Not only does working out make you feel great and release the happiness trigger of endorphins, but it is also an excellent way to bond and connect with others by sheer virtue of engaging in the same motions directed by skilled trainers even if you aren’t physically in the same space. Many excellent workout options are now available online in Turkey, and thus you can break a sweat and learn a new skill in a safe space, from the comfort of your own home.
The following are some of the most popular, effective and accessible online workouts available in Turkey:
For most, yoga has hands-down been one of the best methods of gaining flexibility, balance and strength in addition to attaining peace of mind during these trying times. Not only is it physical, but it is also a mental and spiritual exercise for many. Luckily, Turkey has an excellent website serving as an online platform that offers classes embracing all aspects of the practice.
Founded by an expat no less, "Yoga Uni" offers hundreds of classes in dozens of different styles pertaining to yoga, pilates and other holistic therapeutic methods such as breathwork and meditation. With dozens of Turkey’s most well-known yoga trainers, the website offers a great opportunity to discover which trainer is the best fit for you. Additionally, there are a number of English-speaking trainers, and these days, there are multiple live classes held each week.
Over the past decade, one of the most popular practices to gain strength and streamline the body has undoubtedly been pilates. However, many correlate this form of exercise solely with the complicated machinery, such as reformers and cadillacs, that many studios employ for pilates practice. Don’t fret as there are a number of ways to engage in this particular practice, which is known for encouraging proper postural alignment and building core strength and balance, including simply working out on a mat on the floor or with or without the basic accouterments such as a pilates ball, bands or a foam roller.
“Her Yerde Pilates” is an excellent new online platform and website that offers 164 classes led by 35 expert trainers that are broken down into beginner and intermediate levels. There are also personalized programs such as maternity and postpartum pilates, video series geared toward men, and others to fulfill specific goals such as fat-burning. Admittedly none of the workouts are in English; however, the website’s interface is clear-cut and extremely easy to navigate. Access to unlimited workouts is offered on a monthly subscription or longer-term basis.
One of the most popular trends that have developed in the workout world during the pandemic is dancing your heart out. People who never used to have a regular workout routine especially embraced this tried and true physical activity for its ability to uplift the spirits while breaking a sweat.
Try Zumba to get in the groove or test the waters of some of those dance styles you have always been curious about, all from the privacy of your own space. Depo Dans, one of the oldest dance studios in Istanbul with branches in Cihangir, Bakirköy and Ataşehir, has begun offering lessons in a wide variety of styles, including but certainly not limited to Bollywood, hip hop and Latin dances in addition to regular Zumba, all of which will be aired on Zoom for those participating from home. Depo Dans offers single class options as well as monthly and extended packages, which are discounted if to be used solely for Zumba lessons.
The hip and hardcore spinning workouts, which are basically bicycling on a stationary bike at a vigorous pace, are also one of the most trending physical activities for those seeking high-intensity training for maximum calorie burn. Luckily for those in Turkey, Urban Riders has been riding up a storm for young professionals in Istanbul and is now not only offering classes online but is also renting out and selling the bicycles needed to work out from home. Their daily, weekly and monthly ULive passes get you access to daily live workouts as well as a variety of previously recorded material from 15 different teachers, including alternatives to spinning, such as yoga.
Gym workouts at home
The Mars Athletic Club, aka “MAC” and “MacFit,” has long been one of the most rooted gym chains with dozens of branches throughout Turkey. MacFit is the less expensive and more flexible gym option that also offers memberships that allow members to work out in multiple locations throughout the country. MacFit’s in-house workouts include classes such as step, kickbox, spinning, hip hop and Zumba, while some MAC gyms also have pools and swimming activities. Due to the current pandemic, however, the gym chain is now offering live online classes that include morning yoga and midday pilates followed by afternoon cardio dance and strength training as well as full-body workouts in evening sessions. (If you'd like a full-body workout with some weights or water bottles, have a look here.)
FitinClass is a website and online platform for live workout sessions in which participants and trainers take part together. A monthly membership allows participants to reserve a spot in any of the 30-minute multiple classes that take place every day, ranging from functional training, yoga, kickbox and pilates, to name a few. FitinClass is part of the same organization that operates Spor Card, a special monthly membership program that allows members to work out in hundreds of gyms located in Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. There are over 200 gyms alone that classic membership will grant members access to, including a number of specialized cross-fit and martial arts gyms, making it the optimal way to discover the right gym for you.
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