June 29, 2009
Perhaps you remember Master Cycling Instructor Jennifer Sage, whose high-powered instructional manual about spinning and indoor cycling, called “Keep It Real”, was reviewed on this very website, in the post “Why You're Not Losing Any Weight in Your Indoor Cycling Class”.
Today Jennifer is back, and she's on a mission to clean up spinning and indoor cycling around the world…
You see, there are many, many things that happen during indoor spinning classes that people simply should not be doing – spinning moves that can be very dangerous for knees and backs, indoor cycling styles that can be ineffective for weight loss and fitness, and a general lack of good knowledge among certified spinning or fitness instructors about how to actually teach the spinning or indoor cycling class.
Jennifer appears to be quite fed up about these problems, and so she starts her post today by featuring this YouTube video…which show some big mistakes made by indoor cycling instructors…
So here's what Jennifer Sage has to say…
“Don't think this stuff happens out there? It not only happens, it's actually prevalent in some places! Sorry, I have to take off my normal diplomatic hat and get downright indignant here. The contraindicated stuff just won't go away, and as such, I just can't/won't shut up! The shananigans in these Youtube videos are not only contraindicated, they're just plain stupid.
I mean, isn't a properly conducted Spinning, or any indoor cycle class, hard enough without goofy moves that take away from actually riding the bike? And this class in the first video is only doing some of the most egregious moves; perhaps it saves the others for the next song, the hovers, squats, & isolations. The second video, I'll leave you to comment (er, gag) on the “Spingasm” hovers, gyrations, hip thrusts and backbends of Angela's Joyride.
I'm slightly relieved to see that these aren't real “Spinner” bikes and is not my beloved “Spinning” program. But that doesn't make it OK or give it credibility. There is not a single indoor cycling program certification worth its salt that condones these outrageous types of class formats. It is bad to a ridiculous degree.
These are instructors who are not certified and/or they are making up stuff because they don't know how to ride a bike and they think their students need to be entertained by erroneous fluff. They don't trust that their students are smart enough to know the difference (or maybe, dare I say it, their students aren't smart enough to know when something hurts it's not good for you). These instructors feel that every one of their students has a bad case of ADD and cannot sit for more than 15, 30 or even 60 seconds and just pedal a bike correctly, without having to flap their arms.
They probably watch The Biggest Loser and get their class ideas from Jillian. They don't understand physiology, biomechanics, or the mechanics of pedaling a bike (even if it doesn't go anywhere, it's still a bike)!
Common sense would preclude this from taking place, but we've all heard that common sense isn't very common anymore…
Tell me, who will pay for the dental work for that woman in the back when she slams her face into the handlebars in the first video? Or the chiropractor visits many of these students will need over time, from either of these classes? Actually, maybe the students don't have the sense to put two and two together that it was their cycle class that threw their back out (except that backbend in Angela's joyride would be a sure culprit for most people in touch with their bodies).
It is my hope that eventually this blog post makes its way around the country until it actually reaches instructors who teach like this so they see the error of their ways. Hey, maybe it will even make it to these particular clubs. The first one is in Italy and the second in Los Angeles not far at all from the Spin Fitness HQ (I guess only in Los Angeles would you find an orgasmic Spin experience!)
Well, maybe that's a pipe dream that they'd suddenly convert from the dark side…Maybe we can have just a little effect and clean up indoor cycling around the country, maybe even the world!”
Wow! Strong words from Jennifer – but as an “ex-indoor spinning instructor” myself, I'd have to agree with what she has to say. The bottom line is this: make sure your spinning instructor knows how to truly make indoor cycling effective for fitness and weight loss.