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Hate indoor cycling? Don’t turn your nose up at spinning classes just yet!
You may not know it, but we are a nation of spinning addicts. The demand for this high-intensity exercise is increasing and gyms all over the country are teaching people to get on their bikes and feel the burn. From ultra-cool spinning studios, to a cluster of bikes in the corner, as long as you’ve got an enthusiastic instructor powering you through and some pumping tunes, you can spin!
If burning between 400 and 600 calories per session wasn’t enough motivation for you, here are 8 more reasons why you need to try spinning:
It’s a fat burner
Spinning isn’t just a killer workout for your legs, its intensity melts fat from all areas of the body away. The faster you pedal, the more fat you will burn, while the slower, more challenging levels will tone your muscles.
Ask most people who attend spinning class whether they enjoy the stationary bike and they will probably say no. That’s because spinning is completely different to cycling. Yes it uses the same equipment, but the experience is unique. As you overcome tougher levels, you’ll feel your endorphins soar and the energy of the class and the instructor will be infectious.
Your legs will strengthen
Spinning utilises key muscles in the thighs, calves and hamstrings, which makes it one of the best leg workouts you can get. It’s a running joke that people sometimes “forget leg day” when they go to the gym. This simply won’t happen if you’re a regular spinner.
It’s a low-impact workout
It can be difficult to get an effective workout if you suffer from an injury; the treadmill and elliptical trainer can cause pain when you exercise due to the impact on your knees and feet. As spinning takes the weight off your feet, it eliminates strain or pressure, while still providing you with a high-intensity workout.
It’s also a great workout for rehabilitating injured muscles. Many runners turn to spinning after a marathon to strengthen their muscles without causing any more damage to their legs.
Tired of doing crunches and planks? Your abs and core get an amazing workout during spinning, as you work to hold your balance on the bike while you are moving. Feeling really strong? Some spin classes involve lifting light weights while you pedal, creating even greater tension for your core muscles to keep your body balanced.
Do your own thing
There is no need to worry about your ability in spinning class, because you can progress at your own pace. Not only this, but there's no chance of getting left behind if you can’t quite keep up, and no feeling embarrassed because you’ve missed a few aerobic moves. While it’s obviously in your best interests to work at the same level as everyone else, you have complete control of your bike and your instructor is simply a motivational guide to keep you going. If you find that the level is too intense, you can always slow down and stick at your own pace.
It halves your workout time
Do you ever feel like you’ve been on the treadmill for an hour when you’ve only been running for 15 minutes? Time flies in the world of spinning and every level is a different challenge, so it’s difficult to become bored in the class. Plus the music is energising and the instructor gives 110% to make sure you are motivated. We dare you to clock watch!
As spinning involves interval training, it is a high fat burner which achieves the same results as steady-state cardio but in a shorter amount of time.
Exercises your mental strength
Regular spinners describe their spinning classes as a cathartic experience rather than just a workout. People come to class tired from their busy days, but leave feeling energised and uplifted.
We aren’t going to lie, a spinning class is hard, but it’s not impossible. Whether you are a beginner, or an expert cyclist, you will be able to push through the tougher levels and feel great afterwards. Throw in a relaxing cool down where you can literally close your eyes and feel the endorphins rushing to your brain, and we guarantee you'll feel fantastic after every session.
Author Lee Pickering is a personal trainer at DW Fitness Clubs.