When I first started going to the gym, I tried to get there early in the morning so I could awkwardly fumble with the weight machines before a line of people waiting to use them formed behind me. According to a new study, I’m not the only one who’s experienced the intimidation that can come from working out at the gym.
The study, a joint effort between OnePoll and the protein powder company IsoPure, surveyed 2,000 Americans about their fitness habits and found 50 percent have faced gymtimidation, reports the New York Post. Gymtimidation takes on many forms—not knowing how to use the equipment, feeling overwhelmed by all the different types of workouts and classes available, not wanting to work out among fit individuals—and every one is reasonable.
You don’t have to hit the gym to start up a solid fitness routine. Instead, ease into fitness with some free at-home workouts on YouTube, where the only one who’s going to judge your dance moves and pushup skills is your dog. (Lovingly, of course.)
Fight “gymtimidation” with the best beginner workouts on YouTube
1. Dance workout: The Fitness Marshall
For anyone too shy to bust a move in a high-intensity dance class, meet The Fitness Marshall. You don’t have to get the moves right, which makes it hard not to have fun. And that’s exactly the message put forth. The backup dancers aren’t professionals either. His squad also includes his boyfriend/manager, Cameron, who makes plenty of appearances.
2. Pilates: Blogilates
Cassey Ho of Blogilates has been making free workout videos for years, allowing people to get comfortable with the exercises at home before entering a group setting. With her positive attitude, upbeat background music, and thoroughly-explained exercises, there’s no room for intimidation.
3. HIIT: Katie Austin
When you’re doing HIIT at the gym or in a class, you might feel like you can never take a break without getting some looks. But at home, you can pause the video as many times as you need to, no questions asked. This workout from Katie Austin is meant for beginners with moves that are easy on the body.
4. Full-body, no equipment workout: MadFit
This workout from MadFit—which is done in 30-second intervals over a 10 minute period—literally works your entire body without a single piece of equipment. Even if you’re not a pro at some of the movements, the goal is to keep doing your best until the next exercise begins.
5. Yoga: Yoga with Adriene
Being filled with a room of yogis who are already doing headstands can make you want to run out and hide. This yoga workout from Yoga With Adriene takes you through the poses nice and slow, making sure you’re learning the proper technique that will carry you for years to come.
6. Chair workout: Jelisa Smith
Jelisa Smith wants people to know they can work out from anywhere—even if that’s using something as simple as a chair in your home. After doing a round of everything from lunges to pushups, you’ll be exhausted in the best way.
There are other ways you can skip the gym, too. Invest in at-home fitness technology like Mirror or Peloton, or grab a monthly streaming subscription on the cheap. These options are all less than $40/month.
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