Whether you're a seasoned workout enthusiast or just starting your fitness journey, understanding the principles and advantages of cross-training can revolutionize your workouts and help you reach new levels of fitness. Read on to find out why you should be cross-training, and how you can cross-train with Pure Barre’s full-body workout classes!
What is Cross-Training?
Cross-training refers to the practice of engaging in a variety of different physical activities to improve your overall fitness. Rather than focusing on a single exercise modality, cross-training involves incorporating a diverse range of exercises, movements, and sports into your fitness routine. This helps target multiple muscle groups and prevent the plateau effect that can occur from repetitive training.
Cross-training encourages a well-rounded approach to fitness by incorporating aerobic activities, strength training, flexibility exercises, and activity-specific training.
What are the Benefits of Cross-Training?
There are many advantages to incorporating cross-training in your fitness routine! Apart from general benefits like an increased overall fitness level and improved performance, cross-training can specifically help prevent injury and maintain your workout motivation!
Improve Overall Fitness
Cross-training allows you to develop a well-rounded level of fitness by engaging different muscle groups in the body. By incorporating activities like barre, swimming, cycling, or yoga alongside your primary workout, you can improve strength, endurance, flexibility, and balance. This comprehensive approach to training ensures that no muscle is neglected, leading to better overall physical fitness.
Cross-training not only enhances your overall fitness but also helps improve performance in your primary activity of choice. For instance, if you are a runner, incorporating strength training and flexibility exercises (like those found in Pure Barre Align™!) can boost your running efficiency, prevent muscle imbalances, and reduce the risk of being sidelined due to running-related injuries. By strengthening your core and working on your endurance and agility, you can improve your performance in virtually any sport or activity.
Looking to build a versatile body that is capable of whatever opportunity you come across? You guessed it - try cross-training. It prepares you for everyday activities, sports, or even unexpected challenges. By diversifying your fitness routine, you develop a well-rounded physical skill set making you more adaptable to different situations and environments and more likely to take up on that Saturday rock climbing invitation!
Cross-training can also be a highly effective way to combat fitness plateaus. The combination of different exercises, intensities, and training methods helps increase calorie burn, improve metabolism, and build lean muscle mass. By challenging your body with various activities, you can break through plateaus and continue to progress towards your goals.
One of the most important benefits of cross-training is injury prevention. Overuse injuries are common among individuals who engage in a single form of exercise excessively. Cross-training helps prevent these injuries by distributing the load across various muscle groups and joints. By incorporating low-impact exercises (like Pure Barre!) and activities with different movement patterns, you can alleviate repetitive strain and reduce the risk of injuries.
Maintain Workout Motivation
Doing the same exercise routine day after day can become boring and, over time, lead to a decline in motivation. Cross-training introduces new challenges, movements, and environments to keep your workouts fresh and exciting. By stimulating your mind and body with a variety of exercises, you can stay engaged, avoid boredom, and maintain long-term commitment to your fitness goals.
What is the best workout for cross-training?
Now that we know why you should be cross-training, let’s focus on how you should be cross training! Pure Barre is one of the best workouts for cross-training because it focuses on core strength, flexibility and mobility - all without placing additional strain on your joints. Combining elements of ballet, Pilates, and strength training, barre offers a unique and effective cross-training experience.
At the heart of barre workouts lies a strong emphasis on core engagement. The small isometric movements, combined with controlled pulses, work deep abdominal muscles to strengthen and tone your core. A strong core is essential for maintaining proper form and stability in most sports and activities. Incorporate Pure Barre into your routine to develop a solid foundation of core strength, balance, stability.
Inspired by ballet techniques, barre also focuses on elongating and stretching muscles. Every strengthening section of class is followed by a focused stretch, while those muscles are still warm. Through dynamic stretching and fluid movements, barre helps to increase your range of motion and overall flexibility. Enhanced flexibility reduces the risk of injury, allows you to perform better in the activities you love and helps you move through life more easily.
Pure Barre is a low-impact workout, meaning one foot is always on the ground at any given point during class. This ability to effectively target specific muscle groups without putting excessive strain on joints and ligaments makes barre one of the best choices for cross-training without sacrificing athletic performance.
If you’re trying barre for the first time, you’ll notice the workouts typically involve high repetition, low-weight exercises. These movements sculpt and tone muscles and place emphasis on your smaller, stabilizer muscles that other workouts often overlook.. By strengthening muscles through controlled movements, you can improve muscular endurance, which is crucial for enduring long workouts or intense physical activities, such as hiking, cycling, or swimming.
Barre workouts not only challenge you physically, but also engage your mind-body connection. The deliberate and precise movements require focus, concentration, and body awareness. As you practice mindfulness during each exercise, you'll develop a stronger mind-body connection. This heightened awareness translates into other physical activities, allowing you to perform with greater efficiency and control.
How do I cross-train with Pure Barre?
We have four distinctive cross-training class formats at Pure Barre for you to choose from: Pure Barre Classic™. Pure Barre Empower™, Pure Barre Align™ and Pure Barre Define™. Each class has a unique focus to create a well-rounded fitness routine for our members. This also allows Pure Barre to be a one-stop-shop for all your fitness needs!
Pure Barre Classic is our signature barre class, focused on small isometric movements to strengthen and tone your whole body. Each 50-minute class flows through exercises targeting your arms, thighs, core & glutes. You’ll utilize the barre, a small ball, a double tube to provide resistance and a light pair of hand weights. This is the barre class you know and love - and maybe love to hate, after it leaves your muscles shaking! Many runners and athletes incorporate Pure Barre Classic into their weekly routine as their preferred method of cross-training.
Pure Barre Empower™ workouts are designed to push your limits by challenging your muscles to work to their full potential. Utilizing a platform and wrist/ankle weights, the combination of strength training, isometric holds, and cardio intervals elevates your heart rate, increasing your cardiovascular endurance. The enhanced endurance and stamina will carry over to other activities, enabling you to go the extra mile or finish strong during intense workouts.
Pure Barre Align™ slows the pace down and offers a restorative experience focused on improving your flexibility & mobility. This class flows through various stretching exercises to increase your range of motion, while still strengthening & toning all your major muscle groups. While most exercises in this class will utilize bodyweight only, you may sometimes incorporate a ball and the double tube resistance bands. Pure Barre Align offers many of the same benefits of yoga, but takes it further by incorporating strength training flows within class. The dual focus on recovery & strength makes this class perfect for cross-training!
Our newest class format, Pure Barre Define™ fuses our classic barre technique with functional dumbbell strength training. In 50 minutes, you will experience the best of our Pure Barre fundamentals, combined with additional weight-based training to build your strength and confidence in your form. If you’re looking to incorporate resistance training into your routine, or simply looking to enhance your muscular definition - Pure Barre Define is the class for you! Pure Barre Define is the newest class on our schedule, so please reach out to your local studio for more information on the local launch date!
Get Started with Pure Barre
Cross-training is an essential strategy for optimizing your fitness and performance in various physical activities. With its unique blend of strength training, flexibility, and mindful movement, barre offers a multitude of benefits for individuals seeking a well-rounded workout routine. By incorporating Pure Barre into your cross-training regimen, you'll enhance your core strength, flexibility, and endurance while developing a heightened mind-body connection. Whether you're a runner, cyclist, dancer, or simply someone looking to improve their overall fitness, fill out the form below to start cross-training with Pure Barre!