Indoor cycling is one of the most popular exercises today, and with good reason. Using a stationary bike allows users to enjoy all the benefits of cycling while indoors. Also, all the risks associated with cycling such as traffic, noise, and crowds are virtually eliminated.
One of the challenges of operating a health and wellness business is improving your patients’ fitness. Doctors recommend at least two and a half hours of moderate cardio exercise every week, and your patients can easily reach that goal that by using a stationary bike. Apart from strengthening the heart, stationary bikes also target and strengthen major muscle groups.
Safety should always be your top priority, even when exercising indoors. Teach your patients to simplify their workout instead of experimenting with intricate and unsafe routines. Indoor cycling is one of the most popular workouts out there, but many people fail to follow safety precautions and proper training.
Here are a few tips to ensure a safer and more productive workout for your patients.
1. Learn proper form
Many people use stationary bikes for their leg muscles, especially the calves, hamstrings, and quadriceps. But, if they learn proper form, a stationary bike workout can activate muscles all throughout the body. Depending on the bike, patients can focus the workout on their legs or shift the workload to their upper body.
Your abdominal muscles can also be activated if people follow the correct form. Tightening the abdominals helps maintain control and proper form. To activate the core area such as abdominal muscles, draw your stomach in towards the back and straighten your back. You can perform a wide array of exercises that use the core muscles while on the bike.
2. Wear proper workout gear
Patients need to wear proper workout gear for maximum effectiveness. Wear comfortable cycling shoes, athletic shorts, and a loose top for easy breathability. Make sure to have a towel and a water bottle handy to keep yourself dry and hydrated.
The exercise area should be cool and well ventilated. While more calories are burned in warmer rooms, you run the risk of your patients overheating if there’s no wind to cool them down while cycling.
3. Use both pedals
Exercise bikes have two pedals for a reason. Do not attempt to take one leg out and pedal with the other. Your patients may injure themselves as the pedal might hit your leg as it completes its revolution. If they want to up the difficulty, tell them to increase the resistance instead.
4. Avoid nonstandard use
Exercise bikes are one of the most efficient ways to keep our bodies fit, but some people go one step further. Some people use their exercise bikes for push-ups and stretching. This is unsafe, and you shouldn’t use a bike for anything else apart from cycling. An exercise bike is not an integrated machine. ; If your patients want to stretch or perform other warmup exercises, tell them to do so on the floor.
5. Limit the speed
Tell your patients to reduce their speed if you think they are going too fast. One telltale sign that you’re going too fast is if you feel you’ve lost control of the pedals. You also risk slipping out of the pedals, which may cause serious injuries to your feet and knees. Stop the workout and wait a few minutes to rest your legs.
6. Loosen up
When riding on an exercise bike, always tell your patients to tighten their core and keep the hips moving. Holding them in place only shifts the workload on the hamstrings and quadriceps, increasing the possibility of an injury. They also risk injuring their knees.
7. Don’t use accessories
Focus on cycling while using an exercise bike. Don’t use accessories such as stretch bands and dumbbells. Lifting while cycling is dangerous as it splits the person’s attention in half, and the intensity and effectiveness of the workout are halved as a result. They might even fall off the bike if they lose their balance.
A final word
If there’s one thing that all patients need to remember, it’s to never let anyone adjust the resistance on their exercise bike. Only they can decide the speed and pace of your workout. Work with a professional to create patient goals, but don’t make them compete with others. Recovery isn’t a competition and forcing your patients to workout at an uncomfortable rate can aggravate their condition.