Stationary biking has been an exercise staple for decades for many great reasons. It offers one of the best ways to easily get exercise indoors and it provides a low-impact, high-intensity cardiovascular workout while building both strength and endurance. Stationary bikes can be very effective, easy on the joints, and it can also work a variety of muscles throughout your body if you use it on a regular basis. Using a stationary bike is often safe, comfortable, and won’t add any extra stress to your knees, hips, or lower back.
Whether you are brand new to indoor cycling and you just bought your Peleton bike or you’ve been an expert on the topic for quite a while now, good form on the bike can be the difference between a fun ride and an unpleasant experience. It is definitely worth the time and effort to refresh your knowledge on everything in order to ensure that you are setting yourself up for success.
You’ll be sure to love your new stationary bike if you have just bought one and you are looking for a convenient way to exercise on your own time or you are a cycling pro who needs a high-quality workout when the weather outside is freezing cold and gross out.
Whatever your fitness goals are, a stationary bike is the right tool for a regular cardio workout at home. Here are our top ten tips for stationary biking to unlock the bike’s full potential as you lose weight and gain muscle more efficiently.
1. Clothing Necessities
Wearing the right clothing when you ride the bike is important. The basic clothing staples include tank tops, t-shirts, and shorts. We love the Men’s Aqua Tie Dye Cali Bear Tank Top, the Women’s Black Camo Bolt Tank Top, and the Women’s Light Grey Wake Pray Slay Tank Top as comfortable tank choices for any workout. Plus, they make a great summer outfit when paired with shorts or even swim trunks.
For shorts, there are the Women’s Black Marl Shorts, the Men’s White Printed Space Dye Slant Zipper Pocket Shorts, and the Men’s Black Camo Fleece Cargo Shorts. They’re stylish and perfect for working out, but you can also wear them when you throw on a hoodie and you just want to lounge around the house.
Here at Brooklyn Cloth, we also have many t-shirt options that are necessary when you are riding your stationary bike. One is the Men’s Original Garment Brooklyn Embroidered Tee, another option is the Women’s Black Blessed Rainbow Short Sleeve Tee, and a third is the Women’s Dusty Rose Grateful Repeat Short Sleeve Tee. These t-shirts will also help you upgrade your closet and give you a boost of style without sacrificing any comfort. We suggest pairing these with some jeans if you are going out at night or with some sweatpants for a cozy weekend getaway.
2. Work on Flexibility and Stretching
Flexibility is important, especially for those who frequently use a stationary bike. Having at least some flexibility in your legs will improve your performance and comfort while also allowing you to sit in the best position on your bike. It will also help with muscle recovery and decrease the likelihood of any injuries that may occur.
Some fitness experts recommend dynamic stretching before and after you go on the bike. This type of stretching warms up your muscles and improves your range of motion. Also, as you first go on your stationary bike, you should spend an extra five minutes lightly pedaling to warm up your legs before you go right into your high intensity workout.
The repetitive action of cycling means there are many muscles and joints that are ignored during it as well, so if you take a lot of time out of your day to spend time cycling, many of your muscles are being neglected. Stretching and working on your flexibility will prevent these unused joints from becoming weak and prone to injury when you’re doing activities off the bike.
3. Practice Good Form
Having the right form is imperative as you ride your stationary bike. It helps to prevent any injuries that may occur and will also help you burn even more calories. One of the most important things to keep in mind is to try not to hunch over. You should keep your back straight whether you have an upright posture or prefer to lean forward to properly grip the handlebars. It’s good to hold the handles at the sides of the seat as you go through intense periods of cycling, but try to not put so much weight on the handlebars.
Some other things to keep in mind for good form is to keep your feet flat, because if you pedal with your heels scraping the ground or your toes pointed, it will prevent you from trying as hard as you possibly can as your workout and your performance will be damaged.
4. Adjust Your Stationary Bike
Adjusting the bike’s seat properly may take a little time. You should adjust your seat by sliding it forward or backward until your extended leg has a slight bend when on the far side of the pedaling cycle. You should also modify the saddle angle. Your bike seat angle should be level to support your full body weight and allow you to move around on the seat when necessary. If it is titled upward too much, it can result in pressure points. When it is in a downward tilted, it can make you slide forward while riding and put extra pressure on your arms, hands, and knees, which can lead to injury.
Adjusting the seat height is also important. When your front leg is fully extended, there should be a slight bend in your knees (five to ten degrees). You should change the handlebars as well. If the handlebars are too high, too low, too close, or too far away, you may have neck, shoulder, back, and hand pain. A proper reach allows you to comfortably use all the positions on the handlebars and to comfortably bend your elbows while riding.
Changing the resistance is another crucial thing to keep in mind. Once you are all set up and ready to start working out, you can manually control your workout intensity, resistance, and speed or you can try one of several programs that some bikes offer. Adding resistance simulates hills and inclines and engages your hamstrings and glutes more than riding with light resistance. Pedal with very little ankle movement and remember to both push and pull up on the pedals for a better ride.
Another important tip for a strong, stationary bike workout is hydration. Everyone at this point should understand how important it is to drink plenty of water every day but drinking a good amount of water before and after an exercise is important as well. The harder you work, the more you sweat, so make sure to replenish yourself with water throughout a workout as well.
Stationary bikes are a great way to get into shape as quickly and efficiently as possible. They are suitable for all different kinds of lifestyles and are available in most gyms. They can be small and affordable if you would like one in your home. Once you get the hang of biking on it, you may look forward to your daily workout and you may also start to think of it as something fun to do!