Spinning is one of our favourite forms of exercise here at Gymetc, and the popularity of our indoor cycling classes tells us that it’s an activity you love doing too!
It’s great as both a cardio workout, and as a way to build muscles and strength. But are you doing it right?
Here are 5 of our top tips to help you improve your spinning technique:
Prepare your bike properly
Before you begin any spinning class, you should always ensure your bike is aligned correctly and set in the appropriate positions. Not only will this improve your ability, it will also help prevent any injury.
Your seat should be positioned so that you can reach the pedals comfortably whilst still getting a full extension of your leg. A good way to assess this is to stand next to your bike, and line up your seat with your hipbone.
Too low, and you won’t be giving your legs a good workout; too high, and you could face knee and hip problems.
Once you’ve set up your seat, you can adjust the handlebars. Whilst individual preference does play a factor here, ideally your bars should be set at the same height as your seat; this will provide the optimum spine position and reduce any unnecessary pressure.
Loosen your grip
One common problem many riders have is a grip of the handlebars that’s far too strong. They feel it’s necessary to support their weight on the bars, and hold on tight with all their energy.
But in this position, your energy is channeled in all the wrong places, and the tension created in your fists can cause shoulder, back and wrist problems. Instead, your energy should be placed in your core, legs and bum.
Your handlebars should just be there for support – nothing else. Move back from them if you’re gripping to tight, engaging your legs, glutes and core, squeezing tight to support your weight!
Ramp up the resistance
There’s nothing worse than spinning without resistance. If your legs are just moving round freely, you’re not putting any effort in. No effort equals no benefit.
Whilst you should always work to your own pace in a spinning class, it’s important to make use of the resistance on the bike. Rapid legs without resistance can damage your hips as they’re rotating too freely.
Turn it up, and you’ll see the changes in your workout.
Check your positions
You’ve set your bike up for when your’e seated, but what about the position your body should be in when you’re climbing or performing another movement? It’s important to always check these as you progress through your workout.
For climbs, your hands should be on the outside of the handlebars to open up your shoulders, and your back should be as straight as possible, with legs bent at the hip. If you get tired, don’t slouch, but instead move your hands closer together; this will help push your hips back up!
When you’re out of the seat, don’t move closer to the handlebars. Instead, you should keep your arms as outstretched as possible, and just hover over the saddle. This will help target your glutes and quads, and isolate your core.
Stretch, stretch, stretch!
Finally, just like after any kind of workout, it’s vital you remember to stretch.
Your legs might be shaking, your glutes tight and your core burning, but that’s all the more reason to stretch out those muscles. Cool down slowly, and remember to perform a stretch for ALL of your muscles, not just those in your legs. It’s easy to forget your shoulders, arms and obliques have been working hard too!
Check out our timetable to find out when the next spin class is on, and put these new techniques to the test.