1. Leave Your Arms Out of It
The rise in boutique studios has allowed upper-body exercises—handlebar pushups and super-low-weight, high-repetition lifts—to infiltrate indoor cycling classes. But unless two-pound dumbbells and panda pushups are part of your regular upper-body routine, they’re probably a waste of your time. Skip ’em and get more from your ride.
2. Work at Your Level
“Your first indoor cycling class can be daunting,” says Rush Hannigan, lead instructor at Houston’s Ryde studio, “especially when you’re surrounded by regulars who seem to know the cues before they even come.” His advice: “Find a resistance level that’s challenging but still manageable.”
Feeling like crap? It’s OK to take your resistance off, sit up, and do your thing. “Don’t let anybody bury you,” Taylor says. “You’re in control of the resistance, you’re in control of your speed, and the instructor is there to guide you on a great workout that’s a lot of fun.”
3. Keep the Movements Simple
Okay, so there are moves in indoor cycling, but in most classes they’re straightforward variations on sitting and standing, depending on whether or not you’re “climbing.” Relax and keep your body weight centered over the pedals. Don’t lean on the handlebars when you’re tired. Be wary of too much lateral movement and remember that if it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
And finally, it’s BYOWB, or bring your own water bottle.