If you think you can’t fire up muscles and get an intense butt and leg workout in 10 minutes you are sadly mistaken. It’s no secret that I love barre workouts, and I love ’em even more when I can bust out a 10 minute express barre workout at home, or in the studio!
I’ve been known to bust out a barre move or two when I’m cooking in the kitchen, doing laundry, or bruising my teeth. My husband finds it hilarious and mocks me “and pulse pulse pulse”. Yet secretly I think he is scared to death of coming to one of my barre classes, because deep down inside he knows he would be dying.
I give mad props to guys that come to barre. It’s not easy walking in to a studio full of women and doing a workout that is so insanely different from the traditional ‘man’ thing. Especially when a first-time dude walks in and starts shaking uncontrollably, wondering how the hell he’s going to get through the next 50 minute of class, and looking around to see all the barre-experienced ladies gracefully executing each move and controlling the quivers.
But if you’re like the guys, and scared to death of the barre ‘experience’, OR if you’re a barre junky and just can’t get enough, this 10 minute express barre workout is for both sides of the spectrum! And will give your lower body some serious work.
Grab a sturdy chair and use the back as your barre, the edge of the counter will do, a table, or a bar at our local studio – like mine at Fortis & YOGALUX in North San Diego.
10 Minute Express Barre Workout
Curtsy Lunge to Side Knee Raise
Start an arm’s distance away from the barre, counter edge, or back of a sturdy chair. Stand parallel to your ‘barre’, then step your right foot behind your left, bending your supporting leg (your left) and keeping a 90 degree bend in both knees – executing a curtsy lunge. Next, lift your right knee up towards your right elbow and extend your left leg. Place that leg back down into the curtsy lunge and repeat for 30 seconds.
To transition to the next move, keep your right leg lifted and shift your standing foot to face the side of the room (not facing the the bar like it was), and position your right leg so your knee is directly in front of your right hip and your thigh is parallel to the ground, knee bent in a 90 degree angle. Place your right hand on your hip while your left hand maintains stability on the bar. Keep your hips facing forward and get ready for the next move.
Side Arabesque Lifts
Once you’ve transitioned your body to the side, keep your hips squared to the front as you lift your knee a few inches higher than the original position, then drop it slightly. Execute this pulse up of the knee for 30 seconds, keeping the up-and-down pulses as high as you can without arching your lower back.
Side Leg Raises
Extend your raised leg and gently tap the ground with your toe. Next, lift your leg up to your highest position, keeping your knee extended, foot pointed. Drop the leg back to tap the ground and lift again. Do this for 30 seconds.
Transition back to parallel at the barre by shifting your body towards the bar, left toe facing the bar and hips parallel, all while keeping your right leg off the ground. Once your foot, shoulders, and hips are parallel to the bar, bend your right knee and think of bringing your heel in towards your seat. Do not arch your lower back to stick your booty out – keep your hips tucked under.
Hamstring Curl Glute Lifts
Keep your right knee behind your left knee the entire time and try to maintain the bend in your knee as if you are attempting to get your heel as close to your seat as possible. Next, lift the knee up slightly, then back down. Continue to pulse up and down for 30 seconds.
Roll uour left foot up to relevé (heel lifted, weight on the ball of your foot) and bring your right leg in slightly, so that it’s at a 45 degree angle behind your body. Bend your knee slightly, then keep it stationary as you extend it fully, squeezing the right side of your seat as you extend. Bend it slightly again and repeat this for 30 seconds.
Wide Second Plié Pulses
Step your right foot out wide and bring both feet to releve (heels lifted, weight on the balls of your feet). Your hips should be directly under your shoulders and grip lightly on the bar. Bend into a deep plie, knees facing outward. Lift your body up slightly, then back down, all while staying on the balls of you feet. Do this for 30 seconds.
First Position Hip Tucks
Step your feet together into a first position, heels together and toes apart, all while remaining in relevé (on the balls of your feet). Bend your knees into a relevé and press them outwards. Hips should still be positioned directly under your shoulders. Next, roll your hips forward – towards your ribcage, executing a ‘tuck’, then roll back to the original position. Continue to tuck forward for 30 seconds.
Step your right foot behind your left and bend both knees into 90 degree angles, executing a forward lunge position. Lift your body up slightly, still keeping a slight bend in both legs, then lower back down. Repeat this up and down motion for 30 seconds.
To finish, bring both feet together, legs hip-distance apart. Maintaining a light grip on the bar, roll up to relevé (heels lifted, weight on balls of your feet), bend your knees to sink down to your lowest challenge position, and either hold that position or pulse up a few inches, then down a few inches. Complete the static hold, pulses, or combination of both for one full minute.
Repeat the same exact sequence with your other leg, completing a total body, 10 minute express barre workout.
WOAH, were you shaking? If not, I challenge you to sink down lower, lift your heels higher, extend your leg straighter, or lift it leg higher. This circuit should burn in all the right places! And be sure to keep this mantra that I always say during the barre classes I teach, “Shaking is good! Shaking means change!”
So embrace that shake at home, in the gym, or at the studio.
And don’t forget to follow me in Instagram for lots of barre workout videos you won’t see on the blog!