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Cycling classes have risen in popularity in recent years and if you haven’t tried one yet, you may be wondering why. Improved cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength, endurance and joint mobility are just some of the key health benefits you’ll see from hopping on the bike. Before you start riding, keep reading to find out how you can best add cycling to your regular exercise routine.

How often should you cycle each week to see benefits?

To receive the optimum aerobic fitness and health benefits, Fernwood Fitness Personal Trainer Lexi recommends starting with three 20-minute sessions per week, maintaining 60-70% max heart rate (MHR).

“You can then gradually progress to 5 plus sessions for 30 minutes at 70-80% MHR,” Lexi says.

You can cycle solo or for an added motivational boost, join one of Fernwood’s cycle classes for a high-calorie burning, fun and effective workout.

“The lights are low, the tunes are on point and the instructor takes you to another level of cardio you didn’t know existed, nor would you ever have expected to achieve,” Lexi says.

What are the benefits?

Regular cycling has many benefits on your overall health and fitness.

“Cycling can assist in increasing your bone density, as well as improving your joint mobility, posture and coordination in a fun and low-impact way,” Lexi says.

Regular cycling has also been proven to assist in reducing anxiety, stress and depression when riding outdoors and/or with a friend (Better Health).

Lexi also recommends cycling for those who are going through an injury rehabilitation, as it is a low-impact, weight-bearing aerobic exercise. Read more on the benefits of aerobic training.

What other workouts best support cycling?

To compliment cycling, include strength training in your routine, targeting your posterior chain and core. The posterior chain is made up of your glutes, hips, hamstrings and calves.

“In saying that, don’t neglect your upper body, as I believe an aligned and even body is a healthy one,” Lexi says. As a weight-bearing exercise, cycling engages large muscle groups which help build strength in the lower body (predominately when standing out of the saddle).

Cycling is a great low-impact workout with a myriad of health benefits when performed regularly. Remember you can go at your own pace and build up the intensity and number of sessions gradually. 

Interested in trying other group fitness classes? Find out what our favourite Fernwood classes are.