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Cycle 101

Indoor Cycle classes are one of the most offered forms of cardiovascular exercise on a group fitness schedule in the gym or  studio.   Being highly effective form of cardio that produces  weight loss and fat burning its also one of the most popular sports in the world for over a century.  If you’re someone who needs to get in cardio (which is all of us), you dont want to have to think about it and you need the motivation of a group …… Indoor Cycling is for you.  Ever heard the saying “Its just like riding a bike”?   It means simple and doable.  You get on, you pedal, that’s it.  Easy.

But, cycling classes get a bad rap.  They are highly misunderstood, being thought of as a class you “need to get in shape first” before taking.  I get it, its intimidating. I can remember my first cycle class like it was yesterday… picture me 20 years ago attending only classes offered in the group studio, like step or abs and buns.  Those were safe.  The cycle room looked scary, dark, with people wearing weird shoes, and some crazy lady was yelling from the lead bike.  To this day, that is how the cycle room can be perceived. Intense and HARD.  Dark and scary. Any exercise class can be hard, cycling just happens to look that way.   What most people dont know about cycling, is that it's the MOST beginner friendly class on the entire schedule.

Yes, you read that right, I didn’t mistype……

Heres the thing. If you go to a Boot Camp Class and you’re a beginner and the instructor asks the class to do 10 burpees…..what if you can only do 1? The entire room knows you didn’t do the 9 remaining burpees.  In a cycling class, no one knows what you decide to do with your resistance knob, because its YOUR bike.  Intensity in a cycle class comes from adding resistance and you’re the ONLY person that can do it.  Did I just blow your mind? Do I have your attention?


Now, one thing you should know before I convince you to sign up for a cycle class.  Not all cycle classes are created equal.  Cycle classes can (some of those will refer to themselves as spinning instead of cycling, which is actually a copyrighted program and should only be used by the company) practice upper body engagement on the bike with weights, do pushups, popcorn jumps, and many other unsafe and ineffective movements in class.  These classes can not only lead to injury or make one worse you may already have, but can be difficult to follow.  In addition, you’ll burn WAY less calories. Most people dont know that fact.  The reality is, if you ride the bike like it should be ridden, pedal and create power, and leave the choreography and weights for OTHER classes, you’ll burn MORE CALORIES and get fitter.  At Burn Studio, we ride authentically and use our coaching to keep you engaged during classes.

Why you need cycling classes:

  • Results. You’ll torch calories and burn fat for big results.  At Burn Studio, we ride with console measurement so the results will be even bigger.  You’ll get to know your Power numbers and see how far you ride during a class, which is a huge motivator to keep doing it!
  • No Impact.  One of the biggest benefits of cycling class is there is no jumping or impact involved. We need classes that dont involve impact simply due to the fact that over time, impact can create a wear on the joints.  And as we age, this becomes an even bigger factor.  Now at 44, and years in fitness, I feel things I didn’t used to in many parts of my body.  Cycling is a pain free class for me
  • Instruction.  We’ll tell you exactly what to do, when to do it,  and how to do it safely in class.  
  • Tribe. The energy of the group will help you push harder than you ever thought possible. Before long they’ll become the supportive community you need to keep going. There is something magical about riding bikes, in a dark room, together, going nowhere in the dark.
  • Stress Relief.  Whatever happened that day or whatever is going on in your life. You’ll pedal it away one stroke at a time until a weight has been lifted from you.


Here's what to expect for your first cycling class:

  • Arrive early.  Your instructor will need to set you up for the most comfortable fit so you can ride with ease. We want to make sure you are riding as comfortably and safely as possible
  • Hydrate.  Bring water.  You will sweat and water helps you during recoveries on the bike by brining your heart rate down.  Performance will be much better with water.
  • The seat.  Maybe you’ve heard about it, maybe not.  But being honest.  The seat is uncomfortable.  You will wake up the next day feeling violated.   There is nothing wrong with you, it's normal.  Give yourself a couple weeks of consistent classes and the seat issue goes away.  Promise.
  • Tennis Shoes.  They’re okay to wear to class. You dont need cycling shoes, although if you plan to cycle regularly they will make you more efficient in turn creating more power and burning more calories.  If you do wear tennis shoes, just know that you will feel a bit unstable through the foot and ankle.  The thicker the sole on the tennis shoe the better
  • Standing.  Standing out of the saddle can be very difficult for new rider and that’s ok.  Remember its your ride and you can sit anytime. I recommend that you get of the saddle in small increments at first and sit when you need to.
  • Resistance.  Its your resistance knob.  Remember it moves left and right.  You can take away or add at any time.  At Burn we coach using intensity, meaning, we'll tell you how it needs to feel and let you decide what to do with the resistance knob.

So. What are you waiting for? Get to the class schedule and book your cycle class today!

Here’s my link to all of my favorite cycling playlists that I use in my classes at Burn every single day. Enjoy!

Spotify Cycle Playlist

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