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-   -   Which climbing technique is best overall? (https://www.bikeforums.net/33-road-bike-racing/33031-climbing-technique-best-overall.html)

Richard Cranium 07-25-03 06:48 AM

Which climbing technique is best overall?
 
OK, this is another thread about the "best" way to climb hills or mountains. It is impossible to describe all the different scenarios and type and sizes of riders. What I'm interested in, is hearing what you "think" is the best way to climb over all long period or series of climbs on a long race.

Everyone pretty much knows that climbers will stand or sit during their climbing depending on steepness, length, current speed etc.. or road conditions. Everyone pretty much knows that depending on what you have been doing before the climb, or how rested you are determines how much you stand or how much to remain seated.

The question is: From the perspective of bio-mechanical efficiency which method most successfully propels the rider forward?

In other words, which method produces the most "work" with the least cost to the rider?

Richard Cranium 07-25-03 06:56 AM

Hey don't forget - efficiency, is what we're talking about........

nathank 07-25-03 07:07 AM

i voted seated as i NOW do almost all my climbing seated most of the time, ALTHOUGH standing every so often to change up and refresh/stretch is good. and there are times when standing is more appropriate (like cresting the hill to "sprint")

but my climbing has really improved and a lot is from shifting down and staying in the saddle and spinning -- a lot is also b/c this is now my 3rd summer in the Alps and i routinely ride 2000-6000meters of vertical (6,000-20,000ft) a week (over 65,000m vert in 2002 and on track for much more this year!)

in climbing the aero aspect is no usually important.

if you run out of gears on a steep climb then you have no choice but to stand. (but on my 9spd MTB i have a 22 x 34 so never run out of gears)

pgreene 07-25-03 07:13 AM

i don't think anyone can say one method is more biomechanically efficient, because it depends largely on things like muscle mass, cadence, weight, etc. for a tiny little fella like heras, standing and spinning seems to work well--he loads up his cardio system from a high cadence and gets more oomph per pedal stroke by standing. for a bigger guy like jan, well, i don't know that i've ever seen him really standing to climb.

i think the combo works best, if for no other reason than it uses different muscle groups. i'll resist the temptation to say "the best climbers in the world, lance included, seem to do an awful lot of standing" and instead say whatever works best for you is what's best for you.

bac 07-25-03 07:24 AM


Originally posted by Richard Cranium
The question is: From the perspective of bio-mechanical efficiency which method most successfully propels the rider forward?

In other words, which method produces the most "work" with the least cost to the rider?

If efficiency is your sole criteria - sitting is without question the winner. However, the rub is that you generally must switch up in order to stretch out and use some other muscles. Therefore, both sitting and standing will get you up the hill more quickly - but not more efficiently.


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