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Personal trainer apps guide people during workouts, similar to a real-life personal trainer, except the guidance is from a smartphone or tablet. Some apps focus on specific physical activities, such as running or yoga.

A quick look at 9 of the best personal training apps

As these apps are more affordable than a personal trainer, they could help people on a budget stay healthy and remain physically active.

This article discusses how personal trainer apps work, their health benefits, and some of the personal training apps available for different exercises.

Personal trainer apps aim to give people the experience of having a physical personal training session at home through a smartphone instead of going to the gym and working around a personal trainer’s schedule.

Most apps tend to have a progress tracker, and some may also include meal plans and tips for healthy eating.

These apps do not usually require a lot of home gym equipment. They have variable workout lengths and intensities, meaning people can simply pick up their phones and work out when they have the time.

The cost of personal trainer apps varies depending on how much detail and input a person requires. There are some free apps, but most require a monthly or yearly subscription.

Personal trainer apps can be less expensive than a gym subscription or personal training session.

Medical News Today includes reputable, well-received apps and those with a range of price points and features.

Additionally, MNT considers the following:

  • Health claims: MNT chooses companies that make no questionable health claims.
  • Trust: MNT includes companies that operate transparently regarding their products, services, and leadership. Also, those companies have certifications from reputable, third-party organizations where relevant.
  • Business standards: MNT chooses companies that follow safe and ethical business and marketing practices.
  • Reputation: MNT includes companies with no warnings from governing bodies, unresolved lawsuits, and positive standings with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

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.

Best for yoga: Down Dog

  • Platforms: iOS and Android
  • App Store rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars
  • Price: 3-day free trial, then from $9.99 per month

Down Dog is a yoga app that provides people with a brand new yoga practice each time they log in. Down Dog does not use prerecorded videos, and its workouts have over 60,000 configurations, so people can build a yoga routine to suit their preferences.

The app has the following features:

  • multiple practice types, such as Vinyasa yoga and restorative yoga
  • a paid feature to focus on back pain
  • six different yoga teachers
  • dynamic accompanying music
  • offline yoga practice
  • available in nine different languages

The app offers a free 3-day introduction to the yoga series, as well as paid boost features that unlock the rest of the app. Down Dog memberships cost $9.99 a month or $59.99 a year.

Best for cycling: TrainerRoad

  • Platforms: iOS, Android, and desktop
  • App Store rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars
  • Price: free to download, from $19.95 per month

TrainerRoad aims to help people plan a workout for on- and off-road cycling, a triathlon, or custom events.

The app has the following features:

  • structured, power-based interval training
  • workouts for indoors, outdoors, and groups
  • crossplatform cycle training
  • tracks training stress
  • measures personal records
  • compatible with over 200 devices

The app is free to download, and there is a full money-back guarantee for the first 30 days. TrainerRoad subscriptions cost $19.95 a month or $189 a year.

Best for first-time runners: Couch to 5K

  • Platforms: iOS and Android
  • App Store rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 4.6 out of 5 stars
  • Price: $4.99

This app is suitable for people who are new to running. They can choose their fitness coach and join the running community on social media. According to the app website, people can finish a 5K race after 9 weeks.

Learn about the best running shoes for women and men.

The app has the following features:

  • four different motivating virtual coaches
  • human audio cues to guide people through their workout
  • in-app music player
  • map routes
  • support from the running community
  • repeat workouts
  • best performance tracking
  • treadmill support
  • graphs and averages to track progress

Once people have completed the Couch to 5K, the same company offers a 5K to 10K app so that a person can continue building on their physical fitness.

Best for pregnancy: Tone It Up

  • Platforms: iOS, Android, and desktop
  • App Store rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars
  • Price: 7-day free trial, then from $8.33 per month

This personal training app is suitable for people who are pregnant and those who want to continue reaching their fitness goals at home.

Learn more about the best pregnancy apps.

The app has the following features:

  • pregnancy and postnatal exercise programs
  • over 500 on-demand workouts for every goal and fitness level
  • full-length, follow-along videos demonstrating proper exercise technique
  • class reminders and progress tracking
  • tips and guidelines from experts for eating healthy meals
  • recipes, including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options
  • an online community

If a person is pregnant, they should always speak with their doctor before starting new workouts.

This app is free to download, and new customers can access a 7-day free trial. Premium features, including workout classes and on-demand videos, are available when people commit to a monthly or yearly subscription. Prices start from $8.33 a month.

Best for strength exercises: Workout Trainer

  • Platforms: iOS and Android
  • App Store rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars
  • Price: free, with an optional subscription starting from $6.99 per month to access premium features

This app offers both free and premium features. People can use this app to discover at-home bodyweight workouts, with or without any gym equipment.

This app has the following features:

  • thousands of free workouts and custom training programs
  • compatible with Apple Watch or Bluetooth LE Heart Rate Monitor
  • certified trainers that provide step-by-step audio, photo, and video instruction
  • adjustable difficulty levels
  • paid access to over 100 multi-week training programs
  • option to hire dedicated coaches for one-to-one online training

A PRO+ membership costs $6.99 a month or $59.99 a year.

Best for free workouts: Nike Training Club

  • Platforms: iOS and Android
  • App Store rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 4.3 out of 5 stars
  • Price: free

This app is free to download and use, which may make it most suitable for people on a tighter budget.

The app provides various workouts, such as yoga, HIIT, basketball, running, and weight training. Additionally, people can customize plans to suit their needs and requirements.

Other features include:

  • meditation workshops
  • nutrition advice
  • workout reminders
  • personal goal tracker
  • streaming capabilities
  • expert tips and articles

Best for seasoned runners: Map My Run

  • Platforms: iOS and Android
  • App Store rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 4.7 out of 5 stars
  • Price: free, with an optional subscription of $5.99 a month to access premium features

This app may be most suitable for seasoned runners who want to log their workouts and runs.

This app is free to download and use. Standard features include Apple Watch connectivity, syncing with most exercise apps, and saving favorite paths to run. Additionally, the app allows people to log over 600 workouts and runs.

Premium membership costs $5.99 per month. Features include:

  • live tracking
  • personalized training plans
  • monitor heart rate
  • real-time audio coaching on GPS-tracked runs

Best for live classes: Obé Fitness

  • Platforms: iOS and Android
  • App Store rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: 3.8 out of 5 stars
  • Price: 7-day free trial, then from $24.99 per month

This app features live and on-demand classes, making it suitable for those who prefer classes in the comfort of their own home.

People can access 20 daily live and over 8,000 on-demand classes, including dance, kickboxing, yoga, HITT, and pilates workouts.

People can stream the classes through Chromecast, Roku, Apple TV, and Fire TV. The app also provides a workout community, offering workout parties and calendar sharing.

This app offers a 7-day free trial. After this period, people must pay $24.99 a month or $169.99 a year.

Best for trainer choice: Future

  • Platforms: iOS and Android
  • App Store rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars
  • Google Play rating: no ratings available
  • Price: $19 for the first month, then $149 per month

This app offers a choice of coaches available worldwide and custom-built workouts that people can complete in their own time.

The app offers unlimited workouts that people can fit around their schedules, alongside goal and calorie tracking.

Additionally, people can message their personal trainer at any time.

This app is free to download. The company offers a discounted first month costing $19, with each additional month costing $149.

The following table compares the personal training apps in this article.

PlatformsApp Store rating out of 5Google Play rating out of 5Price
Down DogiOS
Android
4.94.93-day free trial
from $9.99 per month
TrainerRoadiOS
Android
desktop
4.94.8from $19.95 per month
Couch to 5KiOS
Android
4.64.6$4.99
Tone It UpiOS
Android
desktop
4.84.77-day free trial
from $8.33 per month
Workout TraineriOS
Android
4.74.4free
optional subscription from $6.99 per month
Nike Training ClubiOS
Android
4.84.3free
Map My RuniOS
Android
4.84.7free
optional subscription from $5.99 per month
Obé FitnessiOS
Android
4.83.87-day free trial
from $24.99 per month
FutureiOS
Android
4.9no ratings$19 for the first month
$149 per month

People may wish to consider the following when choosing a personal training app:

  • Exercises: People should ensure that the app they choose supports the exercise they wish to do, such as cycling, yoga, or kickboxing.
  • Personal training: Some apps connect people to a real person, whereas others provide prerecorded encouragement and tips.
  • Features: Some apps offer extra features, such as calorie counting, whereas other solely focus on a particular set of exercises.
  • Price: Some apps are free to download and use, whereas others may cost over $100 per month. People may wish to consider their budget when choosing which to download.

Personal trainer apps encourage people to lead a more active lifestyle and can help them reach their fitness goals.

According to the United Kingdom’s National Health Service, people who do regular physical activity have a lower risk of:

Regular exercise may also alleviate the symptoms of other conditions or help stop them from progressing.

Diabetes and cardiovascular health

A 2017 review found that moderate to vigorous aerobic exercises, such as jogging and cycling, increased maximal oxygen consumption, which reduced the risk of cardiovascular problems in people with type 2 diabetes.

The reviewers also note that strength training helped improve bone and mineral density and insulin sensitivity.

People with diabetes who have difficulty finding the time to visit a gym or research workouts may find a personal trainer app more convenient.

Learn more about diabetes.

Fibromyalgia

A 2017 systematic review found that aerobic and muscle-strengthening exercises helped ease painful symptoms of fibromyalgia and improved overall well-being.

Due to the chronic pain people experience with fibromyalgia, committing to a gym membership could be costly, especially during a flare-up. A personal trainer app may help people exercise from home when they feel better but do not have the energy to visit a gym.

Learn more about fibromyalgia.

Cancer

According to a 2017 study, mild physical activity — when possible — is safe during cancer therapy and may improve a person’s quality of life during and after treatment.

However, if a person is receiving chemotherapy or other cancer therapies, they should check with a doctor whether it is safe to increase their activity levels. With a doctor’s help, they should also develop an exercise plan customized to their specific needs.

A personal trainer app may benefit people receiving cancer treatment as they can take part in guided exercises from home.

Learn more about cancer.

Here we answer some common questions about these apps.

Can fitness apps be as effective as personal trainers?

A 2021 study found that downloading fitness apps alone is not enough to modify a person’s fitness habits.

However, those who already have an established health and fitness program may find that fitness apps are a more affordable way to exercise than working with a personal trainer.

Can people use a personal trainer app when new to exercise?

The majority of fitness apps are suitable for both beginners and more those who are more experienced.

However, people may wish to choose an app that markets itself mainly for those new to exercise. These apps may provide more resources, training tips, and instructions than other products.

How do I know if a personal training app is right for me?

People should consider what type of exercise they wish to do, such as running or taking part in studio-style classes. Different apps may be more suitable for certain exercises.

Another consideration is whether a person feels the motivation to exercise without someone providing one-to-one instruction and encouragement in a physical space. People who prefer physical contact with a trainer are less likely to find personal training apps suitable for their needs.

Exercise can reduce the risk of developing certain conditions, such as depression and stroke, and ease the pain of chronic conditions, including arthritis and fibromyalgia.

While people may not be in a position to use a gym or hire a personal trainer, there are affordable personal trainer apps that can help people reach their fitness goals.