3 Simple body conditioning exercises for riders

Motorcycling is more strenuous than driving a car
by Gaki Moto | Jan 19, 2017
Body conditioning exercises for motorcycle riders
PHOTO: Shutterstock

Have you ever felt severe muscle pain during and after a long ride? Or struggled with the entire weight of your motorcycle while maneuvering through traffic? Do you encounter difficulty in shifting your body from side to side when attacking a corner on a motorbike? These are symptoms that you lack exercise.

Motorcycling on a daily basis is not easy. It may be more convenient to move around with a motorbike to save more time, but riding needs greater physical effort than driving a car. It takes all parts of the individual's body to control a motorbike.

Since fitness training is my profession and motorcycling is my passion, I’ve put together a shortlist of three practical exercises for riders. This comes with the help of another fitness expert, Julio Veloso of Movement Performance MNL, who happens to be a Vespa rider.

These exercises will hopefully improve your riding prowess, and with no gym equipment needed.

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1) Lunges

From the time we move the motorcycle upright from its leaning position on the kickstand, we use our legs. As we maneuver the motorcycle, leg muscles are at work. Shifting weight while negotiating turns would also entail your leg muscles to obtain the proper balance. So let’s work out those leg muscles with lunge exercises.

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How to do a lunge:

Position 1: From standing position, move one foot forward.

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Position 2: Dip your rear knee down until your front leg is at a 90-degree angle. Make sure your knee does not go over your toes. Then push back to starting position using the leg in front.

Suggested: To start do 12 repetitions. Rest and then repeat for a second set.

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2) Pushup planks with shoulder taps

Your core plays a key role in balancing yourself on a motorcycle. Do not neglect your upper body in controlling the motorcycle. The shoulder, chest, and back muscles play a big role in steering. In traffic situations, the push and pull on the handlebars bear more weight than when cruising. We definitely need strong muscles when lane filtering.

How to do pushup planks with shoulder taps

Position 1: Place your palm on the floor up to chest level. Keep your back straight. Maintain straight planking stance during the whole exercise.

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Position 2: Dip the body down, then push up in a slow but firm motion.


Position 3: Tap each shoulder, one side at a time. Make sure your hips don’t turn.


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Suggested: Start with eight repetitions.

3) Neck mobility

During a ride, one starts to feel the wind drag, especially when going fast. All that force from the wind combined with the weight of your helmet tend to strain your neck muscles. Of course, a lighter, more aerodynamic helmet helps. But in the long run, we still feel its weight. Within the city, we all ride responsibly by always looking to the left or right when changing directions. This shows that neck mobility is used more often than you think.

How to do the neck movement exercises

Movement 1: Turn your head to look at each side slowly. (Look left and then look right)

Movement 2: Look up and down slowly.

Movement 3: Lean your head to each side. (lean left, lean right)

Suggested: Five repetitions each. Count to 10 while doing each movement. 

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PHOTO: Shutterstock
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