Home exercises for bike fitness/strength?

Cambie

Active Member
Location
Brighton
Hi all,

Can anyone recommend any exercises for conditioning, strength training that's specific to road cycling that you can do at home?

Thanks.
 

BSRU

A Human Being
Location
Swindon
Hi all,

Can anyone recommend any exercises for conditioning, strength training that's specific to road cycling that you can do at home?

Thanks.
A bike on a turbo/rollers.
 

Rob3rt

Man or Moose!
Location
Manchester
I admit I don't know the history here but I've found squats to help. Has there been disagreement to that in the past?
Without going into a whole load of debate and also acknowledging that squats offer other benefits beyond leg strength (core strength, various health benefits, hormonal benefits etc), it has been argued (by myself, various other members, people in the scientific community and some top tier coaches) that:

A) Leg strength is not a limiter in cycling performance except in disciplines where huge instantaneous torque must be applied (track sprinting)
B) The time doing squats would be better spent on the bike
C) The muscular fatigue caused by doing squats will be detriment to the following day or two's cycling training, as such you basically balls up 3 days of cycling (including the day you spend doing them) for a squat session that has minimal cycling benefit in the 1st place.

There have also been various counter arguments (by a similar group of contributors), some reasoned points have been made.
 
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adscrim

Veteran
Location
Perth
Without going into a whole load of debate and also acknowledging that squats offer other benefits beyond leg strength (core strength, various health benefits, hormonal benefits etc), it has been argued (by myself, various other members, people in the scientific community and some top tier coaches) that:

A) Leg strength is not a limiter in cycling performance except in disciplines where huge instantaneous torque must be applied (track sprinting)
B) The time doing squats would be better spent on the bike
C) The muscular fatigue caused by doing squats will be detriment to the following day or two's cycling training, as such you basically balls up 3 days of cycling (including the day you spend doing them) for a squat session that has minimal cycling benefit in the 1st place.

There have also been various counter arguments, some reasoned.
Fair enough, but with hesitation I suggest that when trying to fit in some conditioning at home, body weight squats both double and single leg will aid conditioning for the majority of recreational cyclists. ie those who would be doing nothing as an alternative to some 'light' conditioning work and if he'll forgive me, I've assumed that the OP is one of those, much like myself.
 

Rob3rt

Man or Moose!
Location
Manchester
My argument would be that, if, instead of doing nothing, you did some cycling, you would be better off, if cycling was your main concern. If general health and wellbeing is your main concern, well do as you like, anything that contributes to that.
 

vickster

Legendary Member
And proper stretching after riding. And core exercises. Plenty of sites and videos for cyclists.
If you have any ails Or injury, consult a sports physio before starting any programme
 
OP
Cambie

Cambie

Active Member
Location
Brighton
Wow! I didn't know I was opening a can of worms haha.

I'm a recreational cyclist and a newbie too. I have a turbo trainer. I also run. Obviously, cycling is hitting my legs in a different way to running so I wondered if there was a good supplemental way to train specifically for riding to accelerate the conditioning process.

I understand and probably accept the argument against squats. It sounds logical to me so I will mix up the road, mtb and turbo training with various types of riding, hills, interval, long slow etc. I will definitely be working on my core as cycling has identified a weakness there.

Thanks everyone for insightful replies. Great forum. I'm learning loads and loving the new sport!
 

nickyboy

Norven Mankey
I think it depends on how much cycling you're doing now. There is a principle of diminishing returns from "just riding your bike" but this is quite a few hours per week @Rob3rt probably has a much more considered view on this. If you're getting to the point where an extra hour cycling isn't contributing much because you're doing a lot of hours cycling, then you should look at other stuff like core strength exercises. Until then, just ride your bike
 
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