Cyclists need good mobility and flexibility in their hip flexors and thoracic region in order to avoid pain on and off the bike. Here are 5 mobility and flexibility exercises that will help keep you moving in the right direction.
Dynamic Runners Lunge –
This movement opens up the hip flexors. Starting in a runner’s lunge, we gently move forward and backwards. Once we add the arm movements in, we engage our core, upper back, and shoulders as we gently open up the thoracic region with a small twisting motion.
T-Spine with Foam Roller –
We start in child’s pose and then move back and forth with one arm propped on the foam roller. This opens up our hips. Then we take the opposite arm and thread the needle under the arm that is propped on the foam roller. As we move back and forth on the foam roller, we gently slide the arm across the mat, under the propped arm. This movement helps release the thoracic spine as well as loosens up the shoulders.
There are many variations of pigeon and many ways to get into pigeon. Here, we use a yoga block to help support the pose, although some people who are more flexible will not need the extra support. The pigeon stretch is a great hip opener, and stretches your thighs, groin, back, and psoas.
Wall Stretch –
This stretch isn’t fancy, but works wonders for your quad and hip flexors. Using a wall, bend one leg at a 90 degree angle with your foot on the floor. The other knee is on the floor (use a cushion under the knee) and the foot is against the wall. To get a deeper stretch, move your knee closer to the wall. Make sure to sit up tall during this stretch for maximum quad and hip flexor stretch.
Primal Squat –
This is a fantastic functional deep stretch that helps with hip mobility and can relieve back pain. and there are three versions, depending on your mobility. You can hold a chair while you hold the pose; you can put your heels on a towel to make it easier, or you can put your feet flat on the floor and hold the pose on your own.