Before you give the first strokes of the pedal that you will be moving along the cycle tracks or the top of a mountain, some warm-up exercises and activation of the muscles, joints, and nervous system are required.
Eric Chouinard, owner and trainer of the Gym Endorphin, located at the foot of mont Sainte-Anne, suggests five exercises for cyclists will begin their ride the bike “more efficient and easy while reducing the risk of injury,” he said. In the beginning of the season, why not take the opportunity to adopt and maintain this good habit preparatory before every ride ?
Exercise 1 : activate the muscle flexor of the hip (psoas-iliac), ” to decrease the discomfort in the lower back caused by the position on the bike “, offers Mr. Chouinard. To do this, place a knee on the floor and move the opposite foot. By pushing the hips forward and drawing the shoulders back slightly, stretch the quadriceps while keeping the abdominals tight and the back upright. Repeat 8 to 10 times gradually increasing the amplitude.
Exercise 2 : performing squats with an elastic band placed at the top of the knees allows you to activate the glutes, in order to “integrate them into our movement of the pedal stroke and decrease the stress on the knee joint,” says Chouinard. Keeping the feet shoulder-width apart, back straight and abdominals engaged, “send the buttocks to the rear and keep a constant tension on the elastic by pushing the knees outward slightly,” said Mr. Chouinard. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
Exercise 3 : put into action the postural muscles of the back and shoulders to increase your capacity to preserve longer the good posture on the bike and reduce the risk of muscle tension in the neck, ” said Mr. Chouinard. Lying on the belly, the feet aligned with the hips and hands aligned with the shoulders, raise the legs by contracting the glutes, while lifting up his arms to each side, pulling the shoulder blades towards each other. Hold the position for a few seconds, and then return to the starting position. Repeat six to ten times.
Exercise 4 : rotate the trunk by genuflecting with inspiration forced, to “understand the muscles of the thoracic cage and the muscles of respiration,” emphasises Éric Chouinard. The back straight and abdominals tight, push the hips under the body. “By keeping an inclination towards the front, make a slight rotation of the trunk while lifting up the arm at about 45 degrees. Turn the side of the foot to the ground. Once in rotation, inhale until your lungs are full, exhale and return to the initial position “. Perform four to six repetitions on each side.
Exercise 5 : knees bent to about 90 degrees, made of extensions of the ankles (8 to 15 reps), keeping the back straight, head up and abdominals tight. This exercise will activate “the stabilizers in the ankles, knees and hips and, by the work of balance, our central nervous system,” said Mr. Chouinard.