While it was once necessary to purchase expensive memberships for online workout programs, it is now possible to find a free exercise program on the Internet.
How To Choose a Free Exercise Program
There are a vast number of free exercise programs on the Internet. Before choosing one, you should define a list of criteria. Here are some factors that should be taken into consideration:
- Does the program require registration?: Even though these programs are free, some may require a registration and a login. Since creating a registration allows you to store your program, it can be a beneficial feature. However, if you have issues with privacy, you might want to choose a free exercise program site that does not require registration.
- What type of program are you looking for?: Some free exercise sites are geared toward gym activities, while others are suitable for home exercise routines. You can also find free Pilates exercise programs, as well as free programs that use stability balls, bands and balance devices.
- Who designed the free fitness program?: Are the exercises designed by fitness enthusiasts or fitness professionals? While enthusiasts may be skilled at performing some of the exercises, professionals are more skilled at cuing, exercise description and safety considerations.
- What is your learning style?: Some free fitness program sites have a written description of the exercise. Others add an image or an animation. Some sites include video. Since text-only exercise descriptions are often difficult to decipher, it's best to choose a fitness website that at least offers a photo of the exercises.
- Does the website have frequent updates?: Burnout is the enemy of exercise compliance. If a site does not occasionally update its programs, you might get bored and thus be less likely to do the workout.
- Do you have injuries or medical conditions that would preclude certain types of exercise?: While some free exercise sites will offer guidelines and modifications of the exercises, others do not. Be sure to check with your doctor or physical therapist before performing questionable exercises.
Free Pilates Exercise Program Sites
Although Pilates is a popular method of exercise, taking more than one class a week can be expensive. Fortunately, there are a number of Internet sites that offer free Pilates exercises. However, keep in mind that Pilates exercise is characterized by its subtleties and precise movement. As such, it's best to continue at least one weekly session with a professional, certified instructor. Here are some of the free, Pilates exercise websites on the Internet:
- Pilates on Fifth: Pilates on Fifth offers free Pilates podcast videos. You can also subscribe to the site for free with iTunes and get an updated program each week.
- Easy Vigour: Easy Vigour was created by a former veterinarian turned fitness professional and Pilates instructor. It is one of the most extensive free Pilates exercise sites on the web. The site has pictures of each exercise, as well as detailed descriptions.
Free Weight Training Exercise Sites
If you plan to join a fitness center, you might want to take advantage of the free, introductory training session that is usually included in most gym memberships. However, depending on the gym, additional sessions may cost anywhere between $25 to $80 an hour. If your budget does not allow for this type of expense, consider using a web-based weight training program.
Ex RX, otherwise known as Exercise Prescription on the Net was created as a Master's Thesis by James Griffing. The Kansas State University student wanted his program to be available to everyone. The website has a highly informative beginner's page, with detailed information about weight-training programs, training tips, aerobic exercise and nutritional information. The exercise pages describe the actions of each muscle group and include a variety of exercises using different types of equipment.
With the variety of free fitness programs on the Internet, cost is no longer an excuse for not exercising.