Are you a first time cyclist? Here are some tips from City Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic to get you started.
Cycling is a great way to get around the city whether it’s just for fun, fitness or an environmentally friendly way to get from A to B. A 30-minute bike ride will increase your heart rate and can help you achieve your weight loss goals or maintain a healthy weight. Cycling is also an excellent way to cross-train for other sports, such as running.
Keep your body fit
Cycling uses mainly your leg muscles, so you’ll want to make sure these are in good shape. Try adding strengthening exercises (squats and lunges) and some core stability exercises into your training regime. Always stretch your muscles after a long cycle
Choose the right bike
When purchasing a bike, there are two things you need to consider:
- Firstly, decide which type of cycling you’re intending to do. Road cycling requires a different style of bike to mountain biking. So make sure you get a bike that’s suitable for the terrain you intend to use.
- Secondly, you need a bike that’s right for you. You’ll need to tailor it to your body size, shape and any injuries you have. So visit a specialist cycling shop for advice before you buy
Check your positioning
Speak to us at City Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic about a suitable cycling position for a pain-free ride. If your seat is too high or too low, or your feet aren’t on the pedals properly, this may put extra strain on your joints and muscles which can lead to injury.
To prevent injuries, you’ll need a suitable helmet. I like a white helmet as it reflects the light better at night. Stay alert to traffic and the environment around you. Wear reflective clothing and ensure your bike has a working light and bell.
Plan your route
You’ll need to plan a suitable cycling route in advance. To keep all of your muscles working try to vary the inclines and distance that you ride. If you’re steadily increasing your distance, only increase it by 10 percent each week so your body can adjust.
Keep your energy levels up
Make sure you eat and drink regularly, especially if you’re cycling for long distances. Cycling uses up a lot of energy and you don’t want to be stuck without any suitable nutrition when you’re a long way from home. It’s a good idea to stock up on energy bars and always carry plenty of water or another suitable drink with you. You sweat a lot when you cycle, so you need to keep replenishing your body fluids.
Remember to move regularly
You could feel a little stiff for a few days when you first take up cycling. You shouldn’t feel any pain in the sitting position or after you’ve been out for a bike ride. Try to change your riding position every 20 to 30 minutes.
Have some fun
Cycling can be great fun and isn’t only for long distance rides. It’s a great way to get around and enjoy the outdoors as well as seeing things you just don’t see when you are in your car. If you experience pain or your muscles are getting tighter as a result of your bike riding then come in to see us at City Physiotherapy. We are here to keep you on your bike and moving freely, Tel: 8212 4886. Level 6/108 King William Street Adelaide.