In my pursuit of a life devoted to wellness, I started teaching a lot of group fitness classes across the city of Chicago. Barre is currently one of my favorite formats to teach. This is true for a few reasons, but mostly it allows me to spend an hour being especially bossy.
Somehow moving to the beat turns me into a sassy dance mom and I don’t care who knows it.
Barre, depending on where you take it, can be true to ballet or it can have a more boot-camp-y flair. Mine tends to fall on the boot-camp-y side of things. No matter how I teach, some of my favorite moves are classics that target the thighs.
The most potent thigh moves in barre can take just two minutes and leave your muscles quivering and what Cass, one aSweatLife writer, calls “weird sore.”
Use this quick thigh workout to target your legs when you’re pressed for time.
Christiana (who shot these spectacular photos) and I found something solid to hold onto for these barre moves – you can use a railing or the inside of your kitchen sink. We may have used the fence on my building’s terrace. Those may or may not be my neighbor’s flowers. They’re lovely, neighbor, thank you.
Here’s your workout.
Heels-up plie: 2 minutes.
With your shoulders stacked over your hips and your feet wider than hip-width distance, turn your toes out slightly and raise your heels and bend your knees to lower down while keeping your back flat. Never fully straighten your legs. Lower down three inches and back up three.
Parallel releve to chair: 2 minutes
Start with your feet hip-width distance and your feet parallel to each other. Lift your heels and lower down bending your knees, keeping your back flat and your knees stacked above your ankles. Your butt should be about halfway to a squat and your weight should be supported by whatever you’re holding onto. Pulse twice in that position, then lower down to chair (a position in which your back is flat and your hips are parallel to your knees and your knees are above your ankles. Pulse twice and return to the higher position. Do this for two minutes.
Inner thigh pulse: Do both sides for 90 seconds.
Laying on your side with your shoulders stacked and your hips stacked, cross you top leg over your straight bottom leg. Point your toe. Lift and lower.
Full range-of-motion inner thigh lift: Do both sides for 90 seconds.
Laying on your side, roll back onto the meaty part of your seat (aka your butt cheek). Lift your top leg up and keep it there. For the duration of this exercise, you’ll be raising your bottom leg to meet your top leg. Do both sides for 90 seconds.
If you don’t have somewhere outside to do your barre workout or super flexible shoes in which to do your workout, inside and in socks is the best option. Some of my favorite barre socks are by Pointe Studio like the socks I was wearing in this at-home barre workout.
Congrats to Sarah M.