FAQ ABOUT BARRE
- Carrie Tyler, Rasamaya Founder

WHAT IS RASAMAYA BARRE?

Rasamaya Barre is a challenging, empowering, effective, and fun form of exercise that utilizes your own body weight, a ballet barre, free weights, and other props to sculpt, tone, and lengthen your body. The movements in a barre class are drawn from ballet, yoga, Pilates, and orthopedic exercises. The ballet barre is used to help with coordination and balance. It also allows us to position the body in unique ways that create a truly full body workout. No area of the body is left undiscovered in a barre class. Classes are timed to upbeat, fun music, and our instructors motivate clients by offering personalized attention and hands-on adjustments. We promise you will leave feeling energized and motivated.

More specifically, a traditional Rasamaya Barre class begins with a short educational anatomy piece before moving into our dynamic warm up and upper body section of plank, push-ups and targeted exercises for the upper body and back.  At Rasamaya we dedicate time to toning those terrific triceps, which really help to add definition to the arms. After a stretch at the barre we move into our lower body section with creative movements that target the thighs and seat from every direction. Finally we end class with a series of challenging abdominal work before finishing with a long stretch and rest.
 

HOW IS BARRE DIFFERENT FROM YOGA AND PILATES?

Different from Yoga and Pilates, barre particularly focuses on many of the small postural muscles of the body. It is incredibly strengthening for your structure, and non-taxing on the joints. In a barre class we work the muscles to their full potential through small challenging movements and then we stretch and elongate the muscles. Our mantra for barre classes is, “Hold it. Feel it. Move it. “ We get you into proper anatomical position, ask you to hold the position till you feel correct engagement and then layer in variations of small movements.  Your muscles will absolutely shake and quiver. It is this response that allows for a rapid change of shape within the structure of the body.

WHY IS RASAMAYA BARRE DIFFERENT THAN OTHER FORMS OF BALLET BARRE METHODS?

Not only do all of our classes have a theme, which provides you with education, but also our classes are formatted to be an efficient workout that targets every part of the body on a variety of planes.  No time is wasted and our boutique approach to fitness ensures that you will get personalized attention. All of our postural positions in barre have been discussed and researched with our advisory team of chiropractors, doctors, and physical therapists. We also place our stretching segments at intervals through the class after we have exhausted a muscle group. This interval stretching technique reduces muscle soreness, and research has shown that flexible muscles are stronger than tighter muscles. You can expect to see results quickly, which can include chiseled abdominals, thinner waistlines, toned thighs, and a higher seat. You will also see an increase in muscular endurance and stamina.

I’M SORE FROM CLASS, SHOULD I COME BACK?

You will most likely be sore. Muscle soreness and stiffness is a normal part of beginning a barre program, and in fact, an ongoing part as you learn to access and challenge your body on a deeper level.  You may feel sore after every workout. Keep coming to class, but be reasonable about taking care of your body. This is also one of the many reasons we have yoga to warm up and elongate those tired muscles.

DO I NEED BALLET OR DANCE TRAINING?

Absolutely not! Barre is for everyone!

DO MEN DO BARRE?

Yes, absolutely. Barre uses your own body weight to build muscle and is less stressful on the joints and body than traditional weight training.  It is a full body workout and you will absolutely be challenged in a way you never have before. Almost every man who takes barre classes at Rasamaya loves it. 

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I TAKE BARRE CLASS?

If you are really looking to change the shape of your body a mix of barre, yoga, and cardiovascular training are recommended. This ensures that you maximize all sides of the fitness equation (strength, flexibility, power, and endurance). But do what you can do. You may become sore, but we encourage you to continue to attend classes and maybe take some extra yoga to work out any discomfort.

WHAT DO I WEAR AND BRING TO A BARRE CLASS?

We recommend you wear tight fitting workout clothing in which you can move through a variety of postures. Traditionally leggings or tight fitting athletic pants are worn in barre and Pilates classes. No shorts please. You will also need a yoga mat and water.

Most  barre classes also require socks with grips.  Socks help you from sliding and also are much more sanitary when you bring your foot on the barre. It also mimics the ballet shoe honoring the original source of barre methodology.

MY MAT IS NEW AND SLIPPERY! WHAT DO I DO?

Put it in a doorway at home that you walk through on a regular basis barefoot. As the mat begins to absorb the oils of your body it will soften the plastics and wear. Time will help break down some of the coating. You can also wash most mats in the washing machine on delicate with a very small amount of detergent and hang to air dry. This helps them get less slippery. It’s good to know most of the eco-mats sold today are made of recycled rubber, hemp and other green materials that tend to be less slippery than the PVC-based mats. An investment in a quality eco-friendly mat will pay off—they last longer and are better for the environment.  

WILL BARRE HELP ME LOSE WEIGHT?

Probably. If you look at this question from an exercise science standpoint, losing weight becomes an easy three-fold equation: challenge your heart rate, increase muscle mass and cut calories.  

Barre absolutely helps to increase muscle mass. In fact few other methodologies tone the body so quickly.  The more muscle you have the higher your metabolism will be because muscle burns 15 times more calories than fat.  Barre will also increase your heart rate slightly. We push the muscles to the point of fatigue, which is where real change begins to occur. It is a natural response for the heart rate to increase a slight amount to the challenge. 

We have found that clients are naturally inspired to pay more attention to their diets as they quickly begin to see their body transform. One final note: don’t underplay the role of stress in the body. Barre is a challenge, which is why we allow time for a long stretch and relaxation at the end of classes. It’s important to allow your body time to recover. A healthy movement client balances out the stress of intense workouts with strengthening yet rejuvenating yoga classes. Cross training is important to your overall health.