If you are aiming to be a pro cyclist then only cycling is never enough to get you there. If you have cycled long distances then you are no stranger to constant backaches, muscle cramps, and exhaustion. To tackle these problems you have to work your whole body and other aspects such as flexibility, mobility and strengthening your whole body. Here are 5 exercises to get you in the best cycling shape from the top cyclists from ‘Cannondale Pro cycling men’s team’.
5 awesome exercises for cyclists to seriously step up your game
Plank/sit-ups by Peter Sagan
Peter Sagan also knew as the “Terminator” for his performance last year at ‘Tour De France’ who is also a sprinter suggests doing core exercises such as sit-ups and planks. Plank is an exercise that focuses mostly on the core, lower back, and the deltoids. This can be quite tough to hold for beginners or if you are not used to tightening your core but this is a workout worth doing since it is one of the most effective core workouts that also happens to train other important muscle groups. Sit-ups focus primarily on the abdominals. It is a good exercise to target your abs specifically. Sagan recommends doing 200 to 300 sit-ups a day.
Leg curls by Ivan Basso
Ivan Basso, two-time winner of Giro d’ Italia suggests doing leg curls for strengthening the hamstring as well as the back especially the lower back. He advises training on the leg curling machine with your preferred weight resistance level. Ivan trains at 60 to 70% of his maximum. By training your hamstrings you will be able to strengthen your back as well. During long rides, your back will give you a lot of trouble if you do not condition them properly. So it is crucial to train and strengthen your back.
Deadlift by Noriyuki Masuda
Having broken his back two years ago when he crashed in a human-powered plane from 50 feet up, Nariyuki Masada, who recently joined his first European team from UCI’s Asia tour suggests doing deadlifts to really strengthen your back. He uses an overhand grip and does three sets of twenty repetitions. The deadlift is a compound movement that works on grip strength , lower back, glutes and also hamstrings but focuses primarily on the back and legs.
Lunges by Ted King
Ted King, the only American in an Italian team recommends using free weights over machines and doing very dynamic and explosive workouts. Ted suggests doing reverse lunges using dumbbells that are preferably ten to fifteen percent of your body weight , keeping your shoulders leveled and your back straight. He prefers doing reverse lunges over regular lunges because it helps to create less stress and tension on the knees so you do not damage them. Lunges focus primarily in the Glutes, soleus, and the quadriceps. This prevents hamstring injuries by strengthening your inner thighs , calves, and the Glutes.
Agility ladder by Guillaume Boivin
Guillaume Boivin, who is a former hockey player from Canada says that the agility ladder is a great combo of cardio and strength training. He recommends shuffling side to side on the agility ladder using resistance bands for twenty minutes. This increases your heart rate as well as strengthen your Quadriceps muscles that help you make tough uphill climbs.
Writer: Shalin Chitrakar