Cord Cutting Guide
Best Online Fitness Programs You Can Stream
Dec 11th, 2019
The average American spends 24 hours on the Internet each week --- and over an hour a day on Netflix alone. That probably conjures up images of someone sprawled out on the couch in pajamas, shooing a dog away from mu shu pork, and eventually realizing they’ve only taken 14 steps the entire day. In other words, it’s a sedentary activity.
But it doesn’t have to be! Exercise streaming is a popular and fast-growing trend; in fact, it’s one of the biggest fitness trends of 2019 (move over, Crossfit). You’ve got access to a great variety of content, available whenever, wherever. Plus, unlike expensive gym memberships or fitness classes, most of the content can be streamed for free, or a low fee.
So, not to sound like your spin instructor but… Are you ready to go from “Netflix and chill” to “stream and sweat”?! We’ve got you covered.
Where to Stream High Intensity Workouts
Before diving into some of the major streaming services, check out BeachBody On Demand, a subscription service with over 100 different workouts and specific exercise plans. Some are in real time (à la Peloton) or you can check out specific recorded workouts like P90X, Insanity MAX, or 21 Day Fix.
Fitness on YouTube
FitnessBlender is a great Youtube channel run by a husband and wife training team designed for busy people. Their 500+ (and counting) workouts are perfect whether you have 5 or 45 minutes to train. And can we say #CoupleGoals?
Another option: The highly popular BeFit features a variety of workouts from experts like Jillian Micheals, Denise Austin, and Mary Helen Bowers.
Fitness on Amazon Prime
If you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, take advantage of this fun 70-minute Zumba Fitness-Concert Live video. Don’t let the length intimidate you though. It’s broken up into 16 separate routines for you to pause and play (or skip) as much as you want.
Boxing on YouTube
If you’re looking for something a little more...martial, boxer and trainer Nate Bower has a number of short twenty-minute workouts through his Youtube channel NateBowerFitness. Unlike many martial arts channels and videos, which focus on training for the boxing gym, he has videos designed for getting your boxing on from the safety of your home.
Crossfit on YouTube
You might have heard of a little fitness trend called Crossfit. Started in 2000, the training program combines calisthenics, aerobics, and Olympic weightlifting in specialized gyms. But even without the dedicated Crossfit gym membership -- which can be pricey -- you can still subscribe to the Crossfit HQ Youtube channel for great videos on everything from at-home bodyweight workouts to nutrition to how-to’s on proper weight training techniques.
Weight Training on Amazon Prime
Though weight training requires having some more heavy equipment at home, it’s still possible to stream. For women looking for more focused weight training, Amazon Prime has a Full-Body Dumbbell workout video designed especially for women, with best results if done 3 times a week.
Where to Stream Yoga
Yoga is probably the best online workout to do at home. Movements are slow enough that it’s unlikely you’ll knock over that brand new vase or bang your knee against a glass coffee table. If you’re looking to find that yogi balance on demand, we found some good options.
Netflix has plenty of documentaries focused around the art and healing of yoga, like I Am Maris or On Yoga: The Architecture of Peace. Just in case you need to pregame or postgame your workout with some inspiration to continue contorting your body into a scorpion pose.
Unfortunately actual yoga workouts on Netflix are conspicuously absent. But if we all band together and search for “yoga workouts” or “yoga training” on Netflix, maybe they’ll get the hint.
Yoga with Adriene has 5 million fans for Adriene Mishler’s straight-forward, relatable teaching style. Best of all, her training occasionally includes her adorable -- and well-behaved! -- dog. #YogaGoals, meet #PetGoals.
Other Options: Purple Valley Ashtanga Yoga provides a more vigorous workout that links breath to a faster pace of movement. You’ll be temporarily transported to Purple Valley’s beautiful location in India and might get surprised by guest appearances from well-known yoga instructors.
If you’re a parent, babysitter, cool aunt, or just trying to occupy random children in your living room, check out Cosmic Kids yoga. This channel incorporates existing children’s shows or movies into the background, like Harry Potter-themed yoga in the Great Hall, and slowly walks kids through movements. It’s been known to occupy a two-year-old for a full thirty minutes. You’re welcome.
If you’re already subscribed to Amazon Prime, you should take advantage of their online workout programs. Yoga Sweat, a 30-minute Amazon Prime yoga video, focuses on power yoga, which includes faster, more strength-based movements than what you might be familiar with.
Another Option: You might be looking for a slower pace to find your zen--or heal some recurring stressors causing you pain. For a more therapeutic practice, Kanta Barrios’ Yoga Therapy for Back Pain and Stress Relief might be perfect.
Other Yoga Streaming Options
Yogis Anonymous is a real yoga studio in Santa Monica that also streams their classes online. You can try it out for 15 days, then you have to commit to a subscription (about $45 for three months). Or DoYouYoga is a free streaming experience boasting a 30-day program “to change everything.” Basically your own personal yoga trainer on your TV.
Online Workouts with Accessories
While yoga is a fairly low-investment workout from the comfort of your own home, you can get even more involved by adding some at-home equipment.
Peloton and Flywheel
If you haven’t seen Peloton commercials, or the tweets mocking Peloton commercials, let us just direct your attention here for a brief moment:
So, yes, both options are just a *bit* more expensive than an Amazon Prime subscription. But if you’re into cycling and would like a way to DIY at home, this is a great solution. They also have financing options and you can just subscribe to the streaming service portion separately if you’d like to purchase cheaper equipment yourself.
This is a workout that you will need to purchase the accompanying gear - which is a shiny, sleek (gasp) mirror. Just like there is a mirror at the front of most workout studios, this mirror will show you an instructor and other people participating in whatever workout you choose. It is controlled by a companion app, is compatible with heart rate trackers like Apple Watch, and when turned off, functions just like a normal mirror. It is a bit pricey, with the set-up starting at $1495.
If you’re active on social media, you’ve probably caught a glimpse of fitness gurus working out with straps hung from their ceilings. No, we’re not kidding. This type of resistance training is called TRX, and you can do it from home - you just need a solid, sturdy spot to anchor your straps.
The suspension straps range in price from $190 up, but you can subscribe to the workout app or specific workouts alone, which start at around $5.
Enjoy a rest day (and train vicariously) on Hulu
And if all of these options still aren’t enough -- or you just want a rest day -- you can always find inspiration from the athletes of obstacle course show American Ninja Warrior, now available streaming on Hulu.