A gym, music, a motivating instructor, and the desire to cycle. That’s all you need to enjoy the benefits of spinning or indoor cycling on your legs, your heart — and your stress.
A home gym or exercise bike, music, a motivating instructor, and a lot of desire to pedal. That’s all you need to enjoy the benefits of indoor cycling on your legs, heart, and stress.
Indoor cycling or spinning, as it is commonly called, is defined as a group physical activity practiced on a specially designed bicycle at a predetermined pace that works mainly the cardiovascular system.
Advantages of pedaling for health
Every day, more and more people are encouraged to bike in cities. But even more, people are signing up for indoor cycling classes due to lack of time, weather conditions, fear of traffic, or simply because they like to accompany the activity with music and motivation.
There are already specialized instructors in many fitness centers who, with the help of rhythmic music, put their students’ legs in motion, thus promoting the cardiovascular system, muscle tone, stress reduction, lung capacity, etc.
Pedaling is one of the best exercises for staying healthy, so much so that experts claim it helps ward off some diseases. We are not the only ones to say this. The Deutsche Sporthochschule (DSHS) in Cologne also says so in its report “Health and Cycling”: “Regular cycling saves money on expensive doctor’s visits, medications, and even treatment.
The results are obvious even if people do not start doing sports regularly until later in life. People with typical back problems, obesity, and other cardiovascular diseases could enjoy many years of good health if they decided to cycle more.
The benefits of spinning
Indoor cycling (or spinning) is not only fun, but it also has many health benefits. Here are the main ones:
- Strengthening of muscle groups: indoor cycling mainly involves the lower body, i.e., the legs and buttocks, although the upper body is also involved as a secondary muscle or with less effort because, after all, the body is a muscle chain and all muscles must work together to achieve safe and efficient movement.
- High-calorie consumption: the higher the heart rate, the more calories are burned, although this also depends on other variables such as weight or gender. It is also important to note that any cardiovascular exercise improves fat metabolism.
- Decreased resting heart rate and improved blood circulation: during aerobic training, the heart becomes bigger, and stronger and loses some of the fat that covers it, allowing it to function better with each beat and transport more blood to the rest of the body,
- Wellness: because indoor cycling is a high-intensity training activity, it helps us reduce stress and, thus, anxiety, resulting in a feeling of well-being and mental relaxation at the end of the workout. Exercise helps the brain release endorphins, a hormone that gives positive feelings.
How does a spinning session work?
To the rhythm of the music and the instructor. The bicycle and legs are essential in spinning, but music is also crucial in this type of activity. The common thread allows communication between the teacher and the student. It determines the intensity and pace of the class at all times, in which people pedal along imaginary paths during training sessions lasting about 45 minutes.
The combination of different types of rhythm allows the instructor to create working combinations: strength and endurance in an uphill section or control and speed in a downhill section: the combination of the two works our cardiovascular system from the very first pedal stroke, which makes the workout safe, effective and fun.”
The instructor is also responsible for improving the physical condition of each participant, adapting the requirements to each person’s physical level. Therefore, you will help your student increase cardiovascular effort as they improve, based on other criteria such as gender, age, physical condition, previous exercises, time available, health status, etc.
Of course, it is important to remember to hydrate properly before, during, and after training because, in indoor cycling, you sweat a lot due to the frantic pace of the pedals, which increases body temperature and thus promotes the loss of water and minerals.
Spinning bike posture
It is very difficult to get injured while cycling in a gym with a good trainer, but it is common to have various muscle aches and pains if you adopt the wrong posture. The posture on the indoor bike is more aerodynamic than on a traditional exercise bike or road bike, whether walking or mountain biking.
The spin bike is equipped with a flywheel, which differs from other bikes mainly because it can adjust the resistance with a knob, an adjustable seat, and a horn-shaped handlebar, which is also adjustable.
Although indoor cycle classes are group classes, they can still be tailored to the characteristics of individual participants. Therefore, it is important to let the instructor know if you are participating for the first time or have special medical conditions so that the class can be tailored to your personal needs.