I’m often asked what the “best” workout is. I know, when I get this question, the underlying motive is to find the ultimate calorie burning, sculpting, six-pack wielding activity.
Hate to break it to you…there is no ultimate workout. Most fitness gurus, if they claim there is one, are either trying to sell you on personal training that allows them to be paid for showing you what THEY love to do…or they have a piece of equipment they’re trying to sell you.
My advice, whenever I get this question is, the exercise that you love doing the most, the one you’ll keep doing, on a regular basis, over time, is the best exercise for you.
That being said, looking around at the popularity of “Dancing With The Stars” and “Black Swan”, there are a lot of us, myself included, who love to dance. It makes sense, if you, too, love the creative release that comes with dance, that adding a barre class to your routine could be a great way to exercise, and keep exercising.
If you ever took formal dance classes as a child, you’ve got the muscle memory for barre. Just a few minutes into it, and guaranteed you’ll be swept back to that long-ago. But it’s far more challenging than your childhood class, and the benefits for adults abound! One important perk of barre is that unlike many cardio activities, it combines flexibility work with strength and aerobics. Athletes who become overly focused on one activity such as running or weights, can sacrifice flexibility, and increase their injury proneness, in the process. Barre is low impact, allowing you to exercise without aggravating old injuries or joint issues. Barre also incorporates upper body movements, which benefit the spine and posture. And people who stand taller are people who look leaner and more confident!
M6 Fitness in Thousand Oaks is one facility where barre fitness is enjoying tremendous popularity. They provided a video of a sample class for you to check out. Don’t be fooled by the lack of huffing and puffing — these folks are working pretty strenuously, lengthening and toning muscles using a ballet barre and integrating dance conditioning, light weights, isometric exercises and cardio plié jumps – however, no previous dance training is needed to take the class.
Former dancer and facility owner Michelle Vrakelos has a long list of enthusiastic clients, including celebrities and well-known athletes, such as professional volleyball player and model Gabrielle Reece, former NFL player Chris Hayes, and former NBA player Gary Grant. Popularity of her classes has been so great that she recently expanded her facility that is more than double the size of her original location.
If your current routine is feeling lackluster and you’re looking for a new twist to keep you excited about physical activity, consider a barre class. M6 Fitness has a variety of dance-based classes in addition to barre, schedules for which can be found on their website.
M6 Fitness is located at 258 Lombard Street, Thousand Oaks, California.