Many people enjoy cycling as a hobby and these people are in very good company because some of the world’s best cyclists got their start from cycling as a hobby. Cycling is an activity that can be enjoyed by amateurs and professionals alike and because of that it is one of the most popular forms of exercise in the world.
It is a sport that utilizes the whole body; when you are cycling every one of your muscles is doing something. Your leg muscles are pumping furiously to keep you going at a very fast speed (regardless of whether it is a sprint race or a distance race) and your arms and body are swaying along with them in an effort to give you the most aerodynamic push possible. Even your back muscles are being stretched out in a static stretch by the way that you angle yourself on the bicycle. It is one of those sports that really do exercise everything and because of that it is also one of the most difficult sports to get good at.
Cycling techniques and exercises are going to be used widely by people that are involved in cycling races. Cycling races have a diverse nature that is similar to running races and in cycling just as in running there are short sprint races as well as longer distance races. These types of athletes will work for hours a day on their cycling technique and will want to make sure that it is as close to perfect as they can get it.
On the other hand, there are many non-cyclists that also use cycling within their workout. The reason for this is that cycling itself as a discipline is a great way for an athlete to get their cardio work in and for this reason many athletes of many other sports will use cycling as a mechanism to get themselves the cardio work out that they need. Essentially the cycling methods and techniques listed in the next section are for people that are actually sports cyclists but the activity itself can be used by almost any athlete that does cardio workouts on a regular basis.
Techniques for cycling vary greatly between different athletes depending on the type of cycling involved. For this reason it is virtually impossible to pin down a specific style of cycling that serves as the optimal technique to use. One of the things that make an athlete good at their sport is their ability to identify what is working at the time and emulate their play after that. To that end budding cyclists should examine the style and technique of the top cyclists at their distance and speed and try to emulate their styles as closely as possible. While it is impossible to discuss in detail a perfect technique the next two paragraphs will deal with some things to keep in mind for both sprint and distance cyclists.
Sprint cycling is a lot like sprint running and a lot of the muscles involved in the activities are the same. Therefore the same principles can be applied. Athletes that are looking to become very good at sprint cycling need to have very powerful leg and thigh muscles that are capable of exerting a very large amount of torque on the bicycle pedals to get them going at a very fast rate. While muscle endurance is not particularly important in sprint races what is important is power as well as technique. Every one hundredth of a second is precious in sprint races and for this reason it is important to have good cycling techniques.
For distance cycling, the nature of the beast is slightly different. Power is not as important and neither is technique, although the importance of power diminishes far more than the importance of technique. The most important quality for a distance cyclist to possess however is endurance and for this reason many top class distance cyclists spend multiple hours each day doing endurance leg exercises.