Barre Certification recommended product list

 

We get a lot of people asking what products we recommend to accompany barre classes and exercises. Since we are educators that certify instructors in different types of facilities around the world, IBBFA Barre Certification has been able to compile a list of the highest recommended products to use as a barre instructor.

 

Portable barres

For portable barres we recommend Vita Vibe. There are different looks and styles and you are sure to find one that fits your needs. Prices vary from $115 to about $300.

Also, keep in mind that there are freestanding barres and ones that can be mounted to the floor. Freestanding barres may tip when there is too much lateral force so they should not be used a crutch to keep the user’s balance.

 

Our pick for freestanding:

Freestanding fit barre from Vita Vibe for $189.95.

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Our pick for floor mount:
Professional Aluminum Single Bar Floor Mount Fitness Barre System (Fixed Height)

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Barres that can be installed

We would also recommend Vista Vibe barres if you are looking to install a barre in your studio or home. Different styles and lengths are available. Prices vary from about $70 to $225.

 

Our pick:

Professional Aluminum Single Bar Wall Mount Ballet Barre System (Fixed Height)

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Handheld 1-3 pound weights

Our pick:

CAP Barbell Neoprene Coated Dumbbell from $1.99. Note: solid in singles! These inexpensive weights feel comfortable in your hand and are easy to store- the hexagonal shape prevents them from rolling.

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Inflatable 7-9 inch balls

 

Our pick:

ProBody Pilates Blue Mini Stability Ball $10-$20. Easy to inflate and deflate (good for travel). This mini exercise ball works well with our Barre exercises.

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Resistance bands

 

Our pick:

DYNAPRO Exercise Resistance Bands (in LIGHT) $14. These resistance bands have a comfortable grip and are very durable. Make sure to take note at the level of resistance you are purchasing. We use the Yellow/Light ones for our barre exercises.

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The scholarship is here!

scholarship

Calling all barre enthusiasts! The International Ballet Barre Fitness Association is pleased to announce the release of the Barre Instructor Certification Scholarship. We are looking for one dedicated instructor that can make an impact on their community by teaching barre. Please email your completed application to info@barrecertification.com

We look forward to receiving  your submissions! Thank you!

IBBFA Barre Certification Scholarship Application

You see, I see, we all need CECs!

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Not all teacher training courses are created equally. Furthermore, online teacher training programs can be a big risk if you don’t know what you are getting yourself into. Here are some important things to consider when looking for certification programs;

  • It is important to think about where you plan on taking your certification once completed. If you want to be able to teach at multiple locations or in private studios, it is critical to know what your training allows you to do.
  • Make sure you are qualified for the course before signing up! Some online courses are more elementary and give you the most basic information necessary, though these sometimes require additional courses to complete your training. Some courses are designed as continuing education so they are meant to build off of your foundational knowledge received in group fitness certifications or personal training programs.
  • See if you can get CECs (or CEUs, which mean Continuing Education Credits or Units) for a program you are already certified in. This is also a great way to validate a course. If you come across an online training course that is not accredited by multiple providers, the course may not be reliable. The accreditation process is rigorous and the more accreditations a course has, the more likely it is comprehensive and thorough.
  • Though not always available, it is also a good sign if a course has international accreditation…meaning you can take your certification abroad to teach what you love!
  • See if the course provider offers additional courses so you can continue to receive CECs in the future without having to start over with a new company or course. Look for advanced levels or courses for specific populations.
  • See if there is a guarantee! It seems simple, but this is huge in online courses. If the course provider is so confident in the material that they offer a money back guarantee, it is going to be a much safer bet.
  • Finally, look for testimonials, social media feedback and multiple sources of customer support. Do their certified instructors love them? Do they provide quality customer support? Do they seem like they interact with their community in a positive way?

 

If you are ready to get certified as a Barre instructor, check out all of your options before committing. Remember that Barre Certification is accredited internationally by ACE, NASM, PMA, ISSA, AFFA, CanFitPro, and Fitness Australia (just added!).

Raising the Barre at Business Boutique

This past weekend, some of us at Barre Certification got to attend an all women’s entrepreneur conference. It was so incredible to be around women that were dreaming of doing something big and making a difference in the community. It made us think how special it was to help support all of the studio owners and independent instructors out there.

 

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One of the major takeaways for us was coming to the realization that solutions come from having problems and talking about them with people that may be in a similar boat. One of the speakers Lysa Terkeurst encouraged us that our “very best idea ever won’t come from a strength [you] have but from a weakness”. Pinpointing a problem you have as an instructor and then reaching out to your community is how you find the best ways around that problem! I know for me, I have a lot of older students with some pretty serious, chronic pain and I started reaching out to my fellow instructors on ways to help them. We started talking about how we used Foam Rollers before and after rehearsals when we were dancing professionally and realized that was a great option for stiffness and achy bodies. So we started a foam roller class at my studio! Our clients have loved it and they all say the same thing, “I have a foam roller at home but I never know what to do with it so I never use it”. It has been so rewarding to see this solution be so helpful for our clients!

There was a lot of discussion on how to overcome fear. When it comes to teaching your first class, signing up for a certification (online!!??), asking your friends to participate in a practical video submission, or deciding to start your own business, we can hit some major mental road blocks. Best advice I heard all weekend? Talk to yourself… when you listen to the voices in your head, all you hear is fear and doubt speaking. But when you talk to yourself, you can say whatever you want or need to hear! We have people of all ages sign up and go through the Barre Certification program. Candace J., our incredible customer support genie, pointed out that “we all have different struggles or fears to overcome and for some it is age. For such a long time the world told us that when you hit a certain age you should stop doing certain things, so people have had to re-program their brains.” Don’t let the negativity swirling around your head dictate whether or not you make a big change in your life.

And then there was this little nugget…”Just because someone needs you to do something, does not obligate you to do it”. Oh boy, did we need to hear that! Christy Wright is the founder of Business Boutique and she did such an incredible job reminding us that we need to focus on protecting the time we have. She pointed out the paradigm that we all see daily, “Do they need me and can I help?” The answer is almost always yes, because why would someone ask you if they didn’t think you could help?? We need to predetermine what qualifies as a necessary ‘yes’ and what can be a ‘no’. “Boundaries aren’t about saying no; they are about saying yes to what’s important to you”.

Aside from the incredible speakers at this event, my favorite part was walking around in our “Barre-tenders” shirts and having ladies come up to us and say “My cousin just opened a barre studio in Illinois!” or “Oh I have taken a few barre classes and it is the hardest workout I’ve ever done”. The amount of openness and community that was present in these ladies was just so comforting and exciting at the same time.

Beach vibes and Barre class

 

In our latest class outline, we are channeling the great energy we are getting from the Barre Body Challenge. Take your students outside to enjoy the breeze or bring the beach to the studio with the Reggae at the Barre Playlist! This class has been jam packed with some new exercises. Look for more compound exercises that work upper and lower body simultaneously. Or upper body and core in moves like the Rocking Pushups. Nothing makes me feel more like a mermaid! And if your clients are loving the extra challenge, be sure to check out our Level 3 course which comes out this month! This is the most advanced course yet and is a great way to challenge those athletes and dancers you have in class!

Follow the video found in your BarreZen area for a full class of Reggae themed fun or select a few exercises your clients will love! As always, let us know if you have any questions.

Barre Body Challenge is here!!

A new class outline and playlist is available now on BarreZen! This month, the format of the class is a bit different. You will actually see three fully choreographed dances to help students get their heart rate up! The Barre Body Challenge is designed to push participants to try new things while achieving their goals! Each week has a theme song and focus to keep the 10 week challenge interesting and exciting for instructors and participants. If you have never done a challenge with your students before, this is an amazing way to build a community of warriors and make a lasting impact on your facility and students! We had one of our incredible Certified Instructors write for the manual on ways to boost Metabolism and loose weight safely and effectively.

 

When you introduce your students to the challenge, encourage them to write down a goal that can be attained in 10 weeks. Depending on the number of participants, you may want to pair people up with each other or instructors to be accountability partners throughout the course of the challenge. One of the most common challenges people face is attending all of the classes required. We all know that frequent attendance boosts results tremendously but some weeks, the challenge is to attend two classes in one day or 5 classes in a week! That can be difficult for clients so find ways to offer different times and types of classes to accommodate if possible.  The other major hurdle people face is the added focus on healthful, mindful eating. It is strongly encouraged to eat smaller meals throughout the day so blood sugar levels can remain stable and participants can maintain their energy for the extra workouts! Many participants in the past have said this part of the challenge is the hardest to keep up with but when it becomes habit, they continue the practice long after the 10 weeks have passed.

 

The final recommendation for studios embarking on the Barre Body challenge is to create some sort of forum or social media group. You can easily create a private Facebook group for paid participants. Many of the weeks’ challenges include posting and sharing during the challenge. Have fun with your students and get creative! Get some fun shirts made, have a kick-off party and throw an amazing 90 minute “sweat fest”, go on field trips to the farmer’s market, go on hikes and keep each other motivated! Summer is around the corner…will it be your clients’ best season ever??

 

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BarreCast

How much time do you spend mindlessly listening to the radio or T.V. each day? If days fly by and hours disappear, it is likely that you lose valuable time doing even necessary tasks like driving or preparing meals. If you have never listened to podcasts, you will find a whole world of people out there with similar interests as you that are talking about issues and topics that you care about! Podcasts are a fantastic way to learn about things you are fascinated by and hear experts discuss things you care about. Some of the most popular podcasts out there are on topics like sports, politics and true crime. There are so many more possibilities, however, that allow listeners to dive in to more specific topics like startup businesses, specific television shows and behavioral psychology, for example.

THAT is why we decided to create our very own podcast about what it’s like to be a barre instructor. BarreCast was created to bring instructors together in an industry that can often feel very isolated and even cut throat. We all have the same vision to make our communities better by teaching classes we love. Take a listen and see what you think!

Episode 1, we discuss with one of the authors of our manuals and Master Instructor, Hallie Edmonds, how the integration of ballet makes fitness more attainable-not more elite. Many barre classes you may come across make students feel left out if they don’t have a ballet background. Ballet is the foundation of barre because of the discipline and shapes the body makes in the movement. It is unlike any other movement form out there and that makes it seem out of reach for the general population. Our job as Barre Instructors is to make that accessible for our students- not to ‘dumb’ it down but really to explain why certain positions and movements have the names they do. We can also bring the ballet fundamentals to athletes that are used to training in a very different way. By focusing the work on smaller muscle groups in the body, we create a physical discipline that athletes do not typically get in their training elsewhere.

If you are an avid podcast listener, share what inspires you! If you have never even heard of podcasts, try searching a topic you are interested in and see what you find. Your challenge is to find new ways to be mindful in the mundane tasks you do so you are growing and learning throughout each day. Don’t let those precious seconds fly by!

Listen to our BarreCast Podcast:

March Madness

The class outline for March is all set to our own version of those awesome Jock Jams CD’s you know you love! And that inspired us to use that trusty ball for almost all of the exercises listed…even some of the stretches! These outlines are meant to inspire you as instructors to try something new, use fresh music and put classes together that your clients will LOVE! Use some or all of the outline provided to try new things and push your clients to the next level while continuing to focus on safety. There are so many tutorials out there and it can be nearly impossible to differentiate between exercises that are safe and unsafe in a 30 second video. We promise these exercises have all been designed and approved by our expert Master Instructors to ensure safety and accuracy. If you need more clarification or information about anything listed in these class outlines, never hesitate to reach out to us at support@barrecertification.com and we will be more than happy to help! Be sure to tag us in anything you post about these themed classes! We want to show you and your dedicated clients off to the world!

BarreZen is live!

How often do you feel a creative block as an instructor and feel your students losing interest. It can be such a challenge to come up with themes, songs, exercises and outlines that feel fresh and new for students. So many certified barre instructors choose to teach classes because they love fitness and empowering their community. This should not translate to hours alone in the studio stressing out about future classes. Kaizen is a Japanese business philosophy of continuous improvement of working practices, personal efficiency, and small steps to make big changes. We have based BarreZen on this principle because we know that instructors are self-motivated people that want to make a difference in the world and their lives. If you are an instructor that loves the moments when you help students come to huge revelations but struggle to stay inspired yourself, this is the place to find that inspiration. New class outlines and playlists will be posted monthly by our very own Master Instructors. If you think you may have an idea to contribute to members, we want to hear about it! Let us know how you stay inspired daily! Tag us in your social posts to share new ways to approach classes @barrecertification #barrezen and have fun!

Ballet Foundations at the Barre

We feel a shift happening in the world of fitness today. At Barre Certification, we see people reach out to us every day because they are discouraged by the group fitness classes offered in their area. Has this been an issue in your community?

We would like to end the shallow, close-minded and competitive culture of studio fitness. Certified barre instructors are part of an elite group of people that not only become empowered through informative manuals and video tutorials but have access to support each other.

How often as an instructor do you wish you could ask a peer about timing for an exercise or an injury modification for a student? THAT is why we are here. Barre instructors should be so empowered by the knowledge that they have and the support system the exist in that they can change the way people think about their health and fitness. Community is the name of the game.

All of the master instructors at barrecertification.com have extensive dance and fitness backgrounds. We really believe that the bond between fellow dancers is something that should be experienced by everyone.

When you create an environment that thrives on discipline, encouragement, and self-improvement, you create what dancers have worked with their entire careers. It’s no wonder dancers have the energy to endure six hours of daily rehearsals and eight shows a week.

The standard has been raised for barre instructors. When you know the fundamentals of ballet technique as well as culture and etiquette, you pass along a deep history of excellence and extreme success.