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I'd Stack that! How Do I Structure My Barre workout?

Do you like your time wasted? Yeah me neither. At UpBeat, we know the importance of our participants' time. In every UPB training, our certified instructors learn exactly how and why we use stacking for a hard-core yet accessible class every time.

How Do I Get the Most Out of My UpBeat Barre classes?

One of the best ways to utilize your time wisely as an UPB instructor is to keep transition time to a minimum. With 9 class maps to choose from, organizing your playlist should be a breeze. All class maps are designed to first properly warm the large muscles of the body with big dynamic movement, get the heart rate up, and engage the core. After that, the order in which you work through the muscles of the body is going to depend on just three things: your equipment, muscles, and planes of motion.

What Is Equipment Stacking in Fitness?

We talk a lot about "stacking" here at Upbeat Barre. We are usually talking about either equipment or muscles. Let's start with equipment. Stacking the same piece of equipment for at least 3 tracks in a row allows participants to get a feel for that equipment, go up or down in weight as needed, and intensifies the signature burnout that muscle-endurance workouts (like barre) are praised for. Switching equipment (weights, balls, bands, sliders, yoga blocks, etc.) too often can waste precious time and cause confusion, not to mention minimizing that burn you're trying to chase!

What is Muscle Stacking?

Muscle stacking means working on one muscle, and then letting it lead us to work in areas surrounding that muscle. In short, exercise stacking refers to ordering your workouts in such a way that each movement "feeds" off the one it follows.

Since we properly warm the entire body in the first 3 tracks, we are free to go to burn town for the rest of class. (Generally, we work larger muscle groups first, then smaller. This is just fyi though, because we literally do all the mental work for you in our class maps!)

For example, for our first UPPER, let's say we plug in a tricep track.

The track burns out our triceps completely because it is focused to do so. It also warms the shoulders as a secondary muscle used. So, we might choose to do a shoulder-focused track for our next UPPER in order to stack the muscles used and maximize burnout. We do a LOT of compound movement here at UPB (to avoid boredom and rev up the heart rate throughout the workout), so stacking muscles is easy to do if you pay attention to targeted muscles listed on every set of notes. (This is also searchable in our choreography database!)

What Role Does Planes of Motion Play In Our Stacking?

Another huge aspect of any UPB playlist is POM (planes of motion). Our instructors know how important it is to have our workouts mimic our movements in real life both for strength and injury prevention. Hitting all 3 POM is non-negotiable. With the above example, if our tricep track is done all in the sagittal POM, we would choose a frontal plane to work in for our shoulder-focused track. Or maybe follow with a transverse directed bicep track. In this way, we maximize burnout of muscles while protecting joints and effectively "train how we live."

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