I tried my first barre class recently. My impression: it's a good workout, but also kind of... well, there's not a nice way to put this. Boring.
Here are the pros, in my mind:
The barre itself (sort of a waist-high railing around the room) is a nice prop for the exercises.
Afterwards, my muscles definitely felt like they had been through a good workout.
If you close your eyes, you can pretend you are a pretty ballerina.
And the cons:
The movements tend to be small and exhausting: hold your leg up for three million years while pulsing it back and forth.
If you open your eyes, you are surrounded by mirrors that make it very clear you are not a pretty ballerina.
The studio required that we wear socks; a lot of barre enthusiasts like to use sticky socks that have some nubs on the bottom that provide a little grip. One other perk that may be specific to my studio: They did not have locker rooms, but they did have a long counter with mirrors mounted above it.
The counter was stocked with beauty products like dry shampoo so you could freshen up after your workout. I had two simultaneous reactions: "That's so thoughtful!" and "The other people who go here must be a lot more stylish then I am, because I'm just gonna go home dripping in sweat like usual."
Barre classes are super popular, so just because I didn't love it doesn't mean you won't. So I'm curious, for those who do barre: What do you love about it? And what would you tell someone who is about to try it for the first time?