March 28, 2017

Pure Barre: Pregnancy Modifications

Image via Pure Barre site

I'll be the first to admit that I'm not really keen on working out while pregnant. I was pretty sick during my first trimester, so working out was the last thing on my mind. But as I started to feel better, I knew I had to find some type of workout to do, especially to balance out my mint chocolate chip ice cream craving. I was doing Fitness Blender from home, but it was hard to maintain the discipline to keep at it.

I used to take Cardio Barre pre-pregnancy and loved it, but the studio isn't the closest to me. So in my search for local barre classes, I found a Pure Barre studio that opened up nearby. I had taken one Pure Barre class years ago, so I figured I'd give it another go. Now, it may not have been the wisest decision to start a new exercise routine mid-pregnancy, but I went into the first class with the mindset of "let's just see how I do," and I ended up really liking it! Maybe the fact that I had taken barre classes in the past, or that I was working out pre-pregnancy helped, but you should obviously consult with your doctor if you're considering a new workout, especially during pregnancy.

I've been taking Pure Barre now for a little over a month and its become my go-to pregnancy workout. There are, of course, a lot of modifications I have to make during the class, especially when it comes to ab work. The studio I attend was really accommodating in showing me the various pregnancy modifications and gave me a list of instructions, so I thought I'd share them in this post for any other mamas-to-be who are taking Pure Barre. Again, I'm obviously not a medical expert, so you should always consult with your doctor first and listen to your body during class!


Hundreds: Keep your legs bent at the knees and either hold on under your thighs bringing your chin towards your chest or rest your head on the ball and do the arm movements.

Roll Up: Keep your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, hold on under thighs to help yourself sit up. (Note: I find this takes too much effort for me, so I kind of improvise during this part)

Planks: Do them all from your knees

Pushups: Do them from your knees with shins to floor

Thigh and Seat Work

All are fine without modification but take a breather if you need to! In seat, if you feel too much pull on your lower back while doing full folder, fold your arms on the barre and hop in closer for more support


Keep your bottom knee bent and bottom foot on floor as well as hold on to your leg the entire time.


Keep your feet on the floor at all times. You can stay flat footed, on your heels or on your toes and just follow whatever movement the class is doing with your feet on the floor. If the exercise entails rotation, only rotate a tiny bit.


Use the ball behind your lower back and hold on. When the exercise entails rotation, only rotate a tiny bit. For the second part of abs when we roll back, use the modifications from the hundreds in the warm-up or stay sitting upright with the ball and mimic the movement of the class.

For the final part of abs where we are on our backs doing small lower curls, either join in with slightly bent legs, or if you're not comfortable on your back, skip it and move on to cat/cow stretching.

Cobra Stretch

Do cat/cow instead

Back Extension

Extend one arm and one leg; switch when class is half-way through exercise

Back Dancing

Keep your hips lower, widen your stance if that's more comfortable.


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