When you teach indoor cycling, you encounter a variety of rider types. Every type is driven by a set of unique personal factors. I have compiled a few of my favorite rider types. Here they are:
- The Sweat Puddler & Bike Drencher: You’ve seen those riders: ferocious, intense and….sweaty, real sweaty. The bike is literally dripping with sweat, the handlebars are drenched and there’s Lake Michigan underneath the bike. Was wondering why the bike’s rusting. Holy Rusty Bike Batman!! I don’t really mind as long as you clean up after the class ends. Remember, your mother does not work here (Or maybe she should?!!)
- The Move In Special: Never gets too old – he walks in with an oversized gym bag, cleats, two jugs of water, a coat, four towels, cell phone, energy drink, sandwich, laptop, tablet, today’s newspaper…did I forget anything??? And, proceeds to put it all around the bike. Rent Special!! Welcome to the building. Glad you moved in. Need some help?? How about a locker?
- The Gotta Be Connected 24/7/365: Dudette always texting. News flash: when you’re texting, you’re not working!! Besides, the studio is dark, so we ALL (yes, everyone) can SEE YOU. Stop!! PLEASE!!
- The Social Media / Chatty / Selfie Maniac: Gotta say hello to riders next me, how’s life? How’s the weather? Did you see the game last night? Oooooo, let me tweet about this awesome class. Ooooooo, let me check my Twitter timeline and Facebook posts….but, before I do, lemmmeeee TAKE A SELFIE!!
- The Guy off on Journeys of Discovery: Hey, I am paying for this class, why should I follow the instructor? MY MONEY, MY WORKOUT!! Let me plug in my headphones and just do what I please (ya know, some stuff you’re doing is just plain crazy and borderline stupid. You can even injure yourself….). But wait, there’s more…
- The Often Blowing Away Everyone, Even the Instructor: Insane cadence and super speeds get you nowhere, FAST! Yep, scientifically proven. Nope, don’t argue. Cadence and resistance are like cream cheese and a bagel. One without the other is just meh… Listen to the instructor’s cues – there is reason why we are climbing and why we are sitting.
- The Winter Soldier During Summer: I am getting hives just thinking about this. Sweat pants, sweatshirt, sweat suit, sweat everything….you’re burring up like a comet upon re-entry. Moisture wicking garments are your best friend…cotton is your worst enemy. Oops, there I said it!!
- The Stylishly Late: Ahmmmmm…..we can see you coming in 15 minutes late. It’s dark in the studio, but when you open the door, all eyes are on you. SPOTLIGHT!! THERE IT IS!! Not subtle…may as well come in with a marching band….at least it is more entertaining. But hey if you come in late, please try not to disrupt the other riders especially if you are…….. MOVING IN.
- The Optimistically Early / Dude Who Slept There The Night Before: I guess you slept in here last night, right? Some riders are an hour early, just riding, sweating, busting down hills and crushing mountains. All before class even starts. An hour before. Two hours…a day before. I guess I forgot to add the sleeping bag to the MOVE IN special.
- The Feedback / Engagement Specialist: I see you, but you know what, I cannot hear you. I am mic’d…you are NOT!! The beats are loud. I have no idea what you are trying to say to me from three rows back. I hear screams, grunts and stuff like that. Sorry. I am just going to smile back at ya. Do not mistake my nods and smiles as acknowledgement that I heard you. I CANNOT HEAR YOU!!
- The Newbie Arriving Stylishly Late: Oh, you want some help pairing your wearable performance metrics devices with the bike’s onboard computer, and try a few different seat/handlebar adjustments, and not sure how to clip in – all 15 minutes AFTER class has started, when it is dark and you’ve never done this before? Hmmmm, let me see if I can get you one of my assistants…NOT!! Remember this: IF YOU ARE ON TIME, YOU ARE LATE.
- The Always Thirsty: Going in and out of the studio to refill your water bottle. Oh, wait, maybe I could invent a hydration kit where a hose runs from the water fountain to the bikes. Think I can patent that? Look, hydration is critical, but going out to get water and trying to get back into a dark studio, avoiding the MOVE IN SPECIAL dude, risking tripping over riders’ stuff, getting blinded by the texter…get it – it’s risky. Bring in a few bottles (a case is good) or better yet, ask the MOVE IN SPECIAL dude if you can borrow a jug of water!!!
- The Metrics Obsessed: You cannot wait for class to be over to tweet your metrics, Kcals, watts, distance, etc. But you insist on doing it all during class. Here you are, fiddling with your cell phone, trying to connect to the studio’s WiFi but it is not working, messing around – all the while, YOU ARE NOT WORKING!! Put the phone down – Step away from the phone. Or, I am going to call Liam Neeson – he is good at taking things!! TAKEN 5 in theaters soon!!
- The Groupies & Synchronized Swimming Teams: Buddies that ride together, tapping back, jumping, sprinting, doing it all in perfect harmony. What an awesome sight to see. I love it. I admit it. It’s like a dance routine without even trying! JUST KEEP IT SAFE – Alright?
- The Sneakers: hey I get it that you have to leave early, but watch out for the MOVE IN SPECIAL & the Selfie dudes. We can either see you trying to sneak out or you may trip over the oversized gym bag. Just be careful. Better yet, pick a bike close to the door and please please please, do cool down before you hop off the bike. We care. “We care long time!!”
- The VIPs: Hey, welcome to the first row, you card-carrying VIPs you!! But, it comes with an obligation to follow the instructor. Because….everyone behind you can see what you are doing. And, doing your thing is not cool.
- The Shadowz: All the way in the back, far far way, in a yet-unnamed galaxy….Ah, I still can see you. Just because you are in the shadows does not absolve you of your duties. Ride and Ride Hard Shadow People!!
And for a bonus…
18. The Trekkies: Using warp speed for cadence and wearing a red shirt…you know how that ends up… (hint: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Redshirt_(character))
Other types you want to share? Let me know.