What's Cool In Road Cycling

Toolbox: Gears are Just the Beginning

Imagine yourself in the Alps or maybe the Rockies, long before the word derailleur had been invented, struggling on a single fixed gear. Now consider the array of equipment choices we have today, praise the innovators, and read more about how we can make the pain more tolerable by better understanding how to use the tools.

Cadence: Effect on Subsequent Max Effort?

We're often taught to spin our legs during the early parts of the race in order to "save" our legs for the hard efforts near the end. However, this spinning at easier wattages often comes at a higher energy cost than at a lower cadence. So is it indeed the best option prior to attacking the final crunch point of the race?

Power Play: Analyzing Gearing Strategies

Toolbox readers will know that one of our recurring themes has been about pedaling dynamics and figuring out just what cadence is optimal for particular applications. Never one to leave well enough alone, we take a first-hand look at different gearing and cadences for a short interval effort and what the power data teaches us…

Optimal Cadence: Reader Suggestions

Our running series examining optimal cadence and whether a higher cadence at any power output is necessarily better has provoked a lot of comments. The scientific jury is still out on whether higher cadences are a panacea for all cycling ills. However, the mailbox has continued to flood with reader suggestions for workouts aimed at elevating preferred cadence…

Optimal Cadence Revisited

Thanks to Lance, we have seen a “revolution” in prevailing thought about optimal cadence in cycling time trials from a rouleur rolling big gears to spinning high cadences. But should we all aim to adopt the same high rpm TT style? What does science say about cadence, efficiency, and performance?