If you’re like me, you like to do your research before delving into things. Ok, if you’re ANYTHING like me, you do way too much research and drive your family crazy.
When my neighbor invited me to spin, I jumped at the chance, because I had never been, and was eager to try. Plus, it’s no secret that I’m pretty close minded about cycling, thinking that they’re ‘just cheating anyway’ and that anyone can do it. So yeah, I had that going for me!!
Anyway, while it’s still relatively fresh in my mind, here’s some stuff you might need to know before hopping on the spin bike for the first time.
– What to bring: a water bottle, and willingness to try something new. You *might* want to wear tights. I find that no matter how short my running shorts are, the fabric bunches up on the saddle [a fancy word for bike seat] and becomes really annoying/possible chafe zone. Honestly, this is a personal debacle, and I don’t know if it’s a common problem. Just my two cents.
– First and foremost, make sure your bike works. Give the pedals a manual spin, make sure the resistance dial works, give the brake a press, and ensure that you have foot straps that are intact. To me, this make more sense than immediately adjusting the bike to your liking, because who wants to put forth all that effort, only to have to change bikes because it doesn’t work?
– Adjust the bike.
Seat: Stand next to the bike, and move the seat so that it comes up to right below your hip bone. If you want to test this seat position out, hop on the bike, and give the pedals a few slow turns. Your leg should extend all the way out when your foot is closest to the floor. Also, make sure you’re not too far away/too close to the seat. To check this, make sure that as your knee is coming up, that it is centered with the pedal. If you feel like you’re reaching for the handlebars, you’re too far away; too scrunched up, you’re too close.
Handlebars: Again, this should be a comfortable fit, and you should feel like you’re 7 years old again, flying down the cul de sac. What an instructor mentioned to us before class, was that your handlebars should be even with your seat. You might not think this is important, but it is. Hunching over a set of handlebars that are too low is just going to kill your back!
Slip your feet into the pedals, and tighten the straps. My very first class, I thought I was too cool for school, and opted to get on a bike that didn’t have straps. Um, yeah, about halfway through a sprint my feet flew off the bike, tearing the crap out of my legs and leaving them bruised for weeks.
This is all I can think of at the moment. Trust me, you’ll get hooked. It’s great cross training and a nice change from the treadmill. Hopefully you’ll have an amazing instructor that will have a rockin’ playlist, the ability to leave puddles under your bike, and answer any questions you have.