Core Strength for Cyclists


Cycling, particularly long distance cycling can change the body. I’ve previously written about some of the changes I experienced and also some of the other changes you may experience while cycle touring. A lot of the negative changes can be reduced by having a strong core – this is why core strength for cyclists is so important!

Why cyclists need a strong core?

  • A strong core supports and protects the spine and helps to prevent lower back pain! The common cyclist position involves rounding forward, which increases pressure on the spine (and the discs in the spine). Over time this can stretch the ligaments and weaken the back and cause back pain. Having the extra support from a strong core can help prevent long term injury and pain. I’ve discussed this a bit more in this Back Strengthening for Cycle Tourists article.
  • Core strength can help improve balance and prevent falls.
  • Maintaining a strong core can help with comfort in the saddle, and help us maintain a good posture, which can reduce the chance of injury. This can overall can help our performance.

This is just a few of the reasons why core strength for cyclists is important!

Cycling in the Saskatchewan Prairies
Cycle touring in Canada!

How to strengthen your core

I’ve created a 7 day core strength challenge which will cover a different core muscle each day and how to strengthen it.

The challenge starts on Monday 20th July. Daily challenges will be posted on YouTube in the Core Challenge playlist. Subscribe to be kept updated. I’ll also post the videos below, as they become available.

The daily challenge will only take 5-10 minutes, so can easily be fit into your daily routine. It also means you can incorporate it into any other training plan you currently have.

Beginners are welcome! Although it’s important to work within your limitation and stop if you feel any pain (I realise I’m talking to cycle tourists that push themselves to the limit – but just want to make sure you do look after yourself 🙂 ).

If you are training for a cycle tour or long distance bike trip, I definitely recommend including some core strengthening into your training plan.

Day 1 of the Core Strength Challenge: The Obliques

Day 1 of the 7 day Core Strength Challenge

Day 2 of the Core Strength Challenge: The Transverse Abs

Day 2 of the core strength challenge

Day 3 of the Core Strength Challenge: The Back

Day 3: The Back

Day 4 of the Core Strength Challenge: The Glutes

Day 4: The Glutes

Day 5 of the core strength challenge: The Abs

Day 5: The Abs

Day 6 of the core strength challenge: Hip Flexors

Day 6: Hip Flexors

Day 7 of the core strength challenge: The Pelvic Floor & Diaphragm

Day 7: Pelvic Floor & Diaphragm