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Old 05-16-13, 09:10 PM   #1
KL66
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seat position

I am in my third year of road biking as an alternative workout. This year I conquered my fear of clips and really enjoy them and feel dumb that I waited so long. My question is, I know the height of the seat has an affect on how much you push vs. pull. As a new clip user I need to strengthen the muscles to pull and learn to consistently pull, I'm use to pushing so much, especially up hill, so I try to think about pulling. Any advise would be appreciated. Thanks
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Old 05-16-13, 09:37 PM   #2
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Don't worry about it, your body will naturally do what is appropriate. ATMO
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Old 05-16-13, 09:50 PM   #3
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Thanks, but I want to maximize my speed, since I have so little of it. My curiosity surrounded If a higher seat was better for speed, because I seem to maximize my pull while going fast.
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Old 05-16-13, 10:20 PM   #4
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This will probably strike you as boring, but if you have flat terrain for a good 10-15 miles, then start doing one-legged spins. Just unclip from one pedal, let your leg hang in back of the pedal and spin in a circle with the other leg. When you start to get clicking between 11 and 1, you are fatigued. Switch legs and repeat. If you can get to 50-60 spins per leg you are getting it. This drill will teach you, and your muscles, what is required to generate maximum power throughout the 360 stroke. I have been doing them for about 6 months while going through physical therapy and I have learned an incredible awareness of how power is developed that I never had before. In essence, you are waking up the muscles that have never been properly used and engaging them in generating power. What a concept. Should have done this a long time ago.
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Old 05-16-13, 11:53 PM   #5
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Instead of pushing down on the legs-Start pulling up instead. Initially you won't be able to do it for long and will never be happy doing it all the time but once it gets comfortable for a couple of minutes at a time-Concentrate on pushing down and just extending the power stroke.

Gradually that power stroke will become near full circle but you still have to think about doing it. It is not natural and I doubt it will be the way you pedal all the time but by using the upstroke aswell as down you will find the muscles do get a rest.

The way I learnt was at the gym in spinning classes and I still can't work out why so much emphasis is put on it unless it is to give the normal cycling muscles a rest. But as a way of training the muscles to give a longer power stroke it does work.
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Old 05-17-13, 06:14 AM   #6
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I'm about to find out for myself. A friend recently transitioned from SPD road pedals to Speedplays and gave me his SPDs. My shoes should be in early next week and I already have new cleats, so we'll soon see. At least I don't have to worry about joining Club Tombay (anymore).
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Old 05-17-13, 06:41 AM   #7
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Think circles. Your feet will figure out what to do.

re: saddle height, I start with a height that leaves a slight bend in my knees at the bottom of the pedal stroke and make slight adjustments, raising the saddle a tiny bit and riding. When I get to the point that I'm beginning to rock a little, side to side, I go back down a bit.

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Old 05-17-13, 07:03 AM   #8
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One other thing that helps is thinking of scrapping the mud off your shoe, or at least it does for me.
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Old 05-17-13, 07:13 AM   #9
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I don't see that seat height and clipless pedals are related issues. Your seat should be at the right height regardless of what kinds of pedals you're using. The clips might add height to your foot, I suppose.

Usually, if a seat is adjusted improperly, it's because it's too low. The place to start is to adjust the height so that your heel barely reaches it with your knee locked. That way, when you add the extra length of your foot, your knee will be slightly bent at the end of the stroke. Start at that point, and ride it around a bit and adjust until it feels right. Like BluesDawg said ... adjust it high enough to be just short of making your hips rock side to side.
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Old 05-17-13, 08:05 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KL66 View Post
I am in my third year of road biking as an alternative workout. This year I conquered my fear of clips and really enjoy them and feel dumb that I waited so long. My question is, I know the height of the seat has an affect on how much you push vs. pull. As a new clip user I need to strengthen the muscles to pull and learn to consistently pull, I'm use to pushing so much, especially up hill, so I try to think about pulling. Any advise would be appreciated. Thanks
Maybe would be good idea to start with somewhere that is comfortable, use a permanent marker to put a scale on the side of your post, and then go up or down an 1/8 inch at week at a time and keep a log of how goes it. Within a reasonable while you should have a good feel for your answer.

Or we can write you a tome on the right and obvious answer?
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Old 05-17-13, 09:42 AM   #11
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The one thing that's done the most for me in smoothing out and "circularizing" my pedaling is intense cadence drills.
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Old 05-18-13, 05:43 AM   #12
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The one thing that's done the most for me in smoothing out and "circularizing" my pedaling is intense cadence drills.
Rollers.
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