There are lots of ways to relax after an exhausting day on the bike (or at work). Something that I particularly find helpful to release tension and stay flexible is Yoga. If you did not yet find a class or style that you liked, just give it another try. It wasn’t love on the first sight for me either – more like an on-and-off relationship that finally lasted.
Find the right class
As with any other sport, it’s more fun (and better for your body and health) if you do it right. Once you’ve learned the basics it is quite easy to put together a little sequence to practice at home. If you don’t want to do this on your own, find some inspiration online. There are a lot of professional videos that might help to get into the flow. Just take your time to do a little research, study the poses and stretches and listen to your body. If something does not feel right and maybe even hurts – don’t force it.
I remember my first session quite vividly. I was bored after 10 minutes and hoped the 90 minutes would be over soon. Things have changed quickly after that. Just be honest with yourself on why you are doing it. Did you like the positive and exhilarating feeling afterwards the last time? Then the chances are high that you will value the experience and do it again. I tested different studios and classes before I found the right one for me. So it was worth it, not to call it quits after the first sessions.
Try something new
In June, I decided to join a Yoga Retreat in Malaga. At that time, I felt like I had lost my strength and motivation a little. I had prepared for the season quite well, but the first race did not go particularly well. So I thought it might be a good idea to recharge batteries and think about the time that was ahead of me.
The retreat (or rather Festivalito) was just the combination I needed. There were different Yoga classes to choose from, as well as music and creative workshops. I also met super nice and interesting people that made it even more worthwhile. I was grateful that I had the chance to take part in it. So in case you need a little boost at some point, check out the Yoga Spirit Circle.
Take special care of your assets
As a mountain biker it’s quite important to be flexible. Make sure to include stretches and poses into your practice that focus on areas of your body that feel a little stiff (or even sore) after your bike rides. For me this means calves, hamstrings, hips, lower back, shoulders and neck. There are quite some videos circulating online on the ‘yoga for cyclists’ topic. Here is an example that I liked…