just another gosling
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Everett, WA
Bikes: CoMo Speedster 2003, Trek 5200, CAAD 9, Fred 2004
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Originally Posted by pedromj
I have a new question about cadence:
Most of the times I can keep a cadence of 100 rpm but I have noticed that when I am at low speeds (mainly with the small chainring) it is difficult for me to spin faster than 85 rpm but for high speeds (mainly with the big chainring) I surprise myself spinning at 115 rpm or even more.
If I try to spin at 100 rpm with a very low gear in a flat road I feel like there is nothing to push and I loose round pedaling but with the same gear in an uphill I can maintain such 100 rpm. I think something similar happens to the situation I describe above. What do you think?
I know just what you mean. It's because of a slight unevenness in your pedal stroke. In a very low gear on a flat road, any slight overpressure at any point in the pedal stroke will accelerate the bike and then you'll have a slack chain in another part of the stroke. Whereas when you are pedaling against higher resistance, slight mistakes in smooth pedaling are not evident. At higher speeds, the momentum of the bike and rider also come into play. As momentum increases there is also less slowing between pedal pulses, so the lack of round pedaling may even become a non-issue.
I do pedaling drills in the fall and early winter on my rollers where I pedal very fast in a low gear, thus against little resistance and with little pedal pressure, at cadences up to 120. Many people do this at even higher cadences. This helps smooth up my pedaling and is a good recovery activity after a hard ride.