FITNESS REVIEW: Barrecore

Bored of HIIT classes, running and aerobics? This game-changing hybrid of pilates and yoga will transform you and your fitness routine

Barrecore has been credited with transforming the bodies of women (including many a celebrity) worldwide, using isometric exercises to create lean, defined muscles, and improve posture.

I didn't know much about Barrecore before I took the class, but with devotees including Jourdan Dunn, Sienna Miller and Millie Mackintosh, I certainly had to give it a go. 

You'll see moves from ballet, pilates and yoga
You'll see moves from ballet, pilates and yoga

WHAT IS IT?

A fusion of ballet, pilates and yoga, Barrecore involves small, intense movements, together with stretching, body-weight and dumbbell exercises. There are a few versions to try, and as a beginner, I was advised to take the Signature class.

The session took place in a spotless ballet studio-style room in London's Notting Hill, with mirrors and hip-height bars all around – something I hadn't seen since my childhood dance classes. The group began by finding balance on our tiptoes, repeating small movements – such as leg raises and dips with pulses – and using small dumbbells for arm exercises.

Looking around the room, and to the untrained eye, it didn’t look like we were working hard – but my burning legs were telling a different story, and I was sweating within just few minutes... and that was just the warm-up.

The attentive trainers are on hand to help with getting your poses just right
The attentive trainers are on hand to help with getting your poses just right

WHERE IS IT?

There are 11 dedicated studios in total, with nine in London, one in Bristol and one in Cheshire.

Small weights are used for sculpting the arms
Small weights are used for sculpting the arms

WHY IS IT SO SPECIAL?

As an exercise devotee, I've tried all sorts of classes over the years, but nothing like this.

Yes, I had to grit my teeth to get through holding some of the poses, but when you’re doing the exercises, you can feel the exact spots that they’re targeting. And though you’re often making tiny movements – which as a HIIT-lover, I'm not used to – I sweated as much as I would in a cardio class. My trusted fitness watch also recorded an equal calorie burn to my usual intense circuit training sessions. 

Dips target multiple areas
Dips target multiple areas

OUR VERDICT?

Just one class was all I needed to be convinced that Barrecore would be a game-changer for me. Both in terms of improving my fitness and strength, and helping me tone the stubborn areas on my tummy, legs and arms.

I left feeling like my whole body had been worked out - with that wobbly leg feeling to prove it. OK, so I wasn’t lean and mean quite yet, but judging by Barrecore’s devotees, I soon would be if I kept this up.

At £28 per class – £250 for 10 classes, or £150 for unlimited classes per month – it might not be a frequent-flyer option for brides-to-be on our budget. But if you can afford it, it is well worth the spend. Our teacher told me that I would see a difference to my body shape (aka, longer, leaner-looking limbs and torso) within just a few weeks if I did the class just two or three times a week. So, if you’re willing to put in the work, this will get you into great shape indeed.

Book an introductory class with Barrecore for £20

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