Indoor cycling can improve fitness for all

Indoor cycling is a group exercise activity which can really help improve aerobic fitness at any level. Many visitors to Champneys Tring have a go at an indoor cycling class, even if their level of fitness is quite low. Although all participants follow the same pre-programmed profile, so everyone sprints at the same time and everyone does a hill climb at the same time – individuals are able to control their own resistance so they can stay within their own safe limits.

Cycling is a non-impact sport so puts less stress on knees and hips, although indoor cycling does include sections when we encourage people to get out of the saddle and stand on the pedals, to get the legs working harder.

The fact that people work together in a class setting encourages them to push themselves and enjoy the mentality of being part of a team. Team work is very important to build motivation and fun into the session.

The fact that people work together in a class setting encourages them to push themselves and enjoy the mentality of being part of a team. Team work is very important to build motivation and fun into the session.

 The music is also carefully chosen in advance of the class to ensure that it complements the dynamic of the cycling. So if we are cycling along a flat, I’ll choose a gentler piece of music than I would for a dash to the finish line.I have three or four different playlists for different classes and I constantly add new tracks into the mix which are in the charts or trending.
Participants in indoor cycling classes do not usually wear heart rate monitors and the special bikes do not have pads in the handlebars to monitor heart rate. Heart rate levels can get quite high in periods of high exertion and people can start to become a bit obsessed about their readings which distract them from the class.
Indoor cycling bikes are also designed more like a racing bike, with handle bars that are down and forward, encouraging you to take a lower more stream lined stance on the bike. This also has the effect of pushing more of your weight onto your bottom and through your legs. Traditional exercise bikes are built to give you an upright stance which is more comfortable and user friendly and can accommodate screens.
Outdoor cycling is definitely something we encourage guests to do at Champneys because it adds an extra dimension to cycling, including fresh air and enjoying the beautiful countryside. 

Outdoor cycling is definitely something we encourage guests to do at Champneys because it adds an extra dimension to cycling, including fresh air and enjoying the beautiful countryside.

The constant change of road surface means you get a full body work out which also encourages good posture and improves balance. Indoor cycling may be the ideal way to work out your leg muscles and improve your cardiovascular fitness with your friends, but outdoor cycling is a total workout for mind and body and is a very popular pastime at Tring, Forest Mere and other Champneys resorts.

Libby Swain

Libby Swain

Libby Swain is senior fitness instructor at Champneys Tring.
Libby Swain

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