Did you know yoga has been around for about 5,000 years? It originated in India, and it’s centered on postures and mindful breathing. Because of its focus on a mind-body connection, people find that yoga is beneficial for both physical and mental health. While yoga has been practiced for a long time, streaming it on an app is nearly a brand-new experience. So, we at Study Finds went on a search for the best yoga apps out there.
Yoga brings many benefits aside from just taking a moment to calm down. According to research, adding yoga to a regular exercise routine is a great way to reduce your risk of developing heart disease. Researchers in Canada found that yoga can lower blood pressure, resting heart rate and improve a person’s 10-year cardiovascular risk. Another study found yoga as a way for patients with Atrial fibrillation, or a persistent irregular heartbeat, to find relief. Both yoga postures and breathing techniques helped a group of AFib patients experience fewer episodes and milder symptoms.
Yoga is not only good for your body, but also mental health. A study found that yoga can actually reverse the reactions in DNA that cause stress, depression or similar conditions. In stressful situations, people who practiced yoga saw a clear decrease in the genetic molecule produced by the sympathetic nervous system, which regulates the “fight or flight” response. And researchers at NYU Grossman School of Medicine say yoga is actually more effective at treating anxiety disorders than standard stress management education.
So, if you’re ready to pose a threat to anxiety, depression and potential cardiac issues, you may want to hit the mat. And thanks to modern-day technology, you don’t have to go to a yoga studio or even leave your house. StudyFinds has found the best yoga apps experts recommend, so you can download them and get started right away. These apps offer a variety of classes and features based on your experience level, so beginners and experts can all enjoy! And, of course, one thing they all have in common is glowing reviews. Don’t see your favorite listed below? Let us know in the comments.
The List: Best Yoga Apps, According To Expert Websites
1. Alo Moves
Reviewed doesn’t hesitate to call this app their favorite: “Alo Moves was our favorite yoga app because of its personalized recommendations and quality of classes. Alo’s app layout looks clean and sleek, which makes it easy to use. Many classes require no equipment at all (other than a mat), and if they do, it’s listed up front so you can gather your gear or select another class.”
It’s a top pick for MindBodyGreen, too: “For a top-of-the-line yoga app that has everything you could be looking for, consider Alo Moves. This app houses individual classes, as well as curated programs to help you build toward certain skills (like splits or handstands). Within the yoga category, you can search for classes based on style, skills you’re working on, difficulty level, how much time you have, and more.”
Active recommends it for its large library and well-known instructors. “One of the most popular and downloaded yoga apps worldwide comes from Alo Yoga. Alo Moves is a very diverse yoga app that offers everything from beginner yoga classes to mindfulness sessions and even face yoga. They also have special skills classes where you get to explore some of the most advanced poses. Whether you’re interested in a relaxing yin yoga class or sweating it out with a HIIT class, Alo Moves has a pretty large library to offer. Their instructors are all certified and well-known, so you feel like you’re being taught by a celebrity.”
“Everyone from beginner yogis to experienced practitioners will find something to love from this app, designed for phone, iPad and Apple TV. Bonus: Your homebound workout will be that much more inspirational when you’re following along with videos shot in jaw-droppingly lovely vistas including Morocco, Positano and Malibu,” PureWow writes.
2. Down Dog
If you like to change up your workout a lot, Women’s Health thinks you’ll like this app: “Get bored doing the same sequence of postures over and over? With this yoga app, you’ll never repeat a class since it can configure over 300,000 different workouts for you. You can choose from seven different instructors too, and the music changes dynamically to be in sync with your breath for each class.”
“Down Dog boasts clear instructions and easy-to-grasp content with a welcoming interface. It offers six different voices and 10 languages to guide you through a routine. Additionally, it’s virtually rut-proof due to 30,000+ classes. The free version isn’t half bad for beginners, either,” Prana Sutra claims.
Oprah Daily says it’ll feel personalized: “Ever wanted to splurge on a one-on-one yoga session? Down Dog gives you that personalized feeling without having to leave home. The app allows you to customize classes based on level, focus, voice, and even music. And with over 60,000 different configurations, you won’t feel like you’re doing the same yoga practice over and over again.”
Byrdie gives this app a glowing review: “It’s a great option for yogis of all levels. There are self-guided programs for those who prefer to do their own thing, live group classes where you can practice with others in real-time, as well as hundreds of downloadable ones that you can save to your library and revisit whenever you like. There are also guided programs to help you reach a particular goal, or you can create and curate your own collection. For $24 per month, you can access more than 4,000 on-demand classes and the program options are wide-ranging.”
“Glo is a yoga app that features thousands of yoga and fitness classes, and it earned a 5 out of 5 stars from our independent review. Glo is an excellent app for both beginners and advanced yogis. It provides various yoga styles, clear instruction, and even daily live classes,” Choosing Therapy says.
“Glo is the ultimate ‘Netflix for yoga’ platform. You pay a small monthly fee and can take as many classes as you want led by some of the world’s best yoga teachers. Glo’s library is very extensive, so there’s something for everybody — from 10-minute restorative yoga sessions, to 90-minute advanced practices,” Lifewire writes.
SELF recommends you at least try this app: “The Underbelly offers inclusive, accessible classes ranging in focus from breath work and essential postures and grounding sequences to fast-paced postures and more. It’s a home for wellness misfits who may feel displaced, discouraged, or overlooked due to a lack of diversity in the health and fitness community. Try it out with a two-week free trial.”
Marie Claire writes about its customizability. “Jessamyn Stanley, internationally recognized yoga teacher, award-winning Instagram personality, and body positive advocate, created an app called UnderBelly that aims to help you cultivate mindfulness in your everyday life. Choose what track is best for you, then get in that downward dog.”
Byrdie names it the best for inclusivity and writes, “More often than not, yoga teachers (and class attendees) come in the form of skinny, white women. Not only is that not reflective of the practice’s Indian roots, but it also creates an environment that lacks diversity and inclusion…It’s coined as being ‘yoga for the rest of us,’ and the sessions are rooted in self-love.”
You might know Yoga with Adriene from YouTube! According to Cosmopolitan, “Adriene is quite literally the OG when it comes to at-home yoga sessions. Join Find What Feels Good and access over 700 videos including yoga and meditation for all levels. Explore daily practices, workshops, in-depth learning, weekly or monthly accountability series, and an opportunity to connect with a one of a kind global community. This is your one-stop shop for yoga, creativity and wellness.”
“Adriene Mishler offers yoga instruction in two different formats — YouTube videos and an app called Find What Feels Good. Her YouTube channel has over 500 free yoga tutorials, including classes to strengthen your core, lower back and more. If you’d rather view her videos offline, you can download the app Find What Feels Good. It gives you access to all her YouTube videos without ads plus dozens more exclusive videos, courses, and workshops,” Trusty Spotter writes.
Choosing Therapy loves the app’s interactivity. “Because Adriene has built such a passionate yoga community and continues to connect with members through vlogs and message boards, we feel that FWFG rightfully earns the award for best yoga app for a community connection.”
Need a good yoga mat? Check out what experts recommend here.
- Women’s Health
- Prana Sutra
- Oprah Daily
- Choosing Therapy
- Marie Claire
- Trusty Spotter
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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This post may contain affiliate links.