Xtend Barre: Lean & Chiseled

xtend-barreThe barre workout DVD market has exploded lately. It seems like just about every week another ballet-inspired workout DVD comes to FBG HQ. This week? It was Xtend Barre’s Lean & Chiseled DVD, which we popped in for a little bun burn.

A mix of dance, Pilates and old-school standing legwork that makes your legs feel as though they’ll fall off, this DVD combines light resistance work (read: either sans weight or 1- to 3-pound dumbbells) with movement for a ballet-inspired workout that gives you a bit more cardio than most DVDs of this variety. After a short 5-minute warm-up that is actually kind of intense (instructor Andrea Rogers loooves the plié squats!), you have a number of sections to choose from: Upper Body for 11 minutes, Barre (lower-body) for 24 minutes, Core for 10 minutes and a stretch-a-rific 5-minute cool down. There is also a short introduction from Andrea, and a tutorial to learn what all the ballet moves and names are that is super helpful for barre newbies.

Glutton for punishment that I am, I tried them all for one 55-minute workout. The Upper Body section features a combo of traditional exercises with some ballet-inspiration. Andrea leads you through arm circles (this part reminded me of Tracy Anderson’s DVDs…), tricep kickbacks, planks and moving through different ballet positions while holding weights. While not impossible, this section certainly gets your arms burning. The Barre segment is certainly the high-point of the DVD though. Using a chair, you go through tons of lower-body work including the ballet faves with pulses and jumps: first position, second position and, again, the plié. For cardio, you even pair some of these moves together to get the heart rate up. This section concludes with traditional standing glute work à la Cindy Crawford. The Core section is pretty much all Pilates with moves like the Teaser, C-Curve and split-leg crunches.

Overall, I thought this DVD was pretty solid. Despite the fact that Andrea made me have Tracy Anderson flashbacks every time she said “teeny-tiny” (which was a lot—thankfully she used those words to describe movement, NOT her desired body weight), her instruction was good and the music was fantastic. My only real main complaint is that while the sections are divided up and there is an option to play all (which pretty annoyingly also plays the intro and tutorial—good for the first time, but after that pretty pointless), the DVD is sorely missing a mix-and-match option to create your own perfect workout. All in all, not too shabby. (And this is coming from a girl with little rhythm and flexibility!)

FBG Rating (Out of 5):

Instruction: ★★★★
Long-Term Likeability: ★★★★
Music: ★★★★★
Fun Factor: ★★★
Meets Expectations: ★★★★
Overall: ★★★★

Fit Bottom line: A solid barre workout that is more cardio than most ballet-inspired DVDs. Good for beginners and intermediate wannabe ballerinas alike! 

Want to try this workout DVD for yourself? Leave a comment with why, and we’ll select one random U.S. reader to win in about a week. The winner will be contacted via email, so keep an eye on that inbox, chickadees! —Jenn

 



Comments

  1. says

    Hi there, FBGs! I just started doing the couch to 5K program – on week 4 currently – and I’ve realized that I probably should be doing some strength training, too. This DVD sounds awesome to me – I always loved to dance, and even took ballet for a couple of years when I was about 10. A dance-based strength training workout sounds awesome!

  2. Suzanne says

    I’d love to win this DVD because I love to dance and I think this will be a perfect addition to my workout routine!

  3. mj says

    I loved Pure Barre, but I like that this one is divided up- easier to find time to fit it in with a newborn and a toddler…

  4. Alexis says

    I love Bar Method DVDs but I always feel I need more cardio to get my heart rate up. I like how Xtend Barre offers more cardio in the workout. I’d love to add it to my collection.

  5. Amy says

    after having reached my goal weight a year ago, i finally have enough balance and coordination to do dance workouts. i’ve tried a few barre workouts before and am still looking for the right one. maybe this one could be it

  6. Debbie says

    I have Andrea’s Pilates DVD and just love her personality–cute as a button–and I don’t mind if she uses the phrase teeny-tiny! I saw the clips of this and looks challenging!

  7. Christine says

    I have taken some barre classes but it would be great to have a DVD to use and still get a great workout!

  8. Martine says

    I’d love this dvd! I actually go to a drop in adult ballet class periodically, but my schedule hasn’t allowed it in awhile, so I’m definitely in dance withdrawal….

  9. Marilyn B. says

    oooOOOooo! I would LOVE this DVD because I started doing P90X with my hubs, but let’s be honest, it’s a very *masculine* workout. I think that this would be a great addition to the muscle confusion, and certainly something more my style. I always wanted to be a dancer, but never got to take classes. At least this way, I could look like one!

  10. Gennin says

    Hi FBG! I am new to your website and I am loving it! I am always looking for new workouts as I get bored easily. I would love to try the Barre to help me trim my bum and thighs. I practiced ballet when I was a child and would love to get back into it.

  11. erica says

    I like to try different things, this would be something completely new for me as I am usually a strength training type of mama.

  12. Cassie B says

    I would love to try it….and I love my workout DVD’s to keep me going at home when I can’t make it to the gym.

  13. Gbea says

    I love working out at home and this sounds like a great DVD to add to my collection.

  14. Krista says

    This workout looks amazing! I would love to win this because I have taken one barre method class and it was a killer workout with lots of amazing exercises!

  15. Marcie says

    This would be a great addition to my workuut routine!! Ad a nice way to reminisce about my ballet classes as a child!

  16. anne g says

    Would love to win this DVD! I have two kids and it’s easy for me to get a workout when I use workout dvd’s. I would also love to try ballet!

  17. Melissa says

    I would love to win this DVD! Always looking for ways to shake up my current fitness routine.

  18. says

    I’ve been looking to add a ballet inspired workout to my beachbody and yoga DVD arsenal. This sound like it would also be good for those times I can’t afford the 20 bucks for a Dailey Method class. I was considering the Tracey Anderson method but I don’t want to be that thin, and I love workouts and women who embrace muscle (not overly masculine but muscle none the less)

  19. Kathy says

    I’m a schlumpadinka and need a kick in the butt! This might be just the ticket. =)

  20. Julie says

    Hi! I’d love to win this DVD because I’m always looking to add some variety to my workouts. I really like dance inspired workouts and just love to dance! Thanks!

  21. Jennifer K says

    I would love this to tone my whole body for swmsuit season… FYI I live in Fla that’s year round bikini season….help

  22. Ari says

    I love bar workouts and was traveling 35 miles one way to attend cardio barre once a week until I showed up one day and they were gone, shutdown and out of business. I’ve been wanting to get back into it but haven’t had the chance.

  23. Naomi says

    I’ve lost 60 lbs over the last 3 years and taken up belly dance, which has become my passion. Now that the excess weight is off of my frame, I really need to fine-tune and tone my muscles in a way that will also improve my strength and dance technique. This looks like it’s right up my alley!

  24. says

    I am training for a half marathon while pregnant with baby #2. Looking for great standing workouts for strength training that can be done at home. Tried fluidity and loved it, still own the bar but would love to try something similar, this looks perfect!

  25. Jen says

    My sister has always loved ballet, so this might be a great way to work out together!

  26. Haley says

    I would love to win this workout video! I am looking for some strength training routines and this sounds like just the ticket!!!

  27. Margaret says

    I would love a new, different workout to get me motivated back into exercising.

  28. Michelle says

    I would love to try this workout! I did ballet for a while as a kid. I now have bad knees & back (thanks to car accidents and track injury), so traditional bouncy cardio routines KILL my joints!

  29. Akesha says

    I’d like to win this DVD because it looks like an awesome workout that I can do in my apt. Joining a gym is not currently in my budget so I work out at home to the handful of DVD’s that I have. I also try to walk outside but it’s been too hot for thatlately. I live on the 3rd floor so I mainly do strength training and toning dvd’s b/c it’s too hard to do cardio but low impact (i’ve tried ;p). I’m starting to get bored with my current selection and I need to try something new.

  30. GeminiJulia says

    This sounds like a good way to mix things up in my workout. Plus it targets all my problem areas. Would love to get a copy!

  31. Kelli says

    I used to do another Barre workout on my cable exercise channel and loved it. We recently downgraded our cable to save money so now I need to build up my workout DVD collection, this sounds like it would be a great addition!

  32. Michelle says

    I just finished P90x and have been contemplating what I should do next. The combination of dance and pilates has the potential to be a very powerful workout and after 13 weeks of P90x a switch to the grace of ballet and pilates sounds like exactly what I need right now.

  33. Melessia says

    I would love to have this DVD ~ I love doing ballet inspired workouts! Having a DVD that would allow me to do this at home would be great. I will be starting on my masters in three weeks, and between working, my three kids, and taking care of the house it would be nice to be able to fit in working out as well.

  34. says

    I just learned about this DVD today via twitter. I take ballet for the barre work and the cardio, but it’s hard to do leaping jetés in the living room. This looks like a cool way to get something similar at home in a much smaller space with a little extra oomph to it!

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