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BarreConcept is currently taught at the Loose YMCA and instructor Vicki Bernard welcomed me to the class. There were 14 attendees, all female and ranging from teens to 50+ in age. The room boasted floor to ceiling mirrors with a sturdy wooden ballet barre running the length of the room (the barre’s sturdiness would later be tested as I push all of my weight down upon it!)
We start with a warm up – as most classes do – and then move onto barre work. It is a little daunting to be so close to a mirror but with good reason, I can instantly see that I’m as crooked as a teaspoon compared to Vicki’s sleek, knife-straight body line and I find myself auto-correcting.
The class focuses on the legs and after the hour I feel like I have had the best work out ever – there is no doubt that if I stuck to this class my legs would become toned and my buttocks firmer! A cardiovascular 5 minutes and warm down later and I am ready to take on the world (or at least drive home and tackle the washing!) so as a concept it works but it is a very different idea.
Emma goes on to say “As with anything that becomes popular, you may find that some trainers may jump on the band waggon and offer courses that are not externally verified. BarreConcept is the world’s first internationally accredited course and is recognised in the UK, Canada and Australia. This means that you can be assured that your instructor is of the highest quality as they have been on an approved course and had to pass certain exam criteria.”
Vicki is full of enthusiasm for BarreConcept “It’s a body conditioning class in essence and tones the legs. It brings in elements of dance and the correction and strength side of Pilates. It works different muscles than going to the gym or going for a run – for example it strengthens muscles around the joints, so the knees, ankles and hips. We also add cardio into it as well as weights so it’s a real mix.”
The class is clearly a hit and the other women taking part were keen to tell me the pros of BarreConcept “It’s more fun than the gym” Shelley tells me before adding “my bum has toned up – so my husband tells me!” then there is Laura who confides: “It burns!” and I have to say I agree. The students are also keen to point out that Vicki is an asset to the class “She is very knowledgeable” chips in Amanda and soon all of them are singing the classes praises with phrases such as ‘core strength’, ‘toned legs’ and ‘flexibility’ being thrown into the mix. It is clear Vicki is an instructor that gains respect and I can see why – her teaching is clear, you can hear her over the music and she is attentive – correcting body alignment and giving positive feedback. All in all BarreConcept is a positive fitness class that really gives your legs a workout and yet I have never felt more graceful when exercising!
To get in touch with Vicki about BarreConcept contact her on Tel: 07759 833097www.glowingfitness.co.uk and to find out more about BarreConcept see www.barreconcept.co.uk