When it comes to long, lean muscles and an elegant posture, ballerinas’ bodies have always been one of the best references. Indeed, ballet-inspired workouts are known to help shred fat, improve balance and flexibility while building a strong and lean body.
What exactly is their secret? What makes those workouts different from any other?
The difference is mainly in the range of motion: indeed, ballet-inspired workouts involve what is known as “micro-movements”. It simply means that while performing those moves, you will only be moving ever so slightly. Doing so, forces you to stay in the contracted position, which has much more impact on your muscles, allowing for better and faster results. the problem with this new trend is that the barre classes are quite costly, which may be stopping a few people from trying it out.
So can you benefit from this and perform ballet exercises at home?
We decided to put together this short list of ballet-inspired moves that can be performed in the comfort of your own home.
This first exercise will mainly focus on your lower body and your core, to help you get those long and lean legs.
Instructions: Simply lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Straighten one of your legs and lift it at a 45° angle. Slowly lift your hips off the floor until your body is aligned in one straight line. Then lower your hips until it is only inches off the floor.
You should quickly feel the burn in your inner thighs, the back of your leg, your butt and your core.
Bonus: to make it easier at the beginning, you can raise your hips while both your feet are still flat on the floor.However, if you are looking to make this exercise more challenging, you can rise on your toes, instead of having your feet flat on the floor.
*Parallel Plié Pulse
This is another exercise that will benefit your lower body and will definitely make you feel like a ballerina!
Instructions: Firstly you will need to get a chair in order to perform this move. Stand behind a chair, hands on top of it and feet together. Lower your hips as much as you can, ensuring that your knees are still against each other, to get into a deep plié position. Then, the only thing left for you to do is to pulse it: which means that in small movements you are going to slightly lift your hips up and directly lower down again.
In order for this move to work properly, you will need to ensure that your knees are bent at all time.
Bonus: Again, to make it harder you can rise on your toe while doing this move.
*Plié Port de Bras
This time, the exercise will be focusing on your upper-body, to help give you this elegant posture while toning your arms.
Instruction: For this one, you will need to grab a pair of dumbbells (if you don’t have any at hand, do not worry, you can simply grab two big bottles). Begin in a plié squat position and lower yourself down until your thighs are aligned. Now you are ready to start what translates into “carriage of the arms”.
So grab the dumbbells and lift your arms in front of you with your palms facing up. Secondly, you need to open your arms until they are by your side (still raised and palms still facing the ceiling). Thirdly, raise your arms overhead.
Those are your three steps and you will need to follow them in this order: 1-2-3-2-1.
Continue improving that posture and toning your arms more with this second upper-body exercise. You will also need to keep those dumbbells (or those bottles) with you for this exercise.
Instructions: Grab those dumbbells and stand tall. The first step includes you raising your arm until your hands are by the side of your head, and open your elbow to the sides. The first step is to grab those dumbbells, stand tall and raise your arms overhead. To complete that position, you then need to complete this position is to grab those dumbbells, raise your arms high above your head, and rise on your toes.
Then lower your arms so that you end up with your hands by each side of your head and your elbows are bent and open to the side. At the same time, you can go back down flat on your feet. The only thing left to do is to repeat.
This exercise will make your core feels like it’s burning but it will help you shred the extra fat.
Instructions: Lie on your back, lift your head and shoulder so that your chin is on your chest and then lift your leg up to a 45° angle. Then lift your arms so they are levelled with your body and not touching the floor.
Now that you are in the right position you can start pulsing your arms: simply raise them ever so slightly and lower them again. This seems quite basic, but you will feel the burn soon enough.
Bonus: To make it easier you can have your legs bent at a 90° angle; however, to make it harder, keep your legs straight but lower them closer to the floor.
These ballet exercises at home will hit the whole body and do a superb job of tightening, toning, strengthening and blitzing unwanted fat!
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