Pilates tips to Improve Biking #2

Single Leg Kick Back.

This is a great #pilates classical exercise for developing and evaluating your hip strength and flexibility to #optimizeyourbiking.  

Single leg Kick back asks for gentle spine extension with hip extension while the knee flexion and extension.  Why is this important to biking? 

1.      Our spine is often too flexed in biking.  This exercise allows for slight extension of the entire spine in a stable, non moving position while the legs and knees move.

2.      Biking our hips are flexed and then partially flexed.  This shortens the front muscle of the thighs and legs.  When the front muscles of your legs are shorter than the back muscles of your legs, it pulls the head of the thighbone (femur) out of place in the hip socket (acetabulum) thus inhibiting your power true strength of your muscles.   Single leg stretch asks your hips to extend and your quads to eccentrically activate as the knee bents.  While you are asking the hamstring to lift the leg (if you do that version) and flex the knee.    This requires your femur head (see above) to move easily and freely in your acetabulum.    When this isn’t the case, you’ll see the hip lift or the heel not be able to move to the buttock.   A sign of imbalance in the leg musculature.

  • What is key here is the concept:  When something you don’t want to move moves, (like my low back) it is showing that what I want to move can’t.  My body’s strategy when my femur head won’t roll forward and down in the acetabulum to let my hip extend, my low back extension to allow for the leg movement I want. 


Most bikers quadriceps are lock in a short position, flexing their hips and inhibiting their hamstrings to fire.  This affects both the power of the body and the position of the bones of the body.


Try this exercise out. How does it feel?


Also try the mobilizing exercise from last week then return to this one, does it feel better?


Keep following for more Pilates tips to improve biking from Pilates in Guelph.


Caitlin BoveeComment