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standing to pedal

Old 09-17-20, 01:52 PM
  #1  
deacon mark
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standing to pedal

So I want to ask the group about how long you can stand and continuously pedal? I guess another way to look at it is something liking climbing but this is not climbing question. For me to stand and pedal such as a long gradual rise of the road, which is the best conditions for out of the saddle to me, I can pedal about 30-40 reps then I get pretty out of sync. I can simply then stand a bit and coast and start back but to continuously pedal out of the saddle seems like there is a limit. I wonder if anyone else has any thoughts or how they ride.

The reason is that it seems to me that as I age I find standing to pedal harder to stay smooth and balanced for lengths of time. I don't watch much cycling but I have seen situation where riders are out of the saddle for a length of time. For me I could not imagine continuous pedaling for say even 1/2 mile.

Last edited by deacon mark; 09-17-20 at 05:30 PM.
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Old 09-17-20, 02:01 PM
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For me, at 62 getting old and fat, I have three modes of standing.
1 - Attacking a short hill or sprinting, I can stand and hammer for maybe 30-40 seconds, after which I may as well sit down cause I need to catch my breath anyway.
2 - Standing on long climbs, if I manage my effort it is pretty easy to stand for two to three minutes at a time. Usually I sit back down once my quads start to burn
3 - The busted seatpost - happened once and I was able to ride home standing the whole way, about 15km. Like you, I was unable to keep a steady cadence.
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Old 09-17-20, 02:05 PM
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I don't know what my limit is, but I did a training session yesterday that included a 4 minute standing interval. At 67 rpm average, that works out to 268 reps.
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Old 09-17-20, 02:10 PM
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I have a local hill that typically takes me 5 minutes to do and I will alternate sitting and standing intervals. So, 5 minutes?
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Old 09-17-20, 02:24 PM
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I have done a lot less standing ever since I snapped a Sugino Mighty Compe crank across the pedal eye during an out-of-saddle climb.
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Old 09-17-20, 03:47 PM
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I probably should do it occasionally, but I don't stand. I'm usually going up the hills too fast to stand even if I wanted to try.

When we go up hills, if my son stands, I pretty much can be assured I'm gonna win. And I'm seated.
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Old 09-17-20, 04:06 PM
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I stand on hills and flats to use different muscles but not for very long. I rode 10 miles across our valley with a local pro racer and he stood the entire time. I was pushing pretty hard to keep him from getting too bored and he never sat down.
I climbed a 9 mile canyon with a friend and he stood the whole way except for maybe a minute here and there.
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Old 09-17-20, 05:33 PM
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Standing for 9 miles would be incredible for sure and I am runner with marathons under my belt and that would be nothing compared to standing 9 miles
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Old 09-17-20, 06:02 PM
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https://www.elliptigo.com/products/elliptigo-11r/

Ever see one of these things?
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Old 09-17-20, 06:25 PM
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After building a new bike with different geometry, I'm able to stand longer. I have not measured but I'd guess it increased 50%.

On the new bike, the seat tube is more relaxed; the seat is further back related to the pedals. I've replicated the reach with a shorter stem. So when standing, where seat location is irrelevant, the bars are closer to my body. I think my upper body is carrying more weight out of the saddle since the bars are closer, and I think that had made a difference.
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Old 09-17-20, 08:56 PM
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I can stand for a couple miles at a time. I use a low cadence, like 60, not a racer's cadence by any means! The way to get better at it is of course to practice. That said, I don't really ride out of the saddle much. I like to stand about 1 minute every 10, maybe only 30". Gives my butt a break and feels good, especially on long rides. Because my standing cadence is so low, I usually shift up a ring if climbing, or several cogs on the flat. I watched a bunch of Pantani videos, trying to figure out the trick to it. It seems that his technique was to relax the ankle as the pedal came up and then pull it across the top with his knee, then keep the toe pointed somewhat all the way around. That got rid of the dead spot in my standing stroke.
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Old 09-18-20, 09:41 AM
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100 pedal strokes about
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Old 09-18-20, 09:59 AM
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I still haven't mastered riding without hands in the standing position for more than a few seconds while pedaling, but other than that I stand up with my arms out when coming down hills to cool off, especially if I've just crested it. I'm over 70 and trying to put on 20 miles/day plus other exercises. I've been fit my entire life, my work has always required it of me from military to forest ranger to search and rescue. But I'm fully retired now and old habits like old men are hard to break...
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Old 09-18-20, 06:54 PM
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The way I prepared for my 2015, 2016 and 2017 Six Gap Century 103 miles with 11,000' living in SW FL where 100 miles has 80' was to ride 53/12 for 2 to 3 mile straights at 15mph to 18mph standing. Now at 70 and still recuperating from my April 27th crash, the PCa(prostate cancer), my bilateral orchiectomy plus drug effects I can only manage 1 mile but working at getting longer distances.
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Old 09-18-20, 06:57 PM
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[QUOTE=Bigbus;21700619]I still haven't mastered riding without hands in the standing position for more than a few seconds while pedaling, but other than that I stand up with my arms out when coming down hills to cool off, especially if I've just crested it. I'm over 70 and trying to put on 20 miles/day plus other exercises. I've been fit my entire life, my work has always required it of me from military to forest ranger to search and rescue. But I'm fully retired now and old habits like old men are hard to break...[/QUOT

I cannot ride no handed even sitting. I donít practice it and seems generally dangerous with my balance.
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Old 09-18-20, 11:30 PM
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On a good day when the legs and lungs are cooperating, up to a mile on a familiar gradual incline. Helps to have brifters so I can shift as needed without sitting and disrupting my momentum. Also helps to have more closely spaced gears to finesse the effort as the incline grade changes.

On my bikes with downtube or bar-end shifters, I'll sit for a moment to shift gears, then stand again.

Standing to pedal hasn't been any faster for me on most hills and sprints, but it helps to vary the muscle strain or relieve the sit bone pressure for a few moments. My heart rate jumps at least 10 bpm, despite zero advantage in speed, so it's less efficient over the long run. But I do it anyway, mostly as a challenge and to vary my leg conditioning. My legs are toothpicks so I need the strengthening work.

Creatine has been helpful to me in reducing the muscle burning from hard, continuous effort. Ditto, post-ride massage -- a percussion massager and rolling pin to work out my legs. I skipped that routine after a long ride Wednesday and my legs felt mushy during Friday's ride.
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Old 09-19-20, 07:09 AM
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Never timed how long I can stand and pedal. But I do ride off-road also, and when trail riding, seldom on the saddle. Usually either standing and pedaling or just standing. Off-road rides are usually an hour or longer (do take some breaks).
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Old 09-19-20, 07:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Bigbus View Post
I still haven't mastered riding without hands in the standing position for more than a few seconds while pedaling, ..
I don't think I've ever seen anyone do that.
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Old 09-19-20, 07:26 AM
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Originally Posted by freeranger View Post
Never timed how long I can stand and pedal. But I do ride off-road also, and when trail riding, seldom on the saddle. Usually either standing and pedaling or just standing. Off-road rides are usually an hour or longer (do take some breaks).
I've always found standing to climb is harder on a mountain bike than a road bike. I can do it a little better with the suspension locked out and a couple gears higher than normal.
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Old 09-19-20, 08:41 AM
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
I don't think I've ever seen anyone do that.
It's easier than you think, except for the pedaling part. Haven't had much luck with that yet. I put my left foot in the bottom position with my right up high, because that's most comfortable for me and then simply let go of the bars and spread your wings. You put more weight on the left (lower) foot and let the bike lean to compensate. I was able to do this with my MTB long before I mastered it on the road bike. Hell, it took me a while just to get comfortable riding in the seated position without hands on the road bike. It's nowhere near as forgiving as the wider tired and heavier MTB. There's a vid on Utube where a guy teaches wheelies. Once you learn the tricks, it's not all that hard, except on the bike when it comes down hard
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Old 09-19-20, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Bigbus View Post
I still haven't mastered riding without hands in the standing position for more than a few seconds while pedaling,
Why on earth would you want to master such a skill, unless you're a juggling cycling acrobat?
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Old 09-19-20, 01:24 PM
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Stand, to ride the bike on level ground... Why would you want to do that..? I do stand sometimes going up hills, but Holy Cow, the effort one must spend to do that is NOT worth the cost to me neither... I gear down, to go up hills not try and leave it in the highest gear I could make it in... Isn't that what gears are for...??? JMO
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Old 09-19-20, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Bigbus View Post
It's easier than you think, except for the pedaling part.
That's the thing I don't think I've ever seen, someone standing and pedaling with no hands.

I have seen people crash while riding with no hands on the bar including a friend who veered left in a parking lot and ran into a large concrete potted plant, buckling the top and down tubes on his hand made steel frame.
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Old 09-20-20, 01:32 AM
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If you're standing to climb, you're probably lacking low enough gears Either that or you're racing.

For me the only good reason to stand is to give the rear end some rest on my 100+ mile rides and I do that mostly on descents or flats while coasting.

Climbing standing for significant amounts of time would send my heart rate into unsustainable territory and I would pay for that later in the day. Much better to spin in a low enough gear, which is also much healthier for my knees.
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Old 09-20-20, 11:06 AM
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Originally Posted by joewein View Post
If you're standing to climb, you're probably lacking low enough gears Either that or you're racing.
I stand for long stretches when I'm with my riding buddies who don't climb quite as well... so I get a strength workout grinding in a bigger gear while maintaining a slower speed to match their sit and spin aerobic workout speed.

I also stand frequently just to change positions and break things up during really long climbs... which is about all I do... well, the same climb over and over.
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