The Problem with YouTube Fitness

YouTube is usually a good resource for learning about fitness. There is an abundance of channels that post exercise tutorials, explain various fitness-related concepts and offer useful tips and strategies. So naturally, a lot of people turn to YouTube for guidance, especially when they’re just starting out.

While all that is good, it is important to keep in mind that almost all of these fitness channels are businesses. Their prime target is to get views for YouTube revenue and convince you to buy whatever product they are selling. So these channels sometimes compromise the quality of their content so that they can upload more and get more views. For example, “inventing” exercises and creating “specialised” workout routines are two common ways of ensuring higher views, when they are typically just regular exercises with unnecessary adjustments to make them look different. Not only are they pointless for you, but if you’re a fitness beginner, trying out these complicated exercises can very well lead to injury.

Fitness YouTubers also tend to post a lot of strong opinions and claims about how you should never do certain exercises, or how this one workout is the secret to results, which are all just useless filler videos. Taking these as absolute truths is only going to confuse you and shift you away from the basics that actually get you results.

So how do you get the benefits of YouTube fitness without falling into these traps? For starters, do not let YouTubers determine your entire fitness journey. Consult with experienced and qualified individuals for initial guidance. Learn about the basics and stick to it when you’re just starting out. What YouTube is excellent for though, is learning the proper technique, form and cues for specific exercises. YouTube is also great for learning about fitness concepts such as the differences between low-intensity and high intensity cardio, macro-nutrient requirements, breathing and bracing, etc., which serve to give you an understanding of how things work. Just make sure to take advice only from channels that are well established and credible. Additionally, it never hurts to further research about any advice you get from fitness channels, to truly figure out what’s valid and what’s not.


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