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Cycling

Cycling Class Etiquette

A cycling instructor wears many hats: coach, trainer, motivator and mentor. But one title many of us would happily relinquish is “enforcer.” It’s never a pleasant job to police workout etiquette. From time to time, though, situations arise that must be dealt with. Knowing what to do, or at the very least knowing how to respond, can make tricky cycling studio dilemmas less uncomfortable and easier to manage. Here are effective responses to some sticky situations.

Sample Class: Cycle Diversion

You spend so much time making play- lists and designing your indoor cycling classes, but there are days when the creativity doesn’t flow or you’re asked to sub last minute. The following class not only demonstrates the power of cuing and careful drill selection; it also helps you multitask. For example, mix and match this ride by taking one stage and adding it to a preexisting class. Other options: Use two of the stages for 30-minute classes, or use all three for a complete ride.

Cycle Diversion Details

Top Five Cycling Class Etiquette Blunders

A cycling instructor wears many hats: coach, trainer, motivator and mentor. But one title many of us would happily relinquish is “enforcer.” It’s never a pleasant job to police workout etiquette. From time to time, though, situations arise that must be dealt with. Knowing what to do, or at the very least knowing how to respond, can make tricky cycling studio dilemmas less uncomfortable and easier to manage. Here are effective responses to five sticky situations.

Texting During the Ride

Cycle Strong

While the legs may be the stars of the show in indoor cycling, the core is the vital foundation that affects all movement, including the pedal stroke. A solid core helps eliminate unnecessary upper-body movement so that riders can focus and deliver energy for a smooth and powerful pedal stroke. Most cyclists will agree that, whether you’re riding inside or out, the core is the power center for efficiency. These five functional moves strengthen the core muscles and improve overall performance. All you need is 5 minutes before or after your next indoor cycling class.

London’s “Cycle Hire Scheme” Proves Beneficial

In 2010, London launched a cycle hire scheme, which lets residents and visitors rent bicycles to get around the city. Currently there are more than 8,000 bikes and 550 docking stations. However, concerns over rider safety and pollution intake have grown among Londoners. A recent study looked at whether the risks outweigh the health and fitness benefits from increased physical activity.

Sample Class: The Perfect Party Ride

Where’s the party? In your cycling class! This segmented ride allows participants to discover their thresholds, stay fully engaged and leave feeling empowered. Ask three questions throughout class to ensure that participants know what’s expected at each stage and can therefore give their best effort:

What’s the goal?
How long is the drill?
How should it feel?

The Perfect Ride Details

Sample Class: 3 x 3 Progressive Cycling Circuits

Most cycling class participants walk away dripping in sweat, satisfied knowing they got a highly effective cardio workout. But do they have any sense of making progress from session to session–or even improvement within a single session? Do they have a specific goal they can reach in 1 hour and immediately celebrate? Give participants palpable proof of progress with this easy-to-follow formula designed to challenge all levels!

The Formula

From Music Educator to Boutique Studio Owner

Steven Burnes, Australian-born founder and owner of Aussie Fitness Pilates and Spinning Studio in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, reinvented his career in October 2008, after 22 years as a professional musician and high-school and college music teacher. The Peak Pilates® master instructor supplements his studio practice with teacher training and indoor cycling classes.

Cycling Program Sees Significant Growth

What started as a desire to find a physically and spiritually fulfilling workout has turned into a successful business.
SoulCycle®, a full-body workout that combines “inspirational coaching and high energy music” in a dark, candlelit setting has experienced healthy growth since its first studio opened in 2006.

The Proper Preparation

When it comes to warm-ups, indoor cycling instructors often fall victim to the “oatmeal effect”—good for you, but not very memorable. It’s easy to just jump on a bike and ride. However, with a little creativity and skillful instruction, you can engage participants from the start. Be prepared, connect with riders and add a little ingenuity. Begin with a warm welcome and a short introduction, and then ride into one of the following warm-ups.

A Magical, Musical Bike Tour

Up until the late 1990s, cardio workouts shared a similar vibe: shiny, Lycra®-clad bodies stepped, kicked and punched to high-energy dance music. Music was motivational but often generic. Cuing techniques mostly involved giving students notice…

A Smoother Ride

You’re not likely to find a line of members waiting to use the bike on the gym floor; however, indoor cycling classes often have waiting lists. Why do members flock to ride in a group setting? Because a cycling class is much more than a workout: it’s an experience. A great cycling class is a confluence of motivation and technique from the instructor and inspiration from the music. Here are 10 tips from top teachers—and a few astute cycling class members—for giving your students the ride of their lives.

Finish the Hill

My former race coach used to encourage our cycling team to “finish the hill,” to ensure we didn’t power down prematurely. As you start your indoor cycling cool-down, that can be a great reminder for both you and participants. Allowing your instruction to relax completely as class winds down can be detrimental; participants may respond by losing interest, leaving, or turning it into a social networking opportunity and ignoring you.

Frequent Cycling May Be Bad for Sperm Health

Males concerned with fertility might want to step off the bike and supplement with other forms of physical activity. A report published in Fertility and Sterility (2011; 95 [3], 1025–30) linked frequent cycling and diminished…

Urban Cycling Healthier Than Driving

Concerns over car exhaust inhalation and traffic accident risks may seem cause to avoid bicycling in urban areas. However, a recent study suggests that the benefits may outweigh those risks. The report was published ahead of print in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives (doi:10.1289/ehp.0901747).

More Than Just Legs: Refining the Ride

When people want to explain how simple something is to learn, they often say, “It’s like riding a bike!” But is riding a bike really that simple? If you think so, and you’re an indoor cycling teacher, you may be neglecting crucial form cues that would help students enjoy a more efficient, injury-free ride. This sagittal plane activity isn’t as cut-and-dried as it may seem. There are many opportunities for misalignment, discomfort and poor form. A good way to approach form cues is by addressing the body in four zones, from head to toe.

Sample Class: Biking the Boston Marathon

There’s something special about running a marathon. Why not bring the marathon indoors and give your cycling participants a runner’s high? In this class we’ll ride the Boston Marathon and create a unique and exciting experience from start to finish. Each stage is described in detail, offering rich visual imagery. By using these cues, you’ll help students feel that they are truly “in the race.” Interchange visual imagery with solid technical coaching (see the chart)—this is a proven method for making time fly by.

IDEA Member Takes Gold at Senior Games

IDEA member John Platero, director of
education for the National Council for Certified Personal Trainers, won four medals (three gold, one silver) at the California Senior Games in June in Pasadena. In a bid to prove that age is no hindrance, Platero took first place in the men’s 50–54 group for the 5K, 10K and 20K cycling events, and silver for the 40K. He went on to compete in the 2009 Summer National Senior Games in Palo Alto, California, in August, taking first place in both the 20K and 40K cycling competitions.

Sample Class: Bricks for Breakfast

Cycling classes are famous for inspiring participants to try their first 5K run or sprint triathlon race. “Bricks for Breakfast” is offered at Monroe County YMCA in Bloomington, Indiana, where avid outdoor cyclists seek refuge in the winter months, and fitness enthusiasts prepare for their first triathlon competition.

Sample Class: Row and Ride

Rowing and riding classes are dynamic workouts with real-life applications to both sports, rowing and cycling. The
introduction of power meters to indoor cycles and various preset programs on rowers have taken these classes to a whole new level. An understanding of the fundamentals of each sport, mixed with a little creativity, is all that is needed for an effective, fun fusion class.

Row and Ride Details

format: circuit

Total Time: 60 minutes
Equipment needed: indoor cycles and rowers

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