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Whenever you come to one of our classes you will hear our instructors say "SHOULDERS!" or "Let's get those shoulders down!" Some of you may not know what we mean so I thought that I would take a sec to explain. Very simply put, our instructors are giving you cues for you to check in with your body to make sure you have proper form on the bike. 

Here are my tips to help you with your upper body on the bike:

1. Check yourself. (When I ride, I do this for each new song) Becoming "body aware" is really a gift to yourself. Ask yourself-Do I feel a lot of tension in my shoulders? Are my shoulders up by my ears because of my stress? (You can use our mirrors to see) Do I feel out of alignment (meaning feeling heavier on one side than the other)? Use the mirrors to check yourself. Square your hips and square your shoulders on the bike.

2. BREATHE-It ALWAYS comes back to the breath...doesn't it?! Take a deep inhale through the nose and then exhale through the mouth. DEEP BREATHS help you to release the tension you brought to class that you may additionally be holding in your shoulders so BREATHE...

3. REVERSE SHOULDER SHRUG-Here's the BIG ONE and this is what I want you to do: Take those shoulders up to your ears and reverse them back and down. Literally, be dramatic about it. Now, do it again. A reverse shoulder shrug on the bike is awesome because it allows the muscles in your back contract then relax over and over. While doing this shrug, sit upright and SQUEEZE your abs. The REVERSE SHOULDER SHRUG will help you have proper form on your bike so repeat it as necessary and check in with your body for each song. It may take some practice so do your best to be patient with yourself. Remember: It's not about perfection. It's about PROGRESS!

4. CHEST OUT-Once you have rolled those shoulders back and down towards the ground behind you, I want you to stick your chest out like a proud marine. Have a slight bend in your elbows and you are ready to go! YOU GOT THIS!

I think that it's always cool to learn from your workout and take it into your everyday life...so, here's my spin on it (get it, spin on it..haha):

We, as human beings experience stress everyday. We tend to really carry this stress in our shoulders. Bah. Today, when you are driving your car (yes, your car) notice how you are holding your shoulders when you are stressed. Are your shoulders up towards your ears? Do you have "white knuckles" on the steering wheel from grasping it tightly? Be aware of your body. Check yourself, BREATHE, and give yourself a good REVERSE SHOULDER SHRUG. 



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Branda Jacobs
Branda Jacobs
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