Barre classes are all the rage these days. Some attribute this to the 2008 recession causing people to seek out a more simple and affordable way to exercise without using much equipment. Regardless of the reason, it seems like you cannot throw a stone now without hitting a place that offers barre classes.
That said, ballet dancers have been intimately familiar with barres for many years. For the uninitiated, a barre is a stationary hand rest that is used during various types of exercises and warm ups. Regularly compared to Yoga and Pilates, benefits of barre exercises include but are not limited to improving dance technique and/or overall health, weight loss/management, muscle strengthening, decrease risk of injury, and reduction of stress.
The two main types of barres are portable and stationary. Stationary barres consists of a handrail attached to a wall for support, limiting their use to one side only. Portable barres use a handrail mounted onto a firm and sometime adjustable isolated support structure. In order to accommodate various sizes, some have two rails at different heights.
Barre handrails and supports are typically made of plastic, metal, wood, or a combination of these materials. The strongest portable ballet barres are made from structural steel, and are significantly stronger and far more durable than the cheap, thin-walled aluminum barres offered on the market. The specific type of barre one should use depends on purpose, experience, and amount of use.
Fortunately, Boss Ballet Barres takes pride in offering a variety of barres and creating an ongoing relationship with clients through things like a lifetime guarantee. Contact us to ask about our entire selection and we'll help you figure out which barre is best for you!
*Photo courtesy of YMCA Greater Toronto Barre Program