Even exercise fanatics sometimes rush out of spin class right after the last song but before the final stretch. While this is considered a major indoor cycling mistake, it’s easy enough to zip through the most vital stretches on your own, says Bree Branker, indoor cycling instructor at Flywheel in New York City and certified yoga instructor, who demonstrates the only moves you need to do, below:
1. Clipped-In Forward Fold
With both feet clipped into the pedals and level, hold the end of each handle and drop your elbows to the bar as you stand up out of the saddle. Drop your heels down to the floor as you shift your hips back over the seat and hinge forward at the waist, letting your head and chest drop toward the handle bars. Lengthen the spine and pull your shoulders away from your ears. Hold for as long as you’d like, then bring your back foot forward and forward foot backward, and repeat.
Where you’ll feel it: Your calves and and the back of your thighs.
2. Chest Opener
3. Standing Hamstring Stretch
Unclip from the bike and stand on either side of the saddle with your feet facing the handlebars. Carefully swing your left leg up and place your heel (not your ankle) gently on top of the handlebars. With your right hand, grab the inside of your left foot. Keeping both knees locked, and your shoulders away from your ears, gently pull your chest toward the raised leg. Hold for as long as you’d like, then repeat with the right leg raised, this time reaching with your left hand.
Where you’ll feel it: The back of your thighs and your lower back.
4. Standing Figure-Four Stretch
Standing on the either side of the saddle with your toes pointed toward the handlebars, place one hand on the seat and one hand on the handlebars. Bend your left knee and place your right ankle above your left knee. From this position, bend your standing knee and bring your hips back as if you’re sitting in a chair. Hold for as long as you’d like, then repeat on the opposite side.
Where you’ll feel it: All up in your butt.
5. Quad Stretch
Stand on the either side of the saddle with your toes pointed toward the handlebars. Place your left hand on the handle bars and shift your weight into the right leg as you kick your left heel toward your left butt cheek. Your right knee should be pointing toward the floor. With your left hand, grasp the outside of the foot, and pull it to your butt, keeping your hips square. Hold for as long as you’d like, then repeat on the opposite side.
Where you’ll feel it: The front of your thighs and your hips.
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