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Working out at home has surged in popularity in recent years. The ease of not having to leave home to work out in the gym or participate in a group fitness class is one of the main appeals.

A quick look at 11 of the best online workout programs

Working out at home is also considerably cheaper than a gym membership or class fees, if not cost-free, and there are plenty of great options available online.

Furthermore, research suggests that working out using online apps or programs can help people overcome certain barriers, such as a lack of time, facilities, or enjoyment.

Individuals can choose a workout depending on how they feel that day. Those looking to relax or reduce stress can opt for yoga or pilates. For people looking to lose weight or improve their fitness, there are intense cardio workouts that may also boost endorphins, which are the positivity hormones in the brain.

Stretching and strengthening sessions may be a great option for people who sit for long periods at a desk or have back pain.

There are thousands of online workout programs from which to choose. In this article, we list some of the top options available.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.

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The following workout programs are ideal for people looking to relax and improve their flexibility:

For a yoga workout: Yoga with Adriene

Image of the Yoga with Adriene logo over a light green background
Trial periodnone
Supported devicesany devices with access to YouTube
Required equipmentyoga mat, although this is not essential
Pro free service
Conwithout an instructor to correct a person’s posture, physical injury is possible

Yoga with Adriene is a YouTube channel that includes a range of living room workout sessions that Adriene has tailored to various ailments and states of mind.

For example, people can choose:

  • yoga for stress
  • yoga for self-belief
  • yoga for back pain
  • yoga for weight loss
  • yoga for vulnerability

Adriene eloquently explains the purpose of every move and encourages viewers to “find what feels good.”

There are also workout videos for all ability levels, from beginners to experienced yogis. The workout videos vary in length, so whether people have just 10 minutes or a whole hour, they can find a yoga practice that suits them.

For a ballet-based workout: Ballet Barre

Image of the Ballet Barre logo over a light green background
Cost free
Trial periodnone
Supported devicesany devices with access to YouTube
Required equipmentchair
Procan help to improve posture and strength
Connot as suitable as other programs for those looking to increase muscle

Soon after the COVID-19 pandemic began, the Dutch National Ballet embarked on an online campaign to keep homebound nations fit and to pass on some of their skills.

The resulting Ballet Barre workouts focus on coordination and flexibility, making them a calming choice. Ballet dancer Ernst Meisner presents these workouts, and Rex Lobo accompanies them live on the piano.

The sessions offer people an opportunity to learn ballet moves from some of the best professionals in this artistic sport. The exercises are not too taxing, but they can help participants feel lengthened and stronger, with improved posture.

For pilates and meditation: Glo

The Glo website on a laptop and cellphone isolated against a green background.
Cost$24 per month
Trial period7 days
Supported devicesavailable on the App Store, Google Play, Roku, and FireTV
Required equipmentnone
Profeatures live classes as well as on-demand classes
Conother yoga, pilates, and meditation apps are available for free

Glo is an app that has a variety of pilates, meditation, and yoga workouts available either live or on-demand. It also includes cardio, HIIT, and barre exercises.

The company claims these workouts are suitable for beginners, intermediates, or advanced individuals.

Glo offers various classes ranging from 2-90 minutes with various experts in body wellness. A person can purchase a membership for $24 a month. They can also purchase an annual membership for a discount.

The following workout programs are ideal for people looking for an all-round exercise regimen:

For guest presenters: Popsugar Fitness

Image of the Popsugar Fitness logo over a light green background
Trial periodnone
Supported devicesany device with access to YouTube and on the App Store, Google Play, Roku, Apple TV, and Chromecast
Required equipmentnone
Provarious videos with different workout lengths
Connot be suitable for those who prefer workouts longer than 30 minutes

The free Popsugar Fitness workout videos on YouTube cover a wide range of fitness levels and goals. The workout videos usually feature three people demonstrating moves suitable for different fitness levels or degrees of flexibility.

There are various workout types and durations to choose from, covering multiple exercise types. Among others, these include:

Guest presenters include Jeanette Jenkins, The Hollywood Trainer, whose moves are challenging but varied, and Raneir Pollard, who specializes in Tabata, a type of HIIT workout.

Popsugar Fitness is a great place to find a wide variety of home workouts.

For workouts and recipe ideas: Centr

Image of the Centr logo over a light green background
Costfrom $29.99 per month
Trial period7 days
Supported devicesGoogle Play, App Store, Chromecast, and any device that can access the internet
Required equipmentnone
Proprovides workouts and recipe ideas
Conthe Centr app only caters to those with an omnivore, pescatarian, vegetarian, and vegan diet

Via their fitness app, Centr, Hollywood actor Chris Hemsworth and his personal trainer, Luke Zocchi, present workouts that last 20–40 minutes and cover strength training, HIIT, Pilates, and yoga.

The workouts are challenging, but people can adapt them to suit their ability level — by using lighter weights, for example.

The Centr app also provides recipe ideas for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks using healthy ingredients.

This app is a good choice for people who want to improve their overall health. Another useful feature is the option for individuals to input their health goals and track their progress.

Prices start at $29.99 per month.

For a free workout: Nike Training Club

The Nike Training Club app logo, a white rounded square with the Nike logo of a rounded tick and the letters "NTC" in black, isolated against a green background.
Trial periodnone
Supported devicesall devices with access to the App Store and Google Play
Required equipmentvaries depending on the workout, people can input which equipment they have access to
Proclasses in various disciplines
Consome reviews mention this app may not be suitable for beginners

As of the 2020 pandemic, Nike offers everyone free access to the Nike Training Club.

Nike adds new content daily, and people can set their own goals. In addition, users can select which pieces of equipment they have access to so the app can tailor workouts to their circumstances.

A person can search for a workout by choosing a class type, duration, and fitness level.

The app also provides guidance on nutrition, holistic wellness, mindset, movement, recovery, and sleep.

For a pre- and post-natal workout: The Bloom Method

Studio Bloom The Bloom Method isolated against a green background.
Cost$29 a month
Trial period7 days
Supported devicesthe App Store, Google Play, AppleTV, AndroidTV, Roku, FireTV, and Kindle Fire
Required equipmentweights, sliders, BOSU ball, yoga mat, and suspension trainer, with alternative household item options
Proprovides safe exercises for individuals who are pre- or post-natal
Conworkouts are mostly low impact, so they may not be suitable for all people’s needs

The Bloom Method provides a series of workouts for individuals who are pre- or post-natal. It has over 350 classes available on demand.

The workouts cover various areas, including cardio HIIT, dance cardio, barre, postnatal yoga, pre-natal core, boxing, and pelvic floor education.

Users can also access a private Facebook group, free consultations with pelvic floor therapists, meditation, nutrition information, and recipes.

This app costs $29 per month.

The following workouts are high-energy options:

For a dance workout: Kukuwa Fitness

Costfrom $14.99 per month
Trial period3 days
Supported devicesany device with access to the internet, Roku, FireTV, or Chromecast
Required equipmentnone
Pronew videos added weekly
Conmore costly than free dance videos and workouts

For high-energy, feel-good dance workouts, Kukuwa Fitness is a good option. With an upbeat soundtrack from different regions of Africa, Kukuwa encourages participants to move every part of their body and work up a sweat from the start.

The Kukuwa Fitness website claims that people “can burn up to 1,000 calories in one 60-minute Kukuwa class,” but the calorie expenditure will depend on how much effort a person puts in, their body weight, and their metabolism.

Each week, Kukuwa Fitness uploads three new workouts to the site. Favorites include the Kukuwa African Dance Quickie, Feel Good Friday, African Dance and Sculpt, and Midweek Motivate 15.

People of all fitness and dance ability levels are welcome, and the focus is on moving and having fun, rather than on perfect timing and skill.

Prices start at $14.99 per month for a Kukuwa Fitness streaming subscription.

For workouts with or without equipment: The Body Coach TV

Trial periodnone
Supported devicesany YouTube-compatible device
Required equipmentsome videos require weights
Profree to stream workouts on YouTube
Consome videos require equipment

Joe Wicks, otherwise known as the Body Coach, was popular with home-workout enthusiasts before COVID-19 but has since gained many more followers.

Through his Body Coach channel on YouTube, he offers a huge number of HIIT, strength training, and target area workouts that consist mainly of a series of exercises that a person repeats in sets. As with all HIIT workouts, the rest intervals between sets give participants the chance to recover and lower their heart rate.

Some workouts use equipment such as dumbbells and a kettlebell, while others require no equipment at all.

The Body Coach “PE with Joe” sessions have proved popular with people of all ages and have made working out at home fun and achievable for many individuals who have never tried it before.

The following workouts are ideal for people looking to reach or maintain a moderate body weight:

For a motivational workout: Body Project

Costfree, or $25 a month for unlimited access
Trial periodnone
Supported devicesany YouTube-compatible device, the app is available through Google Play, the App Store, Roku, and Chromecast
Required equipmentnone
Propresenters aim to motivate and encourage people to enjoy the workout
Confree membership may have limited features and access

The ethos of the Body Project founders, Daniel and Alexandra Bartlett, is to provide “real workouts for real people that deliver real results.”

Together with members of the Body Project, the duo presents workouts that motivate people to enjoy movement and exercise. Their attitude is encouraging, and the workouts are accessible for people of all abilities and fitness levels.

A person can choose high- or low-intensity workouts, cardio fat-burning sessions, pilates, or workouts that target particular muscle groups, such as the abdominals and arms.

For a challenging workout: Jillian Michaels

Costfrom $14.99 per month
Trial period7 days
Supported devicesthe app is available on Google Play and the App Store
Required equipmentpeople can choose which workout to follow depending on their equipment
Proincorporates meal plans as well as workouts
Conchallenging workouts may not be suitable for beginners

Since rising to fame as a fitness trainer on the TV show “The Biggest Loser,” Jillian Michaels has gone on to create popular workout programs, such as 30-Day Shred and Opus. Jillian’s workouts are challenging and range from HIIT and fat-burning to strength training and sessions that focus on weight loss.

Jillian’s My Fitness App offers personalized workout programs and customized meal plans that simplify the process of losing weight. Her vast community of followers is a testament to the effectiveness of her methods.

Plans start at $14.99 per month.

Below is a comparison table comparing the above fitness apps.

Cost per monthTrial periodRequired equipmentMain workout typesAbility level
Yoga with Adrienefreenoneyoga mat (not essential)yogaall fitness levels
Ballet Barrefreenonechairbarreall fitness levels
Glo$247 daysnone• pilates
• meditation
• yoga
all fitness levels
Popsugar Fitnessfreenonenonevariousall fitness levels
Centrfrom $29.997 daysnonevariousall fitness levels
Nike Training Clubfreenonevaries depending on the workoutvariousall fitness levels
The Bloom Method$297 days• weights
• sliders
• BOSU ball
• yoga mat
• suspension trainer
• alternative household items
variousall fitness levels
Kukuwa Fitness$14.993 daysnonehigh-energy danceall fitness levels
The Body Coach TVfreenonesome require weights• HIIT
• strength
• target area workouts
all fitness levels
Body Projectfree or $25nonenonevariousall fitness levels
Jillian Michaelsfrom $14.997 daysminimalvariousintermediate to advanced

When considering working out at home, people often have particular goals in mind. From weight loss, strength, and flexibility to improving coordination, finding inner calm, and simply feeling healthier, there are online workouts to suit everyone.

A quick online search will return a huge choice of workouts to try. People can choose one based on their goals, available time, and ability level, such as beginner, intermediate, or advanced.

It is usually best to try a variety of workouts to keep things interesting. Some people find a program that suits them and stick with it, while others mix and match, depending on how they feel on a given day.

The Hospital for Special Surgery recommends a person follow these steps to help avoid injury when working out at home:

  • Personalize: A person should follow a workout appropriate for their fitness level. Some people may also need longer breaks than the instructor recommends in the video.
  • Variety: A person should vary their exercise routine rather than doing the same thing daily.
  • Do not ignore pain: A person should stop doing a workout if they experience pain, as continuing can lead to further injury. If the pain persists, they should consider contacting a doctor.
  • Ask for help: A person should consult with an exercise specialist so they can learn the basics of how to warm up, stretch, and more in order to avoid injury.
  • Hydration and sleep: A person should ensure they drink plenty of water and work out while well-rested where possible.
  • Take time to recover: A person should take days off to rest their muscles to allow for recovery.

Below, we answer some common questions.

How does an online workout subscription work?

Once a person has filled in the required personal details for an online workout subscription, they will need to pay. Sometimes, a company will offer a free trial.

Companies often ask for monthly fees that they take via card. For most online workout subscriptions, a person can cancel this at any time.

Once a person has subscribed to a program, they can access all the resources and materials as and when they require until the subscription ends.

Can I test out an online workout program before I commit to the subscription?

Some online workout programs offer free trials for around one week.

People may wish to test out the program before committing to payment.

Do you need equipment for online workout programs?

Many online workout programs require minimal or no equipment. Some programs even offer a list of household alternatives to the equipment it uses in the videos.

Working out at home is more popular than it has ever been, and as demand rises, more and more programs are becoming available online.

There are fitness trainers, types of exercise, and regimens to suit everyone. It is just a case of finding what works best for the individual.