Spinning is an excellent form of cardiovascular and muscle toning exercise. But like any physical activity, it is possible to get injured. There are steps you can take to safeguard your body and prevent injury in spinning classes. Here are some tips for doing so.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
Things you need
- Cycle shoes
- Cycle shorts
Fit the seat or saddle of the bike to your body. A spinning bike's saddle can be moved up or down, as well as forward and backward, to suit the height of the rider. In terms of seat height, you should be able to have a full leg extension at the bottom of the pedal stroke without locking out your knee. Adjust your seat height so you have a very slight bend in your knee when you are at the bottom of the stroke. In terms of fore and aft saddle position, position the pedals so your arms are parallel to the floor. Your forward knee should be precisely over the pedal clip. In essence, if you dropped a plumb line down from your kneecap, it would hit about the centre of your foot.
Adjust the bike's handlebars to fit your body. You should be able to comfortably reach the handlebars when you are in the saddle. Your elbows should never be locked out and always possess a slight bend. Improper handlebar height can lead to arm, neck, shoulder and back discomfort.
Keep your shoulders down while you ride. Oftentimes, riders tend to tense their shoulders during classes and this results in shoulder pain after class, in addition to putting you at risk for long-term injuries. Relax your shoulders and drop them down away from your ears.
Maintain a neutral spine during class. You shouldn't be hunching your back at all. Keeping your shoulders down will help to avoid hunching. In addition, keep your head neutral, thus to avoid strain on the neck. Never hang your head down and always ensure there is space between your chin and your chest. When class participants hang their heads, it puts serious strain on the back of the neck.
Check your leg form. Your knees should be right in line with your ankles when you pedal. If your knees are facing outward from or inward to the bike, you will likely experience knee issues. Check your legs every few minutes to ensure proper alignment.
Invest in a good pair of cycle shoes. While most spinning classes feature shoe cages so you can ride the bikes wearing running shoes, you will feel much more comfortable if you wear cycle shoes. Standard fitness shoes are soft-soled to allow for walking and running foot movements and they provide too give too much for cycling. If you experience tingling, numbness or pain in your feet, it will likely alleviate if you switch to hard-soled cycle shoes.
Wear cycle shorts or tights in spinning class. Cycle shorts are padded and free of seams. This helps to prevent soreness caused by the seat as well as chafing. You are not supposed to wear underwear with cycle shorts because the underwear's seams can cause chafing and pressure spots.
Maintain some resistance on the spinning bike at all times. The resistance not only challenges your body but also keeps you safe. If you don't have any resistance on the bike, you put your joints and tendons at risk for injury. Protect your body by keeping light resistance on the bike at all times.
Follow the class
Tips and warnings
- Ask the instructor for advice on your form. He will be able to give you correction advice if something needs improvement.
- Never perform any movement that you feel is unsafe.