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The pedaling technique thread

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Mar 10, 2009
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FrankDay said:
This is a pedaling technique thread. All you do is describe the result of what you think your technique is: "180 degrees of maximal force to each crank in turn during the chain ring revolution" and you tell us to do this requires using the arms and the legs work like doing a tug-o-war. Tug-o-war has nothing to do with cycling because the feet/legs are mostly in an isometric contraction applying force in a single direction rather than moving quickly while trying to apply force in a constantly changing direction about 90 times a minute. If you were to apply for a patent for your "technique" the patent office would require you to describe your technique in enough detail that a person experienced in the area could reproduce it. You have never done this. You don't have a clue what the forces on the pedals look like or what muscles are used to generate those forces. Further, you ignore what the leg/foot is doing on the other 180 degrees of the stroke, is that leg flacid on the upstroke? If and when you are able to do this perhaps some here will take your musing seriously. I personally think you are on to something in emphasizing the top of the stroke as I believe that is the part of the stroke most available for improvement but your description of what you want to do is so juvenile that no one takes you seriously.
In the sport of "indoor" tug o'war a powerful forward force is generated in addition to a downward force which together give the ideal merging forward and downward forces for a powerful 180 deg. power stroke 11-5. When cranks are in the 11-5 position, simultaneous max force application takes place at 11 while unweighting and drawing back of foot occurs at 5, muscles are in neutral mode between 9-11 as they are being readied for max force application at 11.
Only a small percentage of that possible maximal forward tug o'war force is required to give maximal pedalling torque at TDC , so there is nothing to prevent this technique being used at a cadence of 100+. Because there is no dead spot sector in this technique, timing is all important for that simultaneous switch over of power application and it is here that perfecting is required.
I can't understand why with PC's you continue to train the weakest muscles to apply minimal torque at a time when maximal torque is already being applied. If successful this would give a more unbalanced style of torque application.
 
Sep 23, 2010
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coapman said:
In the sport of "indoor" tug o'war a powerful forward force is generated in addition to a downward force which together give the ideal merging forward and downward forces for a powerful 180 deg. power stroke 11-5. When cranks are in the 11-5 position, simultaneous max force application takes place at 11 while unweighting and drawing back of foot occurs at 5, muscles are in neutral mode between 9-11 as they are being readied for max force application at 11.
Only a small percentage of that possible maximal forward tug o'war force is required to give maximal pedalling torque at TDC , so there is nothing to prevent this technique being used at a cadence of 100+. Because there is no dead spot sector in this technique, timing is all important for that simultaneous switch over of power application and it is here that perfecting is required.
I can't understand why with PC's you continue to train the weakest muscles to apply minimal torque at a time when maximal torque is already being applied. If successful this would give a more unbalanced style of torque application.
Nope. In the Tug-o-war the muscles contract forcibly at near maximum force but they do not shorten. In cycling the muscles are always contracting and lengthening at well under max force and the coordination is always changing because the direction of foot movement is always changing.

Edit: one more thing. In tug o war the muscles actually generate very little power because there is very little distance covered. Power is work per time and work is force through a distance. Cycling is mostly about power generation. Tug o war is about force generation, no actual power required.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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FrankDay said:
Nope. In the Tug-o-war the muscles contract forcibly at near maximum force but they do not shorten. In cycling the muscles are always contracting and lengthening at well under max force and the coordination is always changing because the direction of foot movement is always changing.

Edit: one more thing. In tug o war the muscles actually generate very little power because there is very little distance covered. Power is work per time and work is force through a distance. Cycling is mostly about power generation. Tug o war is about force generation, no actual power required.
Like A Coggan, where pedalling technique is concerned, your physiological knowledge is holding you back. I simply set about a task and do it. My original objective was to pedal in such a way that enabled me to make maximal use of arm muscles and not only was I successful, I solved the mystery of Anquetil's pedalling in the process.
 
May 13, 2011
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coapman said:
Like A Coggan, where pedalling technique is concerned, your physiological knowledge is holding you back. I simply set about a task and do it. My original objective was to pedal in such a way that enabled me to make maximal use of arm muscles and not only was I successful, I solved the mystery of Anquetil's pedalling in the process.

Noel,

Any chance you could put up a Youtube video of you using your technique on a trainer? I think it would help us all better understand what you're trying to describe.

Hugh
 
Mar 10, 2009
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sciguy said:
Noel,

Any chance you could put up a Youtube video of you using your technique on a trainer? I think it would help us all better understand what you're trying to describe.

Hugh
I intend to do that before this year is out when I get the equipment but the pedalling will reveal nothing more as to what's involved than what you see on this video. I will be using alternate arm resistance.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7hh2DcgpnkU
 
Sep 23, 2010
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coapman said:
I intend to do that before this year is out when I get the equipment but the pedalling will reveal nothing more as to what's involved than what you see on this video. I will be using alternate arm resistance.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7hh2DcgpnkU
You could have gone off on your own and solved the mystery of God, let alone pedaling. But, if you are unable to articulate to others what you discovered so they can understand also, the secret will forever remain yours alone.

Power is generated at the pedals. For a start, you need to show that you are doing something unique and "better" at the pedals before anyone will care what you are doing with your arms. If you wanted to maximize what your arms are doing you would have probably come up with a drive like rowing a shell as those athletes have some of the highest VO2max's around. Or, add an independent hand cycle into the mix. But, adding the arms in series with the legs? I don't see it as the arms are much weaker than the legs and the arms are much weaker than the saddle for supporting the legs. But, that having been said, please show us all what you are doing in a way to convince everyone what you do is superior. Good luck. I am always interested in seeing how others solve problems.
 
Go nuts on these :D

I haven't read it, but I assume they effectively change the length of the crank around the circle (longer at the peak of the down-stroke and shorter around the back?) I dunno, I could be wrong

"Cranktip pedals were invented to improve pedalling efficiency. The design places the pedal platform well in front of, and below, that of a traditional design. As a result, Cranktip pedals offer more leverage on the downstroke and a shorter upstroke."

http://cyclingtips.com.au/2015/02/cranktip-pedals-first-look/


 
Mar 10, 2009
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FrankDay said:
Power is generated at the pedals. For a start, you need to show that you are doing something unique and "better" at the pedals before anyone will care what you are doing with your arms. If you wanted to maximize what your arms are doing you would have probably come up with a drive like rowing a shell as those athletes have some of the highest VO2max's around. Or, add an independent hand cycle into the mix. But, adding the arms in series with the legs? I don't see it as the arms are much weaker than the legs and the arms are much weaker than the saddle for supporting the legs. But, that having been said, please show us all what you are doing in a way to convince everyone what you do is superior. Good luck. I am always interested in seeing how others solve problems.
The arm muscles are much more powerful than the muscles your PC's are trying to train. Unlike the extra muscles used by PC's these arm muscles will be used in combination with other muscles to increase overall power output instead of reducing it as PC's can do at maximal power output, because their extra muscles are used independently. Apart from the extra weight, that is why additional independent hand cranks would not be successful. My objective was not only to be able to use the arms in the same way as the track pursuit rider uses each arm to accelerate from the starting line, but to be able to do this while in a seated racing drops position. If you attempt this with the natural pedalling style, you will only pull yourself out of the saddle, so maximal force had to be applied in a different direction and this is how the need for a forward force arose. It only took a week to find that force. This more powerful forward/downward force and use of arms resulted in the dead spot sector being replaced with maximal crank torque and the elimination of all lower back stress (the root cause of cycling's back pain). Rowers have no difficulty making maximal use of their weaker arms and stronger legs.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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Captain Serious said:
Go nuts on these :D

I haven't read it, but I assume they effectively change the length of the crank around the circle (longer at the peak of the down-stroke and shorter around the back?) I dunno, I could be wrong

"Cranktip pedals were invented to improve pedalling efficiency. The design places the pedal platform well in front of, and below, that of a traditional design. As a result, Cranktip pedals offer more leverage on the downstroke and a shorter upstroke."

http://cyclingtips.com.au/2015/02/cranktip-pedals-first-look/



Obviously the OSY CHAIN RING has not been the final attempt to improve power output by changing equipment.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djLKplpWsa0
 
Sep 23, 2010
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coapman said:
Obviously the OSY CHAIN RING has not been the final attempt to improve power output by changing equipment.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djLKplpWsa0
Another effort to "improve the bicycle" which will, most likely, fail. This product is trying to do what Rotor cranks does just in a different way. If anyone thinks this product might really work they don't understand how muscles work. If there will be a benefit it will be small. The best way to get better is to improve the cyclist! Hence, why we train and why this thread.
 
Sep 23, 2010
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coapman said:
Rowers have no difficulty making maximal use of their weaker arms and stronger legs.
Yes, because they don't use them at the same time. When the legs are working the arms are (or should be) straight. When the arms (and back) are working the legs are (or should be) straight. The only part of the arm muscles that should be contracting when the legs are contracting is the fingers to grasp the oar. I don't think anyone would suggest the fingers generate any power (or, maybe someone would, it is the internet afterall) even though they are necessary to transmit the power generated by the legs, arms, etc.
 
FrankDay said:
Another effort to "improve the bicycle" which will, most likely, fail. This product is trying to do what Rotor cranks does just in a different way. If anyone thinks this product might really work they don't understand how muscles work. If there will be a benefit it will be small. The best way to get better is to improve the cyclist! Hence, why we train and why this thread.
Actually he is not trying to anything at all like Rotor. Rotor cranks stay at crank length the entire cycle. As all cranks do. These pedals are trying to keep hip angle open more at the top of the cycle.
 
Sep 23, 2010
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veganrob said:
Actually he is not trying to anything at all like Rotor. Rotor cranks stay at crank length the entire cycle. As all cranks do. These pedals are trying to keep hip angle open more at the top of the cycle.
The hip angle is the same (or minimally different) at the top of the cycle. It is probably narrowing the hip angle at TDC because TDC is now moved forward 30 mm so the lower leg will be closer to vertical at TDC. What they are trying to do is to make the crank longer on the downstroke for more leverage. Both Rotor and these cranks are trying to maximize the work done on the downstroke and minimize the "losses" on the upstroke. Rotor does it my slowing the pedal speed on the downstroke and increasing it on the upstroke. This adapter does it by lengthening the crank on the downstroke (for more leverage/torque) and shortening it on the upstroke. Neither Rotor or this crank adapter cares what is going on the top or bottom.

Didn't you find it just a bit funny that the reviewer reported this crank adapter slowed him down considerably? Of course, that could, perhaps, be explained by the fact this crank adapter really screws up the bike fit. Why don't you get a pair and report back to everyone?
 
FrankDay said:
The hip angle is the same (or minimally different) at the top of the cycle. It is probably narrowing the hip angle at TDC because TDC is now moved forward 30 mm so the lower leg will be closer to vertical at TDC. What they are trying to do is to make the crank longer on the downstroke for more leverage. Both Rotor and these cranks are trying to maximize the work done on the downstroke and minimize the "losses" on the upstroke. Rotor does it my slowing the pedal speed on the downstroke and increasing it on the upstroke. This adapter does it by lengthening the crank on the downstroke (for more leverage/torque) and shortening it on the upstroke. Neither Rotor or this crank adapter cares what is going on the top or bottom.

Didn't you find it just a bit funny that the reviewer reported this crank adapter slowed him down considerably? Of course, that could, perhaps, be explained by the fact this crank adapter really screws up the bike fit. Why don't you get a pair and report back to everyone?
Yes, it is very odd that he was slower. lol. I think his idea is not coming out like he originally thought it would. If that makes any sense.
No, I won't be getting a pair thanks. I am still waiting for you to send me a set of PC's to try for whatever time period you think I should use them. Then I can reprt back with some real results.:) I like that you do think outside the box even though I am critical on some of your "anecdotal evidence". I too like to think of better ways to do things.
PM me for my adress and whatever you need. Thanks
 
Sep 23, 2010
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veganrob said:
Yes, it is very odd that he was slower. lol. I think his idea is not coming out like he originally thought it would. If that makes any sense.
No, I won't be getting a pair thanks. I am still waiting for you to send me a set of PC's to try for whatever time period you think I should use them. Then I can reprt back with some real results.:) I like that you do think outside the box even though I am critical on some of your "anecdotal evidence". I too like to think of better ways to do things.
PM me for my adress and whatever you need. Thanks
I did get a screen shot of their video showing how these pedals change the pedal circle.

Notice that the new TDC is substantially forward of the old one (50 mm or so if the pedal is moved forward 30 mm or so at 3 o'clock) and only a little bit (5mm?) below the old one. I think it quite likely the rider ends up substantially more cramped in the hip angle at TDC (especially when we consider the seat must be lowered also) with this set up.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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FrankDay said:
Yes, because they don't use them at the same time.
You appear to be saying, when the legs are working the arms are idling and when the arms are working the legs are idling ?
 
Sep 23, 2010
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coapman said:
You appear to be saying, when the legs are working the arms are idling and when the arms are working the legs are idling ?
Yep. That is what they aim for. Watch any good oarsman. the arms are straight until the legs are almost straight then the back and arms work to complete the stroke. The back, arms, and legs recover together.

It helps to have rowed crew in college to understand this stuff than, as I suppose you are, guessing at what is happening.
 
Apr 21, 2009
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Good gosh, this thread is still going. Still see the main protagonists are someone who is going off what he sees in a video from the 50s, which is the equivalent of reading tea leaves, and someone trying to create something out of nothing. 15 years of not being able to prove that changing pedalling makes meaningful difference in performance and decrying the best way to measure that change having occurred.

Well done chaps.
 
Jun 1, 2014
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CoachFergie said:
Good gosh, this thread is still going. Still see the main protagonists are someone who is going off what he sees in a video from the 50s, which is the equivalent of reading tea leaves, and someone trying to create something out of nothing. 15 years of not being able to prove that changing pedalling makes meaningful difference in performance and decrying the best way to measure that change having occurred.

Well done chaps.
We need a like button here.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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FrankDay said:
Yep. That is what they aim for. Watch any good oarsman. the arms are straight until the legs are almost straight then the back and arms work to complete the stroke. The back, arms, and legs recover together.

It helps to have rowed crew in college to understand this stuff than, as I suppose you are, guessing at what is happening.
Just because the arms are straight, it does not mean they are not working. My arms are straight throughout and alternately they are supplying the maximal resistance I require for my maximal torque through TDC. The arm of a man carrying a bucket of water is straight, you don't believe that arm is working?
 
Sep 23, 2010
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coapman said:
Just because the arms are straight, it does not mean they are not working. My arms are straight throughout and alternately they are supplying the maximal resistance I require for my maximal torque through TDC. The arm of a man carrying a bucket of water is straight, you don't believe that arm is working?
A straight arm can transmit a force along the line of the arm without the muscles contracting a bit. In rowing the arm muscles are resting while the leg muscles are contracting, providing power. The power is transmitted to the arms by the bracing of the back and shoulders, which muscles are contracting but should not be shortening or lengthening.

However, when cycling the counter torque you think your arms are providing to help you drive the pedal over the top (as I think I understand what you are trying to do) can be just as well provided by the bu## against the saddle. So, it has yet to be demonstrated that your arms are doing anything other than wasting energy.
 
Jun 1, 2014
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FrankDay said:
A straight arm can transmit a force along the line of the arm without the muscles contracting a bit. In rowing the arm muscles are resting while the leg muscles are contracting, providing power. The power is transmitted to the arms by the bracing of the back and shoulders, which muscles are contracting but should not be shortening or lengthening.
As mentioned by people before, your black and white ideas of which muscles are in use is significantly flawed. Even if you could totally relax your arm muscles, when do they need to start contracting and shortening? What is the transition period like, what sort of overlap exists? Why does it matter if the back/shoulders are shortening or lengthening while they are bracing the oars? They would still be using energy in that situation.
 
Except in specific short duration situations, does anyone actually attempt to produce 'maximum torque' (or maximum power) on the cranks? As in a 'full all-out effort'.

I think doing that would cause fast muscle exhaustion, and very uneven power distribution to the cranks.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA
 
Apr 21, 2009
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JayKosta said:
Except in specific short duration situations, does anyone actually attempt to produce 'maximum torque' (or maximum power) on the cranks? As in a 'full all-out effort'.

I think doing that would cause fast muscle exhaustion, and very uneven power distribution to the cranks.
That is the whole point. It's not about producing more power it is about sustaining a submaximal level of power for the duration (hour record) or the distance on the event (200m flying tt or a 180km road race).
 
Mar 10, 2009
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JayKosta said:
Except in specific short duration situations, does anyone actually attempt to produce 'maximum torque' (or maximum power) on the cranks? As in a 'full all-out effort'.

I think doing that would cause fast muscle exhaustion, and very uneven power distribution to the cranks.

Jay Kosta
Endwell NY USA
Two of the many disadvantages of natural pedalling styles, your thigh muscles have to supply all the force and it has to be done in a restricted 60 deg. sector. With the correct TT technique you have 150 deg. in which this max force can be applied and the workload on your thighs is reduced by half, all of which leads to increased sustainable smooth power application.
 
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