Good balance is essential to riding a bicycle, and improving your balance can help you feel more confident while riding. You can improve your balance by riding a bike, and also with targeted exercises performed separately from your bike. Whether you enjoy riding trails, city roads or a mixture of both, consider investing in a hybrid bike for women or men that will let you tackle a variety of routes.
How Biking Benefits Your Balance
Whether you are recovering from injuries or trying to prevent falls, cycling on the best comfort bikes can have multiple benefits. Having a better balance on your bike means that you’ll be able to:
- Ride faster, which gives you a better workout and gets you where you’re going quicker.
- Handle changes in terrain or road conditions, from uneven pavement to bumpy trails.
- Perform directional changes, such as turning a corner or avoiding obstacles in your path.
Another benefit of developing your balance is having better control at slower paces. This will allow you to tackle hills, where you slow down significantly and help you merge with traffic.
Good balance starts with good body positioning. You need to maintain the proper position by aligning your center of gravity with the bike’s center of gravity. To do this, you need to bend at the hips while maintaining a straight spine. In this position, your center of gravity is behind the bike’s center, with some weight still applied to the front. Bikes for older adults can aid you in the balancing exercises that follow.
Safety always comes first, so be sure to find a safe area to do some drills. It should have a curb or boundary marker that provides a straight line to follow. Perhaps the parking lot of a business that is closed for the night will work, as long as there are no cars to impede your progress and no moving traffic.
- Drill 1: Shift your body as you pedal slowly. Lift your buttocks from the seat, moving backward as far as you can while maintaining your grip and steering control. Lower your upper body as much as possible while doing this. Move side to side and forward and backward, shifting your weight with each movement.
- Drill 2: Riding along a straight line or curb can help you see whether you’re wobbling back and forth or veering off-course. Be sure to ride in both directions along the same curb so you can tell if you tend to pull left or right.
- Drill 3: Wait to tackle this one until you’re more confident in your balancing ability. Simply sit on your bicycle while lifting your feet off the ground. Turn the front wheel to the side if needed while remaining aware of your posture. Look forward and keep your weight over the lower bracket.
Moving Through the Drills
Take it slowly at the start. Each drill is a progressive skill, so move from the first to second, then third, exercise only when you’re comfortable and confident in your abilities. Use your hybrid bike for women or men to improve your balance, and soon you’ll enjoy riding wherever you choose.