A Beginner’s Guide to Indoor Cycling
Get ready to ride and learn great indoor cycling tips at your next workout.
Indoor cycling is a great cardio workout that can be adapted for all fitness levels. Whether you are a regular cyclist who wants to come indoors as the weather deteriorates or want to keep your workouts fresh, indoor cycling offer some great benefits:
Low Impact exercise
With the bike supporting your body weight, it’s easier on your joints than running because there is no repeated contact between your body and ground, but you need to set up your bike properly to avoid repetitive strain injuries.
Works cardio and strength
With sustained movement from anywhere from 30-60 minutes, you’ll build endurance the longer you participate, but you’ll also develop strength in large muscles like your quads and glutes.
You control the intensity
Even though the instructor provides direction on speed and gear selection, these are only guidelines. You select an appropriate gear and speed that works for you. As your fitness level increases, you can follow the instructor more closely. A common beginner mistake is pushing yourself too soon and tiring out in the middle of the class. You need to listen to your body and go at your own pace.
Pumping music and variety make the time go by quickly. Exercising with others can be more motivating over biking outside alone.
5 Tips for a Great Indoor Cycling Experience:
- Focus on maintaining speed over resistance. Get comfortable at a lower resistance first, then work towards increasing resistance as your fitness level improves. You need enough resistance to maintain control without burning out in the middle of the ride.
- Move carefully. Throughout the class, you’ll be moving between both seated and standing positions (to simulate hill climbs). Practice changing positions (and resistance) slowly to start or risk injury and embarrassment by falling off the bike!
- Proper pedalling with a flat foot will help you maximize engagement of your glutes and hips and reduce pressure on your quads and knee joints. Make sure the cage is tight around your foot so that you can get the full benefit of the ‘up-stroke’.
- Drink lots of water during your workout. You need to replace fluids lost through sweat.
- Don’t skip the cool down. You might be tempted to leave as soon as the ride is over but stretching and getting your heart rate normalized are important to proper recovery.
For everyone’s safety, important health protocols have been put into place that everyone needs to follow including: the need to maintain physical distance at all times and wear a mask when in close proximity to others, wash your hands frequently and disinfect your bike before and after use.