For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, spinning is essentially indoor cycling. It’s done on a stationary bike with a weighted wheel but has all the benefits of cycling.
Except for the fresh air of course, but the fact that it’s convenient enough to do at home or without going too far is the appeal for some people.
People use it as a way to build up things like strength, endurance, fitness and some people just enjoy it as a hobby.
Typically, people will start spinning by joining a class and this is also something that is part of the appeal for a few of those who try it.
We’ve talked a little bit before on here about the benefits of taking group fitness classes. It’s always nice to have others there for support and company during high-intensity exercise.
So I’ve touched on it briefly, but let’s go into detail on the benefits. Here are five ways that using a spin bike will help you:
1. Cardiovascular Fitness
In short, cardiovascular fitness is how effectively your heart and your lungs can provide oxygenated blood to your muscles.
Having good cardio is something that’s very important and not focusing on this during your exercise time can lead to health problems down the line.
Your chances of heart disease dramatically increase if you have good cardiovascular fitness and spinning is one of the ways that you can achieve that.
It’s an exercise that will put your heart to work consistently for the entire 40-60 minutes that you are spinning.
It’s the cardio exercise for those who are seeking a convenient and low-impact way to stay healthy. Being able to get your cardio done indoors in a safe environment is extremely handy.
If you practice spinning maybe 2-3 times a week then you should notice your stamina and longevity increasing as the weeks progress. This is your heart getting stronger.
2. Muscle Definition
To be specific on this one, spinning is good for building up lean muscle definition for your legs and your core.
Leg exercises tend to be some of the more strenuous, difficult and potentially dangerous ones and a lot of people often opt out of working their legs when they’re trying to build muscle.
If you’re one of these people and it’s because you’re not fond of squats or that intimidating leg press, you could always work your leg muscles on the spin bike.
It’s one of the most effective leg exercises that there is because it works your quads, your hamstrings, your gastrocnemius muscles, and your soleus muscles.
Because you’re going at a high-speed and going consistently for an extended period of time, you are giving each of these muscles attention with the one exercise.
And then there’s your core too. So you can work on getting a great figure while also covering your cardio.
3. Low Risk of Injury
Despite being pretty intense, spinning is actually a very low-impact exercise overall and you don’t need to worry too much about getting injured.
It’s pretty easy on your joints, you are putting your hips and your knees to use but you aren’t putting significant weight on them.
This makes it a great exercise for older people too whose joints are stiffer and more liable to damage or injury.
Don’t get me wrong here, your muscles will be reacting, and you will feel the Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS), but it’s unlikely you’ll cause serious harm.
In addition, the fact that you aren’t outdoors and the bike is also pretty well fixed in place, you don’t have to worry at all about crashing and very little about falling off.
To completely minimize the risk of that last point, you should consider getting yourself a good pair of cycling shoes. These will clip into the pedals and essentially fasten you to the bike.
4. Good for the Immune System
Having a stronger immune system means that you are likely to have a longer lifespan and are less likely to experience too many illnesses.
There are a few things that contribute to the strength of your immune system, mainly relating to diet and lifestyle, but a major factor in your thymus gland.
This particular gland releases T-Cells which hunt down and destroy cells that are infected by harmful bacteria.
As you get older, your thymus will shrink and as a result, fewer T-Cells are released into your body. This is the gist of why older people tend to get sick much more easily.
Research suggests however that an older person who cycles regularly will produce just as many T-Cells as someone who is 20 years old.
You’re exercising your thymus while cycling or spinning and preventing it from shrinking. You could have the immune system of a 20-year old for most of your life if you spin regularly.
5. Stress Reduction
We’ve talked about this here before too. Exercise is good for stress because it helps you to focus your mind on something other than what’s causing your anxiety.
Funnily enough, something that is a source of stress for people who do actually work out is planning and sticking to their exercise regime.
There’s very little of that with spinning. All you have to do is get on the bike and pedal away for about 40 minutes.
You don’t have to think about anything else. You can just relax your mind and focus on your breathing and pedaling.
People who cycle to work instead of driving tend to be more comfortable throughout the day because of it and the same principle applies to spin.
It’s just a convenient, stress-fighting way to get your exercise in.
So in short, the benefits are numerous and if you are looking for an exercise that’s effective but also convenient and low-impact, spinning is right for you.
And while I’d always recommend you take a class for this, once you have it mastered you could even get a spin bike of your own and do this from home.
Take a look at this guide from Groom and Style to get a sense of how great the selection of these home spin bikes is.
Take the class first, of course, to make sure that this is for you. It probably is.