At-home workouts have come a long way from the Buns of Steel videos of the ’80s. Now, all you need is an Internet connection to tap into seriously tough trainer-created exercises. Here are the trainers behind the best workout videos on YouTube.
With a last name like Fightmaster, you better believe she knows how to deliver an effective workout. She’s a certified yoga instructor—with an incredibly soothing voice, BTW—and uploads a new video every Monday, so there’s no such thing as a stale yoga routine. We especially love her choose-your-adventure approach to the practice. Short on time? Go for the 13-minute quickie video. Want to build strength and flexibility? Try this 38-minute workout.
Cassey Ho pioneered the online-workout-video phenomenon when she put her Pilates-plus-pop-music classes—dubbed POP Pilates—on YouTube in 2009. Her YouTube channel is still going strong. She counts over 3 million subscribers and has uploaded enough videos that you never need to do the same one twice. These aren’t traditional Pilates workouts, though. Expect tough bodyweight and dumbbell moves with high reps, made more bearable thanks to Ho’s upbeat instruction. Many of the videos also target areas you want to focus on, like this no-equipment butt-shaping Pilates workout. (Next, try these 12 classic Pilates moves that double as abs exercises.)
Jessica Smith has 15-plus years of experience but still manages to come off as approachable through her straightforward instruction. Her channel is a must-subscribe if you’re a beginner or battling an injury (start with this 30-minute knee-injury-friendly barre workout). Her French bulldog, Peanut, snoozing in the corner of the screen won’t get you pumped up, but she sure is cute.
Not anywhere close to Brooke Tyler’s studio in Asheville, North Carolina? Fear not: She makes abbreviated versions of her classes available to anyone with Wi-Fi. The channel doesn’t add new videos frequently, ut the videos that are live are legit. Start with this 17-minute Pilates mat class, which mixes traditional Pilates moves with heart-pumping cardio bursts.
Amy Kiser Schemper
Amy Kiser Schemper, a Los Angeles–based trainer, proves that super-effective workouts don’t need to suck up hours of your day. Take this 30-minute Tabata video, for example. After a warm-up, you’ll work through high-energy circuits that will make you start sweating, fast. Her channel’s other videos run the fitness gamut from 10 minutes to 45 and from total-body to workouts targeting specific areas like the abs or “love handles.” She’s even got a series of BabyFit videos for new moms (like Kiser Schemper herself!). (Want more heart-pounding quickie moves? Try our 30-day Tabata-style workout challenge.)
Rebecca-Louise Smith, Kelsey Lee, and Cynthia Dallas
Three fitness superstars takes turns hosting workout videos on XHitDaily, a channel with more than 2.5 million subscribers. Some videos focus on cardio, some target trouble areas like the butt or abs, some push you to work out like a Victoria’s Secret model (now if only we could be gym buddies with Alessandra Ambrosio…). No matter which you choose, expect to sweat. This cardio video will leave you out of breath in seconds—but then you’ll be done with your workout for the day just 10 minutes later.
Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott
The fitness-loving duo met at a gym in Southern California, and now the whole Internet gets to benefit from their friendship via their Tone It Up brand. Most of the videos take place on the beach, so you can focus on the waves rather than on the burning you feel in your deepest muscles. Try this (no equipment!) 13-minute ab video. It targets the middle but also builds in a few cardio pushes (think jump rope, front kicks, and mountain climbers) to get your heart pumping. (Next, try these five exercises from the TIU girls for a tight and lifted butt.)
If you’d rather see a pro run through moves you can do on your own time, college athlete-turned-personal trainer Kai Wheeler is your girl. Her channel features quick how-tos on exercises you haven’t yet mastered (WTF is a burpee broad jump anyway?) and run-throughs of exercises like these four bodyweight moves. Wheeler also offers lots of useful tips, like where the weight of your body should be and where you should be feeling the burn.