Yoga for Mountain Bikers
If you spent your last weekend riding the 13 miles of the Horsetooth Mountain Park loop or exploring the other 141 miles of mountain bike trails around Fort Collins, then this post is for you! As you know, especially if you wear your bruises like badges, mountain biking can take a toll on your body. Not only are you extending your leg muscles as far as they will go as you climb, but you are also exerting every muscle in your body as you drop into a line on the way down. If you’re not sore after a ride, you’re not doing it right.
A Yoga Studio for Mountain Bikers
Yoga classes are one of the best ways to recover from biking in any form. As a local yoga studio, Yoga Pod Fort Collins is comprised of many outdoors enthusiasts. So, we know firsthand how yoga can build strength, prevent injury, and restore muscles for mountain bikers and other athletes alike.
Here are some of the ways that a dedicated yoga practice can support mountain bikers to build strength and flexibility, in addition to the other benefits of yoga. Sign up for $30 For 30 Days at Yoga Pod Fort Collins to develop a yoga practice to compliment your biking today!
1. They strengthen your lower back
Mountain biking puts a lot of strain on your lower back, and it requires both strength and flexibility in this area. When your lower back muscles are weak, you tend to hunch and experience pain as you ride.
Active yoga classes, such as podFLOW and podHOT, usually contain a “spine strengthening” series geared directly toward building lower back strength. Poses such as bridge, plank, locust, and cobra activate the muscles of your low back that don’t otherwise get much attention.
2. They release and lengthen your back
In addition to strengthening your back, yoga classes can also help to alleviate back pain by releasing your lower back. podFLOW, podHOT, and YIN classes alike each feature poses that encourage you to lengthen your spine and increase space between vertebrae. Poses like supported bridge, spinal twists, and supine pigeon each serve to stretch your back.
3. They get into your tight hips (and other tight muscles)
Mountain bikers and tight hips are practically synonymous. The pedaling motion greatly restricts mobility in your hip flexors. Tight hips might not seem like a problem, but tightness here translates to knee pain, back issues, and bad posture.
In any yoga class, there is bound to be a focus on hip stretching. Poses such as runner’s lunge and half-pigeon were made for mountain bikers, as they work into tight outer hip muscles and help to release.
At Yoga Pod Fort Collins, we also offer YIN classes as a restorative option. In these classes, you hold poses for anywhere between three to seven minutes to effectively stretch your fascia (or connective tissue). For athletes who put repeated strain on the same muscles, YIN classes are crucial for injury prevention and mobility.
4. They enhance your balance
Part of being a good downhill mountain biker means knowing how to balance. Keeping your weight back is the key to riding downhill, and this requires tremendous balance in addition to strength. When is the last time you focused explicitly on balance training during a fitness workout? At Yoga Pod Fort Collins, you will certainly work on balancing postures during podFLOW and podHOT classes.
Balancing postures not only help your balance, but they also build your mental fortitude and focus — two crucial aspects to strong and safe mountain biking.
5. They’re great for the off-season
Too cold for a single track state of mind? Hop into a yoga class at Yoga Pod Fort Collins during the off season to maintain strength and build flexibility before your next ride. Our podFIT classes could be a great option for you, as they focus on strength training.
Yoga Pod Fort Collins
Stop by our studio in Fort Collins today or sign up online for 30 days of yoga for just $30. Yoga could very well be the secret to improving your mountain biking skills. At the least, it will help to loosen up those extremely sore hips and quads so that you can keep your muscles feeling good.