Stretching, Keeping Good Posture, and Other Practical Tips

Bruises and scrapes are part of every beginner’s journey, but with some confidence and the proper techniques, learning to cycle should not be too painful.

One of the common complaints by people who do not enjoy cycling is that it is too exhausting. Assuming that these people are otherwise in good shape, the reason for their grievances could be that they do not maintain the appropriate posture while cycling, hence putting unnecessary strain on their muscles. Cyclists should also remember to keep hydration levels up, allow the body to gradually transit from light to strenuous exercise, and be aware of the surroundings.

Starting to Cycle, Stretch, Keep Hydrated, Start Easy

People tend to depreciate the value of warming up before a good workout, but they could not be more wrong. Stretching is like taking the handbrake off the body, allowing ease of movement. Do exercises of the shoulders, chest, buttocks, and hips by stretching them repeatedly for about five minutes.

Cycling is very aerobically challenging, so before leaving the house, remember to bring a water bottle for replenishing lost fluids along the way.

When starting, try to pedal on lower gears with higher cadences. It teaches the muscles about the rhythm and sequencing of cycling without stressing them out too much. Struggling to push too hard can result in compensating with other body muscles, hence tiring out quickly and running the risk of sustaining an injury.

Good Posture, Comfortable Ride

Proper posture is the key to a safe and comfortable ride. When riding, keep the body as still as possible with only the legs moving. It helps maintain balance and activates the core muscles so energy will be expended more efficiently. In addition, avoid slumping on the handlebars, as it will put a lot of pressure on the neck and back.

Pedal in circles instead of pushing down; this helps to exercise the buttock muscles. Feet on the pedals should be kept straight; otherwise, it will affect the position of the knees and put extra strain on the hips.

Pedal with Confidence

Many beginners find it difficult to gain confidence on the bike. It can be overcome by getting practice in an area with a dedicated bike path and no cars. Public parks or gardens are also great places to start. It will help learners reach their stability and gain a “feel” for the bike.

A tendency for beginners is to grip the handlebars too tight, as subconsciously this gives an increased sense of security – with fingers poised on the brakes should things get messy. However, this places a strain on the neck girdle muscles, and it tends to make cyclists stiffer and less responsive. A stiff neck would also be a likely outcome.

Beware of Car Doors!

One of the biggest dangers for cyclists is from people opening car doors without checking behind to detect if there is anything (or anyone) in the cycle lane. It makes for some pretty hilarious moments, but probably not for the poor unfortunate cyclist. Check to see if anyone in a parked car tries to pre-empt any accidents of this sort.

Besides being an enjoyable pastime and a good workout, cycling can also be a substitute for driving. This way, cyclists are helping themselves and the community, as this helps to reduce carbon emissions and traffic congestion.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here