I know I talk a lot about good mental health and stress relief during (and after!) OT school, but I of course also believe staying healthy physically is also just as important. This can of course be more challenging due to the extreme time constraints that we have as students, new grads and new practitioners.

While we all know that time is limited in school. Our budgets are also very limited. Because of these constraints, I wanted to share my favorite quick workouts that I

  1. Had time for and
  2. Didn’t have to pay a penny for.

These workouts can of course work for anyone (OT school or not) looking for a good way to save money while still keeping physically fit.

OT school workouts.

As someone in my later twenties at the time of writing this blog post (eesh), I have switched from focusing on working out to look good to working out to maintain my strength and flexibility as I age and recover from older injuries.

My workouts might not be as intense, but they will help me stay strong and prevent further injuries as I get older (fingers crossed!).

I want you to be mindful of your body too and listen to it when you’re doing any type of exercise. Whether it’s running, yoga, HIIT, or Crossfit-types of workouts, if something hurts… STOP!

I can assure you from personal experience that injuries don’t always get better. They often get progressively worse if you don’t take care of yourself.

These are my favorite (free!) workout programs/instructors categorized by type of workout.


This is personally my favorite workout that I try to do at least four times a week. I generally don’t do any advanced sequences or even full vinyasas due to an old wrist injury.

Again, if you have any pre-existing injuries yourself, be mindful and don’t overdo it.

When I’m doing intermediate-types of yoga, my go to sources are:

1. Do Yoga With Me

A free website that survives on donations, with a huge library of yoga videos of all levels.  

2. Yoga with Adriene

This is my personal favorite on YouTube. She is this super silly, cheerful woman named Adriene Mishler from Austin who makes yoga fun and not so monotonous, while giving you a great workout and targeting whatever body part you’re in the mood to work on.

3. Yoga By Candace

A great Youtube channel that has videos of all levels. 

4. Fightmaster Yoga

Last but not lease, this is also a great one you can find on Youtube that also has a separate website to check out. Really, you can’t go wrong with the amount of great yoga content out there, as long as you pace yourself and go at your appropriate level.


I combined the two categories here so I could add my two favorites into one section. I am a firm believer of strengthening the whole body (especially the core) to maintain your strength from now to when you’re in your 90’s+.

Working with older adults as well as inpatient rehab with the physical demands of the job has made me so much more aware of the importance of not skimping on the strengthening.

To make sure I’m able to target each body part at home (again, for free!) I love, love, love Cassey Ho’s Blogilates videos on YouTube as well as her free app that lets you pick what body part you want to target.

My other go-to for home workouts is Fitness Blender which consists of a married couple named Kelli and Daniel that have workouts ranging from pilates to kickboxing to low-intensity and high-intensity (if you’re into that) cardio workouts that don’t require any equipment aside from a yoga mat.


Of course, these are just a few of the workouts I do, and thank goodness for YouTube in that if you’re in the mood to do cardio, abs, yoga, barre, whatever, you can do a search and find whatever you’re in the mood for.

Isn’t technology fantastic?

Just a quick side note that I’m not compensated by any of these folks, and all opinions are of my own and completely unbiased. Make sure whatever exercise option you choose is a good fit for you and that you don’t overdo it.

Take care of yourself and remember that if you don’t have any time to work out in OT school, it’s totally okay.

My craziest semesters were dedicated solely to studying, so don’t worry if you can’t fit it in right now. Take things one day at a time 🙂

Do you have any favorite workouts or workout programs that are cost-effective that you absolutely love and want to share with the world? Shout them out in the comments below!

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  • Hallie June 2, 2019   Reply →

    Staying active has been something that I have really struggled with during my first year of OT school. I went from having a job in retail where I walked upwards of 14k steps per day and lifted heavy items all day….. to studying…. all…day. It makes sense why I have put on a few pounds and lost a lot of strength and flexibility. Now, I am focusing on walking at least 30 minutes, at a brisk pace, and at an incline at least 5 times per week. While this doesn’t seem like a lot to me because I used to be so much more active, it is definitely more exercise than I got the last two semesters. I live in AZ so walking outside is becoming a no-go so I am planning on maintaining my gym membership for now, or turn into one of those people who walk around the mall lol.

    • Sarah Stromsdorfer, OTR/L June 5, 2019   Reply →

      That’s great that you’re still able to get your 30 minutes of walking in, it definitely still counts 🙂 Studying round the clock in OT school makes it hard to justify taking some time for yourself to get some activity in, but it’s so important to do. Keep it up!

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