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How to strengthen your glute medius for better cycling efficiency

How to strengthen your glute medius for better cycling efficiency

There are a number of key muscles that affect how effectively a cyclist moves. While many cyclists may focus on training their quads and hamstrings, there’s another important muscle that’s often overlooked: the gluteus medius. Ottawa-based physiotherapist David Bowman shared some thoughts to understand why this small muscle is so important, and how to train it so you can become a better cyclist.

The gluteus medius is located on the side of your hip, towards the upper part of your buttocks; it’s responsible for stabilizing the hip joint during dynamic movement, which helps to keep the hips level and prevent things like hip drop or excessive lateral movement. The gluteus medius plays a crucial role in stabilizing your pelvis during cycling when you are pushing down on the pedals. It prevents your hip from rotating inward which could cause problems. Training the muscle is important for hip mobility as well, which can help with the fluidity of tour pedal stroke

“A strong glute medius can help prevent compensations and imbalances that can lead to injury,” he says.

But how exactly do you train your gluteus medius? Bowman recommends a combination of exercises targeting the muscle’s strength and endurance. Here are a few examples.


Side-lying clam shell

Lie on your side with your knees bent and your feet and hips stacked.
Keeping your feet together, lift your top knee as high as you can while keeping your heels touching.
Lower back down and repeat for 10-15 reps.
To make this exercise more challenging, you can add a resistance band around your knees.

Side-lying leg raises

Side-lying hip abduction

Lie on your side with your legs straight and stacked.
Keeping your core engaged and your hips stacked, lift your top leg as high as you can without tilting forward or backward.
Lower back down and repeat for 10-15 reps.
You can add ankle weights or a resistance band around your ankles to increase the intensity of this exercise.

Split squats

How to do Bulgarian split squats

Stand with one foot behind you on a bench or step, with your other foot forward.
Keeping your torso upright and your front knee behind your toes, bend both knees and lower into a lunge.
Push back up to standing and repeat for 10-15 reps on each leg.
You can hold a weight in each hand to make this exercise more…

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