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Training & Nutrition

Avoiding injury – 9 stretches for cyclists

Rachel Sokal talks with physiotherapist Anne Dickins to discover what you can do to avoid injury when cycling

Stretching out before and after you ride is one of the key elements in avoiding injury when cycling. 

Anne Dickins and I have looked at your body-and-bike position as well as what we mean by core strength and why it’s important; this time we are focusing on stretching and flexibility.

Stretching can help avoid stiffness, pain and injury. Image copyright Rachel Sokal

As Anne says;

At the most basic level you need flexibility in your muscles and joints to get into a position to ride your bike comfortable.

We’ve covered the theory of how you should stretch, and why. Now it’s time for the actual stretches. We’ve got a 9 stretches that are perfect for cyclists, and will help you increase your flexibility and relieve stiffness.

Don’t forget, to help stay supple and flexible;

  • Don’t slump or stay in static postures – get up and move about – your muscles will thank you for it!
  • Always warm up before you stretch (5 mins gentle cycling or jogging  is sufficient)
  • Always stretch dynamically before exercise (by moving in and out of the stretch)
  • Always stretch statically after exercise hold each stretch for about 30 seconds
  • Never cause pain, numbness or pins and needles during stretches – if you have any pain just easy off the stretch.  If the pain continues then consider seeing a professional for advice as there may be a structural problem

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