10 Ways to Improve Your Spin Class Performance

A spin class is one of the best low-impact, high-intensity interval training exercises you can do to tone the body, build lean muscle, improve cardiovascular health and burn calories.

Spin class, however, is not for the weak of will and will push you to your physical and mental limits. A regular indoor cycling class will also improve performance in other areas of your fitness regime.

However, what can you do to ensure optimal performance during your spin class? Read on to learn 10-ways to improve your spin class performance.

1. Arrive early for a stretch

When it comes to getting the most out of your spin class, effective preparation can significantly improve your overall performance throughout your session.

Getting to your class ten to twenty minutes early and having a really good stretch will ensure you are warmed up before you mount the bike, rather than warming up in the first 15-minutes of your ride.

2. Optimise your bike set-up

Everybody’s body is different, and although you may feel comfortable with your quick adjustment before your spin class, you may not necessarily have your bike optimised to reach your peak performance.

Many people often have their spin bike seat too low or high, have a seat slide too far forward or back, or have their handlebars set improperly.

A good cycle class instructor will correct their students to help them achieve optimal performance. It is worth taking notes or pictures on your smartphone to remember your setting for future reference, especially if you also engage in extra solo spin classes. 

3. Get aligned

Just as adjusting your bike is essential to optimising your performance, maintaining correct form and posture is also critical. Ensure your core is engaged, your back is aligned and supported, and you use your legs properly during rotation with the pedals.

While your spin class instructor will instruct you to correct your posture and alignment during class, choosing to extend your cycle physiology knowledge independently will go a long way in maximising your cycle class performance.

4. Speed over resistance

While building your muscles, challenging your cardiovascular system and pushing your limits are all goals of indoor cycling, if you find yourself falling behind the class when hitting a steep incline, you may want to reduce your resistance.

You should be able to maintain speed, and while challenging your body is essential, you have to give your body a chance to develop; work with your body, not against it.

5. The only competition is with yourself

Spinning is about developing fitness, not winning a race; you only compete with yourself. The point is to build up over time, so ensure your resistance levels allow you to maintain speed throughout the entire session.

If you feel like you’re comparing yourself to others in the class, you are losing focus. Reset yourself and get your head back in the game, and before you know it, you may be ploughing your way to the front of the virtual peloton.

6. Clip for a wild ride

Often, your everyday gym shoes are acceptable for the average spin class. However, if you notice a couple of spinners in the room who seem to take things a little more seriously, you may see them wearing clip-in cycling shoes.

While this may seem a bit extreme to the newcomer, there is a good reason professional cyclists choose clip-in cycling shoes. They allow you to have more control and engagement during your ride, which works just as effectively on a stationary spin bike.

If you’re addicted to spinning and engage in more than one class a week, investing in some clip-in shoes may help you take your performance to the next level. 

7. Don’t fake it; make it!

Your instructor is there to inspire and push you, so if they tell you you’re ready to up your resistance, don’t fake turning the resistance knob; let them help you break through your plateaus.

Think of your spin class instructor like you would your personal trainer pushing you into progressive load with weights. Upping the ante is the only way to get better, stronger and more resilient in your spin development.

8. Lean back like a pro

While spinning provides a full-body workout, it is heavily legs focused; therefore, you want to ensure that you focus on developing the same techniques as professional cyclists to get the most out of your sessions.

Focus on keeping your weight back in your hips and avoid pointing your toes for optimal pedal stroke. Having the correct lean and pushing down with flat feet helps you engage your quads, glutes, hips, thighs and calves more effectively, helping you develop more power throughout your entire session.

9. Focus on RPM

Many cycling enthusiasts say what they love the most about cycling, be that spinning or riding on the road, is getting lost in the cadence; it’s like a mantra when meditating, pushing the mind into a cool, calm focus.

Focusing on your RPM gives you a lot of feedback on your performance. If your resistance is too high and your RPM is too low, you will tend to burn out early. However, not enough resistance and too high an RPM may reduce the effectiveness of your workout.

10. Don’t be a posture imposter

When hitting an incline, which creates more resistance, a common technique in cycling is to stand up on the pedals to gain extra leverage. However, like a professional cyclist, you should only just be lifting your glutes off the seat, not standing vertically or leaning forward.

This cycling faux pas places undue stress on the knees and can increase the chance of knee pain or damage if done all the time; your posture should be working your muscles, not your joints.

Join the collective

Our Melbourne studio in Richmond is the best place to take your spin class experience to the next level. We have a range of affordable spin class programs, including:

  • Three rides in 10-days
  • Three-week Strava blaster program
  • Three-week Women’s program and more

We also have nationally accredited spin class instructor training courses for fitness industry professionals who want to add spin class instructor to their resume.

So sign up and spin your way to a better body and better health here at Cycle Collective, the best spin class Melbourne offers.