Prior to the pandemic, I was both working out at a gym as well as practicing at a hot yoga studio near me. Since gyms and studios have closed, I have been practicing yoga much more than usual – partially because I wanted to incorporate more mindfulness in my life and partly because I didn’t have gym equipment (until just recently). So, ever since March I have been practicing yoga via YouTube, trying out a variety of different instructors and types of classes.
With the start of the new year, I know a lot of us have the intention of incorporating more movement into our lives. So, I would like to share with you all the result of my YouTube yoga research and present a ranked list of my favorite free yoga YouTube channels categorized by what type of mood you’re in/vibe you’re feeling that day:
1. Looking to break a sweat: Alo Yoga
I love these classes for when I'm in the mood to have a sweaty flow class and am looking for more of a workout than a relaxing wind-down. These classes are more focused on building strength and are quite fast-paced. There are beginner classes on the channel but I would say that these are more for the intermediate yogi due to the types of poses/asanas and the tempo of the classes.
2. Looking for playful movement: Nicole Wild Collective
I recently started doing Nicole Wild's classes and I can't get enough of them! Her classes are perfect if you're looking for a playful and expressive, yet challenging, class. I personally love doing her classes when I've been sitting all day or feeling tight, stuck, or stressed-out. Alternatively, I also like these classes for when I'm in the mood for an easy-going class, where I'm free to add in a flow or an inversion if my body craves it. These playful classes always bring me back to my inner child and never fail to make my body feel good and put a smile on my face.
3. Looking for a slow yin-style stretch: Breathe and Flow
I always find myself coming back to this more traditional-style yin class. Although it's 50 minutes, the time goes by pretty quickly when you take into account that each pose is held for about 3-5 minutes. This class is perfect for when you want to take things slow, come back to yourself in the present moment, and get in a restorative stretch with minimal effort. There's also the option for an even longer yin class on the channel.
4. Looking for some feel-good movement: Yoga with Adriene
The thing I love most about yoga with Adriene is that her classes just make you feel good inside and out. She's easy-going, genuine, compassionate, and not intimidating in the slightest. Her classes are perfect for when you want some mindfulness practice and joyful movement. Personally, I always find myself reaching for these classes when I'm feeling down or lazy because her joyful personality always makes me smile and gives me the energy I need to tackle the day.
5. Looking to work on flexibility and sore muscles: Yoga with Kassandra
Kassandra has a wide variety of yoga classes that she offers but I particularly like her shorter stretch-focused videos. I recently been loving doing her classes in the morning or before bed as a way to work on my flexibility and help my muscles recover from my weight-training workouts. Her classes are great to pop on in the morning if you're looking for some energy and intention to start your day; as well as at night to wind down before bed. I also find that the short nature of a lot of her classes makes it easy to make time to practice on a lunch break or in between classes for those of us with extra busy schedules.
Do you think that I'm missing anyone? Let me know in the comments!