When people think of exercise, it’s no longer limited to running, swimming or even line dancing. These days, there’s a whole world of interesting exercise options to choose from, like yoga, pilates, spinning, zumba, just to name some.
The latest exercise trend to arise is something called Barre (pronounced ‘bar’). It’s a hit especially amongst ladies in recent years, but what exactly is it? Is it worth the hype and price tag?
What is Barre?
Named after the bar that ballet dancers hold onto for stability during practice, Barre combines elements of pilates, ballet and yoga.
It stems from traditional ballet conditioning class that ballet dancers use to warm up and is an effective exercise to tone your body and get you to having a dancer’s poise.
Barre is said to help in achieving a sculpted body and better posture. The intense exercise not only lengthens the body, it strengthens the body’s stabilising muscles as well.
The pulsing action done in Barre classes, along with pumping music, is reminiscent of aerobic workouts by the legendary Jane Fonda from the 1980s, which also means that after an intense Barre class, you can expect jelly legs and muscle burn, but also – an S-lined body in the making.
Barre may or may not give you a cardio workout depending on the speed, but it is nonetheless a great exercise to tone and strengthen your body.
Top 5 barre studios in Singapore 2019
|Barre Studio||Package Price||Price per class|
10 classes for $250
20 classes for $420
50 classes for $870
|Ranges from $17.40 to $25|
10 classes for $425
25 classes for $925
50 classes for $1,625
|Ranges from $32.50 to $42.50|
10 classes for $355
20 classes for $670
30 classes for $945
50 classes for $1,475
|Ranges from $29.50 to $35.50|
|Barre 2 Barre||
1 month unlimited classes for $300
3 months unlimited class for $880
|$42 (without package)|
|Wings to Wings||
11 classes for $250,
1 month unlimited classes for $150
Some classes will require you to purchase grippy socks, which can cost $25 to $30 if you buy in the shop.
If you’re on Classpass, you’ll probably be paying around 11 credits for a Barre class, which works out to be around $24.2 to $25.92 for the $59 and $99 plan.
Barre Lab is a project between Breathe Pilates and Yoga Lab, so you can probably expect that the elements of pilates and yoga in what they also term as ‘Ballet Barre’ will be well thought-out and choreographed. All the classes are of the same ability level so you can freely choose from the list of classes and not worry about the embarrassment of passing out in class.
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They offer four main types of Barre classes namely Barre Stretch, Barre 101, BarreFlow and Barre Power.
Barre Stretch and Barre 101 are great for focusing on getting the form of your body right. The classes focus on the form of the spine, the hip, knee and ankle alignment and breathing techniques. The latter two incorporates more strengthening and conditioning exercises to get your muscles burning.
Barre Lab also offers pre-natal classes which focuses on breathing and pelvic floor activation.
People who have been to the Barre Lab have good reviews on the welcoming and sleek studio. The calming ambience of their pastel-coloured studio will surely put you at ease and help you focus during the workout.
Addresses of Barre Lab studios:
- 437 Joo Chiat Road, Singapore 427650
- 60B Duxton Road Singapore 080524
Apart from Barre classes, Upside Motion offers classes in yoga, pilates and even aerial yoga – that graceful exercise where you hang from silk hammocks and stretch out. The Barre workouts at Upside Motion is choreographed by a professional dance and pilate’s instructor.
There is a wide range of Barre classes to choose from ranging from Barre beginners to Xtend Barre Stick and even a class for babies to join in, called Babies on Board.
Xtend Barre Stick is another interesting class offered which involves a separate hand-held bar attached via a string to the bar in Barre. It’s an intense class and you can expect some hard-core conditioning exercises.
Upside Motion often have special events too, like ballet 101 classes and partnerships with other cool organisations like Oo La Lab (perfume mixing) and Lululemon. Their Shenton studio offers shower facilities and a powder room, which makes it convenient to slip in for a lunchtime workout. You can book classes easily with their ‘Upside Motion’ mobile app.
Addresses of Upside Motion studios
- Upside Motion Orchard: 321 Orchard Rd #04-05, Orchard Shopping Centre, Singapore 238866
- Upside Motion Shenton: 6A Shenton Way, OUE Downtown Gallery, B1-02, Singapore 068815
- Upside Motion City Hall: 36 Armenian St, #02-03, Singapore 179934
WeBarre has several studios in the central business district of Singapore, making it very accessible and convenient for working professionals to have a quick lunchtime workout, or an after work de-stress session.
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There are different levels of Barre classes to choose from, starting with the WeBarre fundamentals class where you will learn signature Barre moves at a slower pace. After getting used to it, you can challenge yourself to their “multi-level” Barre class which includes lots of small controlled movements along with dynamic ones to get your body moving and burning.
One unique class worth mentioning is the WeBarre HIIT (high intensity interval training) class. It uses fun props to push you to your limits and helps you achieve desired results in a short period of time. With this class, the claim is that you will continue burning calories and fat long after the class has ended. WeBarre, too, has a post-natal class designed for both mums and newborns.
All their studios have changing rooms and showers, stocked with luscious products and fresh towels and complete with hair straighteners too.
Addresses of WeBarre:
- 86b Tg Pagar Rd, Singapore 088507
- 5A Stanley St, Singapore 068724
- 39C N Canal Rd, Singapore 059295
- 1 Zubir Said Dr, #02-01 SOTA, Singapore 227968
Barre 2 Barre
Barre 2 Barre partners with BarreAmped and is Asia’s only certified BarreAmped studio. The BarreAmped method used is rooted in the origins of Barre, and aim to bring Barre to another level of body conditioning. The studio also offers Barre teacher training at their ‘Barre Academy’ and Barre wellness retreats.
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From the name of their classes, you can already expect to have a lot of fun in their studio while getting a thorough workout. BarreAmped Bootcamp, BarreAmped Fire, BarreAmped BOUNCE, Barre + Dance, Barre + Suspension, Barre + Kickboxing. The names of the workout sound like a ton of fun already. Imagine jumping on a trampoline while doing barre exercises in BarreAmped BOUNCE!
Their studio is light-filled and cosy. People who have attended their class feel very comfortable working out at Barre 2 Barre because of the chill and non-judgemental atmosphere (as compared to atas studios where everyone wears Lululemon and have perfect body silhouettes).
It may be due to the small class size and location (there’s one at East Coast, away from the CBD), which creates a more ‘family’ vibe.
Addresses of Barre 2 Barre:
- 3 Pickering St #03-01, Nankin Row, Staircase 1, Singapore 048660
- 130 East Coast Road, Singapore 428815
Wings to Wings
Wings to Wings is different from the other Barre studios in that it is more than just Barre. They are primarily a dance and body training studio and offer fun dance classes like jazz, beginner ballet, hip hop and zumba as well.
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The other cool thing about this studio is that they have classes tailored for kids too, so you could bring your little kiddo along to your workout sessions.
There are also some great dance events targeted at kids like ‘Toy Story Jazz’ and ‘Paw Patrol Dance’. You and your child can even join their year-end concert and enjoy some bonding through performing together! In terms of price, they are probably the most value for money too, offering unlimited lessons a month for $150.
Addresses of Wings to Wings:
- 311 New Upper Changi Road, #B1-53 Bedok Mall, 467360
- 180 Kitchener Road, #B1-33/34 City Square Mall, 208539
- 2 Jurong East Central 1 , #01-18 JCube, 609731
- 1 Tampines Walk, #B1-K5 Our Tampines Hub, 528523
- 3 Temasek Boulevard, #B1-108 Suntec City Mall, 038983
- 1 Harbourfront Walk, #02-143 VivoCity, 098585
So are Barre classes worth the hype?
Barre classes give your body a good workout, but so does other forms of exercises such as Flow Yoga or HIIT workout. If you’re purely looking for some burn in your muscles, you don’t necessarily need to go for Barre.
However, if you are inspired by the novelty and love the feeling of doing a workout by a ballet bar, such that you’re encouraged to go work out more, it can well justify going to Barre classes.
While studios that are specialised in Barre classes are quite expensive to attend classes at, unless you want to focus 100% on taking Barre classes, you don’t necessarily have to limit yourself to them. Dance studios like Wings to Wings offer a variety of classes other than Barre.
Some gyms, pilates studios and yoga studios also offer Barre as well. For instance, at Virgin Active, you get to choose from an extensive list of more than a hundred classes, including three Barre classes. At places like Options Pilates or Jal Yoga, you also get a good choice of different forms of workouts, including Barre.
The great thing about these options is that you can alternate your workout schedule between cardio heavy ones and strength training ones and be all-rounded in building your ideal body. Also, if you ever do get bored of Barre, you can simply jump into another class and get a different experience.