The best digital fitness services to workout remotely
by Alessandro Ferrara
Stay fit in between videoconferences and takeaway lunches with our selection of 5G-ready fitness services.
While we’re living what we all hope are the pandemic’s last days, it’s undeniable how our habits and lifestyles have changed during the past year. Working-from-home is here to stay for many professionals, and some will even be living across different countries for short periods of time according to an ExO Works research, setting the way for a ‘digital nomads’ boom in the decade ahead. It’s no surprise that the fitness industry has adapted well to this brand-new way of living.
From Apple’s latest service to an independent app that allows you to workout at your desk, we have selected the best digital fitness services to stay active at home – wherever you choose this to be.
APPLE FITNESS +
Launched as “the first fitness experience built around Apple Watch”, Apple Fitness+ promises studio-style workouts easily accessible through iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV, wherever you are. Professional trainers lead some of the most popular workout types, including High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), Strength, Yoga, Dance, Core, Cycling, Treadmill (for running and walking), Rowing, and Mindful Cooldown. Its native integration with Apple Watch – which boasts the title of best-selling smartwatch, infamously outselling the entire Swiss Watch industry in 2019 – along with an intelligent recommendation engine that considers workouts previously completed and an Activity Sharing feature to challenge family and friends, makes Apple Fitness+ the perfect ally to keep it fit, no matter where.
Apple Fitness+ is free for one month for Apple Watch owners, then £9.99 per month or £79.99 per year. You can also get three months free when you buy an Apple Watch. Subscription shareable with up to five family members.
Visit Apple Fitness+.
VIRGIN ACTIVE ONLINE
While its famous clubs are temporarily closed, Virgin Active UK has launched Online+, a digital membership granting access to hundreds of remote workouts led by expert trainers, better known as ‘Activists’. From yoga to heart-pumping cycle classes, the subscription is guaranteed to help you lose those extra lockdown pounds many of us have gained in the last several months. New classes are added every week, available on demand, and with ‘My Plan’ you can set your personal goals and schedule your routine as you prefer. To help you keep motivated, there’s also a new ‘Happily Ever Active’ podcast – a weekly appointment for everything wellness, from how to get moving to enjoying moments of stillness, exclusive to subscribers.
Virgin Active Online+ is free for one month, then £9.99 per month.
Visit Virgin Active UK.
Renowned for its high-end smart bikes and tread, Peloton App offers 10+ workout types streaming on demand, including yoga, stretching, bootcamp and even meditation. The app is accessible from smartphone and many other devices, such as Fire TV and Apple TV to mention a few. If you love running, you can hit the trail with guided runs from Peloton instructor team, keeping track with GPS support for pace, splits and elevation metrics on iOS devices. There is also a dedicated Apple Watch app to track your heartrate while on the move, along with other personal metrics.
Peloton App is free for two months, then £12.99 per month.
Home workouts, bodybuilding, HIIT, booty training, weightlifting – these are only some of the many plans you can find on Fitplan, available on the App Store and Google Play. Over 1,400,000 subscribers can count on a large roster of personal fitness trainers to stay active wherever they are. The app offers step-by-step instructional videos, plus tools to track your weights, reps and time. It is also filled with exclusive motivational content and hot tips to enhance your exercises and nutrition. If it wasn’t enough, a dedicated Apple Watch app that allows you to workout outdoor without having to carry your iPhone is available too.
Fitplan is free for seven days, then £15.99 per month or £69.99 per year.
Selected by Apple as the 2020 iPhone App of the Year for bringing the gym to the sofa, Wakeout offers more than 1,000 exercises and hundreds of routines designed to break the sedentary pattern. Whether you’re on the sofa or at your home office desk – or even in bed! – you can keep it moving by following quick routines with short breaks, such as ‘pillow crunches’. Calories burnt are calories burnt! These routines are part of an impressive library of location-specific movements that can be filtered by mood, e.g. energising, intense, fun. Also available are ‘Wind Down routines’, relaxing movement before bedtime that will help you get a better night’s sleep.
Wakeout is free for seven days, then £4.99 per month or £33.99 per year. Wakeout Business is also available for £43.99 per year.