When the weather isn’t ideal, it’s good to have a workout ready that was designed specifically to improve your cycling performance—that you can do indoors. This glutes and hamstrings workout provides that option, as it includes exercises that target the big power providers behind cycling and gets you strong and speedy for the road.

Yusuf Jeffers, NASM-certified personal trainer and USATF-certified running coach in New York City tells Runner’s World he meticulously designed this workout so cyclists can improve upon three crucial factors of performance: stability, strength, and power.

The Benefits of a Glutes and Hamstrings Workout for Cyclists

The glutes and hamstrings help you kick up your watts. They provide the forward propulsion and keep you steady on the bike, so you need these muscles robust and ready to take on impact, high speed, and long workouts. The exercises included here will help them do that.

The first two exercises in this glutes and hamstrings workout focus on stabilization, says Jeffers. They activate the muscles of the backside, while incorporating both unilateral (one sided) and bilateral (two sided) movements. They also require slow, steady movements to build that stability.

To help you build strength in the muscles of your lower half, the squat and the Romanian deadlift variation focus on time under tension and moving slow. This also helps to improve muscular endurance, so your body can take on many miles.

Finally, the last two exercises included in this workout improve power as they require force and speed to execute properly. This not only helps you crush climbs or end a race with a strong kick, but the power they help you build also means you can pick up and maintain a faster pace.

How to use this list: Do the exercises in the order listed below for 30 to 60 seconds each, with little to no rest in between. Practice exercises 1 through 4 in a slow, controlled manner and exercises 5 and 6 as powerful and quickly as possible, says Jeffers.

Each move is demonstrated by Jeffers in the video above so you can learn the proper form. For this workout you will need a set of dumbbells and sliders or two hand towels, a mini resistance band, and an exercise mat.

1. Glute Bridge Walk Out

glutes and hamstrings workout, glute bridge walkout
Yusuf Jeffers

Lie faceup, knees bent and feet planted on the floor. Drive through heels, contracting the glutes to lift hips up. Body should form a straight line from shoulders to knees. Step right foot forward, then left. Keeping glutes lifted, continue to take small steps forward until legs are straight, knees soft. Then, slowly walk heels back to a bridge position. Repeat.

2. Good Morning to Single-Leg Kick Back

glutes and hamstrings workout, good morning to kickback
Yusuf Jeffers

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, mini resistance band around both ankles, holding a dumbbell with both hands at chest. Maintain a flat back and hinge at the hips, sending butt straight back and bringing torso forward and down. When you feel a slight pull in hamstrings, squeeze glutes, drive feet into floor, and stand back up. Then, lift right leg back and behind you, balancing on left leg. Hold, then step it back to shoulder-width. Repeat with left leg. Repeat from the top.

3. Tempo Squat With Half Lift

glutes and hamstrings workout, tempo squat with half lift
Yusuf Jeffers

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, toes turned slightly out. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, resting lightly on shoulders. Slowly send hips down and back, as if you’re sitting back into chair. Squat down as far as possible in a controlled movement for a count of four seconds. Keep chest lifted and spine neutral. Then, lift up halfway. Pause, then lower all the way back down. Drive feet into floor to stand all the way back up. Repeat.

4. Staggered Stance Romanian Deadlift With Half Lift

glutes and hamstrings workout, staggered rdl
Yusuf Jeffers

Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, arms down in front of you, palms facing you. Step right foot back so toes are in line with left heel. Using right foot as a kick stand to maintain balance, transfer most of weight to left leg. This is your starting position. With a soft bend in both knees, hinge at hips by sending butt straight back, and lower torso toward floor. Keep back straight, shoulders pulled down and back. Lower until you feel a slight pull in hamstrings, moving slowly on a count of four. Drive left foot into floor to lift half way up. Pause, then lower all the way back down. Drive left foot into floor to stand all the way back up, returning to starting position. Repeat. Keep core engaged the entire time.

5. Alternating Hamstring Curls

glutes and hamstrings workout, hamstring curls
Yusuf Jeffers

Lie faceup with glutes near the edge of the mat and heels on top two separate hand towels or sliders. Lift hips off the mat and hold. Slide left heel across the floor, straightening leg. Then bring heel back toward glutes. Repeat on right side. Continue alternating as fast as possible.

6. Single-Leg Plyo Glute Bridge

glutes and hamstrings workout, plyo glute bridge
Yusuf Jeffers

Lie faceup on the mat with knees bent, feet flat on floor, arms resting at sides. Lift right foot of the floor, bending knee, and bringing it over hips. Lift hips slightly off floor. Press through left heel to explosively lift hips up toward ceiling, left foot coming off the floor. Softly land left foot back down and repeat. Keep core engaged the entire time; don’t lift with low back. Repeat on the other side.

From: Runner's World US
Headshot of Monique Lebrun
Monique Lebrun

Monique LeBrun joined the editorial staff in October 2021 as the associate health and fitness editor. She has a master’s degree in journalism and has previously worked for ABC news and Scholastic. She is an avid runner who loves spending time outside.