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Any old guys ride rollers?

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Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

Any old guys ride rollers?

Old 11-15-22, 05:25 PM
  #26  
TiHabanero
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Put the rollers away last fall after my son bought a Wahoo Kickr trainer for me so he and I can do virtual rides together. Haven't bothered with the Zwift or other apps cause I don't like subscription services, but spinning vinyl or a CD and using the watt and rpm function on the Wahoo app makes for a fine workout.

FWIW rollers most certainly helped train my legs into an rpm machine, which in turn requires a smooth pedal stroke. RPM's are needed to keep the drums turning and due to the design of rollers a smooth pedal stroke makes for a really unique experience. Rode those cheap Giant rollers for over 30 years and only one band had to be replaced. They still spin like new and the Minoura replacement band that is about 12 years old is still working just fine.
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Old 11-15-22, 06:16 PM
  #27  
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Old man on rollers:



Smoother helps a lot on seated climbs. Those biased studies of pros hammering were all done on flat TTs. Yep, rollers won't help you hammer, I know a great shock, but there it is. Want to see how smooth you are? Sit down on your trainer, get in a very low gear, and pedal at 115-120 rpm for 20'. Nothing to it, right? Actually, I could do that in my 60s, but now I'm down to 105-110 for long periods. Smooth is all about only putting force on the pedals that's tangential to the pedal circle, i.e. no wasted effort, no bouncing.

These are ancient Bike Nashbar rollers with ABS drums. The drums used to be ribbed, but I've long since polished all that off. The hand lamp at the rear is a heat lamp to preheat the fluid resistance unit. It gets cold out on our shop in winter. The resistance unit isn't very strong, only gets up to maybe 500w, but plenty for me.

The post on my right is there, well, because I'm old and want things a bit easier. Various interval workouts are tacked to it. I want to stop, I just lean to my right and stop. I also get dressed in the morning while standing, pants, socks, and shoes. Every little bit helps. Falling is not good.

Oh - the door behind me is for our resident hobbits.
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Old 11-16-22, 08:19 AM
  #28  
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I once overheard a very smart teammate of mine enthusiastically complimenting a guy on another team on his pedaling smoothness during a crit race. After the race, I asked him what that was about. He said that he figured the guy would probably try to pedal even more smoothly and thus waste additional energy.

Spinning at high speed downhill on a track bike has nothing to do with conventional pedaling technique and certainly nothing to do with theoretical roller-acquired smoothness. Keeping up with other guys who were on road bikes, my maximum rpm on a downhill per a cadence meter was around 225. The only way you can pedal that fast is to forget about "pedaling circles" and instead pretend that your feet are shuttling back and forth on a flat plane. Takes a certain amount of nerve, too.
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Old 11-16-22, 11:49 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Trakhak View Post
I once overheard a very smart teammate of mine enthusiastically complimenting a guy on another team on his pedaling smoothness during a crit race. After the race, I asked him what that was about. He said that he figured the guy would probably try to pedal even more smoothly and thus waste additional energy.

Spinning at high speed downhill on a track bike has nothing to do with conventional pedaling technique and certainly nothing to do with theoretical roller-acquired smoothness. Keeping up with other guys who were on road bikes, my maximum rpm on a downhill per a cadence meter was around 225. The only way you can pedal that fast is to forget about "pedaling circles" and instead pretend that your feet are shuttling back and forth on a flat plane. Takes a certain amount of nerve, too.
As I've said before, on the flat one's crank inertial load is high and one might be able to pedal more efficiently hammering the downstroke. Long climbs are another story, and average speeds on long hilly rides are determined by climbing speed, not speed on the flat.

Descending fixed at high rpm is a good way to get TKRs. You really want to use your front brake (better have one) and pedal against slight resistance. Or so said The Octopus, who rode all 4 routes on Ventoux fixed in 24 hours. That back and forth sensation is very like pedaling circles at high rpm.

I'd sometimes hit 150 and could hold 135 on the flat, going out with geared bikes on a SS. That was about 25 mph with me back in the paceline in my early 60s. With SS, I preferred to climb in the saddle up to about 15%, when I couldn't turn the cranks seated anymore. I had a spin bike instructor, a Cat 1 trackie, who could hit 200, though of course spin bikes are FG too.

Both high and low rpm on a freewheel bike is a very different sensation as the chain doesn't make your feet go 'round - plus one gets to coast! We all get better at the thing we do the most.

I've found one-legged pedaling on the rollers definitely helps my climbing endurance. Of course it has to be done on a freewheel bike or there's no benefit. I quit the interval when I can't keep a tight chain. I found OLP was easier outdoors on the flat or a slight climb with some bike momentum - higher inertial load - but easier isn't the point. I push forward at the top, pull back at the bottom, and somehow drag my foot up the backstroke.
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Old 11-19-22, 05:57 PM
  #30  
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I use rollers for warmup and cooldown at the track. I think most trackies can ride rollers. My first coach, who was from Belarus and coached the national team loved rollers. He showed me pics of two person rollers. Now that is what I am talking about. Get on a double wide set of rollers (common drums) and ride together.
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Old 12-04-22, 07:44 PM
  #31  
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Sure, yes. I've got a smart trainer that I use more, but sometimes I just spin on rollers while watching a movie. Which I probably should be doing right now.. but...
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Old 12-04-22, 08:30 PM
  #32  
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been riding them about every day for the last 2 weeks and it came back pretty fast. just need to lose the gut but spring.
https://photos.app.goo.gl/MaoabD1KiBHFDXCM9
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Old 12-04-22, 10:18 PM
  #33  
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Still riding my Kreitlers several times a week in the winter when the temp dips below 35 or the roads are snow/ice covered.

A couple of years ago a built a freemotion cradle for the Kreitlers and then I installed an angle iron bar in front of the rear roller with 10 neodymium magnets. Makes for great adjustable resistance.
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Old 12-05-22, 05:45 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by jadmt View Post
been riding them about every day for the last 2 weeks and it came back pretty fast. just need to lose the gut but spring.
https://photos.app.goo.gl/MaoabD1KiBHFDXCM9
I’ve read several times that it’s goes better to not look at the front wheel while under way. Focus 10 to 12 feet ahead of the wheel. I started out focusing on a spot about 4’ up the opposite wall. It does help balance and smoothness. I can now look out the windows and even off to the right side to see the wall clock.

But then, given that I even own an analogy wall clock says something ancient about me.

BTW: equally ancient 4” aluminum Kreitler rollers. Original bearings still smooth and quiet. Nice kit. Made a magnet bar for increased resistance but didn’t really need it. Took it off and set in a corner.

Last edited by Prowler; 12-05-22 at 05:51 AM. Reason: add info in BTW
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Old 12-05-22, 08:09 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by gkamieneski View Post
Still riding my Kreitlers several times a week in the winter when the temp dips below 35 or the roads are snow/ice covered.

A couple of years ago a built a freemotion cradle for the Kreitlers and then I installed an angle iron bar in front of the rear roller with 10 neodymium magnets. Makes for great adjustable resistance.
do you have a photo? I have a killer head wind set up but need to order another belt. I recall it was pretty loud so quieter would be nice.
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Old 12-05-22, 08:42 AM
  #36  
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Jadmt, I cannot tell from your photo whether or not you have the alloy rollers? The resistance from neodymium magnets only works with the alloys.
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Old 12-05-22, 08:51 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by gkamieneski View Post
Jadmt, I cannot tell from your photo whether or not you have the alloy rollers? The resistance from neodymium magnets only works with the alloys.
thanks, I don't these are the plastic material well not plastic but the name slips my mind at the moment
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Old 12-05-22, 08:54 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by jadmt View Post
thanks, I don't these are the plastic material well not plastic but the name slips my mind at the moment
You can still build a freemotion chassis, but the rare earth magnets will do you no good as far as reisstance. By the way, I have replaced the sealed bearing cartridges on the Killer Headwind fan. If yours is extra noisy, you may want to consider new bearings.
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Old 12-08-22, 06:10 AM
  #39  
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Got given a set of rollers about 4 years ago and thought, I'm a well trained cyclist, I race, how hard could it be..... now I know. still cant ride them!!!!
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Old 12-08-22, 07:27 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by inaminit View Post
Got given a set of rollers about 4 years ago and thought, I'm a well trained cyclist, I race, how hard could it be..... now I know. still cant ride them!!!!
give it another try. use a chair to get started. put a chair on both sides of the rollers.
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Old 12-08-22, 12:38 PM
  #41  
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May I ask, do the conical rollers as on a TacX Galaxia make a worthy difference? Case in point, Iím a near beginner. Iíve ridden straight rollers once, successfully, many moons ago.

thanks kindly
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Old 12-08-22, 03:12 PM
  #42  
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Iíve been riding rollers for several years. I think I was 60 before I first started on them. There is a bit of a learning curve, but I find them fun when the weather is lousy. I would rather be outside on the fat bike.


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