Riding Your Bike, Not Falling on Your Knees
Everyone says that you don't forget how to ride a bike, but here's what you should never forget before riding a bike! Avoid knee injuries by preparing, training, and stabilizing the muscles connected to your knees. Discover essential stretches to enable you to have a great summer on your bike!
It's almost summer! Which means that many cyclists will be able to train to their hearts' content. However, this requires a certain level of physical preparation to limit the risk of injury, thus enhancing your performance. In fact, although your feet make no impact against the ground like when you're running, knee injuries are still a fear for cyclists. Studiogym gives you concrete advice and provides you with several programs and exercises to have an amazing summer on your bike! Here's an overview:
GENERAL PREPARATION FOR ALL CYCLING ENTHUSIASTS
Whether you cycle occasionally or every day, a good general program along with stretches that engage all the muscles that are used when cycling are a must. Our Stretching for Cyclists program combines 8 exercises that are doable in less than 15 minutes. These stretches target your back, hamstrings, calves, quadriceps, and hip flexors in order to prepare you for cycling and to avoid injuries once you are in the saddle.
STRENGTH TRAINING AND PERFORMANCE FOR CYCLING JUNKIES
For those who focus on performance and who are chomping at the bit during off season, Studiogym put together the Strength Training for Cyclists program. We have combined targeted exercises for you to practice during the off season to strengthen your muscles and prepare you to cycle. They target the hips, shoulders, forearms, legs, and abs to enable you to stay stable and in shape as the season approaches.
THE IMPORTANCE OF STABILIZATION
Above all, you must stabilize your knee joints while training the muscles attached to them. Here are some important exercises and stretches:
Train your hamstrings: These enable you to bend your knees and are predominantly weaker than their counterparts, the quadriceps.
Do a unilateral training session on your legs: One of your legs is surely stronger than the other. Thus, it's important to balance them out.
Studiogym offers you the following exercise:
your gluteus medius:
These are often forgotten in training programs for cycling.
Train in disequilibrium: Do lunges with the help of a BOSU ball or an unstable plank, which enable you to strengthen knee joint stability.
Studiogym recommends this exercise:
One last point that should not be ignored: stretching. Cycling demands you to repeatedly bend and extend your knees, which causes a shortening of certain muscles, in particular the iliopsoas. Here is an example of a stretch that targets this muscle.
Stretch the iliotibial band: This muscle joins your hips to your knees and is often tense among athletes, which can cause knee pain.
Studiogym suggests this stretch:
So for a successful summer on your bike without pain or injury, or for a season in which you shatter your records and enhance your performance, take a look at our programs, and put them in practice—starting now! Happy training, and enjoy the ride!