As an indoor cycling instructor, there are several, brief-duration leg exercises that will help you reinforce the endurance, strength and stamina you acquire while coaching classes.
Although many instructors incorporate cross-training as a way to explore and implement other fitness avenues, these eight specific leg exercises are primarily intended to help you pre-empt injuries or nagging pains such as PFPS, IT Band Syndrome and others. The eight exercises described below are ones that I personally perform a few minutes prior to the start of an indoor cycling class, or when the class concludes (some of the studios I teach at offer full fitness equipment).
Leg Muscles Overview
8 Leg Exercises for Indoor Cycling Instructors
Walk around the gym, and you will notice the Squat rack/area is always occupied. Why? The most popular and favorite leg exercise is indeed Squats. There are several modifications to this popular format: Back Squat, Front Squat, Overhead Squat, One-Legged Squat, Single Leg Squat (a.k.a Bulgarian Squat), Hack Squat and many others. I will probably write a future blog post to address these variations. For now, let’s focus on these leg exercises:
- Leg Extension
- Calf Raise
- Leg Curl
- Glute Bridge
- Step Up/Down
- Leg Press
- Box Jump
With these exercises in mind, here’s how to focus the workout on specific muscle groups:
How Should I Train / How Often?
Aside from squat and squat variations, any leg exercise is a good exercise. Use a combination of the 8 leg exercises shown above based on time availability. If you can set aside 10 minutes per muscle group over the course of a week, you will ensure a varied routine that you can modify and personalize. More importantly, you can advise your class participants on this approach and coach them for improved strength and endurance.