A fitness routine is part of any overall wellness program—after all, moving your body has all sorts of benefits, from improving your memory to helping ease depression. And with the world still under social distancing orders, at-home options are looking more attractive (and more necessary) than ever. Luckily, there are tons of great new smartphone apps out there to suit any goal. From guided yoga to customizable HIIT (high intensity interval training) routines to a cardio-dance virtual studio, here are the best apps to start your 2021 off with a bang.
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For the independents who want options: Downward Dog HIIT
From the developer behind the popular customizable yoga app of the same name comes a version that lets you choose your own HIIT adventure. You can select a category like “Total Body—No Jumps,” “Floor Is Lava (All Standing)” or “Total Body—No Wrists” for your preference or required modifications. You can also personalize your difficulty level by body part for a truly tailored workout. Price: $7.99 per month or $49.99 per year. Available in the Apple and Google Play stores.
For people who want a virtual trainer: SWEAT
Australian social media superstar trainer Kayla Itsines is one of the most beloved out there thanks to her original guided HIIT program, and she continues to add variety to her workouts by incorporating new trainers. Each expert has their own weekly plan set to follow that gets harder as you go to make you’re progressing. The latest additions to the team are barre instructor Britany Williams and yoga instructors Phyllicia Bonnano and Ania Tippkemper. You can follow their programs to the letter or mix and match as you go—even swapping out moves like burpees if you just don’t get why they’re such a thing. Price: $20 per month or $120 per year. Available in the Apple and Google Play stores.
For the yogis: Glo
No matter which yoga discipline is your favorite, this app has something for you. With access to a library of 4,000 classes spanning 16 styles for any level, you can use the app’s filters to pick your perfect flow. Narrow by instructor (including yoga stars like Elena Brower and Kathryn Budig), duration, focus of the class, props, etc. Price: $18 per month. Available in Apple and Google Play stores.
For the low-tech warriors: Home Workout—No Equipment by Leap Fitness Group
With weights in short supply and many gyms closed, getting in a workout that builds muscle can be tough. Enter the Home Workout—No Equipment app, which boasts a 4.9 rating in the Apple Store. Users rave about their quick results as well as the interface’s easy navigation. With a focus on moves like lunges and push-ups that use your bodyweight, it’s a total win for those without a lot of fitness tools lying around, although you do have the option of adding dumbbells if you have ’em. Price: Free. Available in the Apple and Google Play stores.
For the avid runners: Aaptiv
Aaptiv is the leader in audio-based workouts for the person who doesn’t want or need to watch a video to follow along. Started as an outdoor running app, it now offers routines for elliptical machines, spin bikes, and more. For those who like to mix it up, there are more than 30 new classes every week. Price: $15 per month or $100 per year. Available in the Apple and Google Play stores.
For people who want to party: Obé
This app offers workouts of all kinds (including strength, pilates, and boxing), but what it’s known for is the high-energy, everyone-join-in attitude that crosses over all disciplines. Tune into a live class every day, or select from the vast pre-recorded library for anytime perspiration. Price: $27 per month, $65 per quarter, or $199 per year. Available in the Apple store.
For the time-pressed: J&J Official 7 Minute Workout
This platform not only features the workouts from Chris Jordan, the man behind the creator of the original and very popular 7 minute HIIT workout, but it got first place in a 2017 study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research that ranked fitness apps for being both user-friendly and fitting the American College of Sports Medicine exercise prescription guidelines for movement (meaning it includes cardio, strength, and flexibility moves). Workouts range from, yes, 7 minutes up to 32, allow for customization, and don’t require a single piece of equipment. Price: Free. Available on the Apple and Google Play stores.
For the fanboys (and girls): Nike Training App
“Devotees” is an apt word for people who love this download: They get access to the brand’s “master trainers” (including Kristy Godso and Brian Nunez) as well as athlete-led sessions. (Who doesn’t want to know exactly how Cristiano Ronaldo trains his abs?) It also provides a nice variety and caters to both those with access to a gym and those sweating it out at home. Price: Free. Available in the Apple and Google Play stores.
For the cardio-counters: Peloton
This app has become synonymous with the entire at-home cycling movement, but it also offers so much more. In fact, one of the reasons people give it such high reviews is its guided treadmill runs, which take the mindlessness out of long indoor cardio workouts. And, no, your equipment doesn’t actually have to be made by Peloton to use the app. Price: $13 per month. Available in the Amazon, Apple, Google Play stores.
For the group-chatters: Tone It Up
Tone It Up gets a thumbs up for building a sense of community. Created by trainers Katrina Dawn and Karena Scott, the app encourages users to interact with each other as well as with trainers to keep motivation up. And while there are free moves offered daily, you’ll have to subscribe to access the whole shebang. Price: $100 a year or $15 a month. Available in the Apple and Google Play stores.
For dance partiers: The Sculpt Society
This app from trainer Megan Roup has gained a quick and loyal following thanks to her fun and easy-to-follow dance workouts that turn any living room into a dance floor. With new content every week (she also has meditation, yoga, and sculpt), it’s a one-stop-shop for anyone who likes to get down. Price: $20 a month or $120 a year. Available in the Apple and Google Play stores.
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