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10-Minute Barre Core Workout (Mat Ab Workout)

Take it down to the mat for this 10-Minute Barre Core Workout! These barre-inspired core exercises target the glutes, obliques, upper abs and lower abs in a no equipment home workout.

This barre core workout includes some of my favorite barre-inspired exercises to strengthen your abs and glutes.

If you’ve done my abs and core workouts, you know that I believe the best abdominal exercises train your core to do what it is INTENDED to do — stabilize your torso as your limbs move away from your body.

And if you’ve done my barre workouts, you know I like to include these movements to focus on stability and small, deliberate muscle movements.

Today’s mat ab workout combines non-traditional core training and barre for a quick and effective core workout at home.

woman performing a fire hydrant kick in a barre ab workout

Barre Core Workout FAQs

What Is A Barre Core Workout?

Barre workouts focus on low-impact, high-intensity movements designed to strengthen the core and tone common “trouble areas” like the thighs, glutes, arms and triceps. Barre is inspired by traditional ballet moves but it also pulls from yoga and pilates exercises. A barre core workout like this one puts your abs to work with barre-inspired movements that will challenge your core to stabilize you as you move your limbs away from the body.

Can You Tone Your Core With Pilates And Barre Workouts?

YES! Barre exercises are known to target the smaller, stabilizing core muscles (ones we tend to miss in full body workouts). These workouts challenge you to keep your core engaged at all times, building lean core muscles.

Why Is A Strong Core Important?

A strong core is important for so many reasons. According to Mayo Clinic, a strong core is tied to improved balance and stability, improved posture, reduced risk of lower back pain, and reduced risk of injuries (especially from activities that involve core rotation).

Barre Abs: How to activate your core muscles during ab workouts

Improve core strength at home with these barre-inspired ab exercises.

I suggest adding this 10-minute barre abs workout to your fitness routine 1-2 times a week to strengthen your core muscles.

Workout Equipment:

No equipment needed for this bodyweight-only, mat ab workout.

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woman performing a donkey kick in a barre core workout at home

Workout Instructions:

Follow along with the guided Mat Ab Workout on YouTubeled by certified personal trainer, Lindsey Bomgren. 

Your Workout Looks Like This:

  • 5 Ab Exercises
  • Repetition-Based (perform 10 repetitions of each exercise)
  • AMRAP (as many rounds as possible in 10 minutes)

Workout Outline

  1. Plank Leg Lifts
  2. Fire Hydrant Kicks
  3. Straight Leg Pulls
  4. First Position Kick Outs
  5. Boat Pose (Roller Boats)
10 Minute Butt + Abs Workout, woman performing a leg lift in mat ab workout

Prefer to Watch On YouTube?

youtube icon Core Workout

5 Barre-Inspired Ab Exercises

Plank Leg Lifts

Targets: Shoulders, triceps, glutes, lower back, abs and core.

woman performing plank leg lifts in a mat ab workout

How To Do Plank Leg Lifts

  1. Start in a high plank position with hands shoulder-width apart. Your body should be in a straight line from head to toes, gaze slightly in front of you.
  2. From this plank position, engage your core as you use your glutes and hamstrings to raise your right leg off the floor until it’s at about hip height. Foot should be flexed.
  3. Hold at the top for a moment then, lower your right leg back to the floor with control.

Modification: Perform a table top leg lift instead of a plank leg lift (with the opposing left leg bent on the ground to support you).

Fire Hydrant Kicks

Targets: The outer glutes (abductors), hips, obliques and core muscles.

Tone your butt while also strengthening the hips (which stabilize the pelvic floor).

woman performing fire hydrant kicks in a barre ab workout

How To Do Fire Hydrant Kicks

  1. Start in a table top position on all fours. Shoulders are stacked over wrists and knees are under hips, core engaged.
  2. With a flexed foot, and leg bent at 90 degrees, perform a fire hydrant leg lift by lifting your right knee up in line with your hip.
  3. Hold your knee in line with your hip and kick through your heel to straighten your right knee, fully extending your right leg.
  4. Return your knee to 90 degrees and lower your right leg back to the starting position.

Modification: Omit the kick and perform fire hydrant leg lifts.

Straight Leg Pulls

Targets: The rectus abdominis, internal and external oblique muscles.

woman performing straight leg pulls in a barre ab workout

How To Do Straight Leg Pulls

  1. Lie faceup on your back, legs straight and low back pressing firmly into the mat. Your abdominal wall should be wrapped as tightly as possibly around your core.
  2. Raise one leg overhead while the other leg hovers off the ground. Toes are pointed. Option to lift your neck and shoulders off the mat for additional core engagement.
  3. Reach your hands up towards the calf or ankle of the overhead leg, pulling the overhead leg towards your face.
  4. Then with control, switch legs, lowering the raised leg to hover off the ground and pulling the other leg overhead.

Modifications: Option to bend your legs at the knees. You can also rest your leg closest to the ground on the ground, and keep your neck and shoulders on the mat.

First Position Kick Outs

Targets: Lower abs, core, hips and inner thighs (abductors).

woman performing first position kick outs in a barre ab workout

How To Do First Position Kick Outs

  1. Lie on your back, arms extended at your sides and low back pressing firmly into the mat. Your abdominal wall should be wrapped around your core as tightly as possible. Keep the neck and shoulders resting on the mat, arms at your sides.
  2. With knees bent at 90 degrees, stack the knees over hips. Bring your flexed feet to ‘first position,’ making a V with your feet (heels in toes out).
  3. From here, kick your heels out, fully extending your legs as you pull your inner thighs together.
  4. Hold the kick out for a moment before returning the the starting position.

Modification: Kick one leg out at a time instead of both legs.

Boat Pose (Roller Boats)

Targets: The deep hip flexors (which can be weak from sitting too much), abs and core.

This is a great move to practice balance.

woman performing a boat pose exercise as part of an ab workout at home

How To Do Roller Boats

  1. Sit on the mat on your sit bones, legs bent at 90 degrees, feet flat. Tilt your hips forward, rounding through the spine as you pull your navel towards your spine (making a ‘C’ shape with your upper body). Keep your shoulders down and the crown of your head towards the ceiling.
  2. Clasp your hands behind your thighs and roll onto your back, then return to your sit bones.
  3. Take a moment to balance and reset posture. Then, if you’re able to, release your hands from the back of your legs and extend your legs out away from your body, toes pointed.
  4. Hold the extended position for a moment. Then place your hands behind your thighs and repeat the roll.

Modification: Keep the hands clasped behind thighs and legs bent at all times.

Pin this 10-Minute Barre Core Workout (Mat Abs)

10 Minute Barre Core Workout At Home

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  1. I only mAde it through 2 times in 10 minutes and that was with no rest too! You must be moving at light speed to get 4 rounds done in 10 minutes! Great moves though, simple and so effective. Thanks ?

    • Thanks for the feedback Kelly; yes you have the option to set a timer for 10 minutes and get through as much as you can or take the time to complete 4 full sets. I’m so glad you liked the moves and found the workout effective! Nice work and thanks for giving the workout a try! Have a great week! -Lindsey

    • Hi Caitlin! Thanks for checking out the workout. Yes, I love bodyweight workouts that can be done anywhere too! I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! Have a great week xo-Lindsey