Is Spinning Good For Older Adults? The Pros & Cons

Spinning, or organized indoor cycling, has tremendous health benefits. But, is spinning good for older adults? Learn the pros and cons of this exercise for seniors then talk to your doctor about your particular situation.


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Spinning is popular among older adults, but is spinning actually good for older adults?

There are pros and cons of spinning, and you should know what a few of them are.

With that said, read on to learn about the pros and cons of spinning.

The Pros Of Spinning For Older Adults

Indoor cycling, regardless if it’s classes or doing it on its own, offers a tremendous number of benefits. The top benefits of spinning for older adults are:

  1. Cardio– Older people need to do what they can to keep their heart healthy and one of the best ways is to do cardio workouts. Senior citizens who do spinning a few times per week will be getting a great cardio workout. Best of all, you don’t need to do spinning for long periods of time to get a good cardio workout. Spinning can help keep a senior citizen’s heart healthy and strong.
  2. Tone Up– Toning up is possible for older adults, but many older adults tend to not want to do anything too rigorous. Indoor cycling can help tone you up, and it’s not as rigorous as training with weights or other forms of cardio. Spinning isn’t a full workout, but it can still tone up the legs, as well as the arms. It might take sometime to notice results, but as a general rule of thumb older adults should be able to tone up if they do spinning a few times per week for at least 8-12 weeks.
  3. Burn Calories– Indoor cycling results in burning off a ton of calories, and within a short period of time. Older adults can expect to burn off around 400-500 calories in a span of 50 minutes. Various factors come into play, but that is what you can expect to burn if you cycle at a moderate pace. In turn, you’ll keep your weight in check and your endurance will improve at the same time.
  4. Safety– Let’s not forget to mention the safety benefits. Indoor cycling doesn’t involve the same risks associated with real cycling outdoors, such as traffic and road hazards or the risk of falling off due to turning the wrong way. Spinning is far safer than doing the real thing, but you’ll still reap all of the benefits that cycling offers.
  5. Optimal Health– Keeping yourself healthy and fit is one of the best ways to reduce your risk for many illnesses and conditions. This includes obesity and diabetes to name a few. Spinning is one of the best ways to improve your overall health, and in turn you’ll reduce your risks of various ailments.

Remember, the above are only a handful of benefits of spinning for older adults.

senior woman giving thumbs up to her spinning class

The Cons Of Spinning For Older Adults

The main cons of spinning for seniors are:

  1. Back Strain– Cycling can lead to back strain, regardless if it’s on a real bicycle or a stationary bike. Older adults might feel pain in the lower backs if they do not maintain proper posture throughout the exercise. If you’re a complete beginner to spinning, then you might experience back strain. As time goes on and the more your body gets used to it, the less risk of of strain.
  2. Can Overdo It– With spinning it’s too easy to overdo it. A lot of seniors do spinning as part of a class, which is why it can be difficult to know when you should stop, and seniors may be tempted to push themselves too hard. Whether you do spinning as part of a class or in the comfort of your own home, you should not push yourself beyond your limits.
  3. Not A Complete Workout– Spinning offers a great cardio workout, and it can build endurance, as well as tone you up. However, it’s not a complete workout, which means if you want to gain muscle or tone up as much as possible, then you’ll have to do resistance training for your upper body. Yoga and Pilates are good for toning the entire body.
  4. Repetitive– Another con is repetitiveness. Spinning can feel very repetitive for seniors, and this can cause them to get bored with the workouts. This doesn’t mean you’ll get bored, as there are plenty of older adults who love spinning and find it exciting. If you’re not doing spin classes, then consider listening to music as you’re doing your cycling.

Those are the most common cons of spinning for older adults. Before you take up spinning, you should consider those cons.

So, Is Spinning Good for Older Adults?

As you can see, there are several benefits of spinning for older adults, but there are many other potential benefits.

There’s a few cons too, but the pros tend to outweigh them.

If you want to reap all of the benefits associated with spinning, then you should start doing it on a regular basis.

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About Scott Grant, ATP, CRTS® 305 Articles
Assistive Technology Professional, Custom Wheelchair Specialist, Medical Equipment Guru, Dad and Grandfather
I am a lucky dad to four awesome daughters and grandfather to three pretty terrific grandkids. When not working as a custom wheelchair specialist at a regional home medical equipment company, I enjoy early morning runs and occasional kayak trips. I am also a self-admitted nerd who loves anything from the 1980's. Learn More

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