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.
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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).
10-Minute Barre Core Workout (Mat Ab Workout)
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.
No equipment needed for this bodyweight-only, mat ab workout.
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Targets: Shoulders, triceps, glutes, lower back, abs and core.
How To Do Plank Leg Lifts
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.
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.
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).
How To Do Fire Hydrant Kicks
Start in a table top position on all fours. Shoulders are stacked over wrists and knees are under hips, core engaged.
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.
Hold your knee in line with your hip and kick through your heel to straighten your right knee, fully extending your right leg.
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.
How To Do Straight Leg Pulls
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.
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.
Reach your hands up towards the calf or ankle of the overhead leg, pulling the overhead leg towards your face.
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).
How To Do First Position Kick Outs
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.
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).
From here, kick your heels out, fully extending your legs as you pull your inner thighs together.
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.
How To Do Roller Boats
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.
Clasp your hands behind your thighs and roll onto your back, then return to your sit bones.
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.
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.
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