Jenn is a Barre fitness instructor, owner of studio space, Wildflower Studio, in the heart of Paris 9eme, and the creator of a barre-based method called BalletPhysique. She is currently the Master Barre Teacher Trainer for CaliforniaBarre and is pursuing her 600 hours pilates certification with BASI as well. Read more about her and her classes at https://wildflowerstudio.uscreen.io/
What is a barre workout?
Jenn: Barre is a method inspired by dance and Pilates. It incorporates closed chain exercises (planks and push-ups) and open-chain exercises (lifting the arms and legs) and it maximizes using one’s own body weight to strengthen and tone muscles. The blend of dance and Pilates is the actual positions of the body like the pointed toes and the elegant postures.
Over 70 years ago, Lotte Berk, a dancer, who suffered from various injuries, created the original barre method. She combined her dance exercises with her physical therapy routine to train herself back to a healthy body. And voilà! Barre was created. The method is called barre because she originally used a ballet barre for support, like classical ballet dancers. The method has evolved over these past years and now we sometimes do not even need a barre to perform the exercises.
What are the benefits of barre workouts?
Jenn: Barre workouts tend to focus on the parts of the body which women, in general, want to tone: arms, back, abs, butt, thighs. Each class will usually consist of exercises for each of these parts of the body, making the class really complete. It is notorious for the high number of reps for each exercise which means many chances for your muscles to work and for your mind to really focus on the right muscles, thus fine-tuning the movement and mentality with each rep. In addition, barre exercises are known to be low impact, which means relatively safe for the joints. There is no jumping movement. So, people with knee or ankle injuries can enjoy classes without too many worries.
Who can participate in a barre workout?
Jenn: Barre is a workout that is accessible to almost everyone. What makes barre open to people of all types and levels and shapes and forms is that all the exercises can be done whether you are super in shape or “not really right now”. Of course, if you have any chronic illness or pain, or if you are pregnant you should always seek the advice of a doctor before trying something new.
There are so many modifications and variations of each exercise that you are bound to find the way that works for you on that given day. If you’re not feeling it today, don’t go as low in the wide second plié, or don’t lift your legs too high in the front or back. If you want an extra challenge, you can add arm or ankle weights or try the exercises on demi-point. Not feeling the plank today? Bring your knees to the floor and focus on core strength. One can always focus on form and posture and still get so much out of the workout.
How to join your international barre online class from anywhere?
Jenn: I currently give live classes via zoom two times a week. Monday + Friday 12h30-13h30 CET (Paris time). It’s the perfect lunch break pause 🙂 You can sign up at www.joywithjenn.com. You can also access an unlimited amount of barre and pilates fitness videos on my VOD site: www.wildflowerstudioparis.com
What is #spreadjoythroughmovement?
Jenn: I have been dancing for the past 26 years and teaching dance and fitness for the past 8 and what I have found to be the most important component is Joy. If you’re not enjoying what you’re doing, what you’re doing is not sustainable. Sooner or later you will burn out and stop. How awful would that be if you spent so much time and effort doing a workout that you didn’t enjoy, but just did to stay in shape and, suddenly one day you lose motivation and stop. You will find it hard to start again because you realize there was no real joy in what you were doing. And then perhaps you will never start working out again?
My classes serve to first spread joy through movement by helping people discover how good it feels to move their own bodies in their own way. My goal is to inspire you to enjoy working your muscles and moving your bones. My joy is helping others first find joy within themselves, then let it radiate out through their own wonderful and unique movement. And often, people get stronger, feel happier, become more motivated, accept themselves easier, because they enjoy the process.