PADDLE HEALTHY | SUP BARRE, THE NEXT TREND?
Sweet tea, scrumptious eats, and Southern hospitality aren’t the only great finds of Virginia Beach; the bustling coastal city in southeastern Virginia is also the home of the next trend in standup paddling: SUP Barre. Created earlier this year by VB local, Whitney Fulton Lee, the activity blends our favorite watersport with the popular ballet-inspired workout, barre.
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Paddleboard yoga is so last year. Trade it in for Virginia Beach native Whitney Fulton Lee's genius hybrid—the strength and flexibility of barre paired with the balance of paddleboarding—and join her sunrise SUP Barre classes. Lee also offers sunset classes and occasional dog-inclusive, SUP With Your Pup sessions.
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The 19-month-old golden retriever has become a mascot for owner Whitney Lee's business, SUP Barre, which offers traditional barre classes atop paddleboards in the flat waters off the beach at First Landing State Park.
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3. It’s the perfect place to explore the great outdoors.It’s not just about sunbathing on the beach, y’all. Strike a balance between fun and fitness by taking a SUP Barre class (invented by local Whitney Lee and located on the water in the city’s lush First Landing State Park).
1. Get Your Paddle On. Located on Narrows Beach in the middle of First Landing state Park, taking a SUP Barre class is the ideal way to mix aquatic fun with a bit of fitness. With founder (and VB local) Whitney Lee as your spirit guide, hop on a SUP Board with a small group of classmates and paddle together to the other side of the gorgeous inlet where the water is calmer. There, drop your anchor ( yes, each of Lee's SUPs has its own mini-anchor) and let Lee guide you through a series of ballet and yoga-inspired moves, all while balancing on your board. But beginners needn't worry-all of Lee's exercises are easily modified, and the overall vibe of the class is relaxed and rejuvenating.
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SUP Barre is the innovation of local instructor Whitney Lee, who paired her passions to create the exercise concept.
"I love stand-up paddleboarding, and I am a certified barre instructor," she said. "I combined them for a unique workout."
SUP is an acronym for stand-up paddleboarding, and barre is a fitness concept based on a combination of movements that incorporate the handrail — or barre — found in ballet studios.
Lee grew up on Crystal Lake and lives to spend time on the water.
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When it comes to SUP Barre, we’re all beginners. The new niche in SUP—created by Whitney Fulton Lee of Virginia Beach, Virginia—just hit the water in early June, and SUPthemag.com‘s contributing editor, Shari Coble was onsite to give it a whirl.
Lee’s SUP barre class took students through an introductory workout that started with entry-level moves and advanced with increasing challenge. Despite being completely new to barre, we were able to tackle it pretty well, according to instructor Lee (…or maybe she was just being nice?). Besides the fact that it’s a great full-body workout, SUP barre is also a low-impact and fun activity that just gives us another reason to get out on the water with our boards and paddles.
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1. Testing your strength and balance with SUP Barre:
Virginia Beach is home to SUP Barre, the first-of-its-kind workout that combines yoga and barre exercise with balancing on a stand-up paddleboard. SUP (the classic version) may be the fastest-growing watersport in the country, but this takes it to the next level. Whitney Lee, the creator of the phenomenon, is a Virginia Beach native, and found her inspiration for the practice right here.
Sign up for an hour class (it includes board rental) and try it out — though it’s wise to give a pep talk to your core beforehand. And while you’re discovering your inner zen and burning some calories, you’ll be floating along a secret beach known to locals as “The Narrows.”
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If you are seeking an exciting challenge more invigorating than chasing your kiddos around the playground, convince your fellow fit mommas to sign up for a SUP Barre class, which is a combination of stand-up paddle boarding, yoga and barre (ballet-inspired workout) done on the serene water in First Landing State Park. SUP Barre also offers Beach Barre, SUP Yoga, stand-up paddle lessons and a SUP Sunset Booze Cruise. Single class sessions and group reservations are both offered, and boards are available for rental. Locations are at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront at First Landing or along Shore Drive but vary depending on class. Check the website for more information. SUPBarre.com
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Try out your first “barre” class, with a twist. Barre is like yoga but has its roots in ballet — think of a ballerina’s elongated, lean muscles, and that’s the goal. But SUP Barre adds another level. Yeah, who needs solid ground for balancing?
SUP Barre brings together barre and stand-up paddle boarding, and it’s definitely a zen experience on the calm waters of Chesapeake Bay, where it was invented. Classes are open to all levels, so grab some friends and board up for a workout unlike any you’ve done before. (Yes, even if you’ve SUPed before. Seriously. This is different.)
SUP Barre with One of Our Own! Come out and try the new trend in Standup Paddling, SUP Barre! Created by Whitney Lee, the activity blends a favorite coastal water sport with the popular ballet-inspired workout, barre. Taking off right in our own backyard from the Narrows, classes paddle out across the narrow channel to a cove visible from the beach and put-in. Each board has their own anchor to toss in the water to keep stable and flip the paddle upside down serving as your ballet barre to hold on to. Once everyone is ready, she bumps up the tunes and takes you from ballet's first position to third, with some killer core and lower-body burners throughout the hour-long session.
Whitney was already teaching barre, practicing yoga, and running when she became engaged. he began doing one small exercise on the stand up paddle board and found that barre exercises are even more effective on a SUP board that in the studio.