With over 10 million subscribers, YouTube fitness guru Chloe Ting is redefining how viewers approach daily wellness by bringing challenging workouts to their homes. Like many of the millions of viewers that have flocked to Ting’s channel since March, I first discovered Chloe Ting’s fitness community when looking for ways to stay active while at home during a nationwide quarantine. Ting, based in Melbourne, Australia, delivers high-intensity workouts in short 10- and 15-minute videos, targeting areas of the body like the abs, glutes and legs.
In the U.S., poor quality eating patterns and physical inactivity have led to staggering numbers of adults developing chronic health issues related to lifestyle choices. However, reforming one’s eating and exercise habits is a privilege related to time and money resources. Fortunately, the content, structure and no-cost nature of Ting’s workout programs mean personal fitness is more accessible than ever.
The length of Chloe Ting’s videos means that her workouts aren’t just affordable in terms of cost, but in terms of time. Having time to work out is a privilege, as opportunities to work on personal fitness are not readily available to those who shoulder demanding schedules out of financial need or family responsibility. The rise of the uber-popular HIIT workout approach (High-Intensity Interval Training) responds to the attractive convenience of completing high-impact workouts in shorter amounts of time.
With videos ranging from 10 to 15 minutes, anyone can squeeze in a good sweat with Chloe Ting in between tasks or even before bed. Ting’s videos eliminate the time-consuming routine of having to block out an hour to drive to a gym, improvise with equipment and intimidating machinery, and return home. Consistently, the workouts — from “Warm-Up Routine” to “Full Body Fat Blast” to “Inner Thigh Workout” — require no equipment at all. When following one of Ting’s workout plans, preparing to move your body simply involves rolling out a fitness mat and watching Ting demonstrate each move. Ting coaches viewers when to breathe and how to make the most of each exercise. Her condensed workouts make daily exercise much easier to practice, even in the most crammed of schedules.
The exercises are also intentionally supportive for beginners. Ting’s videos, despite their intensity, make working out a positive experience by encouraging viewers throughout the exercises. Her workouts, focused on burning fat and building muscle, rely on body weight, rather than dumbbells or other weighted tools. She also demonstrates modifications for moves that might be particularly straining. By eliminating the financial burden and potential spatial hindrance of requiring gym equipment, Ting’s videos are inclusive of a wider range of fitness levels, making it feasible for anyone interested in leading a healthier lifestyle to get fully involved in her programs.
In my case, I performed most of the moves in Ting’s videos while squeezed between my bed and desk. Those without a designated space for working out, or who live in more cramped quarters, can fully participate in her workout programs.
The most impressive merit of Ting’s fitness brand is that she delivers quality content completely for free. Ting’s website lists a variety of free workout programs that target specific areas of the body, making it easy for users to customize their workout to their specific fitness goals. As most programs range in length from 14 days to 30, committing to a plan is minimally intimidating for those who might be trying to reform their exercise habits for the first time.
After choosing a program, users are taken to a list of videos to do each day, with each video series tailored to targeting areas like the abs and glutes or legs and arms. Similar at-home workouts can cost anywhere from $20 to $50 a month, so it’s no wonder that Ting’s free videos have been so explosively viral, reeling in millions of views per workout.
Many of Chloe Ting’s subscribers are probably college students stuck in similar situations — sheltering at home for the summer without the access or motivation to go to a gym — but Ting’s content is about more than the convenience it offers quarantined millennials. By dedicating her YouTube channel to at-home, no-equipment and challenging workouts, Ting makes fitness and its important benefits more attainable for all.
Exercise has real mental health benefits, from short-term mood enhancement to alleviating chronic depression. When more people are exercising, more people are happy. By making quality workouts free to all, Chloe Ting and YouTube fitness trainers like her make the psychological benefits of wellness attainable to those who might need them most: people that find the expenses associated with fitness culture prohibitive.
In addition to mood-lifting and physical health benefits, working toward fitness goals increases self-esteem. Free workout content empowers more people to improve their body image, which is evidenced by the women and men of a range of body types that have found Ting’s workouts inviting and effective. Chloe Ting’s comprehensive, free workout programs, such as “25 Days Hourglass Challenge,” create positive, affirming content for viewers to push their physical limits and feel proud at the results.
With luxury fitness brands like Lululemon and expensive workout fads like SoulCycle dominating popular images of fitness culture, it can be easy to feel like making lifestyle reforms requires lots of money, time and gym outfits. YouTube fitness videos demonstrate that one can work toward fitness goals while returning to something simple: using body weight to perform at-home workouts with no equipment, gym membership or attractive workout outfit required. This hits at one truth that makes the wide popularity of Chloe Ting’s videos heartening: All are more motivated to exercise when fitness is made accessible.