Archive for the ‘Cadence’ Category

6 Reasons Why Biking Can Help You Lose Weight

By Jennifer Sage On November 12, 2012 2 Comments

Bicycling magazine has published a good article on how bicycling can help you lose weight. Most of it is spot-on and emphasizes the fat-burning ability of aerobic exercise like cycling.

An example is their reason #3: Trains muscles to burn more fat.

Cycling, especially long, steady rides, builds hundreds of thousands of capillaries in your legs, which means you can deliver more oxygen-rich blood to your working muscles. Your mitochondria—the fat-burning furnaces in your muscle cells—also get bigger, so they can use the increased influx of oxygen to burn more fat and produce more energy.

Most of these we can extrapolate to our students in our Spinning® classes. But I want to stress something that is extremely important if you’re going to pass on this information and this article to your students.

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Music motivates you – it’s scientifically proven!

By Jennifer Sage On October 8, 2012 3 Comments

We’ve known it for a long time in the indoor cycling world, haven’t we? But isn’t it nice to get some scientific proof to back up what we know as sacrosanct?

Music moves us! It pushes us beyond what we might normally do, it allows us to enjoy the challenges of exercise, and helps reduce our perception of suffering.

A few exercise physiologists, including Dr. Carl Foster (who created the Talk Test which makes our lives as instructors so much easier) have teamed up in an ACE sponsored study to examine the effects of music on exercise intensity. This article reviews the seven studies examined by Dr. Foster and his team. They also look into the work of Costas Karageorghis, Ph.D., from London’s Brunel University School of Sport and Education,

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The Risks of Low Cadence and High Resistance in Indoor Cycling Classes

By Jennifer Sage On March 26, 2012 6 Comments

Spinning classAfter my article on the Truth About Cadence in Indoor Cycling Classes appeared in Active.com, I got numerous suggestions to write about the other end of the spectrum – cadence that is too low.

We’ve all seen those Spinning® classes where the instructor asks students to continually raise the resistance or gear, until their cadence drops into the low 50’s, 40’s or even 30’s for rpm. I’ve even seen some Youtube videos where they seem to be pedaling at 15 or 20rpm if they are lucky. They seem to believe that if you have to pull on the handlebars to turn the pedals, that there is some strength benefit. In reality, it it is unproductive and dangerous, and is based on nothing more than “ego”.


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My class this week: a fantastic revelation! I Love the 90’s!

By Jennifer Sage On March 18, 2012 No Comments

Can you believe that after 15+ years of teaching I’m still leaving my classes with a big smile on my face after doing something new and different? Well, no profile really is completely “new” any more, but the way I put a class together and/or the coaching that goes along with it, still amazes me at how different the responses can be. I love that feeling – there’s no way to ever get bored teaching when you have such a wide variety of profiles and ways to present the same profiles, right?

What was my revelation after my class on Thursday this week? I’m well into the second half of a periodized program and every class has a very specific purpose. We are now into the higher intensity, more advanced technique stage, and

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The Truth About Indoor Cycling Cadence – Jennifer’s article on Active.com

By Jennifer Sage On February 24, 2012 6 Comments

SpinningThe following is an article Jennifer wrote for Active.com. To read the article on the Active.com website, click here. Please share the link (or this blog) with your students, program managers and instructor peers. As usual, your comments (both on the Active page and on this blog) are always appreciated!

The Truth About Indoor Cycling Cadence

As you peek into the door of many indoor cycling classes, or if you’ve watched some of the many “Spinning®” classes on Youtube or on television, often you will see frantic legs pedaling so fast it’s more like the roadrunner trying to escape Wile E. Coyote. Legs are blurring so fast you often cannot even see them. However, many students in typical indoor cycling classes do not have the skills to pedal quickly with

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High cadence in Spinning® is hard stuff!

By Jennifer Sage On September 8, 2011 9 Comments

Spinning musicThose of you who have been following me for awhile have heard me preach about the benefits and challenges of legitimate high cadence work, and the ineffectiveness of non-legitimate high cadence work in your Spinning® and Indoor Cycling classes.

This morning I taught a ladder class of high cadence intervals. We maxed out at a “high” of 108rpm, and ouch, that hurt!

Let me explain what I mean by legitimate high cadence….

When you work at cadences from 90-110rpm, with the proper resistance, it is one of the most challenging things you can do in an indoor cycling class, both in terms of technique and cardiovascular challenge. Proper resistance is the key concept there. The ride I did this morning was based on the beat of the songs, which were 85, 88,

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