates and ballet, aka Balates!
So with the exercise side of things imminent, I dragged my work-weary body down the Kings Road to the Barrecore studios avoiding the temptation to slip off for a drink in another type of bar entirely. But as soon as I met my instructor, the bubbly Morgan, and heard funky dance beats (no Tchaikovsky here ladies) coming from the small and in no way intimidating studio, I perked up a little. This was going to be, dare I say it, a fun way to tone up.
We started with a warm up at the barre, pliés and port de bras – so far so balletic. But if you’ve got two left feet, fear not, it was easy to follow and after a few minutes we moved on to a quick round of sit ups and press ups which even the most sofa bound bride-to-be can master! The rest of the hour was taken up with cheery dance routines – think Charleston steps and lots of shimmying of the shoulders, taught patiently by Morgan, whose boundless energy was seriously infectious.
The best bit about the whole class, apart from when we had to pull off our most convincing Vogue style pose, was the fact that it flew by. There’s nothing worse than a class where the minutes tick by excruciatingly slowly – this was the complete opposite, I couldn’t believe I’d been bouncing around for an hour without expiring.
Ok so I didn’t wake up the next morning looking like Strictly’s Flavia but my stomach muscles did feel tighter and flatter and sitting down at my desk was a gingerly affair meaning I’d certainly got my rear into gear! Founder Niki Rein promises noticeable results within 8 weeks and with my discovery of muscles I didn’t even know I had I can totally see how that could happen.
Find out more
Single classes cost £28. Barrecore runs a six-week unlimited bridal package to help you slip seamlessly into that figure-hugging gown. Take as many classes as you like within six weeks from £375.
Classes take place at 77 Kings Road, London
Call 02073497500 or visit barrecore.co.uk