I'm over 50 – how important is it for me to warm up before cycling?

Do advancing years mean pre-ride preparation needs to be increasingly advanced?

An older cyclist on a marina
(Image credit: Daniel Gould)

You’ll witness all sorts of weird and wonderful warm-ups before a cycling event. Some perform frenzied sprint intervals on a trainer in the car park. Others stretch their hamstrings by resting a heel on the top tube and straightening their leg. One particular time triallist used to skip with a skipping rope in the HQ doorway (really). And there are those stories about the benefits of wearing heated trousers.

Everybody about to engage in sport has been told they need to warm up first. But why? Is there a right and wrong warm-up? Does it make any difference whether we’re younger or older?

Alex Welburn
Alex Welburn

Alex is a physiologist and performance coach who is studying for a PhD in critical power and W’ at Loughborough University. He competed for 10 years on the bike, including for GB in both cyclo-cross and mountain bike events, and as a coach has worked with cyclists of all levels including ultra-endurance world champions and Tour de France Femmes participants.

Thank you for reading 20 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1