Myself and Karen were very fortunate to be offered the chance to test out the new Barrecore studio just opened in Chiswick. We were also fortunate or unfortunate (depends on how you see fitness) to be taught by the owner and creator of Barrecore, Niki Rein. I know Karen is an avid Yoga attendee but I must admit since getting the Budster my gym attendance has been somewhat lacking. So now a couple of days later I am still feeling those muscles I rediscovered in the class.
I may sound like I am winging but believe me that is the complete opposite. I loved it! I am feeling energised and excited to get my body back into the flexible, lithe and consistantly upright position it was when I left dance college. I realised how much I had let slouching become an everyday activity. How much I hang on my hips and how little flexibility I have left. This class not only gave me an incredible workout but it also gave me that ever desirable positivity boost we so long for from our fitness sessions.
The studio is tucked just behind the high street in a cute little mews. The waiting area reminds me of the Boutique gyms in LA. It is clean and fresh with a cheerful receptionist waiting to check us in. The class is two floors up so high enough to have daylight stream in through the windows making the class light and not at all stuffy even when we do all start to huff and puff. Niki handed us our non slip socks which can be purchased at the front desk and told us to grab a light set of weights, towell, strap and to choose a mat. Niki advised that we go with the lightest pink weights but if we think we want to go harder take the purple ones. We took both the purple ones and dashed the pink ones at the back of our mats. What felt like 2 mins into the session we were rethinking our decision and both clambered to grab the pink weights. As Niki said the impact is low but that doesn’t mean the intensity is by any means.
One of the great factors of this class or for anyone who may be self concious or fearful of classes is that you are so focused on your own body and keeping everything in line and held that you don’t even realise anyone else is around. I almost forgot I had gone with Karen! When you get to The Pretzel move you will know what I mean. It’s great for regaining awareness of your body and being aware of parts you should have control over but that for most people lay dormant for many years. Just think if your working more muscles they will be burning more calories whilst your sat behind the computer or watching TV. Niki talked throughout the session telling us why we were doing each move, its benefits and keeping us motivated even when we felt like we could squeeze no more.
Niki is a great teacher but also seeing an old dancer friend of mine Stephanie on the list of instructors I know she has recruited only top level teachers who take training and standards as seriously as she does.
We took the barrecoreMIXED which is a signature low impact, full body, interval training program using isometric exercises alternated with stretching. Movements are done using your own body weight as resistance and/or small equipment and high repetition to overload the muscle and then stretched out to create a longer looking and lean physique.