This week I enjoyed my first online fitness class of lockdown: Ballet Fusion. In a class that promised to combine dance, fun, fitness and amazing results, with a feel-good factor thrown in, how could I refuse?
About Ballet Fusion
Ballet Fusion was founded by dance teacher Rhea Sheedy. Passionate about adult fitness, health and wellbeing, she personally developed all of the Ballet Fusion exercises, programmes and classes.
Classes range in length from 20 minutes, focusing on arms or core exercises, through 30 minute stretch and resistant band sessions, to 45 minute ‘classic’ ballet fusion classes.
All you need is a chair to use as a barre and enough space to lift your leg in front, to the side and behind you. Oh and a computer or mobile phone you can watch the class on.
Working out from home
While I have been tempted to try live exercise classes from home, until now I hadn’t given it a go. This was partly due to timings – I have a full time job and a two-year-old creating a schedule that lends itself more favourably to going running at antisocial times of the day, rather than a 10am workout. But also, a little bit of me has been too nervous to try something new. Like trying any new class, I always have that bit of anxiety about making a fool of myself.
However, I love ballet and the opportunity to try out a 20 minutes core workout during my lunch break and a 45 minute ballet fusion classic class during my daughter’s bath time, was too tempting to miss.
And I really enjoyed the classes I sampled.
Classic Ballet Fusion and Abs
The 45 minute ‘Classic’ fusion class was my favourite. It combined work at the barre with floorwork and centre work. The time just flew by and I felt both invigorated and relaxed afterwards.
If you are looking for a gentle, ballet-based workout I can’t recommend it enough. The only downside is that you don’t get the corrections or feedback you might get in an ‘in person’ class. So while this is theoretically for all abilities, I think it is useful to have some background in ballet.
The 20 minute core class was fun. It also encouraged me to do some ab work in the middle of the day, which I wouldn’t otherwise have done. I did feel a little self-conscious working out via Zoom – especially as there wasn’t an obvious place to put my laptop so I could see clearly while lying on the floor, and in the end the angle was pretty unflattering! It was also quite tricky to hear the instructor when the music was playing so I relied on the video and a bit of guesswork.
As a one-off session, I would argue that it is quite indulgent to pay for a 20 minute class. But if you had signed up for a subscription, then the 20 minute classes offer a really good way to sneak some exercise into a busy day.
Transitioning to online
It isn’t just us as users getting used to online live-stream workouts. Although the transition to online classes was part of a long-term plan for Ballet Fusion, the pandemic hurried this along. Rhea writes of her experience:
‘The transition was definitely a learning curve for me, specifically the technology side of things. I’ve tried at least four different cameras and two different mics. Also, the furniture in my lounge/studio has been permanently rearranged!’
‘The nicest surprise of all was the clients’ enthusiasm to join me online. Some people actually prefer online classes to studio classes now. They find more flexibility in the schedules and for people who don’t like to be seen (or see themselves in the studio mirrors), they can keep their camera off and go to town with the exercises in the privacy of their own homes.’
Booking online classes
You can book one class at a time, sign-up to multiple class passes, or subscribe to unlimited classes for a month. The options are really flexible. The classes are live but there is also an online archive of previous classes available. These can be ‘rented’ or ‘bought’ as one-offs, or access is unlimited for a monthly fee.
Online packages vary with the option of an unlimited month of classes priced at £45. Individual classes cost £6.50.
Christmas special prices launching this week include
‘The Taster’ online package (Try one of every class): £10
Normal online class price £6.95. Try every class once in a 30 day period for £10
3 Month online membership: £99
Saving of £36. Includes unlimited online classes, access to the video library and all class recordings, 10% off online shop and free technique guide.
More about classes and pricing available here