• Georgia Sheehan

HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR BASIC RIDING TECHNIQUE

FROM THOSE MOST IN THE KNOW!

 

Rhythm riding is not easy, and although some people can pick it up quite quickly, unfortunately for most of us it takes a bit of practice!




From setting up your bike, to how to adjust your resistance, or mastering a sprint, we asked those who are most familiar.


This is what our Inspire instructors said about how to improve your riding technique...

 

1. Strecth, stretch, stretch!

Before class and after class, you should be stretching! Taking the time to warm up your body gently before jumping on the bike lowers your risk of injury and helps you maximise the first two warm-up tracks. At the same time, don't be tempted to slip out during the post-class cooldown! If you have the time, a post-class stretch is crucial to help your muscles recover, relax and prepare for your next class.


Here are some stretches you can do before or after class to ensure you look after your body!



2. Set up your bike correctly

Okay, so we may not be trying to get a setup exactly like Jake here (😉) .... But seriously, a bad bike setup is not only extremely uncomfortable, but also increases your risk of injury! There's also no worse feeling than tapping back and missing the seat because it's in the wrong place!


There are three things you want to check when setting up your bike:


Seat height


You want to make sure that your seat saddle sits around the height of your hip bone. You can adjust your seat by pulling out the pin at the base of your seat and pulling the seat up / pushing it down until you reach your desired height. Make sure

you retighten the pin at the base of your seat, so that you are locked in and secured for class!


Handle bars


Again, you can adjust your handlebars with the pin at the base of the handlebar. This time, you want to adjust it to a height that feels comfortable for you. Mostly, we just want to make sure you are not too hunched or leaning too far back!


Clip In


The most important and also the trickiest part of setting up your bike! Clipping in takes some practice, but there are some things you can do to make it a little easier. Pointing your toes down and aligning the cleat with your pedal is a great start. You can then drive the heel down, and you should hear a click to confirm that you are clipped in and ready to go!



3. Hill Climbs


Hill climbs are supposed to be HEAVY! You need to make sure you have enough resistance under your legs to activate the muscles we're trying to target (our legs)! How do you add resistance? Reach to the dial between your legs and turn it to the right. We recommend at least 4-5 big turns for a climb!


The other thing that is crucial during a hill climb is to engage your core. By locking in these muscles, you can use your legs instead to push you from side to side, and this allows you to feel the burn in your quads!



4. Jogs

For our jogs, we're focusing on endurance! We want to get that heart rate up and pumping. Again, you want to make sure that you have enough resistance on your legs, so reach down and adjust it accordingly. We recommend 2-3 turns for jogs!


If you're new to jogs, it's best to start by staying in the saddle and trying to catch that beat. When you're ready (this can take a few classes!) you can rise up so that you are hovering out of the saddle while still riding to the beat. The best jog position will allow your bum to hover back over the saddle, while your shoulders are relaxed and your arms lengthened. You want to ensure that you maintain a good posture throughout the song, so you want to keep your core nice and tight again so that you have stability throughout our entire body!



5. Sprints

Sprints will be the tracks where you have the lightest resistance on the dial, but don't be mistaken, you still want to make sure we have enough on there to catch the beat!



You want to feel lifted throughout your body as you're sitting down. Try to avoid slouching in the saddle if you can! When you're ready to rise up out of the saddle, there are two things you want to remember:


Try to maintain that beat!


If you don't have it yet, there's no need to stress. You can keep practising in the saddle for as long as you need!


You want to hover your bum back over the saddle.


You don't want to be leaning too far forward! Leaning too far forward will break that good posture we're trying to maintain, and it will also put you at risk of injury. If in doubt, hover back!


 

We also have some video instructions on how to improve your basic riding technique on our Inspire Cycle page here. Our instructors are always here to help, so don't be afraid to ask them questions before or after class about stretching, how to set up your bike, or how to improve your riding!


Comment below if you would like to see a post detailing how to perfect more complicated riding movements, such as dips, presses, taps and crosses!



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