Smooth Strokes

News & Results

12/21/2002| 0 comments
by Seiji Ishii

Smooth Strokes

Training: Where do you start on your quest for that energy efficient smoothness?

can use a fast cadence no matter how your body is positioned on your machine. You can also stress using correct cadence while fatigued by doing these intervals at the end of a long ride. Recovery rides provide another opportunity to do these drills since the muscular stress is so low. The ultimate goal of this drill is that you engrain this fast cadence into your neuromuscular system and employ it in all your rides. The accompanying chart describes a sample workout for both the single leg pedaling drills covered earlier and these high cadence drills. This chart is only a sample of the many variations that you can add to these very effective drills.

The optimal part of your training year to focus on your pedaling skills and the described drills is during the early base building periods. During these periods intensity is low so it is much easier to focus on efficiency. Also, the skills and motor patterns that make up an efficient pedal stroke must be learned at lower force and aerobic intensity levels before you can carry them over at high force and aerobic intensity levels.

Once you have mastered the efficient application of force and adopted a quicker pedaling cadence you will be well on your way to harnessing more power, higher efficiency, and less leg fatigue on the bike leg. You will be able to sustain a higher average speed during the bike and feel less muscle fatigue when you leave T2. Your competitors may notice something different about your pedaling style as you scream past them on the bike leg in all your efficient glory or float past them on the run on your fresh and springy legs. You will definitely notice the improved results brought to you by your newly acquired skills.

Single Leg Pedaling Drills:

Set 1: 30 seconds right leg, 30 seconds left leg, 30 seconds both legs focusing on form at a comfortable cadence. Repeat 3 times

5 minutes easy recovery riding

Set 2: 45 second right leg, 45 seconds left leg, 30 seconds both legs focusing on form at comfortable cadence. Repeat 3 times.

5 minutes easy recovery riding

Set 3: 1 minute right leg, 1 minute left leg, 1 minute both legs focusing on form at comfortable cadence. Repeat 3 times.

A good goal is to try to get 6-9 minutes on each individual leg per workout. Remember to only use a cadence and interval length that allows you to hold perfect form. Gradually increase interval time and cadence and decrease the recovery period as your skill improves and your neuromuscular system adapts.

High Cadence Drills:

Set 1: 5 minutes at cadence of 107-115, hands on tops and brake hoods.

8 minutes easy recovery riding

Set 2: 5 minutes at cadence of 115-125, hands on brake hoods and drops or aero bars.

8 minutes easy recovery riding

Set 3: 5 minutes at cadence of 115-125, with 20-second bursts of 125-130, hands on brake hoods and aero bars.

Remember that your goal here is foot speed, not force. Relax that

Pages

Your comments
Your comments
sign up or login to post a comment