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Prenatal Barre Modifications
At 20 weeks, we advise Bar Method clients to modify their positions to accommodate their growing uterus. In the case of twins or if you begin to feel uncomfortable sooner, you should modify earlier as needed. Use your best judgement to modify additional exercises not noted here. If any position makes you uncomfortable, ask a teacher for assistance in finding a modification that is appropriate. Always ask your doctor for approval before practicing.
One Weight Lifts
- Modify by working with your back at less of a forward angle (about 45 degrees) or hold onto the bar for balance.
Pushups & Plank
- We recommend, but do not require, modifying pushups and plank again the bar, leaning diagonally in. You are welcome to perform these exercises on your knees or feet as usual if you prefer.
Stretch at the Bar
- At this stage, you should avoid twisting stretches, therefore, remain in the waist stretch (arm overhead leaning towards the wall or mirror) as the rest of the class turns their room-side shoulder down to move to the back stretch.
- Do not perform other variations such as twisting towards your stretching leg and bringing arms to a T-shape.
- You can opt to perform stretch at the bar in a kneeling position if it's more comfortable.
Ball or Small Mat Use
- Using the ball or small mat pressed between the lower thighs is fine if its comfortable for you.
- Stretch gently in this position, especially in the lunge. Do not take the splits option.
- Do not do any variation that includes twisting at the waist, such as the side stretch where you walk both hands to the left and hang to the right.
Fold-over and Arabesque
- Modify these exercises with diagonal seat, standing seat or pretzel. Choose and exercise that can follow the same choreographic moves being taught to the rest of the class as closely as possible.
Zinger and Floor Zinger
- Modify zinger by staying close to the bar, almost standing. Alternatively, do standing seat facing the bar or diagonal seat.
- You can do floor zinger unless you find it uncomfortable. Alternatively, continue doing the seat-work that was being done prior to floor zinger.
- If you are experiencing sciatica, do not do pretzel. Modify pretzel under the bar or on-profile by keeping your hands on the floor.
- During the stretches, do not perform the twist stretch where you turn down to face your extended leg, simply remain in the side stretch.
Round-Back & Flat-Back
- Modify round-back by placing 3-4 risers against the wall under your large mat and lead (about 45 degrees) against the risers to tilt your pelvis forward and support your low back. Use a strap over your working side foot and hold the strap with your elbows bent.
- Instead of the spiral stretch after round-back, raise one arm up, turn your palm away from you and lean to the opposite side to stretch your waist.
- Modify flat-back by keeping both feet down.
Curl & Curl Stretches
- Use 3-4 risers for support in the same manner you do for round-back.
- You must keep both feet on the floor for all abdominal work. Curling is an option for any set if you feel comfortable doing so.
- In place of calm, straight leg clam or flat-back curl, do high curl with the ball behind your waist. Keep the 3-4 risers and sit forward so you can place the ball between your back and the risers.
- In place of low curl with one or both legs up, do kickstand curl. Alternatively, you can do low curl with legs down and perform the curling motion with the challenge option to release your thighs and raise arms higher.
- In place of the knees-to-the-side, oblique stretch after curl, do the mermaid stretch.
- During the cat stretch you should round your back, then bring your spine to neutral, not arch it. The reason is that the weight fo the growing belly can put pressure on your spine when in an arch.
Back-Dancing & Final Stretch
We encourage pregnant students that are 20+ weeks to limit the time spent lying on their backs during exercise. For this reason, we recommend doing back-dancing and/or the final stretch in an upright position. Take the option that is most comfortable for you at your stage of pregnancy.
- You may modify back-dancing by kneeling on a small mat in a parallel position facing the bar and performing rhythmic tucks.
- You may modify final stretch by sitting up with one leg extended in a strap and the other leg bent on the floor for stability. You may also use the risers if needed to lean against for added support.