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Quick Tips for Spin Class First-timers

November 26, 2015 by Normand Richard, Certified Exercise Physiologist

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Many recreation centres, private studios, and even some bike shops offer spin classes. Spinning is a good way to keep your heart and legs fit over the winter in a fun, group atmosphere. Having done a few spin classes myself, let me tell you what it’s all about.

What is spin? A spin class is where a room full of participants on spin bikes (stationary bikes with a sportier setup) are guided through a cycling workout by an enthusiastic instructor. Usually the room is dimly lit and there is upbeat music; some classes even have screens with cycling footage!

Equipment: Wear comfortable clothing that you don’t mind getting sweaty in; shorts, a t-shirt, and runners are good choices. Some spin bikes have clip-in pedals so you can use dedicated cycling shoes if you want. If you have padded cycling shorts, they can make a world of a difference.

Dealing with heat: Because spin classes are indoor you don’t have the wind cooling you. Sweat rates vary between people; some barely drip while others have a small pond under them (anyone relate?). Bring a water bottle and a towel.

Set-up: When you first get to class, adjust your bike seat so that your leg is slightly bent when the pedal is in the 6-o-clock position. This is for comfort but also to prevent injuries. If your buttocks and hamstring muscles are tight you might want to raise the handlebars. If in doubt ask your instructor.

Spin classes are all-inclusive and adaptable – there might be a first time participant spinning beside an experienced cyclist doing the same workout but at their own level. This makes it a good opportunity for people of all fitness levels to get active. Grab your water bottle and towel and roll into a spin class for fun, fast-paced fitness!


Related blogs

Mountain Biking Essentials for Beginners
Bike Riding Is Easier Than You Think

Recommended resources

American College of Sports Medicine: Just You & The Bike: 5 Physical Benefits of Indoor Cycling

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