No heavy stuff, CrossFits, Intervals or running – just a home ballet bar, a straight back, and extended feet. I have 7 ballet exercises that will make you slimmer and more graceful after the very first class.

The ballet has long gone beyond theatrical scenes and rehearsal halls – a stunning physical form, stretch, and posture of a ballerina made fitness instructors around the world include ballet exercises used by professional dancers in their programs.

1. Hundred

First of all, stretch your knees one by one for two minutes. After that, lie on your back, straighten your knees, raise your head and shoulders, press your chin against your chest.

Lift the upper body from the floor and the legs – up to the ceiling or diagonally (this is more difficult). Pull your hands along the body and raise them up and down 4 times, then do twisting twice. Repeat the series of exercises 10 times.

2. Push-Ups

Stand in front of the barre, put your hands on it and step back. The palms are a little wider than shoulders; the back is straight and buttocks are tense. Start push-ups. Try to touch the barre’s with your chest and then return to the initial position. Repeat this 15 times.

You can then make it more difficult: make the push-ups only halfway, do 15 “momentums” (light ups and downs) in this position, and then return to the initial position.

3. Reverse Push-Ups

Sit on the floor, knees bent, feet shoulder width apart, hands behind your back (under the shoulders), the palms faced forward. Lift your hips off the floor and shift the entire body weight on your hands. Do reverse push-ups (bending and straightening your elbows) 20 times, with full feet on the ground. After that, repeat the same thing, but on your heels.

Make the exercise more difficult: stand on your heels, take a few steps forward (the weight of the body remains on your hands) and do 20 reverse push-ups again.

4. Foot Exercise

Stand with your back to the barre. The distance between you and the barre should be the palm of your hand. Feet waist width apart, knees slightly bent. Move your hands behind your back to the sides and grab the barre. Raise your right foot up and straighten it (toes must look up), turn your foot to the right as if “revealing” your leg muscles. In this position, perform each of the following exercises for 30 seconds: lift and lower your foot a bit (a few centimeters), make small rotational movements (as if drawing a circle with a heel in the air).

Then repeat the rotation in the other direction, stretch out your foot, lift and lower your leg several times. Return to the initial position and repeat the same thing with your right foot.

5. Another Foot Exercise

Take the initial position from the previous exercise: stand with your back to the barre, put your hands behind your back to the sides and grab the barre. Raise your right foot up and straighten it in your knee (toes looking up), turn your foot to the right as if “revealing” your leg muscles. Make 15-20 shallow amplitude squats, and then change your legs.

6. Plie and Releve

Stand in the starting position – one hand on the barre, the other – on your waist. Widely spread your legs, turn your feet (toes should look in opposite directions), knees slightly bend. Then descend so that your hips were at the same level as your knees.

In this position, start to descend a little deeper for 30 seconds, and then ascend a little higher.

Next, do the same thing, but by going up and down on your tips.

7. Swinging Backwards

Turn the left side of your body to the ballet barre, knees slightly bent, heels in, toes out. Put your left hand on the barre, bend the right one and put it on your waist. Pull the right leg back a little so that it stands on the tip. Perform the following movements within 30 seconds: make small swings (10 cm from the ground) with your right foot to the back; make a circular movement during one of the swings and try to make a small circle in the air with your tip.

Alternate a few swings and rotations (do them both clockwise and counterclockwise) for 1 minute. Then repeat the same thing with your right foot. If you feel this exercise is easy, do it for 2 minutes for each leg.