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BBS Hall of Fame: Jon + Kelly

When you both have a similar goal in mind, nothing can stop you. Meet Kelly and Jon - they are our BBS #CoupleGoals! You've probably seen them pulsing at BBS Holland Plaza or soaring through a bounce class. Either way, they use group fitness as an opportunity to motivate each other, maintain a healthy lifestyle and also, to spend time together. We chatted with these BBS Hall of Fame-ers and asked them all about their experience with couple's fitness + BBS. Read what they have to say below:  


Why do you barre so hard?

Kelly - I love that even though it’s a workout I am actually having fun doing it. Even when I think I don’t want to go I am smiling as soon as I walk through the doors. Everyone (plus the music!) is so upbeat and positive and the energy is awesome. I love that every class is different and challenges my strength in different ways. I walk away from each class knowing I’m stronger and have done something amazing for my mind and my body.

Jon - I love the Barre community. The people that come here and the instructors are always so positive and it helps make me want to push myself to the best of my abilities. The variety of the different types of classes as well as the different instructors keeps me working hard. Plus having a great looking butt is a bonus!

What other exercise do you live (in addition to Barre) to keep your routine well rounded?

Kelly - I like to throw one of Shaun T’s Insanity Max:30 or T25 workouts into the mix for a really good cardio or strength challenge. I like the option to use heavier dumbbells and the cardio workouts still kick my butt every time.  In the winter months I like to try and go to aquafit once a week for something totally different. I also love the Soar classes at the studio which have definitely helped to build my cardio endurance.

Jon - I love to play team sports and during the summer time I play Ultimate Frisbee with co-workers. I’ve been playing for about 5 years and it’s a great cardio workout since I don’t mind running with a purpose! During the winter time we like to try and swim and do Aquafit with friends.

What is your guilty pleasure?

Kelly - My guilty pleasure is curling up on the couch with some type of junk food and watching low quality TV shows such as: The Real Housewives of the O.C or Beverly Hills, Vanderpump Rules, Geordie Shore, and Teen Mom. I know there are so many better TV shows I could spend my time watching but I just can’t help but enjoy the “unscripted” drama!  

Jon - My guilty pleasure is playing video games. Nothing beats vegging on the couch and playing games for hours on end. I have also been known to watch Geordie Shore with Kelly (and enjoy it). Oh, and thanks to Kelly I am also a “Belieber”

Tell us something that we don’t know about you!

Kelly - I am a total Disney nerd! I love to watch Disney movies and my all-time favorite is The Little Mermaid. We have a house full of various Disney collectibles and my favorite place to vacation is Disney World in Orlando because it’s my happy place! We have been to a Disney theme park every year since 2008 (sometimes twice in the same year) and last year we completed my Disney bucket list item and have visited all the Disney theme parks around the world – Anaheim, Orlando, Paris, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Tokyo!  

Jon - I was a competitive swimmer for about 15 years at a provincial level. I started when I was 5 after the swim instructors failed me at the red level for being too short since I couldn’t stand in the shallow end without my head sticking out of the water! I was also a swim coach for about 3 years after I had finished swimming competitively and have taught many of my friends how to swim better.

What made you start doing barre together?

Kelly - My best friend lives in Calgary and she had won a free month pass to the Barre Body Studio there. I was visiting her one weekend in November 2016 and she told me I had to come to class with her because she thought I would love barre. She was right! I loved how much it challenged my strength in a different way. I started the two week unlimited trial in December and was hooked. I had been in need of a change to my fitness routine as home workouts had become repetitive and motivation was getting hard to find. I have dragged Jon to all sorts of group fitness classes in the past (i.e step class, aquafit, bootcamp, Zumba) and figured he might as well give barre a try too since he was struggling just as much as I was in finding motivation to workout. I convinced him to give it a whirl and after his trial period we both ended up with monthly unlimited memberships and you’ll find us at the barre or on the trampolines most days of the week!

Jon - We have done group fitness classes together in the past and enjoy working out together. We started to do at home “Beachbody” workouts but after almost a year of doing them it got repetitive and boring. Kelly had started doing barre and told me that she had seen a few guys there and she told me I should give it a try.  I started with a three week unlimited and went as much as I could to maximize my experience and I ended up really enjoying the classes! After the trial period I signed up for a monthly unlimited pass and the rest is history!

How is working out together different than working out separately?

Kelly - I think working out together gives you a lot more motivation to get to a class or get a workout in because you become a team and you aren’t doing it just for yourself. It keeps me more accountable for my actions and choices because they impact my partner. I like working out together because even when there are days we might not be feeling up to it, we can borrow positive vibes and energy from each to get through the workout. I feel this gives you that extra push to challenge yourself and work a little harder each time. It also is just awesome to be able to spend time with my favorite person doing something that is actually good for you and enjoyable at the same time!

Jon - Working out with Kelly gives me more motivation to not only exercise but also to try harder and push myself. I have always found that working out by myself takes a lot of extra mental effort to push myself to do the best that I can since no one was watching me and it was easy to give up.  

If you had to choose 3 words to describe each other what would they be and why?

Kelly - Jon is patient, selfless, and laidback. He is the perfect match for my sometimes too “Type A” personality. I often say I am a “realist not a pessimist” but Jon is definitely an optimist. His positive attitude and outlook on everything is inspiring and keeps me striving to live life to the fullest every day. He is a patient listener and is always thinking of how he can take care of or make other people in his life happy and I admire that about him.

Jon - Kelly is motivating, witty and dedicated. She helps keep me on track when I’m feeling extra lazy, either at home or at the gym. She also is very quick witted and can always say something funny or sarcastic without missing a beat which always puts a smile on my face. She is extremely hard working and always puts her whole heart and soul into whatever she’s doing.


Athlete Strength. Dancer Grace. - The Importance of Flexibility & Strength


Build muscle - Evolve resilient bodies - Induce strength
Lengthen muscles – Stretch to capacity - Bend without breaking


These are the goals that drive our barre classes, each with a coinciding theme: strength and flexibility. We find strength in the burn of each small movement and we find flexibility in the release. Strength is the quality of being strong, flexibility is the quality of being limber. While they may sound dissimilar, barre is the art of fusing these two abilities together to encourage the most able bodies. In fact, we highly value the fact that they work best in partnership.

 S T R O N G – Each pulse, plié, and contraction that causes the muscles to shake is pushing muscle fibers to the point of total exertion. By fatiguing not only the large muscle groups but also their supporting accessory muscles, our prime motive is strength. Strength is crucial to a healthy body because it supports life functions, maintains general health, and fosters overall wellness.

 F L E X I B I L E – You most likely recognize this as the stretching component of class – the warm up, the barre stretch after a series, the final stretch on the mats - you certainly are not wrong. After peak exertion, we deliver a stretch to release the muscles that were previously pushed to their limit. However, what you might not know, it that anytime we are working an exercise in extension, this is also promoting flexibility. Flexibility is crucial to a healthy body because it a key player in injury prevention, reducing stress in fatigued muscles, and promoting a greater range of motion to take your workout to the next level.

So how do they work together?


The relationship between strength and flexibility is significant for a variety of reasons. Flexibility affects strength because a limited range of motion is going to hinder your best strength gains. Think about the mobility required in a squat … when you get deeper into the movement, you can push the muscles further. Having the flexibility to put your body in the proper position and alignment for an exercise is a vital part of fitness. But with that said, the stronger you get, the more flexibility you lose. It is crucial to continue to stretch before, after, and during resistance training to keep the body limber but also to maintain this desired flexibility.

Likewise, strength affects flexibility because flexibility without the corresponding strength to support it can result in joint instability. This is when tissues weaken and are no longer able to hold the bones of the joints in proper place. Lets break this down further – Joints allow movement throughout the body. Ligaments hold the bones of the joints in place while your body is at rest; muscles hold the bones of the joints in place while your body while moving. It is absolutely essential that muscle strength is developed to support the body in motion.

In conclusion, the body must be both supple and strong. We consider this these two qualities fundamental in each barre class that we lead. And encourage you to find a balance between the two to cultivate the most functional, healthy, and best body possible! 



Barre Body Studio – Edmonton


Barre Favs: Summer Fitness

BarreFavs - Summer Fitness

With the warm weather and the extended YEG sunshine, the fitness opportunities are endless during the summer months! We turned to your barretenders this week to ask how their fitness game changes during the summer. While you can always catch them at the barre, they have some really good ideas on how to compliment your barre workouts with some sun and fresh air. Read all about it below!

"In the summer I look forward to more activities that get the body moving and the heart pumping outside! I really like to head over to the Grandview stairs when I have a free night and we love taking Bax out for more walks because the weather is so much nicer. Also, does running to catch up with the ice cream truck count as cardio? Asking for a friend…" - Jill

"For some reason I'm open to doing and trying more things in the summer. Last summer I ran stairs for the first time which was killer! Not sure what I might try this year!" - Lauren

"Not really, I'd love to say I get out and go running in the valley or do stairs outdoors at Glenora, but I am a terrible runner. I go for more walks outdoors and enjoy the trails. This year, I might end up utilizing my back yard though! --- Benefits of living on a golf course ;-)" - Kirsten

"I usually increase my bicep workouts. It takes a lot of effort to bring the icy cold margarita to my lips while sitting on the patio!" - Elissa

"Once summer hits I resume all outdoor activities! Tennis, golfing, river valley walks (I might even take up running this summer - probably not, but maybe!), biking, Frisbee, the list goes on. You will still catch me at the Barre probably as much as I am now - but any time spent during the colder months going to other studios or checking out new fitness gigs in Edmonton is now transferred to outdoor activities!" - Michelle

"How does your fitness game change once summer hits? To be honest, my fitness game slows down a little during summer. Although I play rec league slo-pitch, I spend more time hanging out with friends (usually on a patio) than I do taking my usual barre, spin, and yoga classes. Whoops!" - Lindsey

"More time spent doing outside activities; walking/running in the river valley, biking, hiking, outdoor yoga, stairs, whatever I can do to get outside and enjoy the sun." - Carla

"I don't do much differently in the summer in terms of my workouts, but generally I am more active, walking more, playing outside with my girls, swimming, hiking, etc. I LOVE summer!" - Jessica

"Mine pretty much stays the same! I love to switch it up with outdoor activities since it is after all nice out :)" - Hannah

"Once the snow is off the ground I tend to run outside quite a bit more. It's a great way to get exercise in while still enjoying the beautiful weather." - Jaime

"When summer comes, my fitness game gets weaker because I'm sitting on the patio. Just kidding it really doesn't change much but I try to go outside more often." - Emily

"With the extra daylight, and warmer temperatures, I start running outside again in the mornings! I love being outside, and its the perfect way to start my day." - Christy

"When summer hits I often try to do more outside fitness activities to take advantage of the sun and heat! Anything from a walk to biking or playing in the yard with my nieces, all a great way to change up the routine!" - Erika

"My fitness game kicks into high gear when the summer comes! There is something about sunny mornings that energize me to get a workout in first thing. Also, I am stoked that hiking season is back!" - Katarina

"It's summer and we might as well enjoy the nice weather while it lasts so there will be a lot more hiking, biking, swimming, kayaking and paddle boarding. Pretty much anything that I can do outside that's active." - Erin
Now get out and enjoy the sunshine barrestars.


Barre Body Studio - Edmonton


#GirlBoss - Tanya

Meet Tanya – founder, designer, creator. Tanya started a small succulent business, Fringe & Flora, last year in November 2016. We started by asking her a little bit about how she started up her business and what lead her to this field.

I’ve made many flower arrangements and potted plants for my own yard but wanted to create something on a smaller scale that people can have in their homes, offices, events, or give as gifts and become part of/enhance their home decor.

I started by choosing my pots and planters. I’m very selective about what type of pots I use- I want them to be beautiful and special but simple enough to allow the plants to shine. As well, I wanted to provide selections for many different tastes and decor styles. Succulents seemed like the obvious choice of plants to use because they are so beautiful, unique and diverse, and are relatively easy to care for and can be made to suit any space. It wasn’t easy to find a supplier for them since they don’t grow well in Alberta, but luckily I found a local nursery that I source most of my succulents from and occasionally will bring some in from BC. If only we had the weather to grow succulents year round, I would be in heaven!

Next came months of creating arrangements for family and friends to see what worked and what didn’t. It was a huge learning process and involved many sleepless nights, but I eventually came up with a cohesive collection which was photographed for my website. I decided to work with a local photographer/designer, Jillian Schecher, which was so helpful and such a positive experience.




Then we asked Tanya to tell us a little bit more about the specifics of her brand. What the early stages of building her brand looked like, what her creative process looks like now, and how she collaborates with her clients to make each creation unique and authentic. This is what she said …

When developing Fringe & Flora, I knew what look and vibe I was going for but I just didn’t know how to translate it into a brand. I decided to work with a local photographer/designer which was so helpful and such a positive experience. She helped bring my vision to life and create a brand that is truly “me” and shows what I offer, as well as keep me inspired and gave me confidence during the tough times when I wanted to give up.

Fringe & Flora arrangements are made-to-order and each one is unique. Customers can browse the collections of arrangements on the website, fringeandflora.com, and choose which style of arrangement and planter they like. From there, I have them fill out an order form with specific questions, for example how many succulents, if they want one larger or multiple smaller ones, colour palette, the décor style- to get a sense of what they want. Customers can be very specific and know exactly what they want, but often they give me full control to create something special for them.

I also receive requests for arrangements through social media and email. Often a person will like something I’ve posted on Instagram and message me to order something similar. I’m very open to all forms of inquiries and love working with clients and hearing their ideas, making it a collaborative process. Some of my nicest arrangements were created because of requests and feedback from clients.

Once the client places the order I will plan their arrangement and choose the perfect succulents. I try to keep a selection of succulents on hand but will always go out of my way to find just the right ones for that specific arrangement. Sometimes this means ordering something in or shopping around locally The whole process can take up to a week but if someone needs something on short notice I always do my best to have it ready for them. I offer delivery to the Edmonton area for a small fee, or pickups at my downtown studio at no charge.

Sometimes a person has a special container that they want used for their arrangement. I’m happy to do custom orders, as well as replanting a Fringe & Flora planter if the succulents start looking tired and need to be refreshed.

I have done a few pop-ups around the city and will open up my studio on the occasional weekend so people can stop by and shop some pre-made arrangements. The best place to get the scoop on what's going on with Fringe & Flora is probably Instagram (@fringeandflora).


We asked Tanya what she likes about her job and asked her what her favourite part of being an entrepreneur was. We also chatted with her a little bit about the life of an entrepreneur and how she is able to maintain a work/life balance. Here is what she had to say ...

My absolute favourite part about this job is creating something for people that they love and that makes them happy. I feel honoured when people choose me to create something that they will have in their homes or gift to loved ones, and I get so happy picturing it as something they display in their homes and that brings them joy.

I also really love the planting and gardening aspect and getting my hands dirty- it’s so therapeutic to work with and the plants and the dirt and have contact with nature. No matter how stressed I am, after making an arrangement I always feel better. Visiting the greenhouses for inspiration and to get supplies is also pretty sweet perk of the job.

Finally, love being able to be creative and the process of planning out the arrangements- which succulents will look best together and go in which planter.

It’s so fulfilling to see the final product after all the planning and hard work that goes into each one and people can know that every single piece is made with love.

Maintaining a work/life balance is definitely something I struggle with because I am a perfectionist and tend to feel like I have to be able to do absolutely everything all the time, and having your own business can be incredibly busy. Sometimes I have to force myself to take time away from work, to hang out with my husband and dogs, see my wonderful family and friends, work in my garden, or to just have time to myself, and have realized that I'm better and more productive if I do these things. It also might sound cliche but eating healthy and exercising (especially barre) make a huge difference. Whenever I leave barre I feel energized, more balanced and less stressed. I'm also trying to be more mindful and focus on the present and have recently started meditating which has been a game changer.

And finally, as always, we talked about community. How the YEG community influences her work, her business and her product and also, as an entrepreneur in Edmonton, how she works alongside other locally owned and operated businesses.

The Edmonton community has had a huge influence on what I do. I think our city is so special in that its residents really appreciate locally made goods are so supportive of local business. I feel so lucky every single day to live and work in YEG and be part of such an amazing group.

I've had nothing but positive feedback and support from other local business owners, makers and vendors that I've worked with or met at various shows and events. There is such an amazingly talented group of people who live here and work so hard at their crafts and rather than competing, it's like everyone wants each other to succeed.

The group who has had the biggest impact on me by far though are all the customers I've had the pleasure of meeting. I'm constantly blown away by how kind and supportive everyone is, and it makes me appreciate what I do so much and keeps me motivated to work harder and do better.



Email: fringeandflora@gmail.com

Instagram: @fringeandflora

Website: fringeandflora.com


Barre Beats: May


This plus 20 weather has got us cruising with the windows down. And what are we listening to? Well that can be found in this month's Barre Beats. Check the blog below to catch up on what jams we are loving this month! 

Bad Liar - Selena Gomez

Despacito (ft. Justin Bieber) - Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee 

High Without Your Love - Loote

No Promises (ft. Demi Lovato) - Cheat Codes

Rollin (ft. Future & Khalid) - Calvin Harris

Slow Hands - Niall Horan 

Malibu - Miley Cyrus

The Line - RAYE

Castle on the Hill (Seeb Remix) - Ed Sheeran 

OK (ft. James Blunt) - Robin Schultz

Young (ft. Andrew Jackson) [Sam Feldt Remix] - Frank Walker

Open Your Eyes - Sam Feldt & Hook N Sling

Rhurbarb - Oliver Nelson

What are you listening to? We want to know! Hit us up on Facebook (Barre Body Studio Edmonton) or Instagram (@barrebodyyeg)!


Barre Body Studio - Edmonton 


#WomanCrushWednesday - Instructor Spotlight: Carla


Why do you barre so hard?
It’s an alternative to the gym that’s structured but is varied enough that it never feels routine. It’s a full body workout that really targets and tones the smaller areas of your body you don’t usually exercise.

What keeps you inspired and motivated? 
The combination of energized instructors and clients, the bumpin’ music, and a supportive atmosphere/community that keeps you wanting more.

What other exercise do you love (in addition to barre) to keep your routine well rounded?
Running, river valley stairs, HIIT, spin, yoga, row; you can find me just about anywhere!

What advice do you have for your fellow barrestars?
Breathe through it and draw on the strength from those around you, oh and have fun!

What is your favorite post workout snack?
Always down for a smoothie loaded with lots of fruit and greens or dates with almond butter and coconut


Whats your favourite work out track right now?
Party Favor - Give It To Me Twice (feat. Sean Kingston and Rich The Kid)

What is your guilty pleasure/ pleasures?
Re-watching old teen TV shows the really kitschy ones like The Hills, Gossip Girl, The OC… so bad yet so good.

If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
Peru and Bolivia, it’s been on my list forever.


Barre Favs: Summer Activity in YEG

BarreFavs - Summer Activity 2017

There is no better time to be an Edmontonian than summer! The electric energy and fun atmosphere are just a few perks that come along with being known as Festival City. We are buzzing with excitement and big plans for the coming months. Read below to see where you may find your instructors on a warm day, when they are not tending the barre.

"My favourite summer activity is going for strolls around the city with my pooch, Marvin. We spend a lot of time at the off leash playing in the river!" - Elissa

"During the summer I love to go standup paddle boarding at Lake Summerside." - Megan

"Does sitting on a patio drinking chilled white wine, laughing loudly and catching some rays with my girls count? If not, then I'd say anything in the water, time on the lake, swimming, paddling, boating. I love the water, and if I could, I'd be in the ocean." - Kirsten

"Anything and everything with food: heritage days, taste of Edmonton, or just hitting up a patio in general!" - Lauren

" I have a family cabin out by Red Deer so on the weekends my family and I like to head out of the city to enjoy some time spent outdoors. We love to waterski and wakeboard and always enjoy the much needed family time at the beach during the day and by the fire at night. If we're in the city, my husband and I love to walk down 124th street with our pup, Bax and grab dinner at one of YEG's many food trucks! " - Jill

"Day trips to the mountains! Alberta is such a beautiful place and summer is the perfect time to go adventuring!" - Katarina

"Enjoy all the activities that YEG has to offer! All the festivals and street events. " - Hannah

"Definitely backyard fire pits!" - Jaime

"My favorite summer activity to do in and around the city is to go to the old strathcona farmers market and then have dessert somewhere after." - Emily

"My favourite summer activity would be to hop on my bike and go exploring my city. Some great tunes, the sunshine and a bit of a sweat is what I look forward to when the summer (finally!) arrives." - Erika

"I love going to check out different festivals and farmers markets in the city - there are actually so many!" - Michelle

"Being a mom of three kids, we hit up as many different playgrounds with spray parks, and outdoor pools around the city all summer! Perfect way to stay cool and have fun!" - Christy

"Floating down the Pembina River. Fun fact: the large s'well fits a whole bottle of wine!" - Lindsey

" Walking to the downtown farmers market, grabbing a coffee and walking around browsing the desserts, summer fruits and vegetables. Perfect morning!" - Carla

"It's a tie between checking out all the amazing festivals Edmonton has to offer and hanging out at all our beautiful parks with my girls. Summer is my favorite time to be an Edmontonian!" - Jessica

"Taking my commuter bike to get around the city opposed to driving. Being close to downtown I might head to the downtown farmer's market or to North 53 for the best cocktails our city has to offer." - Erin


Have more ideas for us? Hidden treasures in our city that you'd like to share? Hit us up on any of our social media platforms!

Instagram - @barrebodyyeg
Twitter - @barrebodyyeg
Facebook - Barre Body Studio Edmonton

Barre Body Studio - Edmonton


Barre Favs: Props

BarreFavs - props

Bands, balls, weights - oh my! Your barretenders are always keeping things fresh by changing up not only the music and movements but also the props! Props bring diversity to each barre class - you never know what you are going to get. If you couldn't already guess your instructors favourite props ... here they are!

"Green band for arms!" - Erika

"Definitely the blue band, it can take any exercise from 10 to 10 000 in a second. Never fails to deliver the best burn." - Charlotte

"I love the blue band. The extra resistance it adds to even the most simple series always gets everyone sweaty and working hard! Bring on the shakes!" - Kristin 

"Weights are by far my favourite prop. Mostly because I just love the arm series, but they can add resistance to just about any exercise. (And who REALLY likes bands anyway)" - Lindsey

"I love the blue band! It's so versatile and allows you to take so many basic barre moves (plies, butterfly, clam shells, chair, etc.) and adds that extra challenge and way more burn. Plus it's light weight or portable so it's easy to take on vacation!"

"The ball! Mostly for the wide versatility it offers in class and how it transitions from the barre to the floor work seamlessly." - Erin

"My favorite prop is the blue band! I love it because it can be used in so many different exercises and makes for an effective and quick burn." - Emily

"I like to incorporate lots of different props into my series' because you can take the same series and add a different emphasis to the movements. If I had to choose a favorite it would probably be the ball, especially for inner thigh work. The ball allows you to choose how much resistance you want to apply, meaning you can work intensely or ease off a bit to get a little break if you need it." - Jaime

"I like the new air cushions because " - Elissa

"My favourite it the red band because it really gets those hamstrings!" - Megan

"I think the best prop to challenge any barre move is your own mental resistance. You get out what you put in, so in my opinion, you are your very best prop! ;)" - Michelle

"Hands down the mat - who doesn't love mat work? But for real, the possibilities for floor work are endless, I'm a big fan!" - Katarina

What are your favourite props in a barre class? Let us know through any of our social media handles. You can find us on facebook @ Barre Body Studio Edmonton and twitter/instagram @ barrebodyyeg.


Barre Body Studio - Edmonton


Mummy Tummy: Postnatal Barre and Diastasis Recti


If you are searching for a safe and effective workout regime to get you back to that pre-baby bod, we’ve got what you need! As a workout catered specifically to women, barre can be mindfully modified to be the absolute best prenatal and postnatal exercise for all of the hot mommas out there. Because of the low impact nature and small, isolated nature of the movements, barre offers a safe and fun option for expecting mothers and new moms to keep up with their fitness routine.

Today on the blog we are going to focus specifically on barre as both, postnatal fitness and rehabilitation for diastasis rectus. At BBS we value fitness as a lifestyle, which mean ensuring the flexibility to support you through all stages of life, including the creation of new life! Once baby is born, your body has gone through all sorts of structural and hormonal changes and we understand that reintroducing exercise back into your routine can be extremely intimidating. We encourage you to start off slow, always do what you are comfortable with and speak with a professional before working out. (Your doctor and your instructor should be your go to!) We offer Baby Barre classes that ensure low-impact movements, proper core bracing, and many rehabilitative exercises for the pelvic floor, however, our Barre Body Fit classes can easily be adapted to accommodate any client that is postnatal!

Okay, so all is well and good … but what if I have Diastasis Recti? What effect does this have on my fitness routine?

Diastasis recti, or abdominal separation, is common among postpartum women. This is typically defined as a separation (approximately 2.7cm or greater) between the two sides of the rectus abdominis muscle, less scientifically known as your abs. This is typical in postpartum and pregnant women because as your uterus grows during pregnancy, the rectus abominis stretches (and even more so when you are expecting more than one!) Also note that this condition can be stimulated by pregnancy because it is ultimately a build up of pressure. It is not necessarily caused by pregnancy, diastasis recti can occur in men, children, and women who are not pregnant as well.

Now that you know what it is and how it’s caused, we will get into how to check for it. You can check for ab separation right at home.

1)   Lie on your back on a flat, hard surface and place your feet flat on the floor. Take a few deep breaths to settle your abdominal muscles.
2)   Place your fingers right above your belly button and push deep into the abdomen.
3)   Gently lift your head and shoulders to contract the abdominal muscles.
4)   If you can physically feel a gap, that is your abdominals separated. From there you can test the width of separation based on how many fingers can fit into that gap.
5)   Repeat this process with your fingers just below the belly button, as separation can take place here as well. 

First and foremost, if you do discover any separation between the abdominal muscles consult a doctor. In some cases, minor separation can be resolved simply at home but for more sever cases, physiotherapy may be a better option. However, if your diastasis recti is not surgical, it will typically be repaired through movement and core strengthening. Remember that your abdominal muscles are in a vulnerable state postpartum, so it is important to start slow and take small steps towards recovery. Here are some tips that we have as you begin to repair separation:

· Use breathing techniques to engage and strengthen the transverse abdominals.
· Focus on improving your overall posture, sitting and standing. Always think about lifting tall through the top of your head and maintain a neutral spine and pelvis. Barre does fantastic work for your posture, take the alignment tips from your BBS class and apply those to everyday things!
· Perform all movements in your barre class with deep core activation. Zip up through the lower belly, breath into the side body and back of the rib cage.
· Exercises such as bird-dog, pelvic tucks, cat-cow, glute bridge, and fold overs are all safe and effective ways to brace and strengthen the core.

 With the list of YES exercises, we’ve also got some no-no’s as well! Stay away from crunches and sit-ups to avoid overworking the muscle and worsening the separation. Crunching from flat back or with the ball behind your shoulder blades should be avoided. In a barre class, you can replace any crunch exercises with level 1 abs (the ball underneath the tailbone). Remember that if at anytime you are looking for an alternative exercise to do in class, your instructor will be more than happy to help you out!

(Note: Plank is an exercise that may be okay near the end of your healing process. Listen to your body because it will be a little bit different for everyone in this position.)

In closing, we would like to remind all of our barre mommas, that ab separation is not permanent and it is SO common. Mummy tummy is one of the joys (yup, we called it a joy) that comes along with that sweet little babe! With the glorification and praise of the dad bod, we’re going to let you in on a secret … the real victory here is the mom bod: strong, powerful, and you look damn good too!


Barre Body Studio - Edmonton


#WomanCrushWednesday - Instructor Spotlight: Sarah


Why do you barre so hard?

I love barre simply because it is SO much fun! I started ballet at 2 ½ and
being at the barre takes me back to the fun days of dancing at the studio! The
energy at the studio is always addicting and I love how each class is different
and challenging. ​

What keeps you inspired and motivated?

Feeling the changes!! ​Having more energy, feeling stronger, and gaining more confidence.

What other exercise do you love (in addition to barre) to keep your routine
well rounded? ​

I like to take spin classes (LOVE YEG cycle!) and hitting the treadmill!

What advice do you have for your fellow barrestars?

Continue to challenge yourself each class! Always try to dig deeper, get lower,
or add more weight.

What is your guilty pleasure/ pleasures?​

Really anything CHOCOLATE! OMG’s, skor and Nanaimo squares are my favs!
I’m also guilty of treating myself to the occasional shopping spree 

Whats your favourite work out track right now?​

Starboy ft. Daft Punk and the Weeknd!

Enjoy the little things – what little things make you smile? ​

My morning coffee! Also being able to spend time with friends and family!​

If you had to choose 3 words to describe yourself, what would they be?​

Compassionate, Attentive, & Fiery (I’m a ginger!)​