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What Exercises Should You Do Before a Long Bike Ride?

rcise your legs, but also your buttocks and your core muscles. Going on a long bike ride, whether it is for charity or just for fun, can be an exciting and challenging experience. However, it will be a challenge for your muscles. The repetitive motion of cycling can cause a lot of strain on your body, so what type of exercises and stretches should you be doing in order to prepare yourself? Stretching your muscles will help you to avoid cramping – because if your muscles are not properly warmed up beforehand you will risk pulling a muscle.

Before doing these stretches you should jog lightly for around five minutes in order to get your blood pumping, so that you are not stretching your muscles before they have been warmed up. Preparing for a major London to Paris bike ride? Here are a few of the best exercises that will help you to prepare your body for a long bike ride.

Quadricep Stretch

Stand on your left foot and curl your right leg back. Use your right hand to grab the top of your foot and pull on it until you feel a slight stretch along the top of your thigh. Hold the stretch for 15-20 seconds and then let go and switch to the other leg. If you find it hard to balance you can hold onto a sturdy object or lean against the wall.

Kettlebell Swing

Take akettlebell and get an overhand grip on it, holding it in front of your waist at arm’s length. Then, bend at your knees and hips while lowering your torso, so that you create a 45 degree angle with the floor. While doing this, swing the kettlebell between your legs.

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Keep your arms straight during this, then thrust your hips forward and straighten your knees. Swing the kettlebell up to your chest level while standing up. Make sure that you swing the weight back and forth with some force. This will not only exe

Sitting Leg Stretch

You can do another great stretch by sitting on the floor and touching the soles of your feet together so that your knees point out to either side. Try to pull your feet slowly toward your body, while cupping your hands over your toes. If you want to deepen the stretch, hold your feet together and press down with your elbows into your knees. Make sure that your movements are slow and deliberate and that you are not bouncing your knees up and down. Also, make sure that you don’t slouch your back or strain your neck and shoulders.

Exercise Ball Hip Raises

Make the most of the large exercise balls you see lying around at your gym and prepare your legs and hips for a long bike ride. Start by lying on your back on the floor with your knees bent and your feet flat on the top of an exercise ball. Raise up your hips, so that your upper back and shoulders stay on the floor but your body forms a straight line between your knees and your shoulders. Hold this position for a few seconds, then slowly lift one knee to your chest. Lower it back to the start, then lift the other to your chest. Continue to do this, alternating back and forth between your legs.

Calf Stretches

Start this exercise by standing a little way from a wall and leaning on it with your forearms, while you rest your head on your hands. Bend one of your legs and place that foot on the floor in front of you. Keep your other leg straight behind you. Slowly push your hips forward until you feel a stretch in your straight leg. Make sure that you keep the heel of the foot on your straight leg on the ground and your toes pointing straight ahead. Do not bounce, just push through with the stretch slowly for 20 seconds.

The benefits of having supple muscles before a long bike ride are huge. The more flexible you are the more you will be able to ride your bike faster with less effort – while also avoiding aches and pains the next day. You will also develop stronger, more flexible and more muscular legs, which not only look great but will benefit you in other sports as well. Next time you are going on a charity challenge bike ride, why not give these exercises a try?

About Mary Abe