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portable barres

Guest vila

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Does anybody own one of the portable barres (porta-barre type etc) and would you recommend them? Are they stable and really that easy to transport (the weight seems to vary quite a lot)? Any advice would help since they're quite an investment.

Thanks to all.

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The salles of my ballet school have portable - well, movable anyway - barres that are used during classes in addition to those at the sides of the room. They are very handy, I find - I try to get a place in the movable ones whenever I can, as they are usually in places with better view to the mirror. :)


One person can move them around the classroom, though typically we take them out in pairs to make it even easier; they have wheels so that when you tilt the barre it moves on the wheels and when it's upright the wheels don't touch the floor. (Hngh, difficult to explain.)


(Taking them out of the classroom to the next one is a pain, though - the wheels only work when your direction is roughly "away from" the barre. To transport them further than that the actual barres can be detached from the stands, but the stands would still be rather heavy.)


They are stable, too - you can make one move slightly with horrible leaning to the barre, but I have never seen one to come even closer to falling. During normal class work, they are practically as steady as the ones attached to walls.


I don't know the model we use, but I could try to find out. It didn't look like the PortaBarre or any other picture I found in the web. Those all had these long "feet" perpendicular to the barre itself, ours have heavy circular stands which I think might be more stable. I also have no idea what they cost - they look pretty expensive, though.

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Unless you are a teacher or own a school, I don’t think you need a portable barre.


If you are just using it on your own, a chair, piano, piece of furniture or window ledge works just as well. You only want to put the slightest amount of weight on your barre anyway.


For studio use, my school’s portable barres are homemade. Unattractive and bullet proof, they are easy to move and I’m sure not very expensive.

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Guest WendyMV

Mine was made from the friendly guys at Home Depot for about $50. It's 6' long and made from galvanized steel and it is totally stable. Trust me, it's better than using a chair or table, or even countertop (which I have done). And it's a whole lot cheaper than the barres you can order for $300! :)

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My favorite barres are made of metal pipes. You buy the pipes and elbows as needed at Home Depot, and then screw them together.

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I used to hit the plumbing supply store for galvanized iron pipes, joints, and so on, then welded the "U"-shaped contraption to two auto wheels. Worked fine for me, and very useful for building upper body strength for partnering when I wanted to move it!;)

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I just wished my balcony -which has a great rail- was inside my flat, but yes, you guys have been a real inspiration : i think i will hit the DIY shops, far more appealing and certainly a better deal to have my own private and unique specimen (though i did fancy for a moment the idea of having a carrying case :) ) ... Just hoping I'll get through this experience (hopefully this weekend) without major injury, i haven't been near an odd job... well for a long time.

Thank you all.

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Anne, I'd get 'em for you, but my uncle with the body shop and auto dealership passed away some time ago. ;)

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Our barre bottoms are made of metal pipes, not automobile parts. There is no welding, only screwing together of the pieces. They have a certain material consistency I imagine would be ruined if you used wheels.

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Not if you have a properly trained welder handy. (Learned how to braze at 10, oxyacetylene at 12, and arc and heliarc at 13)

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In my opinion, it doesn't matter how good the welder is. This is a subjective aesthetic opinion. Our barres are made entirely of pipes screwed together, and somehow there's something aesthetically pleasing to me about that.

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Aesthetic HOOEY! :mad:


You want things that work.

If they look good, that's nice, but function is first.


PS. Oscar Wilde died a long time ago.

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Who is Oscar Wilde?


Form follows function. The most beautiful things are those that are simple and functional at the same time.


Now you'll have to convince me that wheels welded at the bottom of a barre is more functional than all-pipe barres. I'm not at all convinced. All-pipe barres can be folded flat. They can be disassembled for storage and moving. The base does not protrude along the length of the barre...


In any case, ballet is all about aesthetic; actually, functional aesthetic, if you ask me. It's beautiful because it's simple and elegant and functional all at once. So to some extent, we approach everything with that eye. Not just the dancer, but also the stage, the studio and yes, even the barres. Our studio is spectacularly beautiful.

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If a dancer were to refuse to use a barre at many classrooms, mine included, because it wasn't Florentine Fourteenth-Century enough, he'd probably find himself starting class with a fast pas couru out the door, probably followed by pieces of the offending barre.


Re: Wilde - look it up! Also "aesthetic movement" in literature and art histories.

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