The 9 Best Streaming Fitness Subscriptions for At-Home Workouts
On-demand fitness is making it easier than ever to sneak in a sweat session. From yoga to Spinning, our staffers put a slew of streaming workout subscription apps to the test and are now sharing our strongest picks.
No gym membership? No problem. More and more Americans are taking advantage of technology to make it easier to stay (or get) in shape. Today, on-demand services make up 7.7 percent of the workout industry, compared to just 4.8 percent in 2014. And more than 58 percent of smartphone owners have downloaded a health app.
But since there are more than 45,000 health-related apps to choose from in the Apple App Store alone, finding the best streaming workouts can be a challenge. So we put several through the paces to rank and recommend the top on-demand fitness options available. (Note: All streaming fitness workouts are ranked on a 0-5 scale.)
Best Workout Subscription App for Dance: LEKfit
Former professional dancer and choreographer Lauren Kleban’s dance-inspired workouts use low-impact, high-intensity intervals to tone muscles. “I enjoyed the videos so much that I got up one morning and did a core class before work,” says our assistant photo editor, Gabrielle. Mix and match 22 staple on-demand fitness videos to create your own personal best streaming workout, or follow one of seven filmed classes. No matter what you choose, you’ll get spot-on coaching. “I felt confident doing these exercises because of the detailed instructions,” says Gabrielle.
- On-demand fitness tip: Kleban is the sole trainer, so you’ll want to do a trial to make sure her straightforward teaching style suits you.
- Rating: 3 ½ / 5
- Cost: $16/month
Best Workout Subscription App for Strength Training: Booya Fitness
You’ll never feel like you’re in over your head because Booya’s on-demand fitness videos include groups of participants at different skill levels. The 100+ classes range from yoga to kickboxing, but the cool user interface makes them easy to narrow down with filters for time, activity type, space constraints and necessary equipment. “I did toning/strengthening exercises, which I normally wouldn’t do on my own for any prolonged period,” says Darcy, our executive editor. “I even felt the familiar (and reassuring) post-workout soreness of taking a new class.”
- On-demand fitness tip: Some of the foam roller videos target only one side of your body, so you’ll have to hit replay for the opposite side.
- Rating: 4 / 5
- Cost: $10/month, $27/3 months or $100/year
Best Workout Subscription App Among Popular Programs: Beachbody on Demand
When you want access to workout plans that are loved by millions, Beachbody on Demand has the power pack—P90X, Insanity and 21 Day Fix. Our beauty and fashion director, Dori, loved 21 Day Fix. “The exercises were challenging and sweat-inducing, but they also have modifications for the moves,” she says. The service boasts a mix of workout genres and lengths across 600+ videos. Even people who only like classes will find the streaming workouts motivating enough to do at home. “Plus, it’s so easy to try out other types of exercise,” says Dori. “You can’t be embarrassed when it’s just you at home!” (Related: How to Set Up a Budget-Friendly Home Gym)
- On-demand fitness tip: Beachbody has so many great programs to choose from that it’s best to sample a few before committing to one.
- Rating: 4 ½ / 5
- Cost: $39/3 months, $59/6 months or $99/year
Best Workout Subscription App for Spinning: Peloton iOS App
The 4,000+ rides on demand and up to 14 live rides streamed daily mean you’ll never get bored with cycling. “Despite the wide selection, workouts are arranged so that it’s super easy to find what you’re looking for,” says Lauren, our editorial assistant. “There are even stretching and foam rolling videos to aid recovery.” Bonus: You can create a custom schedule of live-streaming workout rides and request reminders. (Related: 11 Secrets From Women Who *Actually* Find Time to Exercise During the Lunch Hour)
- On-demand fitness tip: Since it’s only available as an app, you may be more inclined to use Peloton on the go (say, in a hotel gym), but remember that you’ll need a strong connection to avoid slow loading times.
- Rating: 5 / 5
- Cost: $6/week or $13/month; free with a Peloton bike
Best Workout Subscription App for Variety: Daily Burn
Satisfy your need to switch things up with hundreds of high-quality videos—and without the hassle of self-sorting. “Just click the next video in your program. I didn’t have to think about which workout to try,” says our research chief, Lixandra. She also found the trainer in the “Move!” series encouraging. “I’m not a gym person, so the dance workouts got me to exercise,” says Lixandra. “I felt lighter, more flexible and energetic after doing them in the morning.” And the timer keeps you posted on how much longer you need to endure a tough move.
- On-demand fitness tip: A basic plan offers 250+ workouts within 20 fitness programs and a new daily video that’s available for 24 hours. Daily videos won’t disappear if you pump up to a premium subscription (for a total of 800+ workouts).
- Rating: 3 ½ / 5
- Cost: $15/month for basic or $27/month for premium
Fitness at your fingertips: More than 58% of smartphone owners have downloaded a health app. Those focused on fitness and nutrition get the most use.
Best Workout Subscription App for Yoga: Dirty Yoga
“I would describe it as love at first workout,” says Lisa, our design director. It’s straightforward, simple and unbuttoned to get you practicing when you can, where you can, without feeling like you have to be a yogi. “The instructor was very thorough, so I could tell if I was doing the moves properly,” says Lisa. “But what surprised me the most is how much it felt like being in a class.” Making time for the videos was effortless since she enjoyed them so much. (Did you hear? You don’t have to do cardio to lose LBs! But there’s a catch…)
- On-demand fitness tip: Unlike many services, Dirty Yoga offers almost all new workouts every week, which incentivizes you to do them before they’re gone.
- Rating: 5 / 5
- Cost: $5/72 hours or $20/month
Best Workout Subscription App for Pilates: Pilatesology
With a library of 1,000+ professional exercise videos at your fingertips, you can surely kick your Pilates skills up a notch—even if they’re nonexistent right now. “They had lots of basic classes that truly taught me the technique,” says Regina, our food director. “I don’t often find such detail in mat classes, so it was really helpful.” However, if you have any lingering questions after a streaming workout, post them under the video and you’ll likely receive a personal response from the instructor. Or use the site’s forums to connect with other members and teachers. (Bonus: The Best Workouts for Your Mood)
- On-demand fitness tip: While many videos don’t require extra gear, some teach proper form with traditional equipment—like the Reformer or Toe Corrector.
- Rating: 4 / 5
- Cost: $19/month or $149/year
Best Workout Subscription App for Postnatal: Moms Into Fitness
Raising a kid is hard enough, but going to the gym and eating well too? Forget about it! Moms Into Fitness makes it just a little easier with 90+ videos in four categories (prenatal, postnatal, weight loss and core) designed for women trying to reclaim their bodies by working toward specific goals in the comfort of their home. “With so many fitness options out there, I didn’t know where to start after having a child, but the site’s streamlined options made an exercise routine easier to manage,” says Julie, our executive food editor. The service also provides healthy kitchen hacks and meal plans.
- On-demand fitness tip: Although the streaming workouts target “mom bods” and post-pregnancy trouble spots, the instructor’s fitness level may be intimidating.
- Rating: 4 / 5
- Cost: $13/month
Best Workout Subscription App for Overall Wellness: Grokker
Grokker isn’t just for exercising—it offers thousands of classes, ranging from mindfulness to healthy cooking. “It was nice to have a combination of different types of content to pull from,” says Lynya, our health director. “It’s like one-stop shopping.” Whether you want lessons in sports conditioning or Japanese cooking, you’re covered. Sticking by the motto “Be a better you,” Grokker helps you stay accountable with emails that are actually useful. “It reminded me about the morning mindfulness sessions I wanted to do,” says Lynya. “Plus it delivered suggestions for videos I might like that were spot-on, and sent motivational ‘Nice job!’ messages post-workout that kept me engaged.”
- On-demand fitness tip: If you can’t find exactly what you’re looking for, the Grokker team welcomes suggestions for new content.
- Rating: 4/5
- Cost: $15/month
Exercise economics: On-demand services make up 7.7% of the workout industry, compared to just 4.8% in 2014.
4 Tips to Make the Most of Any Workout Subscription App
Nearly all of us thought an at-home workout would be easy to stick to—but struggled to put our muscle where our mouth is. Here’s how to make the most of your membership.
→ Do your research. Set aside at least 30 minutes to explore your on-demand fitness subscription service. Many have multiple programs or hundreds of videos to choose from, so you’ll want to investigate the offerings and familiarize yourself with all the features.
→ Create a fit squad. Find a friend who uses the same service and do videos together via Skype or Facetime. (Try these three tips to find the perfect workout buddy!) “Give encouragement and hold each other accountable,” says Julie Erickson, owner and founder of Endurance Pilates and Yoga in Boston. Another option: Invite friends over for a class. “Make it a weekly non-negotiable get-together,” says Erickson.
→ Change your clothes. “Choose a cute pair of leggings or a top that highlights an area you already love to motivate you,” says Ngo Okafor, a celebrity trainer and creator of the FitMatch app. For a morning workout, lay out your exercise gear the night before. Similarly, trade your work outfit for exercise clothes as soon as you get home at night—even if you aren’t working out until later. (Check out the latest athleisure trends that are chic and comfy all at once.)
→ Stick to a schedule. “Add classes to your calendar like you would any other appointment and create reminders,” says Erickson. “Mix things up by training different body parts on different days,” suggests Okafor. “You’ll look forward to training those parts again next week and be less likely to bail on workouts.”