6 Reasons Why All Cyclists Should Practice Yoga

The practice of yoga is about balance, connection of the mind and body, and a sense of being present in the moment. This is achieved through various poses and breathing exercises that will benefit indoor and outdoor cycling enthusiasts in their performance, mental focus, and in training plans. The flowing combination of strength, balance, stretch, and core activation make them a great dynamic warm-up before a ride. If you’re riding more than four times a week, it might well be better to swap one of those rides for a yoga session. Here’s why…

1. Improved Core Strength

Yoga is a great way to improve postural alignment and functional core strength. A strong core enables cyclists to maintain proper spinal alignment and posture – even when fatigue starts to set in on a long ride.

Many of the fundamental yoga poses are rooted in developing inner-abdominal pressure while maintaining neutral spinal alignment. This is beneficial to cyclists as it decreases the pressure on the shoulders and wrists that comes with riding postures.

A strong core is also beneficial as it decreases the risk of lower back injuries. Lower back pain is a common challenge amongst cyclists, especially those who spend long hours in the saddle, and this is often the result of poor core engagement and postural support.

2. Increased focus and lower levels of tension

Physical, emotional and mental tension from the demands of life and poor riding postures drains energy. For cyclists this has an impact on pedal efficiency and form. A lack of mental focus or too high of stress levels can decrease a riders ability to push optimal power levels. This makes a ride that may have previously been easy, seem incredibly challenging.

Yoga sessions can do wonders to increase mental acuity, decrease stress, and reduce the negative impact of muscular tension on the body. Whether it’s through a purposeful focus on breathing, the use of a mantra, or simply the calming nature of the practice, yoga sessions will improve cyclists focus on the bike.

3. Promotes Total Relaxation

Ah – we cyclists can be busy people. Fitting in work, family life, the general chores and admin that most people use their Saturday mornings for, and lots of hours on the bike can sometimes feel like a lot to balance.

Most Yoga classes end with a short meditation – this is just a few moments to lie back, relax, breathe, and listen to your body.

Of course, you could just promise yourself you’ll do this once a day, or once a week, before you go to sleep – but will you? Dedicated time at the end of a session will hold you to that promise.

4. Reduced Risk of Injury

When yoga flows are used as a means of “prehab” training, common injuries in the back and legs are less likely to occur. Because yoga approaches movement from a place of balance the common imbalances experienced in riding can be addressed and improved.

In cycling the leg never reaches full extension, thus giving the hamstrings little opportunity to fully lengthen. Over time this reduces the elasticity of the hamstrings and puts it at greater risk of strains and tears. Poses such as Standing Forward Fold aim to increase flexibility of the hamstrings for riders.

5. More Efficient Breathing

The yoga breath is slow, controlled, and asks the breather to focus inward. This type of breathing is opposite of the rapid breath taken by many athletes during higher intensity bouts of exercise. The ability to slow the breath down and focus inward at will allows participants to feel release from tension and control over their actions.

The ability to breathe better makes cyclists more efficient in their performance and allows quicker and more controlled recover after hills and other high intensity riding elements.


6. Improves Flexibility

The cycling position can also put stress on your lower back and neck, as you bend over the handlebars. This can cause certain muscles – such as those in the glutes, quads, and hamstrings – to tighten  up. Unless your body is perfectly symmetrical in terms of strength, length and flexibility – which is very rare, most people have one stronger, shorter or more flexible leg – this can cause rotation in the hips, which will worsen over time and become uncomfortable.

A Yoga class will give you the opportunity to stretch out the tight areas – and you’ll often be asked to look for in-balances, areas where one side is tighter than the other.

Insights Into The Top 8 Bicycle Brands In The World

Lots of cycling enthusiasts own a wide range of different bikes. Many of the most seasoned cycling experts have owned various different brands of bikes throughout the years. The history behind many of the most popular brands that produce bicycles is immensely interesting. Thus, there are many loyal fans of certain brands that have been known to produce some of the best bikes in the world. With this in mind, here are some insights into the top eight bicycle brands in the world.

Trek Bicycle Corporation

Trek is one of the most well-known names when it comes to cycling. This is because many athletes have used bikes created by Trek and broken world records. Lots of professionals like to use this bike because it is known for having exceptional engineering. Many fans of the brand find that bicycles created by Trek are able to provide them with an extra edge when they are competing in major competitions.

Cannondale Bicycles

Cannondale has a very loyal following throughout the world. The brand has built a reputation for using a variety of different high-quality materials in the bikes that they produce. For example, they have started to specialize in creating bikes out of aluminum. Aluminum is immensely lightweight, meaning that it can facilitate much faster speeds than other types of bicycles. Hence, for competitive purposes, Cannondale bikes have started to become a favorite.

Giant Manufacturing

Perhaps the biggest revenue generator in the bicycle market, Giant Manufacturing is a behemoth brand within the industry.

The brand has grown to become perhaps the most well-known brand for bikes in the entire world. Recent figures estimate that Giant has generated over two billion dollars a year in bike sales. Such large revenue figures are due to the fact that the brand has an extensive selection for both casual and professional bike riders.

GT Bikes

Fuji Bikes

Fuji Bikes has one of the longest histories when it comes to bicycle manufacturing. Fuji Bikes was first found in 1899, making it over one hundred years old. Throughout the decades, Fuji has been able to create bikes that have been popular throughout many global markets. Today, Fuji is a respected and reliable bicycle brand that is able to cater to novices as well as professionals.

Pinarello Bicycles

Pinarello is a brand that started in Italy in the early twentieth century. Like Fuji Bikes, Pinarello has an extensive and dynamic history. The designs of Pinarello bicycles have long been said to be some of the most aesthetically pleasing. Indeed, these bikes look very cool. These days, Pinarello is a favorite amongst many major cycling teams throughout the world.

Colnago Ernesto Bikes

Colnago has been a pioneer brand for bicycles created out of thick and durable steel. When it comes to steel bicycles, many believe that Colango is the best brand in the business. The bikes that the brand creates are made from some of the highest quality and most durable steel available. Many cycling enthusiasts find that using a Colnago bike for outdoor expeditions is best.

SCOTT Bicycles

Swiss manufacturer SCOTT has built a great reputation for innovation in the world of cycling. Many of the latest creations by SCOTT utilize highly complicated technology to facilitate such things as shock absorption. Many believe that some of the biggest breakthroughs regarding cycling will be thanks to SCOTT in the future

Giant Manufacturing

Perhaps the biggest revenue generator in the bicycle market, Giant Manufacturing is a behemoth brand within the industry. The brand has grown to become perhaps the most well-known brand for bikes in the entire world. Recent figures estimate that Giant has generated over two billion dollars a year in bike sales. Such large revenue figures are due to the fact that the brand has an extensive selection for both casual and professional bike riders.

How To Avoid Getting Hit By A Car When Cycling

Cycling can be nerve-wracking because it comes with the potential of being hit by a car. Fortunately, there are a number of steps that you can take which will reduce the chances of you being hit by a car. Wearing a helmet will keep you safe, but does not actually prevent any accidents.

Get A Headlight

If you are going to be cycling at night or when lighting conditions are not ideal, you need to get a headlight. This will alert vehicles to your presence and ensure that they are able to see you in the low lighting. It is also required by law in all states because it is a primary safety device.

When you are riding in the daytime, you should also have your light on. Ideally, you will want to get a flashing white light which is more visible to car drivers. A headlamp mounted to your helmet is also a good idea because when you look at the car, you will know that they have seen your light.

Ride In The Center Of The Lane

Most cyclists will ride close to the curb because this makes it easier for vehicles to overtake them. However, this can also cause problems when you are approaching an intersection. There is also a chance that the drivers behind you could overlook you as they focus on the middle of the road.

Riding closer to the center of the road is recommended for a number of reasons. Drivers behind you will see you and you will also be more visible at an intersection. If the driver at an intersection fails to stop or continues pulling out, you will also have more room to maneuver. Being further to the left will allow you to pull further left without any worries that you are still going to hit the car.

If you are cycling on roads with cars parked on one side, you should cycle away from the cars. This will reduce the chances of a driver opening their door and you hitting it. When you ride further to the left, you will be able to swerve and avoid the collision.

Be Careful When Riding Against The Traffic

There are a lot of people who assume that riding against the traffic will be safer. This is true to a certain extent because you will be able to see the oncoming vehicles. However, doing this will increase the chances of an accident because drivers are not expecting a bicycle riding against the traffic.

The most common accident when you ride against the traffic is when a vehicle turns from a side street. They will often turn into a cyclist because they are not expecting them to be there. After all, there is no reason for them to assume that a cyclist will be coming up the street.

The best way to avoid these types of accidents will be to not ride against the traffic. If there is a bike lane, you should still avoid this because drivers are expecting cyclist from the opposite direction. You can continue riding against traffic if the bike lane is separated from the street or has enough space for 2-way traffic. Of course, you will still need to be vigilant when crossing streets to avoid an accident.

Being hit by a car is the worst nightmare of any cyclist. Fortunately, there are a number of steps that you can take to improve your safety and reduce the chances of an accident. Making yourself as visible as possible is important, particularly when you are cycling at night. You also need to ride with the traffic to avoid any issues.

Helpful Guide On The 7 Best Valentines Gifts For Cyclists In 2019

When it comes to Valentines Day gifts for cyclists, it can be a little bit confusing as to which gifts are best. Many people that are not active in the cycling community may be unaware of the various tools and gadgets many cyclists are yearning to have. By providing a cyclist with a great valentines gift that is relevant to their cycling hobby, it is likely they will be immensely happy. Hence, here is a helpful guide on the seven best valentines gifts for cyclists in 2019.

Heart Rate Monitor

Lots of cyclists are highly into the fitness and health community. Hence, many cyclists are very interested in tracking their heart rate throughout a given cycling session. Heart rate is a great indicator of how much effort a given cyclist is putting into a cycling expedition. Hence, being able to monitor such a metric throughout various different cycling journeys could be the perfect way for a cyclist to improve their performance, making the heart rate monitor an excellent gift.

Saddle Bags

Cycling Sunglasses

Many cyclists have to deal with eye strain due to cycling for extended periods of time in the sun.

Eye strain and eye damage are common within the cycling community because many don’t take proper precautions to protect their eyes. Hence, providing a high-quality pair of sunglasses to a cyclist is a great way of ensuring that they not only look great but also protect themselves from eye damage in the future.

High-Quality Headlights

A certain subsection of the cycling community loves to partake in nighttime cycling. Cycling at night can be very dangerous if the right precautions aren’t taken. For example, without using the right lighting, it can be easy for other vehicles not to notice a cyclist. Thus, using high-quality headlights is important for avid nighttime cyclists. These headlights can be found at many specialist shops.

Sports Camera

Considering how photo and video technology has developed in recent years, many cyclists are starting to become enthusiasts of capturing their cycling sessions. Sports cameras that are currently available in 2019 are highly compact yet able to capture high-resolution photo and video. Cyclists that are looking to capture their cycling sessions and share it with the world would highly appreciate a gift such as a sports camera.

Efficient Bike Pumps

One necessary yet sometimes boring aspect of cycling is the need to pump up the tires of a bicycle. Many cyclists find it tedious to constantly have to pump up tires when they are partaking in a long cycling expedition. Thus, finding a pump that is able to complete the job as quickly as possible is a great idea for a gift. These days, plenty of high-tech pumps can pump up a tire many times quicker than older pumps on the market.

Chain Cleaners

Chains that are not properly cleaned and maintained can jam during a cycling session. However, there are many cyclists that neglect to properly clean their chains. Thankfully, lots of great chain cleaners are available at the moment. These cleaners are easy to use and can completely clean a chain in less than a few minutes, making them a perfect candidate for a gift.