The cycling class experience is very much two-sided. It’s incredibly group-centric – you pedal in sync, tricep dip together, and feed off of each other’s energy. On the other side, it’s extremely individual – you control your experience, from how much resistance you apply to how much of your mental and physical energy you’ll give to the class.
To get the most out of your cycling class, there are a few different things you can do to work that individual progress and grow for yourself. Dr. Jenni Bruning Brown shares her top tips below to become an expert on the bike.
- Fuel up before class
Eat something small before class and drink before, during and after class. Making sure you stay hydrated will ensure you have enough energy and remember, if you feel thirsty, you haven’t had enough.
- Engage your core and abs
Try to imagine a girdle or tight band pulling in around your stomach when you are standing up out of the saddle. Make sure you’re not leaning on the handlebars and try to keep your abs and area below your ribs engaged. Imagine that you’re hanging by a string above your saddle, rather than leaning over them, or lifting up and out through your chest.
- Keep your knees in
Use your inner thighs while pedaling. You’ll want to engage them by pulling your knees inward, engaging your core and pulling your inner thighs toward the seat post. If you ensure that your toes are not pointed downward and instead flatten out your feet, you’ll avoid injuries to your knees. Remember that the more tired you are, the more likely your legs will start to bow out. Focus on engaging your core and pulling in toward the center.
- Relax your shoulders
Drop your neck during class and find space under your chin. We tend to tighten up our shoulders and use our shoulders rather than our legs. Remember to relax your shoulders and loosen your grip.
- Have fun.
If you aren’t having fun or getting a good sweat in your cycling class, it’s time to find a new class or a new instructor. Your workouts should be a time to have fun, hear great music and let your body feel strong, confident and get an amazing sweat! Try out some of these tips for yourself to maximize your spin class experience.
We’ve got multiple classes a day so that you can work your new knowledge. Check MindBody for this week’s schedule and our new schedule starting January 2!