Whether you've been using a set of the best resistance bands for home fitness, or you have a full home gym setup with the best elliptical machine and rowing machine at your disposal, it's time to change things up.
Barre offers excellent total-body core strength and excellent flexibility, but to practice it, you usually have to go to a proper studio. However, London Barreworks' Vicki Antsey has filmed her 10-minute lower-body workout exclusively for Fit&Well, and all you need is the back of a chair to hold onto instead of a full-length professional barre.
Check out the workout below:
Why do this workout?
The last of three workouts Vicki filmed for Fit&Well, this is all about your legs, incorporating lunges and squats as well as more advanced barre-specific moves like the plié, taken from ballet.
The resistance exercises are actually great for beginners, as you can use the back of the chair to grip and take some of the weight off your legs. It's a great way to slowly build up your lower body strength.
Why try barre?
Barre, like ballet, is suitable for both men and women. Vicki's workout is big on flexibility training, helping you get (and stay) mobile as a big part of the 10-minute routine, stretching your quads and hamstrings.
Chances are, especially if you're an older fitness enthusiast, you don't stretch enough. It's never too late to start: stretching helps lengthen muscles, limiting the risk of injury and helping with our exercise recovery.
As we age, our muscles naturally contract, which limits our movements and stops us getting out and about – think of the characteristic shuffle of an elderly person without much mobility. Stretching will fight against this process, giving you many more years of mobility.
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Matt Evans is an experienced health and fitness journalist and is currently Fitness and Wellbeing Editor at TechRadar, covering all things exercise and nutrition on Fit&Well's tech-focused sister site. Matt originally discovered exercise through martial arts: he holds a black belt in Karate and remains a keen runner, gym-goer, and infrequent yogi. His top fitness tip? Stretch.
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