Tuesday, September 18, 2012

BALLET BEAUTIFUL: Classic 60-minute Workout

This is my first review that I did the workout for in my new studio space!!
I really admire Mary Helen Bowers, she always comes up with the most amazing workouts! If you are not familiar with her, you can also read my previous post on her Ballet Beautiful: Blast Series, which is also amazing! These workouts are always a low-impact series of movements that include ballet inspired movements. They seem little, but I promise they will burn before you are half way through with each one. As a professional ballerina she is very good at hiding her effort, don't let this discourage you! Instead try smiling or going to your happy place, if you can control that, then it will help you make it through any workout!

Ballet Beautiful: Classic 60-minute Workout is just what the title says. An entire hour of targeted workouts that will improve muscle tone and strength. Mary Helen Bowers always splits her DVDs up into different segments based on the area your are targeting. Below is a list of what is included in this 60-minute workout (times are approx. The entire workout might be just shy of 60 min. but you should be stretching afterwards anyway):

  • Bridge Series (15 min.)-A killer sequence that you will feel in your legs and butt for sure!
  • Abs (6 min.)- A short series of ballet crunches holding your arms in first position, but she also gives variations so that if you aren't comfortable there you can hold your arms elsewhere. The twisting crunches are my favorite, and she ends with pulsing.
  • Inner Thigh (7 min.)-Simple exercises that will definitely burn! I felt it not only in my inner thigh but a portion of my hamstrings and quads as well. She give reminders to lengthen the knee, this just means to straighten all the way.
  • Outer Thigh (10 min.)-A ridiculously good amount of burning! The great thing about this one is that you are fatiguing the muscles-which I've heard is good for increasing flexibility- the hard part is to get your outer thigh to relax after the sets in order to stretch!! :) I sat in butterfly position (knees open feet together) until they released then went into the stretch that she shows on the DVD.
  • Arms (10 min.)-Different than her Swan Arms from the Blast Series DVD, she has you do dips and some other ballet inspired movements with the arms that will definitely tone!
  • Standing (4 min.)-Great to finish off the workout. Not as intense, so it acts more like a cool down. Make sure that you stretch everything after the entire workout!
Since this is a customizable workout, you can do one or all series! You can also choose the order in which you do them. This is great for if you need a quick workout in the mornings, or before Thanksgiving dinner, etc.  I completed this workout starting with Arms, then Bridge Series, Outer Thigh, Abs, Inner Thigh, and last Standing.

I love the music on her DVDs, but if you don't like the classical feel then there is an option to turn off the music and you can play your own motivating music! Her voice is soft and precise, and very encouraging. She give regular reminders about alignment and lifting the abdominals. The cinematography is also amazing. She performs this DVD on a yoga mat and keeps a water bottle nearby. The mat or a rug would provide excellent padding for any of the sections. I definitely recommend this one to anyone that wants to develop toned, lean muscles. If you are looking for some conditioning to do outside of your dance classes, this is also a great option! Anyone can do it!

If you are more interested in the Ballet Beautiful Program you can check out her website:

If you are interested in purchasing this DVD see below:

Happy Training! à bientôt!

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