10 popular at-home workouts that actually work, according to fitness experts

Flickr/irisphotosSome at-home workouts only require a few pieces of basic equipment.

Home workouts are popular because they are oftentimes cheaper and more convenient than joining a gym or attending classes.

Plus you can work out whenever you feel like it without having to worry about sharing equipment or even leaving the comfort of your home.

Finding the right at-home workouts can be a bit of trial and error, but with a bit of research, you might be able to find something that works well for you and we’ll have you getting fit in no time.

From bodyweight exercises to high-intensity workouts, here are 11 at-home workouts that fitness experts and trainers swear by.

1. Bodyweight exercises will never go out of style.

Dirima/ShutterstockNo equipment is required.

Bodyweight exercises don’t require equipment, which means you can do them anywhere without having to invest in or bring anything with you. They’re also a good place to start if you’re not sure about what you should do, but want to do something outside of the gym.

“Add some walking to this routine and you have a low stress, powerful workout you can do anywhere,” fitness expert Evie Fatz told INSIDER.

2. High-intensity workouts can mean great results with minimal equipment or investments needed.

Justin Sullivan/Getty ImagesJump rope can be part of a high-intensity workout.

Whether you’re looking for programs and methods that let you do more with less or just want to take your body weight exercises up a notch, high-intensity workouts are something that you can do at home, but that will really work all parts of your body.

“Taking bodyweight strength moves from programs like CrossFit and high-intensity cardio modalities that require minimal space, like jump rope, can be a really potent combination,” Josh Rogers, the co-founder of RPM Training Co., told INSIDER.

“They may want to have a trainer review a program they are considering to see what it may be lacking so they can supplement it such as by doing additional stretching for flexibility,” Robert S. Herbst, a personal trainer, weight loss and wellness coach, told INSIDER. “They may also want to run through the program with the trainer to make sure they are using proper form to get the most out of the exercises and not get injured.”

3. BBG by Kayla Itsines lays everything out for you, so that you can plan ahead.

Getty/Monica SchipperThe program can help you plan ahead.

Kayla Itsines’s BBG program is super popular – and for good reason. It provides detailed workout plans and instructions.

Ashley Pitt, NASM personal trainer and the creator of the healthy lifestyle blog,A Lady Goes West, told INSIDER that she likes that BBG tells you what sorts of things you should be doing each week, which can help you ensure that you’re doing what needs to be done and can plan ahead.

When doing at-home workouts like these, it’s important to keep an eye on your form, Pitt tells INSIDER.

“… There isn’t a trainer around to correct issues,” Pitt said. “It would also be beneficial for people who work out at home to record themselves doing the workout to watch back and check their form, or use a mirror as well. When you’re working out at home, you should set the app or monitor up to eye level as well, so you aren’t straining to see the next moves or demos of what you’re following along.”

4. The Tone It Up founders have built a positive community.

Getty/Emma McIntyreTone It Up founders, Katrina Scott (left) and Karena Dawn (right).

With Tone It Up, you can plan out your entire week based on the program’s weekly schedule or mix and match to create your own workout.

“The Tone It Up Girls are extremely popular amongst my peers and clientele,”Lauren Seib, a NASM-certified personal trainer/online coach and group fitness instructor, told INSIDER. She loves their simplicity and ability to target common female “trouble zones.”

“I love their positive approach to overall wellness and their workouts are great. [It has] lots of variety for any level of fitness and their approachability, in general, is why I find their programming to be effective.”

A sense of community is a big focus of Tone It Up as well. They have an interactive app, a popular Instagram and in-person meet-ups.

5. Beachbody gets harder as you get stronger.

Getty/Terry WyattThere are occasionally Beachbody Coach Summits to attend, too.

If you’re looking for a program that will keep challenging you even as you get stronger, Beachbody might be the right program for you. Pitt said that Beachbody gets “progressively tougher,” which, in her book, is a major pro for the program.

“What makes an at-home workout program effective is if it has variety and offers a mixture of cardio, strength, and flexibility,” Pitt added. “A straight yoga program every day would be less effective than doing a variety of classes from the Beachbody or Les Mills On Demand libraries, which makes your body move in different ways.”

6. AMRAP workouts fit well in a certain amount of time.

ShutterstockResistance bands can be a handy tool.

If you’re short on time or just generally want a workout that’s going to challenge you and really get your blood pumping without spending all day working out, “As Many Rounds As Possible” (AMRAP) workouts might be a good choice for you.

“I love resistance bands and more of a CrossFit-inspired ‘Set the clock and go!’ approach where you tackle a routine in an AMRAP style with movements like squats, tricep dips, hand-release push-ups, lunges, and burpees,” Seib told INSIDER.

7. Les Mills On Demand takes the thinking out of at-home workouts.

ShutterstockIt helps you to map out your workouts.

Pitt also noted that the Les Mills On Demand program, though newer, is one that can be effective. She said that it, like BBG, tells you what sorts of workouts you should be doing each week. Because it lays everything out for you, you don’t have to think through much in the way of what sorts of videos or workouts you need to include to give yourself the best workout, nor do you need to feel like you’re going it on your own.

8. HIIT routines can go anywhere you do.

ShutterstockHIIT workouts can be done using weights.

Seib told INSIDER that she is a “big fan” of HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workouts as a whole. These kinds of workouts are great when you’re on the go because they often don’t require much in the way of equipment, other than, perhaps, some free weights or other things that are often available in hotel gyms.

You can do HIIT workouts that are only bodyweight workouts as well, which means there’s no need to stress over purchasing equipment.

9. Peloton can be a good choice for people who love cycling.

If cycling is your thing and you’re willing to invest in a special bike, Peloton’s at-home cycling workouts might be exactly what you’re looking for. With Peloton bikes, you can stream live daily cycling classes as you pedal.

10. Resistance band workouts are great for those who are into something more low-tech.

Flickr/irisphotosThey can become a useful part of your workout routine.

Resistance bands are one of Seib’s personal favourites for at-home or on-the-go workouts. They’re affordable, pack easily, and don’t take up very much space at home, which makes them a pretty good option for those who prefer at home workouts to anything else.

Knowing what you’re doing when you’re working out at home, however, is super important.

“I would highly recommend taking a few sessions at your local studio or gym with a trained professional first to focus on form, know your imbalances, learn, etc. before working out on your own,” Seib told INSIDER.

There are a few things that you should keep in mind when evaluating an at-home workout to determine whether or not it might be a good fit for you.

Eamonn M. McCormack/GettyIt won’t always work for you just because it works for others.

“[A] program should include a warm-up and cool-down in each workout session,” Pitt told INSIDER. “And the sessions should be varied throughout the course of the week, including cardio training and resistance training (weights or bodyweight). Also, a program should call for at least one day totally off from exercise each week to rest and recover. The workouts themselves should have modifications for people who don’t want to jump or need to tone down the difficulty, and there should be tips for proper form as well.”

Making sure the person who created the program is qualified (meaning they have some sort of fitness certification or training) is also important so that you know that you can trust what they have put together.

At-home workouts may or may not be the only thing you do when it comes to fitness, but knowing that you have a good, effective workout for those days when you can’t bring yourself to head to the gym, you’re on the road, or you want to try something new in a judgment-free zone might give you a little peace of mind – or inspire you to get moving.

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