7 Fabulous and Free Workouts To Get You Moving At Home!

Here’s how you and your family can switch from being quarantine couch potatoes to #saferathome gym bunnies, and boost your health and mood at the same time!


Wellness, Health

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If you don’t happen to be somewhere where fitness instructors are offering exercise classes to neighbors on courtyard balconies as in this cortile (quad) in Milan, don’t worry! There’s a varied and expanding menu of appealing and free workout videos just waiting for you online. Available in a range of fitness styles and levels, they’re here to help you off the sofa and keep you on your toes, no fancy equipment required!

Being stuck indoors can bring its own set of struggles, from boredom, to a nagging feeling of restlessness. Working out at home motivated by well-crafted YouTube routines can help you get through these challenges and feeling more resilient. Whether you’re a beginner or a fitness maven, dance away your cabin fever, and emerge healthier and more joyful!

Fitness pros agree that any healthy person can do these workouts, keeping in mind the following:

  • Start small and build up to longer, more frequent workouts
  • Block off time for exercise to make it happen
  • Set aside a part of your home for workouts with room to move, keeping a mat/towel nearby
  • Always start with a warmup
  • No equipment, no problem! Be creative and use household items like your lounge couch for squats, or cans of soup or a gallon of water as weights

Take your pick from these 7 routines and shake up your living room vibe. If Jessica Alba and 82-year-old New Yorker, Barbara, can exercise at home, so can you! Bonus points for getting other family members to join you!

1. POPSUGAR Fitness

The POPSUGAR Fitness channel is now free. If you like variety in your workouts, this channel will hit the spot, as it gives you access to over 500 workouts from celebrity trainers and fitness experts across strength, cardio, yoga, and dance themes. Many people feel motivated with these videos as they feature at least three people, so they come with a “studio feel”.

Here’s fitness and dance expert, Nicole Steen’s 30-minute, no-equipment, full body workout that aims to tone every muscle. It includes toning moves and cardio bursts, progressing from standing to mat-based exercises.

2. P.E. With Joe

Cheeky Londoner, Joe Wicks, aka “The Body Coach,” has recently caught the imagination of a quarantined public around the world. They look forward to seeing him bound into his living room to offer his unique 30-minute workout for kids and the whole family: “If you’re new to this, welcome, every day, Monday to Friday at 9 a.m. live on my YouTube channel [The Body Coach TV]. I do a workout designed for families, for kids, teenagers, moms and dads, all to get together to have fun, to move, and to feel energized.”

Wicks told TV show Good Morning Britain that he has always used exercise to lift his mood, and wants others to benefit too: “My goal is to change the culture of fitness within a household so that we do exercise in front of each other…and enjoy it, and it’s not a separate thing that Mommy and Daddy do like going to the gym. Let’s do it together!” Kudos to Wicks for donating all the money raised from these quarantine season workouts to the UK’s health system, the NHS.

3. New York City Ballet workout

This is the “mere mortals” video version of the daily fitness routine at the New York City Ballet. This rigorous, ballet-based, and holistic workout promises exercises designed to balance fitness, life and art. Its 17 short sections include warmups, slow body stretches and abdominal exercises.

As actress and ballet fan, Sarah Jessica Parker, explains, “This program will enhance your muscle tone, improve your posture and deliver greater flexibility… I’ve taken ballet, and I know it will give you a special feeling of grace and wellbeing, something all of us can use.” And if you feel these exercises are a little advanced, if you love ballet (even just watching it), you'll enjoy this workout.

4. MadFit low impact, “apartment-friendly” full body workout

Maddie, the calm MadFit trainer, eases you in to this low impact full body HIIT workout, filmed on a mat from her living room, with a smile. Aside from her pleasing personality, this 20-minute workout is packed with other advantages. No equipment, no repeat moves so you stay interested, and no jumping so those of you living in apartments will keep your relations with your neighbors in perfect condition as you condition your body. And you won’t wake up your baby sleeping in the next room either.

And Maddie is garnering praise from people at various fitness levels from beginners to trained athletes. Alluding to Maddie’s quiet presence, follower Dijana Spahić posted: “Finally somebody who is not talking all the time during exercise!”

5. Core & Abs workout with Marion Brand

Part of Marion Brand’s Stay at Home Workout Series, these exercises come from an advocate of staying fit and fabulous after 50, and incorporate household items into the health-boosting routine.The exercises in this video focus on core and abs, with 30 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest. As Brand says: “Don't just watch ... clear a spot in your house, grab your household items and JOIN ME NOW!!”

Brand also reminds everyone that one size doesn’t fit all, so participants should proceed at their own pace. She also emphasizes the importance of warming up before any workout: “Marching in place, arm circles, squats, are examples. Do something you like, put on your favorite music ... dance, walk, climb your stairs, do some housework!”

6. Swing dance workout for beginners

Love dancing, want to burn calories and have fun? Who can resist this invitation from Monica, the creator and presenter of this really enjoyable 10-minute, equipment-free swing dance workout for beginners. We love the catchy retro music too. “All of this stress is just too much!! I hope this video lifts your spirits!!” says one of the viewers.  

This video offers a total body workout and can be an intense cardio session, depending on how much energy you exert when joining in. Tennis shoes are recommended to give you more support while you follow the moves.

 “This is awesome! Thank you so much! Needed something different!” posted Kris Rose. “What a cute and fun dance workout. It’s my second day of doing this workout and I already feel flexible! Will continue to do this to make myself feel good” adds Varna Shankar.

7. Yoga for vulnerability with Adriene

Adriene Mishler’s channel features everything from meditation for stress relief to high-intensity classes with routines for stamina and strength. Known simply as Adriene, her online yoga classes feel personal, almost like you’re benefiting from a one-to-one session.

Adriene’s new Yoga for Vulnerability online workout is perfect for everyone at home practicing self-isolation. Adriene has one of the most soothing voices on the planet, and a relaxed approach to yoga that appeals to millions. She invites you to join her for “this 35 minute loving and powerful grounding yoga session…from my home to yours!”

As Adriene shares, this at-home yoga practice “will lean in and use the tools of asana, breath, and science to welcome a sense of peacefulness and ease for both mind and body. The awareness of my own vulnerability has made me more aware of others' vulnerability and more loving and receptive in general,” she reveals. If you enjoy this session, check out Adriene’s set of similar practices she calls Yoga for Uncertain Times.

Among her fans is Amrita Jeremiah, who recently posted: “I guess we all forgot about the difference between weekdays and weekends since the quarantine and lockdown, this practice definitely serves as a reminder of what a Sunday feels like. Full of light, love and honesty.”