To date, the bike simulator is one of the most significant types of sports equipment in the gym. Its importance is explained by the great benefits for many muscle groups that are involved in the training process. However, it is important to learn in more detail what exactly is the use of an exercise bike, what muscles it trains and what is its advantage over a simple bicycle.
What is an exercise bike
An aggregate such as an exercise bike is an imitation of a bicycle, the purpose of which – train the body. Such equipment has a seat, pedals, an emphasis for hands and the screen providing information. By varying the resistance of the pedals, you can also change the load intensity.
This sports equipment has earned popularity all over the world, as it is used both at home and in gyms. Nowadays, there are many types of exercise bikes, the difference of which is in the individual characteristics of the models and in who will use it.
Depending on the type of construction, the following types of bike simulator are distinguished:
- Vertical. Such an exercise bike is like a track bike. It is called so because its pedals are clearly under the seat. In the process of training, the legs are located in a vertical plane and due to this arrangement, many muscle groups are involved. Of all types of exercise bikes, the most popular is vertical. Such an aggregate is contraindicated in those who suffer from injuries with a back..
- Horizontal. This type of exercise bike is the most comfortable of all, and it is also intended for those users who have any health problems. Training on such a simulator involves exclusively leg work. In general, a horizontal exercise bike is designed to recover from injuries or illnesses, as its effects on the skeleton are gentle. This type of exercise equipment is the safest of its kind..
- Portable. Due to its small size, this exercise bike can be carried. It is suitable for people who lead an active lifestyle, they are often not at home, or there is little space in the living room. In addition, it is worth considering that during training, the load is difficult to distribute on both legs, and it is also difficult to choose the appropriate resistance.
- Hybrid. The difference between a hybrid exercise bike – its special design. Thanks to him, you can train in a sitting position and reclining. This variation is due to the ability to change the chair in different planes. Mainly a hybrid view of a cycling simulator – This is a mixed type of vertical and horizontal exercise bikes in one design. Such a 2 in 1 unit can be found infrequently, since the demand for it is minimal.
There is another classification of such an aggregate – depending on load options:
- Pads. Thanks to the pads pressed against the flywheel, the load can be adjusted. The advantage of such a unit in its budget value. Among the minuses, it is worth pointing out the noise, the lack of an exact change in load, rapid wear.
- Belt. In this version of sports equipment, you can change the load by tensioning the belt that connects the flywheel and pedals. Among the shortcomings are fast belt stretching, difficulty in regulating the load, noise.
- Magnetic. Such a bicycle trainer involves adjusting the load using the distance between the flywheel and the stable magnets. The unit is silent, smooth. Also its plus in the electronic monitor with the display of training information.
- Electromagnetic. In fact, this is a subspecies of the magnetic simulator. It works from the power supply network, which allows the load to change as a result of the influence of an electromagnetic field on the flywheel. Among modern models, this one has the most correct load system. Also, the electromagnetic exercise bike is characterized by a long service life, smooth and silent operation..
What muscles are involved
In the process of training, such body muscles are involved:
- Lower legs (calf muscles and hamstrings). These muscles work when stretching the foot with the pedal.
- Upper legs (biceps and quadriceps femoris, lumbar muscles). These are the largest muscles, and the greatest load falls on the quadriceps, whose task is to press the pedal with force. Tension is felt especially when lifting with a load is carried out. Conversely, the work of the biceps occurs with the raising of the leg up along with the pedal.
- Buttocks and quadriceps. These muscles work in pairs and their task – keep the body in the right position during the exercise.
- Hip flexor. It makes it possible to extend the hips and bend the leg in the knee. If pain begins in this area, then you should stop training.
- Press. Strong abdominal muscles ensure a normal ride. Also the goal of the press – keep your back straight and put your body in the correct position.
- Arms and shoulders.
How to increase muscle performance
Initially, it is important to say that you need to start training after the desired level of physical fitness has been reached! And be sure to warm up before each workout!
The effectiveness of the muscles will depend on the chosen training program. So, if the program is aimed at weight loss, it is imperative to monitor the pulse. It is recommended not to increase the heart rate, which should be for this exercise. The process of burning fat occurs at 60-75% of the highest heart rate for a certain age, and endurance should develop at 75% of the profit center.
When it comes to strengthening the muscles of the legs, back, buttocks, as well as the development of endurance, it is worth seriously approaching such exercises on the cycle track. Initially, you need to understand what level of preparation the body has and align with it. Next, you need to go through the stage of training the cardiovascular system. To do this, you need to monitor the pulse and gradually increase the load. Under such conditions, the body will get used to, endurance will increase, and the body will take on the necessary forms..
After the result reaches the desired, it is important to move on to strength training. And, most importantly, keep an eye on the pulse and not change the training program drastically.
How to make more muscle work
Usually, in order to include additional muscle groups during training, the maximum load is applied on the cycle track. In this case, the chest, arms and abs begin to be involved. You can try to test yourself which muscles work: for this you need to give all your strength during the first training session. The next day, pain appears in those areas of the body that are least worked out.
Sometimes this happens after a long rest from training. This method should not be used immediately. The best thing – it is to listen to the body and body when training becomes a point in daily routine. After the exercise bike is a regular lifestyle condition, you will notice how the body got stronger, how tightened the muscles become, how much more smooth the back became.
General rules of classes
It does not matter if classes are held on a stationary bike at home or in the gym, it is important to follow some tips:
- Training clothes should be comfortable and breathable. She should not constrain movement. Footwear – also plays a large role in productivity.
- Maintain posture – recipe for success. During the load, the back should be level, which will help improve posture and strengthen the muscles of the back.
- It’s always important to do a warm-up workout before practicing on a cycle track. – it will save you from injuries and stretch marks.
- The lesson program is chosen according to individual needs and goals, as well as depending on one’s own abilities..
- The duration of the load will be determined by the goal: if the task is to lose weight, then you need to train at least 40-45 minutes, and if the goal is to maintain the body in good shape, then enough time will be 20-25 minutes.
- Breathing should be rhythmic and carried out through the nose..
Summing up, it is necessary to clarify some more details. The goal of a workout on a stationary bike will not be achieved by just one «pedaling». In addition to such loads, it is very important to observe the correct regime of the day, go to bed on time. Sleep plays a large role in metabolism, which also affects muscle gain and muscle tone..
Just before training, you can drink tea or coffee, but do not eat tightly. Otherwise, the body will spend energy on the digestion of food, and the forces needed for the process of burning fat. Speed and intensity must be reduced gradually so as not to harm the heart.
Comparison with a bike
At first glance, it seems that these two similar sports equipment have one goal and the same functions..
Nevertheless, having carefully examined it, you can understand that they have a number of such differences:
- Bicycle for the most part means pleasure: speed, wind, nature. Training with him cannot include heart training or weight loss, since this requires a certain level of heart rate, the achievement of which is possible only from frequent and intense workouts. Therefore, pedaling several times, the bike rides on its own, while the person is not working. Another thing is a cycle track: training on it makes you work with your legs and other muscle groups constantly, which leads to the desired heart rate.
- Comfort – important attribute. So, the exercise bike will be ahead of the bike: training at the first does not depend on the weather, it is possible to carry out a warm-up. It is quite convenient to conduct interval training or engage in different parts of the day (for example, twice a day with a duration of 15-20 minutes).
- Safety. Cyclists are often at risk when driving on the roadway, and there are no special tracks for them in the parks. Also some inconvenience is the constant detour of people and animals, which again implies dangerous driving on the highway.
- The frequency of training, in particular cardio, should be regular. As a rule, the most optimal number of such workouts is 3-4 times a week. However, not everyone wants to take the bike out into the street. Regarding the cycle track, it’s worth saying that he wins again – You can do at home, in any weather, and even in front of the TV.