Stretching is something that's extremely important for cyclists - but all too often we ignore it, in favour of jumping off the bike and getting on with the next task of the day.
At TWC, we've teamed up with experts Velo Atelier - who fit bodies to bikes, and offer clinical assessment as well as pilates classes at their studio on Warwickshire - to bring you six stretches that are easy to do but will make all the difference.
Each stretch is demonstrated by pilates instructor Dorte Jensen and her assistant. Though you may have seen them before, Dorte will show the correct way to complete the movement without causing injury by placing stress elsewhere.
Here are the exercises we’ve done, and have yet to cover…
- Glutes (view that one here)
- Quads (view that one here)
- Hamstrings (view that one here)
- Hip Flexors (below)
Today's stretch will work on the Hip Flexors. These are located along the front of the top of your thigh, and they often become shortened in cyclists, who spend their exercising time sitting, and then often further the problem by replicating the stance during the day, at a desk.
Stretching the Hip Flexors can feel painful if they're tight, but relieving the tension will free up the culprits, and surrounding muscles...
How to do the hip flexor stretch...
- Come on to your knees, and swing one leg in front of you
- The foot should be further forward than the knee, and the pelvis squared so the hips are level
- Drop the tailbone down towards the floor
- Lean forward, lifting the breastbone and ensuring that your hips don't twist. You should feel the stretch at the front of the hip on the kneeling leg
- Hold for 10 - 15 seconds, breathing into the stretch
- Swap the legs over and repeat 2 - 3 times
About Velo Atelier and Dorte Jensen
The team at Velo Atelier offer ‘products for the discerning cyclist’ – they work with physiotherapists to provide clinical bike fitting, as well as coaching, saddle mapping, custom frame building, and pilates classes to name just a few.
Dorte Jensen is a level 3 pilates instructor with over five years experience. The stretches in our videos aren’t likely to be unknown to you, but she’ll demonstrate the correct way to carry them out and highlight common errors which can hamper the effects of the stretch.
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