How to Determine the Correct Resistance Level for Spinning

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In order to get the best workout from Spinning you must learn to correctly set the resistance level on the bike pedals. This allows you to simulate going up and down hills. When you determine the correct resistance level during the appropriate intervals, you can maximize the cardiovascular benefits of Spinning.

Things You'll Need

  • Heart rate monitor
  • Appropriate apparel and footwear for Spinning
  • Stationary bicycle

Determine the Correct Resistance Levels for Spinning

  • Familiarize yourself with the way the resistance control on your stationary bike works, so you can make predictable changes while Spinning. Generally, the resistance control is a knob that actually tightens the brakes of the bicycle, making it increasingly difficult to pedal.

  • Practice keeping up your cadence, or the rate at which the pedals are moving, despite changes in the resistance levels. The recommended cadence for Spinning is 60 to 110 revolutions per minute, which is optimal for fitness.

  • Use a heart rate monitor to note the changes in your heart rate as you increase the pedal resistance. By increasing and decreasing your heart rate (measured in beats per minute) through various resistance levels, you can reach your fitness goals more efficiently.

  • Use lower resistance levels while practicing the first three core movements of Spinning, which are sitting flat, standing flat, and jumping. A low to medium resistance level will help to increase endurance and stamina and at the same time determine a baseline for your body to recover between sprints.

  • Choose higher resistance levels for the fourth and fifth core movements of Spinning, which is the seated climb and the standing climb. These movements help to tone muscle and increase strength, especially in the legs, the gluteal muscles and the hamstrings.

Tips & Warnings

  • Keep plenty of water, preferably the kind with added electrolytes and carbohydrates, well within reach while you are Spinning. Experts recommend drinking one ounce of water for every minute you spend on the bicycle in order to avoid dehydration.
  • Visit your doctor and ask if Spinning is the right exercise regimen for you. Spinning can further aggravate back and heart problems, and is not recommended for people suffering from these conditions.

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