One of my goals for this year was to make a work out plan, stick to it, and to also try new workout classes. In early January I decided to sign up for my first Pure Barre class at my local studio in Greensboro. I had been wanting to try Pure Barre for quite some time, but I had let the fear of trying something new scare me away! I had heard a lot of good things about the workout technique, so I signed up for my first class with my friend Mackenzie and decided to see what the Pure Barre obsession was all about!
The day of my first class I checked out the Pure Barre Youtube channel to watch a few videos so I would semi know what to expect (I highly recommend doing this if you’re a first timer). I arrived about fifteen minutes early to get a good spot in the studio and to purchase my sticky socks!
A few things to note about Pure Barre…All of the workout classes at Pure Barre are 55 minutes, which may seem like a long time, but the classes go by really quickly once you get started. You also definitely want to purchase the sticky socks. They help you to stay balanced during some of the movements. You will also want to wear long pants or capris that cover your legs (no shorts).
My local studio is really nice and filled with friendly instructors! They have a great collection of clothing, water bottles, and anything Pure Barre related you could ever want. The smaller atmosphere immediately felt more welcoming than any gym ever has.
As of today I have taken 24 classes since signing up. So I thought I would share my experience and thoughts with you on Pure Barre so far…
1. There is nothing to be nervous about. I am a worrier by nature, so when I signed up for my first class I got nervous that I wouldn’t know what I was doing, I would mess up, it would be clique-y (it is mostly girls after all!), or that I would hurt myself! As soon as I got to the studio my nervousness ceased. I realized that it takes a few classes to really get the technique and movements down. I also realized that everyone messes up moves regardless of if it’s their first, fifth, or one hundredth class…. it happens!
2. Embrace the shake. I had heard talk of the Pure Barre shake before, but didn’t know what that fully meant until I experienced it during my first class (and every class after that!) At first I thought I was doing something wrong until my instructor said “good shake, Emily!” and then it all made sense. I have learned that if you’re shaking you are working your muscles to their fullest potential, and in turn will see results from this! Shaking is a good thing, so always embrace it!!
3. The instructors are there to help. One of my favorite parts of Pure Barre are the instructors. I wanted to try a structured class because a lot of the times at the gym I wasn’t sure if I was doing something correctly and had no one to ask. During the classes, the instructor walks around the room checking everyone’s form. I really appreciate that they correct your form if you’re not doing it correct. They also explain it to you so that you know where you should feel the results. It’s amazing how instantly I will feel something when one of my instructors corrects me. I also like that they are encouraging throughout the class. They will tell you “good job!” or “great focus!” and it gives a positive vibe throughout the class.
4. You will feel yourself getting stronger with every class. My first class was extremely overwhelming, to be quite honest. Everything felt so unfamiliar and difficult. Fast forward thirteen more classes and while the technique is still difficult, I can feel myself getting stronger. I continue to push myself further with each class and I am seeing results because of it! Knowing that I am taking a class and can see results makes me want to continue to go to the classes and push myself even further.
5. Community is huge with Pure Barre. As I said earlier, I was terrified my first class as I felt like the new girl. At Pure Barre there is definitely a sense of community. Everyone I have met has been so nice. I’ve made friends that I now talk to outside of the classes and some I bond with over how badly we’re shaking! It’s great to feel a sense of community with people who are empowering, uplifting and share the same goals in the class.
6. Small movements can show big results. Prior to trying Pure Barre I would go to the gym regularly. I had a routine there, but never focused on the small movements. I never realized how small movements could yield large results, some larger than my gym routine provided. I like that most of the movements can be done at home (if I’m unable to attend a class).
7. Every class is different…in a good way! I have been to many structured classes (i.e Zumba, Pilates, etc.) where it seemed like every class was the same. I could predict every move, every song, and almost every instruction that we were going to be given. Pure Barre is different every class- which I love! Each instructor teaches a little differently and each class works the core areas in a different way. I like the variety, I think it’s part of what keeps me coming back for more daily.
8. Form is the most important. In this class, your form is everything, hence why the instructors are constantly making sure you are doing it correctly. It is more important to have good form and, for example, be less high on your heels, than to be high on your heels with bad form. Once you’ve got the form down it’s easier for you to work on getting higher (or lower) with your movements.
9. Focus on yourself. With such a small class it’s easy to look around and see what everyone else is doing (I’m nosy, I can’t help it sometimes!) but remembering to keep the focus on myself and my movements and progress helps me make the most of each class!
10. Don’t Give Up. Believe me, some days are harder than others (particularly Mondays for me after a weekend of overindulging!) It’s easy to feel like you want to give up…but don’t! The harder you are pushing yourself and your body the better you will feel after the class. Sometimes in class I will give myself a few second break to regroup and get my mindset right and then I get back at it! I also close my eyes a decent amount in the class so I can focus a little better, too!
So while I am no Pure Barre expert, I wanted to share my thoughts and insights with you for those of you who are fellow LTBers or those who are thinking about signing up for a class! I hope to continue updating y’all on my PB experience as I continue.
A special thank you to Christina, one of the owners at Pure Barre Greensboro for getting me into the studio for my first class…and for creating my Pure Barre addiction! xx