Five Best TRX Suspension Trainer Exercises For Cyclists And Triathletes

Suspension Training is one of the most functional and effective ways to increase strength, especially if you’re an athlete who needs to be able to move your body to perform. This is because suspension training requires you to move and stabilize your own body weight through a variety of movement planes, versus more traditional methods that involve sitting or lying down where your core is supported and locked into a predetermined path of motion (usually pressing weight plates).

Training to move your body weight and move your body as a unit develops strength, but this training is also about developing motor patterns and neuromuscular timing. The result is better stability and improved ability for your muscles to do more complex movements while still working together as a whole.

A strong core can be your saving grace on the bike when you get hit by that unexpected gust of wind, an unexpected elbow from a drifting cyclist, or an inadvertent slam into that unseen pothole. A good core also helps you maintain form through adverse conditions and fatigue.

The following are five of the best suspension trainer movements for cyclists or triathletes. You DO want to develop strength and stability to support your training and performance!

 309c_Suspended Push Up From Floor_copy1130804_3308-2
This movement increases
 both strength and stability of the upper body and core. It will help to give better support and control of your body wh
ile in unstable positions on the bike (sudden swerves, wind gusts, unexpected potholes, etc.).  It will increase power transfer from the upper body to the legs during hard and out of the saddle efforts. If you are a triathlete, it will add strength to your swim stroke as well as upper torso run mechanics and posture.

Targeted Area: Chest and Shoulders.

Tips and Progressions:

To make it harder, step back to load more of your body weight onto the straps. To make it easier, step forward to support more of your body weight with your feet.  You can also progress to suspending your feet, instead of your hands.

Row 312b_Inverted Row(A)

This is another great all-around movement that targets the opposing muscle groups to the pushup.  It can improve posture both on and off the bike, as well as strengthen the large muscles of your back which can add power to your swim stroke. 

Targeted Area: Back and Arms

Tips and Progressions:

To make it harder, step forward and place your feet further underneath the anchor.  You will end up leaning back further as well, putting more body weight on the straps which is more weight you will have to lift.  

Sprinter Starts

This one will add strength and stability to the down stroke in pedaling, especially during out of the saddle climbing or accelerating.  It will also It will help triathletes and runners develop a strong leg extension in their run stride that is required for forward propulsion and pushing up inclines.

Targeted Muscles:  Legs and Hips

Tips and Progressions:

Start slow and increase the speed of the movement when you feel comfortable with it.   To progress this exercise, add a hop to it at the top of the movement and focus on maximum acceleration when pushing yourself up from the bottom of the movement.  

209a_Sprinter Starts1 209b_Sprinter Starts 209c_Sprinter Starts

Suspended Plank

This is a great all-purpose movement, as a strong core is beneficial for endurance performance as well as general strength for all activities. It builds the strength necessary to stabilize and create a solid center of mass for driving movement. A stronger, more stable midsection can contribute to stronger bike positioning and run mechanics, as well as delaying fatigue in either activity.

If you have not already done the traditional Plank, work on that movement first by starting with your feet on the ground instead of in the straps. Progress to the straps only after you feel you have mastered the traditional version of the Plank.

This exercise is all about form: your hips need to stay up; don’t let the lower back sag; keep the shoulders soft and the back flat (no rounding the back). It’s easy to start losing form with fatigue, so make form a priority and focus. Doing this exercise in front of a mirror will allow you to self-monitor your form.

Targeted Muscles: Core, Arms and Shoulders

Tips and Progressions:

There is no need to hold this position for minutes at a time.  Work up to sets of 45-60 seconds and then progress adding additional sets, or doing a more advanced progression.

104b_Suspended Front Leaning Plank  106c_Suspended Side Plank

Hip Hinge

This one in particular a great 204b_Hip Hingeone for runners and cyclists as it will train the muscles to maintain stability while supporting the body on one leg.  Running in particular requires the stance leg to stabilize while the rest of the body moves.  A lack of stability in your pedal stroke can also leak energy and create harmful forces that add up over time to cause issues. 

Targeted Muscles :  Legs and Hips.

Tips and Progressions:

If you feel wobbly or are losing your balance, reduce the range of motion until you can get it under control.  Start again slow and only go down until the point where you feel it challenges your balance, and then come back up.
If you enjoyed this and found it helpful, perhaps you have family, friends or training buddies who might like it too. Please feel free to sign up  HERE, to get on the email list. Also, please be sure to check out and "like" the TRX and Strength Training at Cycling Center Dallas Facebook Page.

Check the class schedule if you would like to take a Small Group Strength or Performance Cycling Class. You can also contact me directly by replying to this email to come in for an individual session, get some instruction, or just learn some new things.

Thanks, and let me know if you have any questions or suggestions!

Tracy Christenson
Cycling and Resistance Training Coach
Cycling Center Dallas
214 773 6503

Tracy Christenson CSCS

USA Cycling, USA Triathlon






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Caroline Flack
October 4, 201810:54
Caroline Flack
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