SPOKE STRETCH SERIES

Cycling can be quite tough on the body; time spent in one stationary forward motion, road impact and the effect of climbing. Here are some simple stretches you can use mid ride or post ride using your bike for stability.  

ALEX'S TOP TIPS: 
1.  Leaning into slight discomfort and breathing to stretch it out can be OK, but pain is bad. If you feel pain at all, back off.
2. Treat your body with love. Gently lower into positions using the breath to signal to the body that it's safe and can open up. 

FORWARD FOLD (BACK & SHOULDER STRETCH) 

Your back can get quite tight riding over long distances. This stretch creates more room between the vertebrae and can offer a gentle hamstring stretch. 
Stand with your bike in front of you lengthways with your hands wide - one on the handlebars, the other on the seat. Move the bike away from you as you hinge forward from the hips. You should come down to a 90 degree angle. If you want to ease on the hamstrings, bend your knees. 
Bring your head in line with your back to feel the stretch from hips to mid back to shoulders to neck. It should feel delicious. 

STANDING PIGEON (HIP RELEASE)

This is a standing version of the popular yoga pose to open up the hips and ease the psoas (the big muscle that connects your trunk to your lower body). 
Again holding your bike in front of you lengthways for balance, bend your left leg and place the bent left ankle at a 90 degree angle over your right leg. You'll need to slight bend the standing right leg. 
You're aiming to wrap the thigh of the left leg underneath towards your butt to open up the pelvis.
Repeat on the other side. 

 

SQUAT (HAMSTRING & calf STRETCH) 

Your hamstrings take a hammering on climbs - try this stretch mid ride to ease up tension.
Using your bike lengthways for balance, squat down to the right whilst extending your left leg to the side horizontally. Flex the toe of the extended left leg to stretch the leg muscles. 
You may not be able to get your right heel down on the floor due to your cleats or lack of mobility, that's fine. 
You can stretch your left arm down your leg for a nice lateral stretch.
Repeat on the other side.