Have you tried the Peloton barre classes yet? Didn’t know that barre Peloton was a thing? Well, let me fill you in on everything you need to know about taking barre classes with the Peloton instructors.
In this blog post I’m going to cover:
- Where to find Peloton barre classes
- What equipment you need to do a barre class
- The best clothing to wear to a Peloton barre class
- How long Peloton barre classes are
- Which Peloton instructors teach barre
And so much more, including my own review of taking these classes.
When did Peloton start offering barre classes
Barre classes showed up on the Peloton app in the second half of 2020. The first barre class you’ll find is from September 2020. It’s a 10-minute introduction to barre with Hannah Corbin.
Since September 2020 Peloton has been adding more barre classes. As of this writing there are 50+ barre classes to choose from.
What is barre?
You may be wondering what a barre class is. For example, is it like ballet? Well, as someone who took dance classes for years in her younger days, the answer is both yes and no.
Yes, barre is like ballet in that you’ll need to know some basic ballet terms. This is mostly having to do with your foot position.
For example, the instructor might tell you to stand in first, second or third position. You’ll need to know what this means.
In addition, the instructor might ask you to plie. That’s basically like doing a squat but your feet are positioned differently.
There are arm positions, too, but the instructors are mostly focused on your feet.
Extensive ballet knowledge not required
On the other hand, because this isn’t a true ballet class, you can pick up on things quickly. Trust me, by the end of your first class, you’ll understand the terminology.
Or, at the very least, you’ll be able to watch along as the instructor demonstrates it. I would strongly recommend you start your Peloton barre journey with that aforementioned 10-minute introductory class.
What you need to know about Peloton barre classes
First and foremost, you need to know where you can find Peloton barre classes within the Peloton ecosystem. For starters you can access any Peloton class on the hardware you own aka the bike or Tread. This includes barre.
Next, you can find them on the digital app or the Peloton website, or on a Smart TV like Roku.
Where to find Peloton barre classes
But where are the classes themselves? Under strength.
Personally, I thought they would have been under cardio. But since I started taking Pilates before I took barre, I realized that would be where I would find those classes, too.
What is a barre workout
As I mentioned earlier, barre classes can be a lot like ballet but they’re also not at all like ballet. That is, you’ll use some of the same basic moves that you might in a ballet class where you are standing at barre against the wall. However, Peloton barre classes aren’t all done standing up.
As far as what you’re doing in a barre class on Peloton, you will quickly realize that it can range. Sometimes you might be standing up and doing leg movement repetitions like you might in a dance class. Other times you might be in tabletop position (aka on your hands and knees) doing a donkey-kick like movement just as you would have during 1980s Jane Fonda workout classes.
Peloton barre vs Pilates
I mentioned that I started taking Peloton Pilates classes before I dove into barre. I can thank the hardCORE on the Floor Facebook group and its monthly workout calendar for introducing me to barre.
In my opinion, I think that Pilates done on the mat (versus on a reformer machine) and barre class are really similar. You’re doing micro-movements in each kind of class to target muscles you might not be hitting (consciously) in your other strength-training classes.
The difference could be in how you use your feet, though. For instance, I feel like I spend more time in a Peloton barre class pointing and flexing my feet, and then doing a movement, than I do in a Pilates class.
However, the burn is real. Really real in both barre and Pilates. You may not break much of a sweat, but you are working for real.
Who are the Peloton barre instructors
Right now there are just two Peloton barre instructors. They are Hannah Corbin and Ally Love.
Like I said there are more than 50 barre classes right now, and they’re split pretty evenly between Hannah and Ally.
Why do Hannah and Ally teach these classes? Because they both have professional dance experience.
I believe instructors Emma Lovewell and Cody Rigsby also worked professionally as dancers so I wouldn’t be surprised if they ended up teaching some barre classes in the future. They were great in the Dance Cardio classes Peloton introduced in 2020.
FYI, Ally Love and Hannah Corbin also teach Pilates classes on the Peloton app. That’s along with:
- Anna Greenberg
- Rebecca Kennedy
- Jess King
- Kristin McGee
- Emma Lovewell
- Kendall Toole
- Aditi Shah
- Sam Yo
Ballet arms class
Speaking of Sam Yo, he offers some “ballet arms” Arms and Lightweight classes that you should check out. It’s a great way to get a ballet workout for your upper body.
What equipment you need for Peloton barre classes
Here’s the great news about taking Peloton barre classes–there is no equipment needed. That is, you do not need to invest in any special at home barre equipment.
You’ll probably want a mat, since you spend a significant amount of time on the floor during barre. However, if you’re already doing Peloton yoga classes, you can use the same yoga mat. I’ve shared some yoga mat suggestions, below, though, if you need to go shopping.
Use a chair as your makeshift barre
In addition, you should also have a chair nearby. Both Ally Love and Hannah Corbin use the back of a chair as a makeshift barre for class.
You never sit on the chair, though. No, you’re using the back for balance. That being said, if you happen to have a legit ballet barre in your home, by all means use it for these classes.
Finally, a few barre classes include light hand weights or barbells. These are the same light weights you have on the back of your Peloton bike–if you own the bike. So, that would be one-, two- or three-pound weights.
How long are barre classes
Right now there are Peloton barre classes ranging from five minutes to 45 minutes. Personally, the longest barre class I’ve ever taken was 20 minutes. I could barely walk afterwards, so I’m not sure when or if I’ll ever be ready to take a 45-minute barre class.
Currently, the most popular Peloton barre class length is 20 minutes. I counted and there are almost 20 of these 20-minute classes.
Next, there are a dozen 30-minute classes.
After that, 10-minutes classes are most common followed by 15-minute classes.
Finally, there are four 45-minute Peloton barre classes and three five-minute classes. These five-minute classes are warm up and cool down classes.
Barre themed classes
Just like with other classes that Peloton offers, there are musical or event themed classes in barre, too. Some of these themes include:
- Hip hop
- Spice Girls
- Pop music
- Women’s History Month
Before instructor Ally Love got married, she did a wedding celebration barre class, complete with a white short dress (like tennis whites), a sash and a veil. It was a cute 20-minute class that completely kicked my ass.
Barre accessories and what to wear to class
When it comes to clothing for barre class, you should wear what you would when taking one of the Peloton yoga classes. So, that would be leggings or shorts, and a top that doesn’t restrict you. Because you use your arms a lot, I would recommend choosing a sleeveless top.
Peloton barre socks
The one difference between yoga clothing and barre clothing is your footwear. That is, you’re supposed to do yoga barefoot. You can do barre barefoot, but you may want to get gripper barre socks. You can also wear these grippy socks during Pilates.
Sweaty hands and feet
I’m one of those weirdos whose feet sweat as much as the rest of her body. So, gripper socks are a must when I’m doing a class without my sneakers or cycling shoes on.
For example, in yoga class, my feet and my hands will slip. So, even though a yoga mat is supposed to be a sticky mat, it’s never sticky enough for my ridiculously sweaty hands and feet. That’s where gripper socks and even gloves come in handy.
Using a workout subscription box to get your barre clothing
Recently, I partnered with Wantable subscription box, one of my favorites, to get new clothes for barre class. I requested what’s called an Active Edit–which is what Wantable calls a clothing box exclusively with activewear, athleisure and workout clothing in it.
The box arrived today; tomorrow I’ll be doing an Instagram live for my unboxing. Once that’s broadcast, I’ll come back here and let you know what I got, what I’m keeping and what I’m sending back (if anything).
Why you should combine spin and Peloton barre classes
Wondering if it makes sense to add barre to your spin routine? It absolutely does. Even runners should consider doing barre and Pilates classes.
Think about it this way. When you’re cycling or running, you’re moving in one direction. That is, your legs are just going forward and back or up and down. They do not move side to side. Therefore, there are lots of muscles in your lower body that aren’t getting activated, used or strengthened.
How barre and Pilates classes help with cycling and running
On the other hand with barre and Pilates, you are using all kinds of muscles in your lower body. I’m talking muscles you didn’t know you had, or didn’t realize you could work–and then be sore a few days later. I’ve never had the muscles in my inner thighs scream at me the way they have after barre classes.
But you know what? All of this strength work, via barre, Pilates and good, old-fashioned strength classes (aka squats) has made me stronger on the bike.
Final thoughts on Peloton barre classes
So, have I inspired you to try out one of the Peloton barre classes? Considering you don’t need any special equipment to take them, I’d say, why not?
You can start with the 10-minute Introduction to Barre class, which was the first one I ever took. I promise that instructor Hannah Corbin will be gentle with you. Then, let me know what you think by posting a comment below.