Being a PT in the city I see just how popular spin classes are amongst office workers - the class sign up sheets are nearly always full for lunch time classes. If you’re unfamiliar with spin, it is a cult-like, bike based leg battering 30-45 minutes of hell that will leave your legs like jelly, and it’s really popular with office workers.
I have respect for anyone that take the time to include exercise into their life, but as someone that sits down for most of the day, as office workers do, I find their obsession with spin strange – after spending your work hours sitting down, why would you want to go and sit on a bike? Get up and move your body a bit!
Not only do I find it strange, but I also consider the negative effects on posture this level of sitting has. Sitting in a seated position for 8 hours at work is bad, add in an hour and a half commute every day (which is seated if you’re lucky) and a 45-minute spin session and an office worker could spend over 10 hours of the day sat down.
This seated position leads to adaptive shortening in muscles such as the hip flexors and hamstrings, making them tight. The lower back becomes overactive and tight, and your glutes tend switch off and become weak.
This all leads to an anterior tilt in the pelvis when you’re standing, the pelvis tilts forward and places your spine into lumbar lordosis (curvature of the lower back) This places unnecessary stress on your lower back, as well as your knees due to a forward shift in your centre of gravity. This is why you may be suffering with back and knee pain.
In addition to its negative affect on posture, a spin class puts a lot of stress on the body. This stress, plus the stress from your job, may be contributing to you holding on to fat stores (due to increased cortisol levels - you might be better switching out one of your spin classes for a 30 minute yoga or stretching session.
So if you're an office worker, try and incorporate into your week workouts that get you out of your regular seated position – try some resistance or circuit training that will still allow you to burn plenty of calories and may be more beneficial for your body. And if your life is super stressful, you might be better picking up a stretch mat and foam roller!
If you are an office worker in London, see how resistance training can help transform your workouts and your posture. Get in touch for a free 1-hour consultation now!