Joining a spin class can be one of the intimidating experiences, especially if you’re a beginner, but the bravery is worth the effort.
And here, we shall share with you the spin class tips for beginners.
But before then, let’s define spinning.
What is spinning?
Spinning, also known as indoor cycling, is a form of cardiovascular activity-often delivered in a group setting, and it mimics outdoor cycling.
However, unlike your regular outdoor cycling, spinning uses a stationary bike with a weighted flywheel. The stationary bike used in indoor cycling is known as a spin bike, though both “Spinning” and “Spin bikes” have been trademarked as brand names.
Spinning is known to focus on endurance, strength, high intensity, and recovery.
Proponents of this exercise claim that spinning offers a host of both physical and health benefits, including reducing weight, improving on lean muscles, improving on cardiovascular health.
5 Things to Know Before Your First Spin Class
Few of the health clubs and health boutiques that I know usually offer beginner spinning classes. After all, spin class beginners will only need a few classes to get up to speed.
But it’s not all too easy, especially if you don’t know the basics of the spin classes.
The good news is we compiled a list of the things you should know before you’re your first spin class.
Choose your Instructor Carefully
The first step towards a successful spin class experience is choosing a good instructor. If you pick a good instructor, you’ll enjoy the indoor cycling infinitely more; remember that anything your instructor chooses, from the music to the lessons will greatly affect your motivation and performance, so it’s essential that you pick one that does not put you off.
Preparation is the Key
Spin classes are highly intensive, meaning you will expend a lot of energy during the entire session.
Before hitting the pedals, it’s therefore, necessary that you fuel up with light but nutritious snacks.
Besides snacking, you should as well as carry a water bottle to keep you hydrated. Spin classes often get too hot, and even with air conditioners and fans turned on, you can get sweaty, and so you’ll definitely want to stay hydrated.
What To Wear
Comfort is key when choosing your spin class gear.
Fitted, padded shorts, alongside a breathable cool fabric should provide an incredible spin class garment.
While at it, ensure your spin gear is lightweight and fitting; however, it should not be too tight to the point of constricting your movement.
Also, it should be breathable, allowing free flow of air, and most importantly, it should have the moisture-wicking ability, meaning it can absorb the sweat you produce, thus keeping you dry all the time during the entire session.
Invest in Some Spinning Shoes
While most of the spin studios usually provide clip-in cleats, check beforehand whether this is the case. While these shoes might seem scary at first, they’re simple to use. You can read more about some of the best spin shoes for women here in this article.
If the shoes are not offered, you could choose to wear hard-soled athletic shoes. While they’ll not perform as the latter, they’re the nearest you can get to the professional clip-in cleats.
If you’re a beginner, arriving early is crucial as it will allow you to familiarize yourself with the spin class environment.
Additionally, you’ll have time to set up your bike properly for your body. Also, you’ll have the time to ask the instructor on how the gears are set up.
Be Patient with Yourself
Like any new activity or skill, there’s a learning curve with indoor cycling.
At first, the lessons might be painfully challenging, but with time, you’ll get the hang of it.
Tips to Crush Your Cycling Class
Now that you’re aware of the basics of joining a spin class let us look at five incredible tips any beginner can help us to maximize their spinning experience.
Get Your Bike Set Up Correctly
Before you start spinning, it’s essential that you set up your bike correctly is it will greatly influence the success of your sessions.
The essential bit of setting up a bike correctly is the height adjustment. To adjust the height to the correct dimensions, you should stand next to the bike, and you should feel it on one side of your body for the top of your hip bone-the saddle should be about level with it.
You should pedal in full circles
Indoor cycling is an ideal place to concentrate on your pedal stroke. Unlike outdoor cycling, spinning will allow getting the full benefit of the “Up-stroke.”
Dance on the pedals, not with your hips
We do love a good tune, and we’re accustomed to celebrating the beat with shaking our hips as well as nodding our heads.
However, doing this in a spin class will not only throw your body all over the place, but it will prevent you from gaining the full training benefits of core stance.
Don’t Be Afraid to Go at your Own Pace
The beauty of indoor cycling is that it offers control over how hard your workout is because it allows you to change the resistance yourself.
You don’t necessarily have to be at the same level as everyone; instead, pedal at your pace, but ensure you’re pushing yourself to the limits.
And as you gain strength and muscle, you can always increase the speed and resistance.
Take a Break if you Need
Still pinging on what we’ve mentioned above, you can take a break if you need to.
A majority of the spin classes include sprint intervals, where you spin vigorously before taking a moment of rest by slow pedaling. Now, if you feel the intervals are short, you can extend them to take a breath.
6 Ways You’re Spinning Wrong
It doesn’t matter whether you’re spinning your heart of your body, but if you’re not doing it correctly, you’ll not achieve your health goals.
Here, we look at some of the too-common mistakes that we see many beginners making in their maiden spin classes.
Holding on Too Tight
Holding the bike too tight is not only a waste of energy, but it’s the beginning of a greater problem-supporting your entire weight on your hands and wrists can be quite detrimental to your health.
A sure sign that indicates the presence of this problem is when you get your hands sore after the class session.
Next time, rather than holding the bike too tight, try to balance your body over the mid-section, glutes, and quads.
A common posture we see with beginners when they’re under duress is scrunching their shoulder up around their ears. This posture will not only make cycling harder for you, but it will strain your back as well.
A remedy to this is loosening up the shoulders, relaxing the bend on the elbow, and keeping your neck nice and long. This way, you’ll focus your energy on the lower body and allow you to get the most out of your exercise.
Slacking on Resistance
Though spinning is what you make of it, don’t let the bike do all the work. See, spinning without any resistance, hips bouncing all over the place can result in hip and knee problems.
This is not to mention that an instructor sees this as a form of cheating.
Pushing Too Hard Without Pulling
There’s a reason why the spin bikes have toe cages; it’s not just how hard you can hammer your feet, but also the power you can exert as you bring each foot back up and around, and the presence of clip-in shoes underlines this.
Not Following the Instructor
There’s a reason why your instructor has the lesson planned, and the rhymes, ebbs, and flows in the plan are more than just to match the Beyonce beat playing in the background.
See, you might think that going longer and pressing harder than everyone else will give you a better workout, but you’re burning out your muscles and disrupting the class.
So, it’s always essential to make a point of following the instructor and heeding to their advice keenly.
Failure to Stretch After Class
After a vigorous spinning exercise, it’s not uncommon for your hip flexors to feel a bit cranky, the shoulders peaked and the glutes weary.
See, cycling is a killer lower body workout, and like any intense class, it absolutely vital to stretch it out at the end.
Stretching will not only protect your body, but it will help in building the muscles you just worked.
More, importantly, you’ll save your body from some pain and soreness later.
So, do your body a favor by giving them a good stretch; ideally, it should be two minutes or even longer, and your future self will be grateful.
Other Accessories You May Need : A Spin Bike Computer
Alright now you are ready to take your frist spin class. But wait, you may want to track everything from the every beginning. & The solution? Spin bike computer. For the new spin class enrollees, I hightly recommend it as it will help you to track your fitenss level. Get started to track it with our best spin bike computer guide here. Me and my team has done a lot of research last week and prepared the ultimate guide for you.
When you are a beginner, you might get tempted to quit and leave. But don’t, instead, sit on the saddle, free yourself from tension, and continue to peddle through the class.
In the end, you’ll be prouder for your endurance and excited about the health benefits of the spin classes.
Nathan Is a Semi- Professional Cyclist & Founder of Mybikexl. He own 2 bike shops and a full time passionate rider. When he is not in his shop fixing stuff, you will find him in the road or mountains enjoying himself with his bike.
**As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases ** Read the full disclosure here.