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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

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Old 05-24-14, 08:26 PM   #26
rebel1916
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Only with the ladies...
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Old 05-24-14, 10:36 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Bug Shield View Post
A better question is, What are my strengths relative to the peloton and how do I capitalize on them? ;-)
Yes, perfect.

I'm short (5'2"), I don't feel like it's a disadvantage on the road. Sometimes its a disadvantage shopping, because some frames I'm interested in don't come in my size. There's enough choice, though. Other people may feel it's a disadvantage to THEM, since my draft is rather small.
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Old 05-25-14, 04:20 AM   #28
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People with shorter legs have a mechanical disadvantage compared to people with longer legs. This may or may not correlate with overall height, as some people have short torso with long legs, etc.
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Old 05-25-14, 07:30 AM   #29
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People with shorter legs have a mechanical disadvantage compared to people with longer legs. This may or may not correlate with overall height, as some people have short torso with long legs, etc.
While the longer cranks have more leverage on the chainrings it comes at the expense of pedaling larger circles (slower rpm) and yields no advantage that I am aware of. I'd argue that, on a geared bike, it's a wash.

I think if there were a related advantage there it would related to a rev-limiter in the brain.
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Old 05-25-14, 07:46 AM   #30
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Gingers definitely have an advantage. Their lack of a soul gives them a high power to weight ratio; this is why Jan Ulrich could climb so well despite being a tall guy.
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Old 05-25-14, 08:14 AM   #31
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Yes
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Old 05-25-14, 10:36 AM   #32
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Gingers definitely have an advantage. Their lack of a soul gives them a high power to weight ratio; this is why Jan Ulrich could climb so well despite being a tall guy.
ROFL!

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Old 05-25-14, 10:38 AM   #33
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People with shorter legs have a mechanical disadvantage compared to people with longer legs. This may or may not correlate with overall height, as some people have short torso with long legs, etc.
Assuming the bike fits....How does a shorter leg give you a mechanical disadvantage?
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Old 05-25-14, 11:27 AM   #34
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i wish i were tall. I'm relieved i am not short.
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Old 05-25-14, 12:11 PM   #35
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i wish i were skinny. I'm relieved i am not fat.
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Old 05-25-14, 12:28 PM   #36
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i wish i were skinny. I'm relieved i am not fat.
you've even got the chaotic caPItalisation Right. nice Touch.
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Old 05-25-14, 12:57 PM   #37
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Height is a significant factor in many sports but I was wondering if cycling is one of them.

Are there any studies and/or has it been proven that short cyclists (under 5'7) are at a disadvantage compared to tall cyclists?

It seems as if the lighter and stronger you are - the better. So, if that's true height shouldn't matter - but what do I know.

Thoughts?
They just need to spin their wee little legs and their wee little bikes with the type of height-envy-driven gusto that the "little people" are known for, and they'll be fine.
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Old 05-25-14, 12:58 PM   #38
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I normally don't respond to this kind of stuff but dude you must have 2 much time on your hands to find stuff like this and keep it in your photobucket.
gc3.....He must be new to the internet
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Old 05-25-14, 01:01 PM   #39
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Assuming the bike fits....How does a shorter leg give you a mechanical disadvantage?
Less leverage for your muscles, smaller muscles to do the same work, and a smaller pedal stroke.
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Old 05-25-14, 01:54 PM   #40
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gc3.....He must be new to the internet
I figured he was just a "shorter gentleman" and didn't want to add insult to injury...
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Old 05-25-14, 02:11 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by Silvercivic27 View Post
People with shorter legs have a mechanical disadvantage compared to people with longer legs.
Cycling being an aerobic sport I don't believe this is true unless we're talking about the extremes. What I read on ST is that the aerobic system tends to scale with height. So bigger/taller riders have larger motors without a corresponding increase in frontal area (drag.) Obviously it depends on *what* sort of riding we're talking about. For climbing it's all about watts/kilogram.
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Old 05-25-14, 03:35 PM   #42
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There is a chart which I can't locate showing the height and weight of pro cyclists. There are exceptions like Cadel Evans and others but my recollection was that most were over about 6'. Larger riders would tend to have larger cardiovascular systems and a higher absolute VO2Max. That won't help on climbs where power to weight is the critical factor but for general riding it's the Power to CdA ratio that is important so it depend on who can get into the most aerodynamic position so perhaps tall skinny riders with a smaller frontal area but still large heart and lungs have an advantage.
Poxpower posted thus:

"You can see a list of all the Tour de France winners here and if you click on their links they give you their height / weight:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...France_winners

Lance Armstrong was/is 5'9.5 and 165 pounds, which gives him a ratio of 2.37
Cadel Evans: 5'9, 150 , 2.17
Alberto Contador: 5'9.5, 140, 2
Carlos Sastre: 5'8, 130, 1,9
Oscar Pereiro: 5'10, 150, 2.14
Marco Pantani: 5'8, 130, 1,9"

My recollection from many years ago 5'9" @ 143 lbs was the over all average but then
my memory never was any good.
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Old 05-25-14, 03:57 PM   #43
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if you're short, just grow a beard. you'll be fine.
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Old 05-25-14, 04:02 PM   #44
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I'm around 6'2 and I noticed the power I put out leaves a lot of the shorter riders in the dust. Just my observation.
I find the same, but then when the road turns upwards the short guys who weigh half what I do disappear and I never see them again.
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Old 05-25-14, 04:08 PM   #45
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Fat-free weight scales roughly as height squared. VO2max scales slower than that, and CdA scales slower than VO2max.

So, short and skinny guys have advantage in climbing and tall guys have advantage on flats.

Minimum bike weight partially compensates for the advantage that short guys have in climbing, but does not cancel it completely.

An event like TdF is going to have a mix of stages, some more advantageous to short riders, others more advantageous to tall riders. Overall it ends up pretty balanced.

If you look at an event that is not so balanced, you'll see the height distribution skewed to one end. At the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympics, 5 out 6 medalists in men's individual time trial were taller than 6'.

It's not a huge advantage at either end, so a short guy with a peculiar body shape can still win time trials, and a tall guy can be good at climbing. All else equal, if you compare an average skinny 5'5" guy with an average equally skinny 6'3" guy, both riding 15 lb bikes, the short guy will be 7% faster uphill and the tall guy will be 3% faster in a flat time trial.
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Old 05-25-14, 04:28 PM   #46
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All else equal, if you compare an average skinny 5'5" guy with an average equally skinny 6'3" guy
How do you measure "equally" skinny?
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Old 05-25-14, 04:38 PM   #47
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How do you measure "equally" skinny?
Equal BMI and equal body fat percentage. So, let's say, 5'5" / 132 lbs and 6'3" / 175 lbs.
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Old 05-25-14, 04:52 PM   #48
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I'm around 6'2 and I noticed the power I put out leaves a lot of the shorter riders in the dust. Just my observation.
The school playground is not the best test area to dust short riders. Just sayin' yo.
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Old 05-25-14, 04:58 PM   #49
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Equal BMI and equal body fat percentage. So, let's say, 5'5" / 132 lbs and 6'3" / 175 lbs.
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Old 05-26-14, 07:44 AM   #50
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Bikes with 700c wheels look silly in sizes that fit people 6'4" and above. This is why tall people are discouraged from cycling.
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