The concept of spinning first came into being more than thirty years ago. Ever since then, it continued to be one of the most popular exercise choices among people of all ages. Still, some voices of dissent may argue that it is far too demanding of an activity to be worth it. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
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8 Reasons to Start Spinning
If pursued correctly and regularly, cycling indoors works wonders on health and physical fitness. In addition to these benefits, there are quite a few more advantages that have to do with personal comfort or financial aspects. If you’re unsure whether or not spinning is the choice for you, here are eight convincing reasons to start right now.
1. It Works Wonders on the Heart
The first thing that you need to know about spinning is that it makes for great cardio. Because of the repetitive muscle contractions involved, your heart starts beating faster. This strengthens the heart and blood vessels, it promotes healthy oxygen flow throughout the body, and it lowers blood pressure and cholesterol levels.
What is more, participating in regular mvascular stimulation reduces the risk of developing diseases such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and even Alzheimer’s. Aerobic physical activities are a great way to pursue this benefit. And if you’re not too keen on running or complicated routines, then indoor cycling is the way to go.
Hopping on the exercise bike a few times a week for the benefit of your heart is even recommended by specialists, such as Cycling Medicine Program physical therapist Greg Robidoux. The program is held at the Spaulding Rehabilitation Network, which is affiliated with the prestigious Harvard School of Medicine.
According to Robidoux, the activity is incredibly safe for most people to engage in. It can even be pursued by those recovering from heart disease, as long as their physician has given their approval beforehand. While sessions tend to last between 45 minutes and one full hour, you need to get at least 20 minutes in for results to be achieved.
2. It Exercises All Your Muscles
Your heart isn’t the only muscle exercised by regular indoor cycling. Holistic health coach and fitness expert Kaitlin Condon explains that it also regularly engages the hamstrings, quadriceps and glutes. This means that your thighs and booty are certainly getting a run for their money while you’re up on the bicycle.
However, when adapted correctly, biking indoors can help you work on so much more than that. You can put your lower back into it as well, engage your core and activate your arms for a full session that will leave your entire body shaped and toned. What is more, the thigh isn’t the only part of your leg that gets into it.
Have you ever noticed what great legs cyclists have? The same results can be achieved on your stationary bike, provided that you keep your posture right and pedal firmly. Spinning puts all your muscles to work, whether you like it not. For this reason, it has kept its popularity in gyms and households from all over the world.
3. It Is Gentle on the Joints
As previously mentioned, cycling indoors engage the body in its entirety. Due to this, there is a common misconception that it is quite straining. But the reality couldn’t be more different. Spinning is actually a low-impact exercise, which means that it automatically places less stress on the joints than more intensive alternatives.
For this reason, it is accessible for a wide variety of individuals, and it can help with recovery as well. According to Harvard Medical School, it is a viable option for those recuperating from orthopedic injuries. What is more, senior citizens that encounter knee or hip dysfunctions can easily take up the sport as well.
Nevertheless, aligning your seat and handlebars accordingly is vital to this. The improper set-up can put a strain on your back and knees, thus defeating the purpose of the entire thing. If you’re having trouble doing this, ask an instructor for assistance. Even if you chose to pedal at home, hitting a spin class every now and then is recommended so that you learn the basics.
4. It Isn’t Weather-Dependent
Cardio activities such as running, or even cycling in the great outdoors, are heavily weather-dependent. While they might be amazing to pursue during the warmer months of the year, once fall and winter roll around, you’re going to be tempted to quit. Exercising outside in the cold is possible, but it is certainly a lot more difficult.
What is more, atmospheric conditions can be rather unpredictable at times. It is not uncommon for a summer day to start out pleasant and warm, only to have it ruined by a midday thunderstorm. Fortunately, indoor cycling isn’t affected by this. You can engage in it all-year round and not have to face one drop of rain.
5. It Can Be Pursued at Home
The versatility of spinning doesn’t end with the fact that it is not subject to weather changes. It can also be pursued in various locations. Although the popular concept is joining a spinning class at your local gym, you can do so much more than that. There are sports institutes devoted to this activity alone, so if you want to focus more on it, that’s a viable option.
But the true advantage of cycling indoors is that you can do it in the comfort of your own home. After attending a couple of classes to get a hang of things, you can purchase a stationary bike, install it anywhere in your living quarters, and get going. This makes keeping up with your routine a lot easier, because the machine is right there when you have the time.
6. It Is an Adaptable Workout
Part of the appeal of spinning is that it can be adapted to suit anyone’s needs or goals. You can pedal to lose weight, tone your muscles, or recover from various injuries. Depending on what your end game is, you can tailor your regular exercise sessions so that you achieve visible results in the desired areas.
Not only will you be able to pick the intensity and resistance of the machine, but you can also toy with the duration of the entire routine so that the transition is smooth. Starting off small with 20-minute rounds once every other day is more than enough for a beginner. In time, you will be able to go the full hour.
7. It Is Widely Accessible
Indoor cycling is the invention of one Johnny Goldberg, a South African-born cycling who moved to Santa Monica to become a personal trainer. Its popularity has been increasing year after year ever since it first appeared back in 1989. His classes quickly gained fame among the Hollywood elite, and he patented the concept of spinning in 1994.
Exercise enthusiasts enjoy the wonders of the stationary bike today as much as they used to in the California of the 90s. And because the activity is so popular, it is widely accessible to everyone. If you have a gym near you, there is a high chance that they offer a class, if not more. Thus, finding something to suit your schedule and skill set is a given.
8. It Is Cost-Effective
Last, but certainly not least, you should take up spinning because it will benefit you financially. Because the activity is so popular nowadays and virtually every gym in the world offers it as an option, joining a class won’t lead you to bankruptcy. While one session of a trendy activity can cost more than 30 dollars, a spin class won’t set you back more than 15 dollars at a time.
In addition, due to the steady wave of popularity the sport has been enjoying over the past decade, many gyms offer subscriptions and bundle deals. Therefore, you will save even more money in the long run. Classic options that are tried and true are always the better choice, because you know what you’re getting, and the price is reasonable.
And if you decide to pursue pedaling at home, acquiring a stationary bicycle is quite the investment for the future. Just like their outdoors cousins, spinners come in all price ranges depending on what they are equipped with. If you want something durable, it is recommended that you spend at least 500 dollars on yours, if not more.
Remember that purchasing something that is in the higher end of the price range means that it will last longer. What is more, a more expensive bike comes with better features and functions that can turn any session into a professional experience that is comparable to the one you’d get at the gym.
The Bottom Line
If you’ve been considering cycling indoors and find it hard to make up your mind, consider the aforementioned benefits. Not only does it improve your health and physical fitness, but it is also a versatile and comfortable workout that won’t break the bank. After all, there’s a good reason behind why it managed to keep its appeal for three decades straight.
Article provided by Luke Mitchell of Exercise Bikes Expert. Luke is an MS Undergraduate in Sports Journalism and an independent fitness trainer. You can find more of his written work on Twitter @LukeSMitchell1.