Does cycling build quads?

Cycling is an activity that engages various muscles of your body such as your calf muscles, hamstring and quadriceps. Therefore, this definitely allows you to build your quads over a certain period of time. It is important to note that the results won’t be instant so you shouldn’t expect to have big quads after only a week of cycling. However, you can add other exercises such as squats and dead lifts after or before cycling if you want to build your quads over a shorter period of time.

Well, cycling is one of the most popular forms of exercise as it is readily available and keeps you physically fit throughout. For example, cycling to work and back home in your office wear is still a form of exercise that you can easily do every day if you own a bicycle. In addition to this, you don’t even need to purchase a bicycle as you can still do indoor cycling using a stationary bike trainer at your gym. For sure, cycling comes with benefits and it is of no surprise that it actually helps you to build essential muscles of your body such as quads.

Cycling helps to build the muscles of your body because there is normally resistance between your body weight and gravity. You may not notice this, especially if you cycle frequently however, this plays a big role in building your muscles. In addition to this, most of the time you are required to put in 100% effort when cycling on the higher gear settings which puts in a lot of stress on your quads. For sure, this is usually tiresome however, the good news is that the stress on your legs help to build your quads and calf muscles.

How to build your quads through cycling

Cycle uphill or on mountain roads that are hilly

Cycling downhill allows you to use little to no energy at all when you are riding your bicycle. Therefore, you should ensure that you frequently ride your bike uphill if you want to build your quads. This is because cycling uphill forces you to use more energy which engages your muscles more to effectively deal with the opposing gravity.

For sure, cycling uphill will make you feel like the bicycle is much heavier which will force you to push the weight of the bicycle and your body using your quads and hamstrings. This normally burns your body muscle tissues and is quite tiresome however, it is definitely one of the best ways to build your quads through cycling.

It is also important to note that you should try cycle uphill when standing if you purposely want to build your quads. This is because cycling while sitting on your saddle, you’ll push the weight of the bike and your body using your gluteus maximus.

Cycle when you are standing

To be fair, cycling is more comfortable when you are sitting on your saddle and that’s why a lot of brands emphasize on equipping comfortable saddles on their bikes. However, we’d like to inform you that unfortunately cycling comfortably won’t help you to build your quad muscles. Therefore, you should focus more on cycling while standing on the pedal as it will help you to add weight to your down stroke. Adding weight to your down stroke will automatically increase more resistance on your upstroke as you pedal which helps in building quads.

In addition to this, you should also point your toes downwards while cycling so that you engage your calf and quad muscles more.

Pedal slowly when you are cycling

We all cycle at different speeds depending on what we are trying to achieve during the cycling session. Here, you should pedal slowly so that you can engage your muscles when cycling which is idea for building your quads. Pedaling quickly on the other hand, will enable your bike to go fast enough that you won’t even need to put in a lot of effort to move it. This is because it will be automatically moving due to the momentum gained. Unfortunately, this won’t be of benefit to your quads.

Cycle on higher gears on level surfaces

You are required to cycle on lower gears if you are cycling for leisure because it is relaxing and quite comfortable. However, you should cycle on higher gears if you want to build your quads. This is because cycling on higher gears creates more resistance as compared to cycling in lower gears which puts stress on your leg muscles. This stress is what makes it ideal for you to build both your quad and calf muscles when cycling.

Do short sprints when cycling

This is also another good way to build your muscles through cycling. You should set your bike on higher gears and do sprints of about 30 seconds so that you can be able to build your quads and calf muscles. The reason you are supposed to cycle on higher gears is because it helps you to gain enough resistance which is essential for muscle growth.

What you should do
How it helps to build quads
Cycle uphill
It makes the bicycle feel heavier which will force you to push the weight of the bicycle and your body using your quads.
Cycle when standing
It adds weight to your down stroke which increases resistance of your upstroke which is ideal for muscle growth.
Pedal slowly when cycling
It engages your quad muscles when cycling which helps to build them.
Cycle on higher gears on level surfaces
It creates resistance which puts stress on your leg muscles. This enables you to build your quads and calf muscles.
Short sprints when cycling on high gears
It helps you to gain resistance which is essential for muscle growth.

Conclusion

For sure, cycling helps to build your quads after a while therefore, you shouldn’t expect results within a few days after you start cycling. However, you can follow the few guidelines that we have given you if you want to purposely cycle to build your quads. In addition to this, you should also supplement cycling with other exercise such as squats and dead lifts if you want to build your quads much faster.

FAQs

Does cycling build quads immediately?

No, cycling doesn’t build quads immediately. However, it is an effective way of building your quads after a certain period of time.

Why is it recommended to cycle on higher gears if you want to build quads?

This is because cycling on higher gears allows your legs to get enough resistance which is essential for muscle growth.