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Cycling tips from the pros

Scandinavian Traveler asked Thor Hushovd and Susanne Ljungskog for their top cycling tips.

Multi-season training

It’s not just during the outdoor season that you establish a sound basis as a good cyclist. Spinning and exercises to develop a strong core are the keys to avoiding a sore back and arms when the time comes to hit the road.

‘Previously, people waitied for the snow to arrive  for winter sports, but now people cycle as early in spring as possible’

Tune up

Be extremely careful when buying a bike. The size and configuration should be perfect for you. Have a bike fitting to make sure your posture on the bike is perfect and that you get the most from every turn of the pedals. Incorrect posture can easily lead to injuries.

Preparation is essential

It’s more fun to cycle in a bicycle race if you have prepared yourself.  Do sit-ups, back-bends, and push-ups regularly. Eat wisely and correctly. Eat a hearty breakfast and don’t forget the snacks. Ride for one last time about five days before a long race, but rest is important after that.

Correct position

Slightly bent arms provide a cushioning effect. If your arms are fully extended, the vibrations can go straight into your shoulders, neck and back, which can cause aches and pains. Relax your shoulders and don’t fix your gaze on the front wheel. Look a little further ahead instead for better posture. This will also improve your ability to react if something unexpected happens in the peloton.

Also remember that the saddle should always be higher than the handlebars. Sit on the saddle and put your heel on the pedal. In this position, the knee should be slightly bent. Now you are sitting just right.

Proper clothing

Three essential items:

Cycling pants: These will protect you from soreness and irritation.

Glasses: Prevent bugs and dirt from getting in your eyes.

Cycling shoes: These provide grip on the pedal and ensure that you can use all of your leg muscles. You can achieve far more power when you can both push and pull the pedals.

Text: Katarina Sjöström

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