Since the pandemic broke out last year, we’ve learned we can do any number of things at home: work, socialise, eat restaurant-quality food and keep on top of our fitness regimes. There are now countless apps and virtual classes showing us how easy it is to work out when we want, how we want and where we want. The only tricky part is figuring out which is right for you.
Here are nine of the best virtual sweat sessions to try while you’re under stay-at-home orders.
Sydney Dance Company Classes on Demand
Some empty floorspace is all you need to take an at-home dance class run by The Sydney Dance Company. Choose from a range of dance styles, including contemporary, ballet, jazz, hip-hop, lyrical, tap and Latin funk. Plus, there are Pilates, yoga, stretch and body-conditioning classes, too. Membership costs $29.95 per month and provides unlimited access to on-demand classes – all you need to do is push back the couch and break out your lycra.
Good Times Online
Inclusivity is fundamental at Good Times Pilates, a Melbourne fitness studio that believes “Pilates is for every body”. Choose from class styles that range in tempo and intensity, from the high-energy Sweat to the flexibility-focused Stretch and Chill. The online schedule also includes “Quickies” (workouts from 10 to 15 minutes) and mini workshops (five-to-10-minute classes that focus on particular movements and skills). Choose from two online membership plans: monthly ($39) or six monthly ($189).
Barre Body On Demand
Barre was developed in 1950s London by dancer Lotte Berk, who combined her ballet practice with the rehabilitative program prescribed for a back injury she sustained while dancing.
In 2012, some six decades later, health and wellness entrepreneur Emma Seibold opened her first Barre Body studio in Melbourne’s CBD. Today, Barre Body has seven physical studios and a popular online platform that predates the pandemic.
Barre Body classes – which include several kinds of barre, yoga, prenatal and regular Pilates, dance, strength and tone, and more – range from six to 60 minutes in length. The online membership provides access to both live classes and hundreds of on-demand workouts and tutorials, ranging from beginner to advanced to postnatal programs. There’s a free 14-day trial, and memberships are available for $30 to $40 per month (depending on the billing frequency you choose).
Body Mind Life Online
Body Mind Life is a yoga and Pilates studio and wellness centre with locations in Sydney and Byron Bay, as well as a virtual platform where users pay $59 a month to access hundreds of on-demand videos, including yoga, Pilates, barre fusion, HIIT (high intensity interval training) and even mindfulness. Select classes based on style, duration and level of intensity.
Virtual Playground is the online platform run by Sydney fitness studio Fitness Playground. Work up a sweat with more than 150 workouts and classes, from mindfulness and meditation to cardio and “Fight” fitness. Virtual Playground also offers masterclasses and workshops in which experts provide information about health, nutrition, training and motivation, and answer community questions. A month-to-month subscription costs $19.95 a week, while a year-long subscription costs $9.95 a week.
Fluidform At Home
One of Sydney’s most popular Pilates studios was already running online classes pre-Covid, but its Fluidform At Home offering really hit its stride during lockdown. Filter more than 100 Pilates classes by what area of the body you want to work on. There are also at-home reformer classes, as well as dedicated pre- and postnatal programs. Sign up for a three- ($35 per month), or 12-month ($20 per month) subscription plan that can be cancelled anytime. First-timers also receive a free equipment pack that includes everything you need – ball, bands and sliders – to make sure you get the most out of your at-home Pilates workout.
TSC On Demand
Residents of Sydney’s northern beaches already know and love The Spring Collective, but now we can all get in on the action thanks to the studio’s The Spring Collective On Demand option. Workouts are organised in blocks, which can be layered according to your schedule and skill level to create the best Pilates session for you. A monthly subscription for $19.95 will get you access to the bite-size workout blocks, which are updated regularly, as well as live classes. There’s also a specialised program called Pilates for Performance – designed specifically for dancers, gymnasts and competitive sports people – that can be accessed alongside an existing subscription for an additional $10 per month (or $19.95 per month if purchased on its own). Pilates Protege, an education and training portal for instructors, is another add-on that will be available shortly.
Bodhi At Home
Spin fiends can get their fix with Bodhi At Home, by the team behind Melbourne’s Bodhi and Ride cycle studio. Don’t have your own bike? No problem – the team at Bodhi will help you buy or hire one for your home, whether you’re in it for the long haul (buy) or prefer to flirt (borrow). For $199 a month you’ll get bike hire, plus access to all the on-demand workout sessions. Otherwise sign up for the $99 on-demand monthly subscription or pay-per-view at $9.99 per workout.
Consider this Sydney-based studio your all-rounder. It has classes covering everything from HIIT, stretching, barre and boxing to Pilates and yoga. Tailor your workout based on areas of the body you want to focus on, or request a workout and the team will film one for you. Pregnant people are catered for with access to weekly pre- and postnatal offerings. And there are weekly recipes, and nutrition advice. Membership to the virtual studio and all of its online classes is $19.99 per month.
Additional reporting by Jo Robin, Nicola Heath and Kate Lancaster. This story was updated on January 14, 2022, to reflect price changes.