Our revolutionary Natural Pedaling Method is a major step forward in indoor cycling. Our riders love it (check out our Listen 360 reviews here) and we are getting a national reputation for mindful and super effective indoor-cycling workouts (see this month’s Fitness Magazine!). In many ways, we are a very Portland kind of business….home grown, thinking outside of the box, bringing a certain mindfulness and authenticity to what we do.
Many ‘spinners’ do not realize how much work the standard fixed-gear ‘spinning’ bike actually is doing for them in their classes. It’s a bit like asking a fish what water is- unless you take the fish out of water, it has no idea what it is since it is all it’s ever known. Here’s an easy explanation for you…
Your typical ‘spinning’ bike has a fixed-gear attachment to the flywheel. When your pedals are directly connected to a 50 pound flywheel your initial pedaling effort gets the wheel moving. But…once it’s moving, its propelling your feet around the pedal circle. How do you know this? Try pedaling at low resistance and suddenly stop pedaling, but be careful! Your feet will continue moving around in a circle. In fact, that is why ‘spin’ bikes have a braking mechanism….so you can stop the flywheel from turning and you can get your feet out of the pedals!
So for the entire standard spinning class, a heavy flywheel is powering your legs around, stealing some of your workout, and sending potentially damaging forces into the knees with every turn. This is especially dangerous for the knees at the extremely high speeds typical in spinning classes. Think about it….if you have heavy resistance on could you spin the pedals at 130 rpm? Of course not, so by definition you are hardly doing any work at those high speeds and your knees are taking a great deal of energy from the flywheel.
Our Revocycle bikes have a freewheel. That means when you stop pedaling the flywheel continues to turn and your feet stop. Because the flywheel is not forcing your feet around in a circle, you will need to use all the muscles in your legs to move the flywheel around- you must work against your resistance for the whole pedal circle. This whole circle pedal stroke engages your calves and hamstrings and hip flexors and gluteal muscles in a MUCH more effective manner- you NEVER have a flywheel forcing your legs around in a circle, so you are always working.
The Revocycle Natural Pedaling Method is all about using all the muscles of the legs to create a mindful and super-effective workout that engages the whole leg. Just like you pay attention to your muscles, your body, and your form in yoga or barre class, we pay attention to all the wonderful, powerful ways we engage our leg muscles.
As one rider from NYC said this week: “This is a ‘much better workout than SoulCycle; there the flywheel controls you, here you have to control the flywheel….I Love it!.”
Ever wonder why in standard ‘spinning’ classes you can stand on the bike for 5 minutes or more at a time or why they incorporate all sorts of other moves? If you are actually standing and climbing, or really working on a sprint, there is no way you would be able to stand for 5 minutes or more or do any kind of move other than driving hard. The flywheel is doing the work for you!
The benefits of our Natural Pedaling Method are huge- no energy is being sent into the knees by the flywheel so there is much reduced risk to the meniscus of the knee, more muscles are toned in the legs and seat, more calories are burned, more focus is required so time flies by more quickly, there is a greater sense of accomplishment.
Think of us like you do you yoga or barre practice… we work on a beautiful and supple pedal stroke, lock into the beats of the songs, and find the zone for a sense of peace and happiness!