It never gets easier, you just get faster.

More intense than riding a stationary bike, our spinning classes last for 30- to 75-minute sessions. The intensity will vary throughout the class thanks to different body positions (i.e., standing versus sitting), pedal speed, and resistance. Our instructor will tell you when to change your settings so your ride feels like it would outdoors—complete with hill climbs, sprints, and coasting. In some special classes, the pedalling is even mixed with upper-body workouts, resistant bands, or a themed adventure.

Spinning is definitely no ride in the park, though. It will amp up VO2 max (the rate oxygen is carried to the muscles), a sign the body is being pushed.  Plus, all that pedalling will work your quads, hamstrings, glutes, calves, and core. Studies have also found that indoor cycling can help shed unwanted pounds and potentially ward off migraines, while keeping impact on your joints to a minimum.

Whether you’re a spin class newbie or simply brushing up on the etiquette, here are some tips for a successful joyride:

  • Suit up. The body will definitely work up a sweat, so throw on moisture-wicking clothes to keep cool and dry. As for the feet, cycling shoes are required for some classes, but normal trainers will work fine in most cases.
  • Take a seat. If it’s an option, reserve a bike online to guarantee a spot in the class. Otherwise, get there early to snag a seat. And newbs, don’t head straight to the back—getting a bike up front will make it easier to follow along.
  • Adjust your saddle. Getting the perfect fit on the bike can be tricky, but a general rule of thumb is to adjust the seat to be even with your hip. As for the handlebars, position them so the neck and back doesn’t strain. And strap or clip in the feet: The balls of the feet should rest on the center of the pedal and if you’re strapping in, make sure they’re secure.
  • Know the numbers. Some instructors call out numbers to indicate how far you should be rising out of your seat. Roughly, position one is sitting in the seat, position two is a slight hover over the saddle, and position three is a more dramatic hinge forward.
  • Insist on resistance. There are no real gears to change, but there will be a resistance knob or computer. This will control how hard the muscles need to work to increase RPM (that’s bike talk for revolutions per minute).
  • Towel off. Keep a towel draped over the handlebars for easy access—you’ll probably need it. And swigging water is encouraged mid-ride to stay hydrated (although the spin ‘n’ sip definitely takes some coordination).

Indoor cycling puts things in full gear with its awesome tunes, control over resistance and speed, and overall intensity. Hop on to the nearest bike and give this class a go!

  • Due to a skiing accident, I have no ACL. Fit2Ski has been fantastic for me. Run by a qualified physiotherapist, who understands different injuries, the circuit of activities were designed appropriately and each individual in the class stretched to their own level of ability and fitness. After only six weeks, I have amazed myself with how much more confident I am in using my knee and what I can now do!

  • I used the Fit2Ski programme as the final step in my rehabilitation from ACL knee surgery. It had elements of strengthening to build on what I had already achieved but most importantly for me it introduced more dynamic movements and exercises. It has given me the confidence to get back to playing the sports I love, cricket and football. I can’t recommend the programme highly enough.

  • 2x per week seemed like a good plan. I found starting with a small group very helpful because it meant I was able to get lots of attention at the beginning which gave me more confidence to know that I was doing the exercises correctly.