Chris Pine’s ‘Incredible’ and ‘Difficult’ New Workout? Ballet.

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Photo credit: CBS Photo Archive - Getty Images
Photo credit: CBS Photo Archive - Getty Images

He might be one of Hollywood's four anointed Chrises, but Chris Pine is a slightly different kind of leading man to his namesakes. Dubbed "his generation's Robert Redford" just this week by Slate, you're more likely to find him going viral as an accidental book influencer than you are to see him posting his workouts to social media.

And when it comes to his workouts, Pine approaches things differently too: he just revealed that his "difficult" and "incredible" training regime currently revolves around ballet.

"I love it," he told People in a recent interview. "I wish I'd done it years ago. It's an incredible workout. I just find it so beautiful because you have to be so strong and kind of masculine, so to speak, but also very gentle and feminine with your arms and your hands. It's just a very difficult art form."

He's not wrong: while the word "ballet" might initially evoke images of tutus and pastels, the truth is that being a ballet dancer is akin to being a pro athlete much like a gymnast, with extraordinary levels of explosive power, flexibility and mobility, strength, and all-round aerobic fitness. And for male dancers, that also means being able to safely and repeatedly lift ballerinas in a way that appears both beautiful and effortless.

The physically punishing and mentally demanding nature of life as a pro ballet dancer has been well-trodden in pop culture, from the movie Black Swan to Netflix's Tiny Pretty Things to Megan Abbott's novel The Turnout, but as a form of leisurely exercise, the full-body benefits speak for themselves.

Pine went on to explain that "a couple things" first drew him to the art form, but that he was finally inspired to attend a ballet class when he saw the David LaChapelle-directed music video for the Hozier ballad 'Take Me to Church,' which features a striking solo performance by Russian dancer Sergei Polunin.

"I was like, 'Who is this guy?'" Pine said. "I was like, 'I want to look like that.' He's a ballet dancer. And I was like, 'I should take ballet.'"

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