A quick look at the best channels for yoga on YouTube for beginners — after having done a whole bunch of videos.
Both while travelling and in quarantine, we needed some way of staying fit while travelling. We’ve tried many things — including running, travelling with resistance bands and with rings — but yoga is one of our favourite ways of keeping supple.
And while there are many paid courses out there, I vowed to go through all of the best yoga on YouTube before paying for something.
Why Yoga on YouTube? Because
- It’s free (and ad-free if you have YouTube Premium, which makes the experience much better)
- It’s very high quality — often the yogis on YouTube use it as a way of making money, or as a funnel for selling their own online courses
- It’s easy to keep YouTube videos offline – you can save them to your app
Yoga’s also a great morning wake-up routine, and was a regular component of the “Miracle Morning” while I was doing that (which I quickly adapted to my own specific needs).
Yoga Accessories for Beginners
We generally try not to buy things if we don’t have to. We resisted buying a yoga block and strap for as long as we could.. and our practice and progress really suffered because of it. We’ve realized that a block and strap are essential at the absolute minimum.
Yoga people often talk about humility and overcoming ego. Part of this is an attitude of constantly learning. So I still consider myself a beginner, and maybe always will — but concretely, I find most intermediate-level videos technical at some point.
So I made it a mission to go through every introductory video for Yoga on YouTube and to log them.
Here are our favourite channels.
740K subscribers. Website: www.yogawithkassandra.com
Kassandra (Reinhardt) was one of my starting points in doing yoga on YouTube.
Her style of yoga is very relaxed and calming. She often talks about letting go of tension, being aware of pain, and not pushing too hard (but pushing yourself just a little further).
What I like about Kassandra is she’s so approachable. I personally don’t like it when yoga gets too spiritual/mystical. Some mention of “yin” and “chakras” is inevitable, but with Kassandra, it’s minimal and doesn’t get in the way.
Good video with Kassandra to get started: 10 Minute Morning Yoga
17K subscribers. Website: faithhunter.com
Faith Hunter is a rare PoC in a world of online Yoga instructors that are largely white. But that’s not why I like her.
Faith brings a distinct style to yoga and broadens it out from just flowing physically. Her approach is to help people become “spiritually fly”. She uses yoga, meditation and inspirational chats to help people break through insecurity and find a sense of self.
Good video from Faith Hunter to get started: Energizing Morning Flow (10 mins)
7M subscribers. Website: yogawithadriene.com
Adriene’s super-popular channel on YouTube is another yoga channel we frequent.
Like Kassandra, her style is very approachable.
Good video to get started with Adriene: Yoga For Complete Beginners – 20 Minute Home Yoga Workout (from 2013, but still a very popular one!)
871K Subscribers. Website: xuanlanyoga.com (but all videos on YouTube, free)
I started doing Xuan Lan Yoga while in Spain, thinking it was a good way to get my day started in Spanish as well as starting it with yoga!
Xuan Lan is a great teacher. I learned a lot through her, as well as learning phrases like perro boca abajo (“downward-facing dog”) and saludo al sol (“sun salutation”).
There are fewer Yoga instructors in Spanish, and Xuan Lan was one of the best I found.
Good video to get started with Xuan Lan: Tu Primera Clase de Yoga. It really starts right at the beginning.
317K subscribers, website: lucillewoodward.com
Similar to Xuan Lan, I started watching Lucille Woodward for some yoga on YouTube in French when I was working in France for a short spell.
There are more French-speaking yogi than any other non-English language, and of the ones I found, Lucille was my favourite.
Lucille is an athletics coach with over a decade of experience. She doesn’t just teach yoga — she teaches concepts that span a few fitness concepts, including the importance of equilibrium, a balanced diet, and cardiovascular fitness.
Her motto is to « Se faire du bien, sans se faire de mal !», which means “Do good to oneself, without doing harm!”
Good video from Lucille Woodward to start with: Yoga du Matin (20 min)
51K subscribers, website: leighabutleryoga.com
Leigha Butler is one of the “smaller” yoga YouTubers I follow with 51K followers at time of writing. (I say “smaller” because it’s still 51K more than we have!)
Leigha Butler has some more advanced videos in her portfolio — the kind of things you don’t normally see in yoga on YouTube! Often I’ll start out on an “intermediate” video and then be greeted with casual instructions like “now, extend it to a handstand”. She does provide easier options, which I always take.
What I like most about Leigha Butler is that her videos are no-nonsense — she pretty much just jumps straight into it without any waffle. She even cites “minimal chatter” as one of her values on her “about” page, along with “clear cueing” and “attention to breath”. If you ever read this Leigha — I noticed, and I love it!
Leigha Butler’s videos aren’t as polished as many others (that get more and more professionally produced the bigger the channels get), but her videos and instructions are clear. Besides, anyone who has put anything on YouTube may know how incredibly hard it is to have anything “polished”.
A good one from Leigha Butler to get started: Yum — A 25 Minute Yoga Flow
280K Subscribers, website: yogabycandace.com
I found Yoga by Candace (Moore) while looking for stretches for runners, but stayed for a few other videos.
Candace is very to-the-point and has a very calming style. It’s really easy to follow her instructions without getting lost.
Her videos are also really well-categorised (which is why I found her) — organised by focus, length, and so on.
Good video to get started with Candace: 30 Min Yoga for Strength and Flexibility
“Hey,” you cry. “Where is my favourite instructor for yoga on YouTube??”
Sorry if I’ve missed one you love. I’ve not seen the majority of yoga videos on YouTube — there are so many. And sometimes, a yoga teacher may not have connected with me through one or two videos and I miss the ones you love.
If you have a strong recommendation (or if you’re a yogi on YouTube yourself) please feel free to get in touch and let us know what to add.