A barre undertaking.

Anyone else curious about the differences between Barre Method, Pure Barre and Barre3? I was, so I decided to take a class at all three and write about it. 

Every studio offers something different in terms of movement. Barre3 incorporates more cardio and dance into their warm-up and their warm-up is longer than Barre Method’s. Barre Method offers a similar warm-up, but it’s quick, to the point and seems a little more in line with a ballet barre. At Pure Barre, their warm-up was more abdominal specific and we started on the floor. 

Across all three studios, it was obvious there was a specific order to the exercises. Each studio had you utilize arm weights for an arm series, the ballet barre for legs or abdominal specific movements, the mat for glutes and more core work. Each one offered stretching at the end. 

Barre3 was the only Barre studio that did not incorporate the “Barre Tuck” into any of its exercises. Whereas, with Pure Barre, you tuck pretty much every time you move.  Barre Method incorporates the tuck where it seems appropriate. If you have no clue what the barre tuck is, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Here are some interesting articles that break down what exactly tucking does and one theory that supports why tucking long term is probably not good for you. https://www.popsugar.com/fitness/How-Do-Barre-Tuck-42316194 and https://www.fitnessmagazine.com/workout/pilates/barre-tuck/.

As a Pilates Instructor, I was unable to connect with the Pure Barre philosophy of tucking. I felt lost most of the time. The movements were extremely fast, each one incorporating the tuck. The tucking was exaggerated and seemed to not only pulse your hips but to push your shoulders forward. In comparison, Barre Method’s tuck had you hold the position to connect to better to your abdominals and that felt more appropriate. For me, I was able to understand why we were tucking, in that case, and the tuck helped to connect more deeply to the abdominal muscles required to perform each exercise. 

Trying each method really opened my eyes and helped me decide what I liked and what I did not. I have been taking Barre3 for years because it’s convenient for me, they offer childcare, I love the staff and the exercises are more in line with Pilates neutral spine. I enjoyed the change of pace with Barre Method. I liked that the Barre Method class felt like more traditional Ballet Barre and I felt sore the next day in all the right places. I did not enjoy the Pure Barre experience because, for me, it felt too rushed. I just didn’t have the same connection to the exercises and movement.