Parts of the Body an Exercise Bike Works

An exercise bike works various muscles in the body.
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Using an exercise bike can provide a good aerobic workout that is low impact and less stressful on the body than other aerobic exercises. Activities such as running or aerobic classes can stress the knees and joints. Riding an exercise bike works several muscles in the upper and lower body and is recommended to individuals with back problems. Because riding an exercise bike exercises the cardiovascular system, the heart and lungs also benefit.

Back and Skeletal Frame

Riding an exercise bike is a low-impact activity that does not place excessive stress on the back and spine. This is important for anyone who suffers from low back pain. For sufferers of spinal stenosis, or compression of the spinal nerves that cause tingling or numbness in the lower back and legs, an exercise bike can provide an easier form of exercise because you are able to lean forward while biking and avoid an upright position that can cause discomfort. Sufferers of osteoarthritis engage in stationary biking as a way to strengthen the muscles that support their joints, reduce stiffness and maintain flexibility in their joints.

Cardiovascular System

Riding an exercise bike is an aerobic activity that works the heart muscle and increases the lungs’ oxygen capacity. Your blood receives a greater supply of oxygen. This helps deliver nutrients to the body’s cells and remove waste products, such as carbon dioxide and lactic acid. Improved blood circulation increases good cholesterol and decreases bad cholesterol, so your arteries are less likely to develop plaque buildup. Aerobic activity also releases endorphins, which are the body’s natural painkillers that provide a boost to your mood and a sense of well-being.

Upper-Body Muscles

The abdominal muscles are typically engaged when riding, especially while riding a recumbent exercise bike. A recumbent exercise bike has a bucket-like seat that supports the lower back. The abdominal muscles are important in providing stability to your pelvis and spine during your bike ride and are the source of all movement during biking, especially pedaling. To use these muscles during your ride, tighten your stomach and keep good posture.

Lower-Body Muscles

The primary muscles worked during your bike ride are the hip, thigh, backside and leg muscles. During pedaling, the muscles in the front and back of the thigh and butt are activated. The hip flexors and calves are also active but provide less power to the pedaling movement. Increase in muscle strength can help a person deal with certain health conditions. For example, as the thigh’s back muscle’s conditioning improves, it lowers the chance of back pain from a muscle strain.

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