Kate beats William on a bike: 5 reasons indoor cycling is great for your body
Even the royals are getting on the group cycling hype, as Kate and William showed off their competitive sides in an exercise bike race when they visited South Wales on Tuesday.
The Prince and Princess of Wales participated in a class as they went to the Aberavon Leisure and Fitness Centre in Port Talbot.
The couple got carried away in a virtual endurance race in the Italian Dolomites, and Kate, 41, ended up beating William, 40, impressively wearing high-heeled boots.
Group cycling classes are a great way to get fit, but what exactly are the benefits?1. Improved cardiovascular health
“From entry-level to intermediate fitness seekers, there really is nothing quite like a cycling class for all-around health and wellbeing benefits. One major benefit is in its intrinsic link to improving cardiovascular health – a global issue impacting an ever-ageing and less active population. Never has there been a more pertinent time to prioritise cardiovascular health and care,” says Lee Mitchell, personal trainer and editor of running advice site, Jogger.
“Classes can be intense, often working the cardiovascular system towards its upper threshold. This means that your heart, lungs and circulatory system will be working incredibly hard, leading to a long-term reduction in resting heart rate and actually improving your capacity for all exercise – lessening the strain on your heart and effectively conditioning it. Remember, your heart is a muscle like any other – it must be worked and cared for like any other.”
2. Positive hormonesExercise is one of the best ways to boost your mood.
“Another amazing – yet unseen to the naked eye – benefit, is what happens inside your head. There is a deluge of endorphins that are released almost instantaneously, triggered by this form of exercise.
“This leads to a more specific release of dopamine and the feeling of accomplishment achieved by smashing a goal. There is no limit to this sensation, as it does not dull over time – meaning you will receive it each and every time you get on that bike. This [feels like] elation and leads to the added knock-on benefits of classes being a fantastic stress reliever and confidence booster in the long run – taking care of your body and your mind in tandem,” says Mitchell.
3. Variations in impact
Indoor cycling can be good for anyone.
“A lesser referenced, but completely valid benefit is the fact that it can be as low-impact as you want it to be – meaning it can be fantastic for anyone recovering from injury. You can still achieve a great workout, but due to the stationary nature of the bike, there is little chance for re-injury,” Mitchell explains.4. Lower body strength
“Indoor cycling can be sensational for your lower body and core muscle definition. There is no underestimating how vital your core strength is to everyday life – we are talking about the muscles that literally hold us up,” Mitchell says.
5. Reduction of injury
“As much as classes are accessible to those recovering from injury, cycling is also an amazing exercise for reducing your risk of injury in the future. If you don’t use it, you lose it, right? If you’re not using your muscles and joints, they become rusty – the more we activate our muscles, the longer they will take care of us – and indoor cycling activates almost every muscle in the body during a single session. This reduces your risk of future injury by an incredible amount for everyday life,” Mitchell says.