Are you nervous about your first cycling class?
Relax. Cycling doesn’t have to be intimidating, even if you don’t know how to ride on two wheels. As long as your bike is set up correctly, you can have peace of mind that you won’t be at risk of a freak injury, allowing you to fully enjoy the ride.
Adjust Seat Height
Tallman says your seat height should align with your hip bone.
If you’re unsure exactly where/what your hip bone is, it’s easy to find: lift the leg closest to the bike, and level the seat with the topmost spot where your leg bends.
“Just make sure you’re standing up tall to get the most accurate measurement,” Tallman adds.
Make Space Between the Seat and Handlebars
If you sit on your bike and your legs are out to the sides like chicken wings, your seat is too close to the handlebars. This can hamper your form, leading to potential injury.
Luckily, there’s an easy fix to ensure you’re seated properly:
“The best way to adjust your seat is to have your spin instructor look at you to make sure your knees aren’t too far over your toes, but if you’re by yourself, there’s still an easy option,” Tallman says.
Start with your elbow on the edge of the seat, and move it forward/backward so your fingers touch the resistance knob. That’s it! Once you’re on the bike, feel free to make further adjustments so you’re as comfortable as possible.
Set the Handlebar Height
Who knew the handlebars on a stationary bike had to be set up, too?
This can be tricky, because similar to pants, some prefer riding low, while others like them high. If you’re unsure, a good rule of thumb is to start with the handlebars slightly higher than your seat.
“I always say to start with them a little bit higher — especially for those who are pregnant, overweight, or have lower back issues. Since we’re not riding outside, there’s no reason to have them low to be aerodynamic,” Tallman says.
Photo Credit:Visual Generation/Shutterstock.com; Jen Tallman/New York Sports Club