I had never been to Pure Yoga (it’s members-only for most classes), and it was absolutely beautiful! I felt like I was in a spa from the second I walked through the door – everything from the waiting spaces to the locker rooms was relaxing.
Kate Albarelli, a former ballerina, created and teaches the Figure 4 class. The studio where the class took place was already set up with mats, two sets of weights, a cushion, and a pilates ring for each person.
We began at the barre, which included a ball and a band, and faced the middle of the room. We did leg lifts and twists to warm up our muscles and increase our heart rates. We then moved right into the thigh section of the class. I though this was interesting since many of the other barre classes I’ve taken start with arms and weights. Kate explained that our thighs are our largest muscles and focusing on them first will keep your body burning calories throughout the rest of the class. (Can I start every morning with thigh work in an attempt to burn more calories throughout the day? Hmmm ;))
We began plieing with our backs against the barre, heels together with toes apart. At first we used our forearms on the barre for support, but soon our arms were in the air as we pulsed up, down, up, down.
At the end of many of the sequences throughout the class, Kate would have us hold a position for ten seconds as deeply as we could; it was
fabulous killer! My legs started shaking about 15 minutes into the class! Needless to say, I was very happy when the thigh portion was over. Little did I know…
We moved to our mats to begin arm work with 2 and 4 pound weights. We did several tricep exercises with the 2 pounders before picking up the four pound weights for bicep work. 2 pounds might seem like nothing, but let me tell you, my arms were quivering from the repetition before we even moved on to the 4 pounders! We did planks (hate), push ups (really hate), and tricep dips before moving on to abs.
I mistakenly thought, “Thank God! At least I’ll be lying down!” We used the cushions to support our lower backs while curling our shoulders off of the mats. We held this position and pulsed our arms at our sides as well as crossed them in front of our bodies, all the while keeping the pilates ring squeezed between our thighs. I am weird and thought this was the best thing ever! Many of the other barre classes I’ve taken do not include the ring, and I think it really helped with engaged my core while also working my inner thigh muscles.
After the ab section we moved back to the barre to work our glutes. We bent over at the barre for a series of leg lifts before moving back to the floor for more glute work. Let’s just say that I was
happy ecstatic when we began to stretch out our my shaking muscles. My hip flexors always get so tight during glute work, and sometimes my standing leg feels the exercise more than my working leg!
- The pilates ring! As I said, this really added to the class for me
- The music was upbeat and motivating
- Even in a group of thirty or so, Kate walked around and provided individual attention through form correction and motivation
- Pure Yoga is beautiful; clean and relaxing
- Both Pure Yoga East and West are far from where I live
- Many classes, including Figure 4, are membership based
I highly recommend the class and feel so lucky that I got a chance to try it! If it weren’t members-only, I would definitely work a class or two into my routine each week. Thanks Well + Good and Pure Yoga!