Cyclists are awesome – but we’ve got a few bad habits. Over-reliance on caffeine, and a magpie like eye for brightly colour socks and caps are two common vices.
One other bad habits cyclists often possess is a tendency to follow this pattern, day in, day out:
- Jump off bike, shower, eat
- Sit down at a computer
Leading busy lives, it can be easy to neglect one important stage that should come between getting off the bike and anything else: stretching.
When we combine the hunched forwards position of cycling, with the often hunched stance we take during other activities, we can quickly develop sore shoulders, necks and backs.
Allowing bad habits to continue can lead to all manner of problems. Hunched shoulders can pull the mid and lower back out of line, causing rotation and pain down the legs as nerves become trapped – for example. The sort of discomfort you might experience when your neck and shoulders get tight will vary between individuals – but regardless, it’s bad news.
The best way to avoid letting problems set in? Keep up with a regular stretching routine. It only needs to take ten minutes a day and could make all the difference.
To help you stretch correctly, without risking injury, we’ve teamed up with the experts at Velo Atelier to bring you six stretches. 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 (view that one here)
- Neck (see that one below)
We’ve already covered why it’s important to stretch your neck above – here’s how to do it…