While talking to my fellow mountain bikers, when I put a question what muscles does mountain biking work, different people provided me with different answers.
Some newbies didn’t even know that mountain biking actually helps to stay fit. In reality, mountain biking is more than just a sport or competition for entertainment and satisfaction.
It is a complete body workout, and there are plenty of examples where people used mountain biking for weight loss.
It doesn’t make you thin or skinny, but mountain biking helps maintain a good weight, stay fit, and build a proper muscular physique.
This is the reason we have plenty of exercise bikes available at the gym because mountain biking burns excess calories, works your core, and constructs muscles.
However, to understand the core, knowing about which muscles do mountain biking burn is mandatory. My today’s guide at MTB Knowledge will help you find out all the bits and bobs regarding this.
Without any pause, let’s get started.
What muscles does mountain biking work
Mountain biking is a complete body workout to lose belly fat, gain muscles, and maintain a good weight.
It happens because you imply more force to ride your two-wheeler during MT biking than road biking. With more friction, you impose more strength and hence build muscles faster.
So it is a complete body workout, and a mountain biker will never get skinny, thin, fat, or scrawny. However, some muscles play significant roles.
Core leg muscles used in mountain biking are:
1. Quadriceps and Glutes
These are your lower body muscles, located from buttocks to thighs. Quadriceps are in thigs while glutes are in rumps.
While sitting on the saddle and using your thighs for continuous pedaling activates the Quads and Glutes, making them the primary workers during MT biking.
Right in front of the Quads, there are hamstrings, the built muscles you see in the wrestler and bodybuilder’s thighs.
These are located in the backside of your thighs and remain thoroughly activated during mountain biking, and play a dynamic role when on terrain ascents.
To learn more about what muscles does mountain biking work, keep reading:
On worn paths, when you are just sitting and pedaling, the lower leg muscles are stimulated to compress the reins for faster speed.
In the back of the lower legs, calve muscles are located that remain involved during this workout. Calve muscles can do more intense workouts too.
On the steeper grades, cyclists stand from saddles and push the crowbars even more forcefully; calves are strained.
4. Abdominal muscles
Oblique muscles and lower back workout whenever legs are in motion, even when not on a mountain bike or walking pedestrians. However, during MT cycling, the cores get involved too.
Your lower and upper abdominal muscles are stretched and strained while mountain biking on rough or worn trails.
These are called core muscles, and that’s why MT biking is considered the perfect core muscle exercise for stubborn fat.
5. Biceps, Triceps, Forearm
Handlebars are gripped throughout the trajectories, so the muscles in your limbs can work out. These are also among what muscles does mountain biking work.
When leaning forward or staying straight on various MTB trails, the upper body muscles around your shoulders used in mountain biking are deltoids, biceps, triceps, hands, wrists, and forearms.
How to train Muscles for mountain biking?
With the involvement of muscles in mountain biking, one can easily configure how actively a body works during this bustle.
I don’t recommend taking a bike and going on rough terrains without proper know-how of the muscles and their usage during mountain biking.
As you don’t want to indulge in exercises so do the proper homework before moving on the cliffs on a bike.
Muscle Workouts for mountain biking
You should train yourself for mountain biking before taking expeditions. How to prepare for mountain biking? Here are some of my tested and opted instructions:
Warming up is necessary, but it is not like cardio. All you have to do is take a jog around the corner or stretch your muscles in the entire body.
By doing so, blood flow around the muscles and entire body making your body ready for the ride and implying intense force during MTB biking.
Keep reading; there is still a lot more to go on what muscles does mountain biking work.
2. Endurance Training
Once you start mountain biking as a beginner, your legs might hurt too early. This is because you lack endurance. You are not advised to stop but build endurance.
Keep on pedaling your MTBs until you reach the decided time. Within some days, you will build endurance, and your body will ache less. Now, you can increase the mountain biking duration to build more stamina.
3. Strength Training
To increase your strength and body immunity against injuries, strength training is recommended before mountain biking.
For this, you can go for simple exercises like pushups, jumping lunges, and doing different variations of planks and gain strength.
4. Agility Training
Before you go with this training, you will have to understand what agility training really is. It also builds your strength but in a different way.
As you know, you must go through various terrains and turns during mountain biking; agility training helps you adapt to those changes in speed, direction, and pathway.
5. Flexibility Training
Along with muscles, your joints are involved too during mountain biking. The stiff muscles easily get hurt, causing pain and aches in your body.
With flexibility working out, you will eliminate the stiffness and make your muscles and joints ready for vigorous and active movement without cracking or feeling hurt.
Best muscular exercises for mountain biking
Some of the best muscular exercises you should do before going on mountain biking rides are:
- Walking Lunges with twists
- Ball pushups
- Plank variations
- Pushup variations
- Jumping jags
These exercises will help you build strength, become flexible, and get ready to deal with and avoid injuries.
How to keep muscles safe during mountain biking?
This is not all about what muscles does mountain biking work. You also have to take all reasonable measures to help these muscles against injuries by using safety gear for mountain biking.
So, once you are done with mountain biking exercises to warm up, it is time to get your bike ready for the ride. Here is how you will do it:
6. Wearing Safety Gears
Helmets, gloves, and knee bands are a must-wearing before mountain biking. Some optional things you can choose to wear or ignore are safety goggles, elbow pads, masks, etc.
Check if you are allergic to dust or have other aversions; make sure to get ready against that by taking proper measures.
7. Bike Setup
Checking and setting up your bike before the ride is also critical. You have to check the wind in the tires and other things to see if they are working correctly.
Along with this, you will have to check the chainrings and other gears like brakes to see if they are working properly and will not wear off while you are strolling on a rough road with no possibility to stop immediately.
8. Stay Hydrated
Keep drinking water on the way; this is an ignorable thing to do while you are learning about what muscles does mountain biking work.
After every mile, you should drink a liter of water. You can wear water bags or carry your bottles along to refill and drink on the way. But staying dehydrated is not an option.
9. Go Mountain Biking
Once you are done with all the exercises for mountain biking, it is time to get yourself ready for a stroll around the country.
There will come rough terrains and normal pathways; you will also come up front obstacles and hitches. Dodge them all and keep going.
When you meet your duration of mountain biking, the next thing comes is the last step of your Workouts for mountain biking:
10. Ride in a Group (optional)
This is an optional thing or a step. However, riding in groups is beneficial to avoid injuries and enjoy your time. As a beginner, you are advised to use this option.
Once you know much about mountain biking and the on-the-way terrains and their types, simply go on a ride alone or with friends the way you want to.
11. Cool Down
After completing your mountain biking routine, the very next thing you will do is calm down. Yes, it is as important as warming up.
For this, you can go with a simple walk towards the refrigerator to drink water, prepare an after meal, or outstretch your body softly.
Is it necessary? Yes, all the processes, such as a heated body and blood flow, now need to wind up, and your body needs to reach its normal levels.
After proper exercises, do use these gears before going for a bike hike:
12. Bike Maintenance
Once you are done with everything, clean your bike and remove the dust using a cloth. If necessary, wash it up. Check if it requires lubricating, and cover your bike after all the maintenance.
This will be the last thing to do. I personally use THIS BIKE COVER. It is very durable and water and dustproof too. I take it with me on camping to keep my bike from the debris in jungles.
At the end of the discussion, I hope that you now have a complete idea of what muscles does mountain biking work. The discussion is over now.
I have added 5 muscles that will be involved in mountain biking. Besides this, a detail on muscle-building exercises and training is also there. In this guide, you can also read about safety measures to help prevent muscular and physical injuries.
Lastly, I will always help you with your mountain biking experience. Do you like my work? Offer me your precious feedback by commenting below. For more biking guides, click my blog link.