Winter Workout Challenge with Britany Williams: Arms & Abs Barre Class

·Features and Health Editor
·6-min read

Welcome to Yahoo Lifestyle's exclusive 4-week Winter Workout Challenge with Kayla Itsines and her incredible team of Sweat trainers. If you're struggling with the motivation to stick to your workout routine in winter, we've got you covered, with a new workout and recovery session to try each week, as well as plenty of tips and tricks from the experts.

winter workouts Britany Williams.
Try this free Barre-inspired workout from Sweat trainer Britany Williams. Photo: Yahoo

This 15 minute arms & abs workout from Sweat’s Barre Instructor Britany Williams requires a pair of light dumbbells and will help build strength and endurance in your shoulders, triceps and core. 

Take this workout at your own pace as slower movements with proper form are better than going as fast as you can. Quality over quantity. 

The workout is designed to fatigue individual muscle groups by increasing the stimulus to your muscles in a balanced way to ensure you develop strength and stability from all angles.

“Work with light weights (1-2 kg). If you do not have light weights, I recommend substituting dumbbells for something lightweight at home like full water bottles, laundry detergent, or soup cans," Britany says.

"Make sure to take deep breaths throughout the movements to maximise the core work and mind-body connection."

Winter Workout Challenge week 3: Britany Williams Arms & Abs Barre class

Warm Up:

Britany recommends taking a few minutes to warm-up prior to working out. 3-5 minutes of cardio, such as jogging in place or skipping, will help increase your heart rate and help warm up your muscles for your session.

Full Body Sit Up with Arm Circle Reach - 30 seconds

Step 1: Start seated with your feet forward, knees bent and feet flexed. Bring your back flat on the ground with the arms straight overhead with one dumbbell in each hand.

Step 2: Slowly roll all the way up to seated, circling the arms around and up as you lift. Slowly lower back to the ground keeping the arms straight.

Shoulder Press with Knee Lift - 30 seconds

Step 1: Stay in a seated position with your knees bent and feet flexed. Bring your arms to 90 degrees in front of you with your palms facing in and elbows in line with your shoulders.

Step 2: With one dumbbell in each hand, reach your arms straight up. Then as you pull the arms back down to the starting position, lift one knee off the ground, contracting through the core to cause the lift.

Step 3: Set the foot down as you extend the arms up again then repeat with the other leg.

Should Press Pulse in Boat Pose - 30 seconds

Step 1: From seated with your feet forward and knees bent, lift your feet off the ground so that your shins are parallel to the ground.

Step 2: Hold one dumbbell in each hand, palms face inward.

Step 3: Bend the arms to 90 degrees in front of the chest so that your elbows are in light with the shoulders.

Step 4: Quickly pulse the arms up, slightly lifting the arms to find a burn in the shoulders. This press up is a very small range.

Modification: Keep the feet on the ground.

Should Press Pulse in Boat Pose
Should Press Pulse in Boat Pose. Photo: Yahoo

Row with Knee Pull Ins - 30 seconds

Step 1: Come to lying with your legs zipped together and each arm by the sides of the body with a dumbbell in each hand and the palms facing down.

Step 2: Lift your legs and shoulders off the ground to find a deeper engagement in the core then bend both knees into the chest. Then extend the legs back to straight as you pull the elbows straight back into a row.

Step 3: As you bend the knees back into the chest, extend the arms straight.

Modification: Rest your head on the ground OR complete just 1 of the 2 movements (either just the row or just the knee pull)

Modified Side Plank with Oblique Crunch - 30 seconds

Step 1: Come to one knee with the hips stacked in a modified side plank.

Step 2: Bring one weight in your top hand. Reach the top leg and arm long in the opposite direction.

Step 3: Then, to start, draw the top elbow to the knee towards the center of the body before extending both the arm and leg long again.

Step 4: Now, keeping both the arm and leg straight, reach the arm starts the foot as you lift the leg slightly towards the arm.

Step 5: Lower back to the starting position and repeat.

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Side Plank Hip Dip Pulses - 30 seconds

Step 1: Come to a side plank by bringing one elbow to the ground stacked underneath the shoulder. Both legs are straight and stacked.

Step 2: Bring one or both dumbbells to your hip. Keeping your hips lifted, pulse continuously up through the side body to find deep work in the obliques.

Modification: Omit the weights or bend the bottom leg so that the knee is on the ground.

X- Plank - 30 seconds

Step 1: Come to a plank position with one dumbbell under each hand. Back is flat, feet are hip width apart and hands are shoulder width apart. Make sure the abs are engaged.

Step 2: Keeping the dumbbell in hand, reach one hand to the opposite foot, piking the hips up.

Step 3: Lower down to the starting position before repeating on the other side.

Modification: Keep both hands on the ground the whole time and alternate piking the hips up then lowering back to a plank.

Plank with Rotation - 30 seconds

Step 1: Come to a plank position with one dumbbell under each hand. Back is flat, feet are hip width apart and hands are shoulder width apart. Make sure the abs are engaged.

Step 2: Keeping the dumbbell in hand, reach one arm all the way up to the ceiling straight above the shoulder to slightly open through the chest. Gaze should follow the dumbbell.

Step 3: Bring the arm back down to the starting position before repeating on the other side. Tip: Try to not rock too much in the hips. Core should stay contracted.

Modification: Perform the exercise on your knees.

Plank with Rotation
Plank with Rotation. Photo: Yahoo

Birddog - 1 minuted (30 seconds per side)

Step 1: This exercise will be repeated for 30 seconds on each side.

Step 2: Come to all fours with your hands under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Bring one dumbbell into one hand.

Step 3 Reach that arm straight forward as you reach the opposite leg straight back.

Step 4: Now, keeping the abs contracted, draw the knee to the elbow underneath the chest. Then extend the arm and leg back to straight before repeating.

Modification: Work without the dumbbell.

Cool Down

Britany recommends completing a cool down session after your workout. 3-5 minutes of walking will help to slowly lower your heart rate to normal levels and help your body to cool down after a workout. You might also like to complete some static stretching as part of your cool down, where you hold a single position for twenty seconds or longer.

Stay tuned for a new recovery session on Friday!

If you missed any of the last workouts, catch up here:

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