Tour De Yoga – Stage 3

How are you getting on with this year’s Tour De Yoga?

I have designed these classes to focus on common areas of tension in the body for cyclists. Appreciating that cyclists are often busy over the summer on bike rides, these bitesized sessions are hopefully sufficiently short in duration and targeted to hot spot areas of tension to incorporate within your regular routine while maximising benefits. As much I am making these classes available in order, feel free to dip into the classes that are of most interest to you, and practice as often as you can to really notice a difference.

Today’s 3rd stage focuses on the hips – in particular the hip flexors. The hip flexors are crucial to every pedal rotation as they take over from the hamstrings in lifting the pedal back to the top ready for the quads to fire up ready for the next rotation. When you consider that, on average, cyclists have a cadence rate of about 60 revolutions per minute, even relatively short distances can place a considerable strain on the hip flexors  that are often not stretched. Short, tight hip flexors not only increase the risk of injury, but can also result in pelvis misalignment issues, leading to potential back problems.

I love to incorporate lunges into many of my classes. In this sequence, I have transitioned to the low lunge from a forward fold. I could have equally transitioned to the lunge from an all fours position such as downward dog or table top or a standing, warrior-type pose.

As with any of theses classes, it’s important to check in with the body throughout this sequence. Evidently, it is only a short sequence, so depending on when you practice may determine how warmed up the body is to practice the deeper variations of the pose. Transitioning through the pose in stages before lifting the arms up overhead will ensure that you have a solid foundation through your front foot and back knee. In addition, be mindful of any strain the full pose places on your back, particularly the lumbar spine.