Keep Fit Throughout Your Life
Most of us could do with more physical exercise than
we get in modern life - we are designed for exercise and
are diminished by its absence. We will almost certainly
live longer and get ill less often if we build some exercise
into our lives. Doing an hour of moderate exercise every
day will make you more mentally alert, feel better and
allow you to tackle problems with more confidence.
must enjoy your exercise to do it regularly - it shouldn't
a chore. The most rewarding exercise is that which has
a secondary or primary purpose - as it always was -
working the garden, walking briskly or swimming, riding,
or cycling to get somewhere; far better than sitting
in a sweaty gym working machines. Riding Kickbikes® is
enjoyable - even addictive! Plus you get the added value
of being outside, getting where you want, doing mild to
moderate aerobic/cardiovascular exercise and using lots
of different muscle groups for whole body fitness. Almost
anyone of any age or level of fitness can benefit from
the exercise gained by riding a Kickbike®.
Note:- If you have never exercised and are unsure about
whether you should start, or have any chronic medical condition,
it would be wise to check with your physician before starting.
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Cross-Training for Triathletes, Runners and Cyclists
Most competitive athletes use a range of training methods
in addition to working on their chosen sports to obtain;
cardiovascular, muscle speed, /strength and endurance fitness.
Working out on Kickbikes® is efficient because the
rider can improve endurance by maintaining a target heart
rate for long periods of time. You will develop muscle speed
and strength plus cardiovascular fitness which may improve
your running, cycling and tri-times. The low impact and
dynamic nature of Kickbike® training will minimize
the common impact injuries associated with running and
cycling. You need just an inexpensive Kickbike® and
somewhere to use it to get some of the best cross-training
available! - Improve your training!
What Joints and Flexures are involved in the Kicking
The kicking action involves almost maximal hip rotation
and ankle/knee flexure. The 'kicking' and 'standing'
legs have quite different actions, but since legs are
every 3-10 kicks depending on gradient, both legs get
the benefit of both types of flexure and rotation.
below indicates how the Kickbike® movements join
into a fluid sequence.
The knee of the standing leg starts and finishes the
cycle nearly straight (but not locked) and then reaches
flexure (about 30°) as the kicking foot develops
force against the road surface (as the knee has to
bend to accommodate
the height of the footplate from the road) The ankle
flexure more or less mimics this with maximum extension
same time as the knee is extended. The hip though,
is flexing through about 90° reaching maximum
flexure at the point the kicking leg is maximally
extended rearwards. Throughout
the entire cycle, your whole body weight plus any
forces generated via the kicking action (by the other
acting on the standing leg. The greatest work is
done by the standing leg as it straightens up after
The kicking leg goes through a wide range of flexure
of all three joints during the cycle. The knee
of the kicking
leg is flexed by about 90-100° at the very
start and then progressively straightens towards
the end of the kick
itself to return back to 90° on the recovery
stroke. The ankle remains mostly flexed until the
the road) part of the cycle where it progressively
straightens. Hip flexure is extremely good starting
at about 120° and
extending to almost straight at the end of the
kick. Maximum work and speed coincide on the kicking
leg as and while
it makes contact with the road surface and drives
the rider forward. It is speed and strength at
this point which determines
the road speed of the Kickbike® and whether
you will out race your opponents!
Riding Kickbikes® involves a very wide range of movements
and flexure plus intensive work similar to that
involved in running, but with very little road impact.
As can be
seen from the diagrams, shoulder and elbow movements
are also involved in the cycle.
Which Muscles are Used and How?
During Kickbike® training, muscle use on the 'kicking'
leg and 'standing' leg are again quite different but roughly
emulate cycling and running leg muscle usage respectively.
Of course, legs are changed every 3-10 kicks depending
on gradient so both legs get the benefit of both types
of muscle use.
Upper Leg Muscles
Lower Leg Muscles
COLOUR KEY : € = quads, € = hamstrings, € =
glutes, € =
calf, € = tibalis
The Standing Leg does a surprising amount of work during
the kick cycle of the other leg and is the leg in which
fatigue is first felt if legs are not changed frequently
enough. At the start of the cycle, the leg is held almost
straight with the foot slightly flexed and with the heel
off the footplate. All the weight is on this leg as well
as vertical and fore-aft forces generated by the kicking
action and consequent body movement. The muscle work (which
is effectively isometric) is mostly felt in the quads €,
but almost all groups of lower leg muscles are used (tibialis € and
calf € - gastrocnemius and soleus) . The standing
leg is straight at the end of the kicking cycle.
The kicking leg, as noted above, goes through an extended
movement cycle where muscles used and forces developed
are very similar to running without the impact damage.
So hamstrings €, calves and glutes € are the
main muscles used. It should be noted that on the leg
uplift prior to starting the cycle, the abdominals come
as do pecs and biceps/triceps to counteract the forward-backward
body movement generated by the kick.
Maximum efficiency of motion is gained by minimizing
up and down movement (hence the tendency of most competitive
racers to fit back wheel lowering brackets so that there
needs be less compensation for the height of the footboard)
and by minimizing forward-backwards movement of the body
(use of shoulders and arms to steady body position).
Footbiking As A High-Fitness Sport
Footbiking is a rapidly growing, satisfying and highly
competitive sport here in the United States, in Europe,
and elsewhere. This sport has its roots in the 70s, but
the design of highly efficient footbikes like the Kickbike® (which
is used by winners of most major tournaments) has refined
the sport beyond recognition.
It is an inexpensive sport - you need only a low-maintenance
Kickbike® (much cheaper than an equivalently competitive
bicycle), some local gathering spot, a trail and some
Communicate with fellow riders to set up local
races on our messageboard. Contact Kickbike USA newsgroup – http://www.groups.yahoo.com/group/kickbikeusa/ or email email@example.com
to join the in group and share in the enthusiasm and
Many of the fastest riders are also involved in other
endurance sports (triathlons etc.) and use kickbiking