Local high school football players line up for barre practice

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High school football captains try barre. Alicia Vitarelli reports during Action News at 4:30 p.m. on September 19, 2017. (WPVI)

A group of local high school quarterbacks and linebackers, trained to tackle, not tuck, were lining up at the barre.

"I guess it will increase my range of motion and make me a better athlete all the way around, I guess," linebacker Stephen Schoenborn said.

To strengthen their game on the field, the five football captains of the Bishop Eustace football team are trading their plays for plies.

The idea of football players taking a few notes from prima ballerinas is not new. Both need grace, ease of motion, flexibility and strength.

"Football players are big and strong and tackling each other all over the field, but they don't get to hit the small muscles that are surrounding the big muscles," instructor Jenny Sabia said.

Sabia is a barre instructor at Life Time Athletic in Mount Laurel and says this kind of pregame training makes perfect sense.

"This class is geared towards your core, so we pull our core in and tuck it in and work it the whole time," Sabia said.

The captains were certainly a little skittish going in, but they toughed it out.

And while they came in cracking a smile, they quickly got their game faces on.

Sabia said it also helps with balance and mental focus, two things you definitely need on game day.

But she did admit off the record, the women in her class are a tad bit tougher than the guys.
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