Cycling is an important exercise to get your heart pumping. Harvard University reports that biking at an average rate of “12 to 13.9 miles per hour will cause a 155-pound person to burn 298 calories in 30 minutes. A person of the same bodyweight will burn 372 calories at an increased rate of 14 to 15.9 miles per hour.” Compared to other cardiovascular exercises, stationary biking puts less stress on your joint, they improve your joint mobility and strengthens your knees.
This article will explore eight benefits of a stationary bike workout in the gym. Read keenly to explore more.
WHAT BENEFITS DO YOU GET FROM A STATIONARY BIKE WORKOUT?
- Boosts cardio fitness.
Cycling is a good way to strengthen your heart. Regular cycling will help improve the wellness of your heart, enhance your body’s energy and keep you young and fresh. While strengthening your heart, lung and muscles, cycling is an efficient way to burn calories, and body fat, as well as:
- Reduces risk of diabetes
- Improved quality of sleep
- A well-functioning immune system
2. Cycling can lower cholesterol levels.
Although a good amount of cholesterol is good for the body, an overdose of it over burdens and increases the body’s risk of cardiovascular diseases. While stationary cycling lowers bad cholesterol levels, it is also an important exercise that can promote good cholesterol. Stationary bike cycling in the gym can lower cholesterol levels by increasing the ratio of ‘good’ cholesterol (HDL-cholesterol) to ‘bad’ cholesterol (LDL-cholesterol) in the blood.
3. Cycling will improve your lung ventilation.
When you include cycling in your workout routine, it will help improve your lung ventilation and efficiency. Like other moderate intense physical exercises, cycling will cause your breathing to be faster and deeper and consequently help reduce the risk of lung cancer. This process causes an increased delivery of oxygen to the lungs, which the blood supply can take up to supply the additional oxygen needed by the body.
4. It improves muscle and joint mobility and lubrication.
Your first attempt at cycling might make you feel so much pressure on your muscles and joints, but as you stick to a routine exercise, you will find everyday cycling and physical activities much easier because the capacity of your muscles will increase. Regular cycling at a healthy level can lessen the probability of falls, improve muscle health, and heighten the coordination and balance of muscles and joints for elderly people. The risk of type 2 diabetes also reduces because the muscles are healthier and better toned at taking up glucose.
5. It slows down the aging process.
During cycling, the skin receives an increased blood flow to help it reduce the amount of heat in the body. While the skin performs a major role by regulating body temperature, a routine cycling exercise will improve your ability to regulate your body temperature and this will slow down your aging process and keep your skin young and fresh.
6. The heart and circulatory system.
Although your heart normally pumps about 4 litres of blood each minute, during aerobic exercises, this increases to about 20 litres of blood each minute. During regular exercise, your body needs sufficient supply of blood to your muscles to give your body the energy it needs to do the exercise. This kind of physical exercise will make your heart stronger. It will also lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.
7. Regular cycling can help with weight loss.
Cycling helps to burn calories and body fat. If you’re considering what to include in your weight loss routine, stationary biking in the gym can be a great option. Starting a cycling exercise can be difficult, but you can consider this cycling plan to help you get the best out of the experience.
- Begin with a low speed rate
- Increase to an average speed for about 3-5 minutes.
- Continue to take turns between high and moderate intensity for about 20 to 30 minutes.
- Cool off by pedaling slowly now for an average of about 5 to 10 minutes.
8. Cycling is convenient and safer than road cycling.
Outdoor exercises and activities are accompanied with a wide range of risks, including poor roads, haphazard drivers and unfavourable weather conditions. Stationary bike cycling at the gym helps you avoid poor road networks, road traffic, and rains or the scorching sun that might accompany unfavourable weather conditions. You can stay in the gym and enjoy your cycling while you listen to music or even listen to some audiobooks. No matter the weather condition outdoors, you can stay physically fit by cycling in the gym. Indoor cycling can also be a suitable option to speed up recovery from injury.
HOW TO RIDE YOUR INDOOR CYCLE AS A BEGINNER.
- Measure the height of the seat against your own height. The top of the seat should hit your pelvic bone when you step on the black bar behind the bike.
- Measure the distance between the seat and the handlebar by putting your elbow on the tip of the seat, stretching out your arm and checking if your fingertips will hit the tip of the silver shaftt from handlebars
- Get on the bike and keep your knee in line with your toes.
- Keep your shoulders relaxed.
- Gently cycle your legs through.
3 MISTAKES IN CYCLING
- Keeping so much tension on your shoulders.
Relax the muscle in your shoulders and enjoy the cycling exercise by keeping your hands light on the handle.
- Bending your knees.
Do not burn your knees when cycling. Always check to make sure they are straight to avoid any pains.
- Bending your feet.
Do not bend your feet. Avoid exerting too much pressure on your feet by keeping it flat as you cycle.
As a beginner, start cycling slowly and gradually increase your cycling time and speed.
Begin with about a 25 to 35 minutes cycling session and increase your cycling time as you improve.
TYPES OF STATIONARY BIKES
- Upright Stationary Bike
- Recumbent Stationary Bikes
- Dual-Action Stationary Bikes
- Interactive Stationary Bikes
Upright Stationary Bike
The upright stationary bike is what most people think of when they hear ‘stationary bikes’. The upright bikes have smaller seats compared to the recumbent bicycles. This means that in order to use the handles of the upright bikes while riding, you have to lean slightly forward.
The features of upright bikes vary depending on a number of reasons, but most upright bikes have features like padded seats, the ability to adjust the seat as high or as low as preferred, displays speed measure and heart rate. The upright bike has features like the regular which can allow you to sit or stand while riding, allowing you gain maximum workout experience each time you ride them.
Whether you sit or stand, the upright bike enables you to get the best workout results. The upright bikes allow you to have low-impact exercise, because stationary bikes do not cause shin splints or sore muscles.
The upright stationary bike has various resistance levels which is one unique feature it is identified with. If you plan to add cycling to your long-term workout routine, the simple to challenging resistance levels the upright bike provides will make it beneficial in improving cardiovascular health.
Recumbent Stationary Bike
The recumbent bike is designed to have a more laid-back design and a seat that is set back from the pedals. The recumbent bike has no handlebars. It has a large and comfortable seat. Despite this, it provides a user-friendly workout experience and a low-impact means to improve your cardiovascular health. The design of the recumbent bike allows the elderly or people who are overweight, and even the inexperienced in exercise programs enjoy a great workout session.
Riding the recumbent bikes helps you maximize your workout session. Ride it slowly by using slow speeds and add more speed over time to help you recover from injuries, lose weight and enhance your cardiovascular health.
The design of the recumbent bike makes it a perfect tool if you plan to train for a particular sporting event.
Dual-Action Stationary Bike
The dual-action stationary bike can be paired with an elliptical, a stair-climber, or any other type of exercise equipment. This design makes it easier and faster to switch from a bike to the other exercising machine. Whether you workout for 15 minutes or over an hour a day, the dual action bike enables you to exercise both the upper and lower body without extra stress on your joints and muscles.
Interactive Stationary Bikes
These bikes have interactive screens that display live shots of the outdoors and mock spinning class to make you feel you’re in a real class. These bikes have features of both the upright and recumbent bikes. A number of the interactive stationary bikes allow you to watch both cardio workouts and strength-training exercises. These bikes also allow you to play video games while you exercise.
The interactive bikes make your cycling more exciting and fun. With these bikes, the probability of having a boring cycling session is almost non-existent.
Whether you are a beginner, on a weight loss journey or an older person, stationary bike cycling is a great way to burn calories and burn body fat while improving the general health of your heart, lungs and muscles.
Cycling to health, myDr.com.au, Tonic Health Media Pty Ltd, 24/03/2015. https://www.mydr.com.au/sports-fitness/cycling-to-health
Indoor Cycle Workout Beginner, Ideal World TV, 24/06/2016, https://youtu.be/XVIXHG-P9YY
Important Cycling Basics -Fully Explained, Synergy Fitness Clubs, 29/11/2013. https://youtu.be/3l9RYHRuNEA
3 Biggest Mistakes in Group Cycling, DietHealth, 22/07/2013. https://youtu.be/O7BiKuXkAbs
Carey Elea and Nall Rachel, How Many Calories Can You Burn Biking? Healthline, February 27, 2019, https://www.healthline.com/health/how-many-calories-do-you-burn-biking
4 Different Types of Stationary Bikes, Home Gyms, The Home Stratosphere Podcast, (2015). https://www.homestratosphere.com/types-of-stationary-bikes/
Cronkleton Emily, 7 Great Benefits of a Stationary Workout, Healthline, July 12, 2019. https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/stationary-bike-workout