Staying Fit Online: The Guide to YouTube Exercise Videos

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KATRINA MANANSALA/THE OBSERVER

No space? No problem! YouTube offers numerous at-home workout videos that will keep your body happy.

By KATRINA MANANSALA, Staff Writer

While YouTube is a wonderful platform for watching music videos and funny animal compilations, it’s also an excellent place to find exercise videos to help you stay fit during social distancing. Whether you’re Fordham’s top athlete looking for some High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) action or a student seeking a more easygoing routine, YouTube has some great exercise videos to suit your needs.

When performing any exercise regimen, it is important to make sure you are in an appropriate location for your activity. Make sure you have enough space to move and a floor conducive to your needs; shoes, socks or mats may be beneficial but are not always necessary. 

Once you’ve established that your space is fit for exercise and you’re wearing comfortable attire, it’s time to get moving.

Cardio

Workout videos are an excellent way to boost cardio and build strength and endurance. Here are a few videos ranging from beginner to advanced. 

20-Minute Full-Body HIIT Workout. This beginner-level workout from the Group HIIT channel includes demonstrations of each exercise and a visual timer with audio cues. Captions describe the movements and offer notes to keep in mind during each activity. Since there is no background music, feel free to add your own beats for motivation.

Low-Impact Full-Body HIIT. MadFit demonstrates this low-impact 20-minute HIIT workout. Low-impact training offers non-jumping exercises, so they are great for anyone with neighbors living below them. This video leans more toward an intermediate fitness level due to the balance and core stability needed for some of the exercises.

10-Minute Leg Workout. Daniel Ventura from PROMiXX leads these intense leg exercises. This video is solely focused on leg strengthening with a lot of squatting. It’s great for the glutes and thighs, but if you have knee problems, this may not be the best workout for you.

30-Minute HIIT Cardio Workout. After a five minute warmup, Lita Lewis from SELF leads an intense cardio workout followed by a short cooldown. This video is more advanced because the body is in constant motion for two and a half minutes before a 45-second break, as opposed to the typical 30-second exercise and 30-second rest.

Strengthening and Stretching

Stretching is also important, especially after an intense workout. Yoga is one option for stretching and flexibility, but it also works as a gentler way to build strength. Here are some videos on gentle strengthening and stretching.

10-Minute Morning Yoga for Beginners. This quick video from the SarahBethYoga channel begins seated and moves into gentle spinal mobilization followed by some standing movements and ending in child’s pose. On-screen modifications for certain movements are also included. This video also works as a moderate pre-workout warmup.

15-Minute Beginner Flexibility Routine. While the title says “beginner,” the exercises done here are for people of all ranges of flexibility. Exercise leader Tom Merrick takes viewers through a series of simple but effective stretches progressing through the neck, arms, back and hips. 

20-Minute Full-Body Yoga Stretch. Another video by SarahBethYoga brings viewers through a series of deep stretches for the body, especially for tight leg muscles. A personal favorite, these exercises are particularly good after aerobic activity like running, bicycling or HIIT. 

Full-Body Stretch Yoga. Instructor Cole Chance guides viewers in a slow, deep stretch for the body. Chance sets out to release tension and mobilize each part of the body and offers suggestions on how to make the most of different positions.

Listening to Yourself

Something to consider before starting any sort of exercise is your personal limits. If cardio is not interesting to you, then skip the 30-minute advanced HIIT workout. If flexibility is not your strength, don’t force yourself into any painful positions. You most likely don’t have a teacher or trainer with you to prevent injuries, so practice common sense. If it hurts too much, stop.

These videos are only suggestions to get you moving. In fact, you may find other videos you like better. YouTube has thousands of fitness and workout videos available. Know your own body, and figure out what works best for you. 

It is important to maintain your physical health, especially during this quarantine period. We may not be able to run around Central Park, stroll across Lincoln Center or play games on the Plaza, but we must make do with what we have. Now get up, open YouTube and get moving.