Did you put a lot of miles on your bike this summer? Ready to head inside for the year now that the weather is changing? Outdoor cycling in the winter in the Midwest can be difficult – even unsafe. Luckily, there are many ways to keep up your fitness (and sanity!) until next spring.
This off-season is the perfect time to work on cross-training. Off season training for cyclists should include two important components: injury prevention and performance.
Injury prevention: Cycling is performed solely in the sagittal plane. This means all motions are performed in a forward and back motion (think running, sit ups, or elbow curls). Strength training in other planes will help with muscle balance and overall injury prevention. Here are a few exercises that can help:
Performance: While you are cycling, muscles are being used throughout your whole body. The muscles used for increased power and speed are leg muscles, including gluteal muscles, hamstrings, quadriceps and calf muscles. Strengthening these muscle groups in the off season will improve performance in the future. Here are a few exercises to consider:
Try adding these exercises to your exercise routine 2-3 days per week. To keep up cardiovascular endurance over the winter, consider stationary biking, treadmill jogging or swimming. Before you know it, spring will be here and your body will be ready for long bike rides down your favorite paths.
Contact your local Athletico clinic if you experience any difficulty while training this off season to schedule a free assessment or bike fitting!
The Athletico blog is an educational resource written by Athletico employees. Athletico bloggers are licensed professionals who abide by the code of ethics outlined by their respective professional associations. The content published in blog posts represents the opinion of the individual author based on their expertise and experience. The content provided in this blog is for informational purposes only, does not constitute medical advice and should not be relied on for making personal health decisions.
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3. Ericson M O, Bratt A, Nisell R, Arborelius U P, Ekholm J. Power output and work in different muscle groups during ergometer cycling. Eur J Appl Physiol. 1986; 55 229-235