Raising the Barre
If you’ve ever done a fitness challenge, you know how daunting just starting can be. All you can think about is just how long 30 days can feel and whether you’ll actually be able to stick with the process and produce the results that got you interested in the challenge in the first place.
It was an honour to be selected as a brand ambassador for The Dailey Method’s 30-day challenge for the month of June. What got me interested in participating was knowing how good a few weeks at the barre feels. A class at the barre is all about fine tuning. With all of the hard hitting workouts on the market, there is often the assumption that intensity, heavier weight and speed is key to a good workout. In most cases, that’s a fair assumption. However, if you’ve plateaued in your workout or are restricted due to pregnancy, age, or injury, you’ll appreciated the ever-evolving low-impact classes.
If you workout often or simply can’t muster up the energy to make it to the gym because it is so boring (we’ve all thought this at one point), then you’ll appreciate the focus on alignment and strength while incorporating the best benefits from the disciplines of Pilates, yoga and orthopedic exercise. Simply put, these disciplines combined offer an intrinsic focus on improving your performance at any fitness level without boring repetitions. TDM classes are upbeat (you’ll hear a range of music from hip hop to show tunes) and there is a surprising bond amongst the classmates. Maybe it’s because everyone is working at their own speed or that you’re often so focused on the tip and tuck that you won’t want to break concentration. It’s also relaxing to be present and focused on nothing else but your well-being for that short 60 minutes. This is especially important for Moms who rightfully deserve a portion of the day dedicated to themselves. Don’t worry about childcare. TDM has that covered and if you’re a monthly member, childcare is included.
At the end of the 30-day challenge, I noticed a big improvement in that lower abdomen ‘seat-belt’ area and how the simple full body fine-tuning actually helped to improve my strength and performance. Once you feel like you’re perfecting the moves, step it up with a Saturday Beyoncé Dance class.
1. Don’t Be a Hero – start with the lighter weights and take it easy for the first few classes. Starting slow will ensure that you can handle the recommended three classes a week. It doesn’t matter how fit you are – you’re going to be stiff.
2. Focus on Form – to get the best results, you need to take the time to do the moves correctly and that means that you’ll need to sacrifice the repetitions to ensure that you’re doing it right. It takes a few classes to really start feeling like you’ve got the hang of things, but once you do, you’ll start to feel how the small movements really work all the muscles you never knew you had.
3. Pick a Favourite – there are so many great instructors at The Dailey Method, but it’s human to pick favourites and that’s a good thing. Make the effort to find an instructor who makes you want to perfect your form and push you harder. I always like an instructor who is hands on and will walk around the room and correct improper form. I want to get it right (and right away).
For more information on The Dailey Method, visit thedaileymethod.com/studios/ottawa/overview/.
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