Bikes, Yoga and Costa Rica, oh my!

Did you know that Boulder Cycle Sport co-founder Dr. Taro Smith is also a yogi? He and his partner Amy Ippoliti (world-renowned yoga teacher) put together off-season yoga programs for cyclists as wells as yoga therapeutics trainings.

Here is a follow up to a Boulder Cycle Sport e-news Amy did last year with some yoga poses to get ready for the cycling season!

Get the Most Out of Your Bike with Yoga and These 5 Poses!
by Amy Ippoliti and Taro Smith, Ph.D.

The popularity of yoga for cyclists is growing by the day.  Yoga serves as the perfect complement for any rider to address the static upper body positioning and  repetitive lower body sequence of pedaling.  As we get older, our on-the-bike flexibility decreases and can interfere with our enjoyment.

Yoga can help cyclists with: 

Range of motion/flexibility

Muscular imbalances

Core strengthening

Durability/injury prevention

Aerodynamics

Circulation

Mental clarity/focus

Breath control

Motor control/coordination

…and much more!

Here are five poses that you can do after each ride that will make a world of difference!

Supta Balasana (reclined child’s pose) for relieving post-ride low back tension
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Lie on your back and hug your knees into your chest with your arms. Resist flattening your lower back against the floor and instead aim your sitting bones toward the floor as you bring your knees to your chest, creating an arch in the small of your back. Hold this for 30 seconds to 2 minutes and focus on calm, steady breath.

Cat/Cow to promote movement along the spine and reintegrate shoulders & hips
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On all fours, place your hands directly beneath your shoulders, and your knees directly below your hips. Upon inhale, arch your back, open your chest, lift your sitting bones up and look to the sky.
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Upon exhale, do the opposite, round your back, tuck your butt, and bring your chin to your chest. Do a few rounds of these, timing your movements with the inhale and exhale.

Child’s pose – promotes relaxation in the muscles of the upper and lower  back and allows the hips to gently open
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From all fours position, sit back on your heels with your knees apart and big toes touching. Place your hands to your sides with your palms face up. Pause here for 30 seconds to 2 minutes and focus on calm, steady breath.

Lunge into Runner’s stretch to open hips and stretch hamstrings
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Come back up to all fours position and step your left foot between your hands, sliding your right knee back behind your hip into a lunge.  Keep the back knee down and feel a stretch along the front of your right thigh. Hold here for 30 seconds and breathe..

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Then shift your hips back and straighten your left leg.  Do your best to create a neutral spine in your lower back—rather than rounding or tucking your pelvis under—so you maximize access to the hamstrings.  Hold the pose for 30 seconds and breathe. Repeat this process to the right side.

Ninja Death Pose – the ultimate quad stretch and psoas opener!

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Before you even set up for this pose, start breathing very steadily and fully because this one is intense – they don’t call it Ninja Death Pose for nothing!  But it just so happens to be essential for accessing the quads before or after being on the bike.

Set yourself up at the wall with a blanket or exercise mat to pad your knees.  On all fours, back yourself up to the wall and place your right knee near the wall so that your foot presses against the wall. If this is too intense on the quad, move forward away from the wall a bit further until it is tolerable.  (If you feel ready for more, just bring the knee closer to the wall—even touching it—and the stretch will increase.) Step your left foot forward between your hands.  Depending on how stiff you feel, experiment with hand placement. The easiest placement will be to keep the hands on the floor by your right foot.

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The magnitude will increase as you bring your hands up to the left knee, and even more if you bring your hands overhead and reach up.  Repeat this to the right as well.

Yoga retreat in Costa Rica – Boulder Cycle Sport Special $250 off!

We are offering a special for Boulder Cycle Sport customers:  $250 off Taro and Amy’s annual retreat to Costa Rica in March!  Join Taro and Amy as well as some of the Boulder Cycle Sport team for a break from the cold and head to Nosara for yoga, surfing, relaxation and fun in the sun!  The perfect gift for your significant other as a spring break getaway, or go as a group for a corporate retreat! Click here to join us and take advantage of the BCS special.

Link to: http://www.amyippoliti.com/event/costa-rica-retreat-march-2013/

ENTER: NEWYEARLOVE at checkout to receive $250 off. Offer good until January 25th!

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