The Rise of Streaming Workouts

the endorphin effect

As technology continues to evolve in our current society, we have the ability to do more and more things without leaving the comfort of our homes. Shopping, catching up with friends…and even exercising! The idea of streaming workouts has gained popularity in recent years as those looking to get in shape are given the chance to do so without stepping foot out of their home. In this post, we’ll highlight some of these streaming workouts, the benefits they can provide and perhaps what you miss out on when not hitting a traditional gym or yoga studio.

the endorphin effect

The allure of online workouts is quite simple: staying (or getting) in shape with nothing but a comfortable space and wi-fi connection. The health website Goop recently broke down some of the most popular streaming workouts the web has to offer. Check out some of the highlights to learn more about the digital concept:

Full-Body Online Workouts

The Be.come Project by Bethany C. Meyers: So much of the marketing around online fitness classes—and even just fitness in general—is framed around body insecurity as motivation. You’ll find none of that here. Each week, Meyers releases a new class, which is designed to be done as many times as you’d like over the course of the next seven days as you get familiar with the movements. Bonus: Classes are a very doable (yet effective) twenty-five minutes.

p.volve: The focus here is on toning through functional movement: Trainer Stephen Pasterino designed each motion to replicate how your body moves when you walk, run, reach, step, etc. Your heart rate will be elevated the whole time, but it’s definitely not cardio; you really feel your muscles being challenged. Pasterino has developed a firm ball that you wedge high up between your thighs; it’s designed to dig into the superficial layers of the fascia and help you work your glutes and feel your core. But if you’re without, you can filter for classes that require no props.

Online Yoga Workouts

Glo: Glo’s online classes range from five to ninety minutes, and students can pick from super physical “body” classes and more spiritual or meditative mind and heart classes. The big selling point, though, is that Glo flies in some of the country’s best yoga teachers, so you get access to incredible resources. In addition, members have access to lectures and workshops by yoga scholars.

Yogis Anonymous: Yogis Anonymous is based in a homey Santa Monica studio, and the videos on its site are footage of the actual classes. New classes are uploaded frequently, so there’s no risk of boredom, and the lack of staging makes the entire endeavor feel very comfortable and a lot less cheesy. If you live in LA, it’s easy to supplement the convenience of the digital classes with the community of the real-life studio.

the endorphin effect

Online Pilates + Barre Workouts

Pilatesology: Since everything happens on the mat, Pilates has lent itself nicely to at-home videos since the days of VHS. For devotees of the old-school style, the streaming service Pilatesology is truly an indispensable resource. Workouts can be tailored to fit time availability, skill level, and equipment availability; a membership affords access to everything from beginner mat classes to advanced Reformer work.

KICHGO: Kit is one of our favorite Pilates instructors in LA—you can find her on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at Speir, where she’s equal parts stern, motivating, and kind. Online, Kit leads classes that combine cardio and Pilates-inspired sequences. Her videos require some props, which you can get with your video downloads, and which all fit into a small kit. (If you want to try the workouts for free or even tune in live, subscribe to her YouTube channel.)

Equipment Required

The Mirror: Here’s how this insanely ingenious thing works: A full-length mirror hangs on your wall, and it becomes a personal trainer or an on-demand streaming fitness device that has everything from Pilates to strengthening sessions. The reflective surface is interactive—the trainer can actually see you. And of course, it’s still a mirror, so you can see yourself and correct your form as needed. It comes with a wearable heart rate monitor, too, so you get a lot of data post-workout. It’s ideal if you love real-time instruction in class settings but have no desire to leave your house for it.

Peloton: The concept behind Peloton is pretty genius if you’re a spin fan: Purchase one of the bikes for your home, and you’ll get access to live and on-demand spin classes taught in Peloton’s New York studio from the screen mounted to your bike. Those with a competitive streak will appreciate that metrics are displayed throughout the ride (if you’d rather not know, you can always collapse that view). In addition to the classic indoor classes, there are outdoor-style rides with professional cyclists. (While spin is what Peloton is known for, it’s recently brought the same concept to the treadmill, too.)

the endorphin effect

Some of those options may sound convenient and appealing to you, but there are also aspects of fitness that can be lost when just sitting in your apartment or home living room. One of the most obvious issues involves finances. Certain types of streaming workouts, such as Peloton, require hefty purchases just to get involved in a daily workout.

Additionally, working out in a solo environment may seem nice every now and then, but it also breaks you away from the feeling of teamwork and community that you can get in a fitness or yoga studio.

For more, we asked The Endorphin Effect staff for their thoughts on the craze of streaming workouts and the positives and negatives they can have…

Technology is here and depending the quality of tech services will be here to stay, however, it is very difficult to monitor someone’s form, and the corrections and verbal. Whereas, positioning someone requires hands on attention.

I do not use streaming workouts and I actually did not know they were popular. They are probably popular because people can choose to do them at the comfort of their own home with no judgment. This could be a temporary fad but who knows.

You can do it at home. Probably, it’s really just a cheaper option. Understanding what you’re doing, correcting your form, understanding muscle groups and such takes a lot of work and understanding that an instructor could help with so to prevent injury and build your body correct.

They are popular because they are convenient but they can be dangerous too. No one is correcting form and there is not a progression in ability. Just like in school there are prerequisites for advance classes there should be for workouts too. With streaming workouts anyone can jump into any workout at any time. Plus you miss out on the camaraderie of being in a class with others around encouraging you