How to work out during a self-quarantine, from free yoga classes to Arnold Schwarzenegger's bodyweight routine

  • As gyms in the U.S. have been forced to temporarily close their doors to help reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus, some companies have offered their online programming and premium app content for free or at a reduced cost.
  • Some personal trainers and other fitness professionals are also offering free or low-cost workouts and fitness tips for people self-isolating at home. 
  • Here's a roundup of free resources for working out at home if you're quarantined or otherwise can't make it to the gym. 
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Big-box gyms are taking classes online for members (and sometimes non-members).

Whether or not you previously paid for a gym membership, many large national chains have moved fitness resources, including classes, online free of charge, including:

  • Planet Fitness is offering free live-streamed home "work-ins" to the public on their Facebook page, no equipment needed (previous workouts are archived on their page in case you miss a live session).
  • Life Time is offering public access to on-demand workout videos, divided into categories such as strength, cardio, and yoga. They also have other exercise suggestions to try if you'd rather DIY than follow along with a video. 
  • Snap Fitness has a 90-day-free trial available, with registration, to access its online library of workout videos. 
  • Gold's Gym has made its premium access to its propriety training app free to everyone through the end of May, along with an online streaming site full of workouts designed to be done anywhere. 
  • Crunch Gym has moved its workout classes online for members, but non-members can get a  45 day free trial of the Crunch Live app to access workouts and customized fitness plans. 

There are lots of free yoga videos and live-streamed classes from studios available.

With just a mat (or a towel) you can namaste at home and still do yoga with these online resources:

  • Modo Yoga, a studio in New York City, is streaming live classes on Instagram throughout the day, with a suggested donation to support the staff and instructors. 
  • Yoga with Adrienne on YouTube is always free, and has a huge variety of yoga routines for different times of day, to target different areas of tension. Plus, based on how much time you have, you can pick a quick video (under 10 minutes) or longer session of up to 45 minutes and anything in between.  
  • Down Dog includes yoga for all skill levels, as well as 7-minute workouts, barre, and high intensity interval training, through its apps. All content is free to everyone until April 1. After that, healthcare professionals and all students and teachers can access the content for free until July 1st. 

If CrossFit or other intense workouts are more your speed, try these challenging body weight programs with minimal equipment.

For experienced athletes looking for a more intense home workout to replace their usual heavy lifting regimens, many CrossFit gyms and similar programs have designed advanced routines that require minimal or no equipment, using body weight, sustained effort, and explosive power to challenge even the fittest exercise enthusiasts. 

  • Chalk Online, created by personal trainer and CrossFit gym owner Ryan Fischer, has a free two-week trial which includes access to 3 workouts a day — a traditional CrossFit-style workout with weights, a workout for those with little or no equipment, and a conditioning and core workout with lighter weight. 
  • CrossFit SPOT in New York City posts regular workouts and exercise challenges based on body-weight movements like squats, push-ups, plank variations and serious ab-burning core work. 
  • Exceed Physical Culture has a YouTube channel with a library of 20 minute workouts, including full body, upper or lower body, core, and cardio. The videos implement popular Tabata-style timing, with a set period of intense workout followed by rest. 

Family fitness classes include programming for kids and seniors, too.

If you're quarantined with young children or older adults, it may be more difficult to find something the whole family can participant in. Resources for all-ages fitness activities include: 

  • The YMCA 306 online platform has a selection of different works including bootcamp for everyone, "Silver Circuit" videos for older adults, and youth training ideas. 
  • Fitness Blender, an extensive online resource, has a workout designed for kids and parents that features game elements such as "Red Light, Green Light" to keep things fun. Their community forum has more suggestions for kid-friendly fitness from other parents. 
  • The National Institute for Aging Go4Life program offers workouts between 10 minutes and 60 minutes for older adults that include a warm-up, flexibility, strength, and balance exercises and a cool down. Sample workouts are included on the organization's YouTube Channel. 

Trendy brands like Peloton and Nike are now offering their content for free.

Big names in fitness like Peloton and Nike have shifted to offering their premium content free-of-charge to the public for the time being. 

  • Peloton, a brand that's synonymous with fancy spin classes and home workout equipment, now has a free 90-day trial of its fitness app, with instructor-led exercise routines even if you don't have the bike, treadmill, or other equipment. Social features like virtual high fives and leaderboards help provide a sense of community and motivation.
  • Nike recently announced its premium Training Club app content (normally $14.99 a month) is now free until further notice. The app includes a huge variety of yoga, interval training, and mobility work, as well as multi-week programs, led by Nike instructors. 

Boxing and MMA classes have gone virtual and non-contact.

Boxing, MMA, and other fight-training styles can give you a good workout even without exposing you to a stranger's sweat and germs. Some of the best available includes:

  • Title Boxing Club is offering a 30-day free trial of its online at-home boxing workouts for all skill and fitness levels. Their Facebook page also streams daily workouts from Title instructors. 
  • Rumble, an New York City boxing-inspired fitness studio, is streaming live daily cardio classes on Instagram. 
  • If you're quarantined with a training partner, legendary jiu jitsu master Renzo Gracie has made his online training academy free for 30 days with registration. 

Even celebrities are getting in on the home fitness trend to help encourage social distancing and "flatten the curve."

Even A-listers are hunkering down for the pandemic and finding ways to pass the time and stay fit. 

Celebrity trainer Steve Cook of "Biggest Loser" fame has been posting creative workouts with his girlfriend on Instagram, demonstrating how to use your partner as a weight if you don't have fitness equipment. 

Former bodybuilding pro and action star Arnold Schwarzenegger has been a major advocate for social distancing, and recently encouraged people to work out at home using a free 9-step body weight program he posted online, with a version for beginners and more advanced athletes. 

"We'll get through this together, and hopefully, we'll all emerge in a few weeks fitter than ever. Let's do this," Schwarzenegger wrote.

Read more:

People may need to work from home and limit socializing for more than a year until a coronavirus vaccine is available, researchers say

5 things that can help to boost your immune system during the coronavirus outbreak, and 5 that won't

How to create an effective full-body workout in a quarantine, according to personal trainers

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