Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Should I be standing up for hills? Why? Why not?

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Should I be standing up for hills? Why? Why not?

Old 06-20-14, 07:14 PM
  #1  
John Redcorn
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
John Redcorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Tulsa/B.A. OK
Posts: 170

Bikes: Crosstrail Disc

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Should I be standing up for hills? Why? Why not?

Was apprehensive of hills until 3 days ago. Newbie rider since Dec. Monday I'll be riding on constantly hilly mups and bikeways (marked routes through neighborhoods) 15 miles in to work and 15 miles back for the first time if the weather's good. (got showers and lockers at work, it owns)

I didn't think I was ready yet to do this due to large amounts of hills and I've only been riding flat trails along a river (15 miles easy there) but the last 3 days I've rode different sections of that hilly mup between work and home for 3x 10 mile partial-rides and it was no problem.

Those 3 rides I always shifted low and rode slow in the seat. Was in no hurry, don't ever need to be.

At the river where I had been riding a bunch since Dec, there's only one hill, a giant one (to me) 110 feet up in about a quarter mile and I always did that seated and waaay slow like 5-6 mph, 1st gear on mtb or hybrid.

My work is 200' higher than my house but so many hills up and down in between, and using a couple websites to analyze gps logs of those 3 partial-rides, I'll be climbing 1500-2000 vertical feet.

Should I be getting up more and shifting low less? Why? Not looking to be a racer or push myself hard real soon, any reason I should get up? I'm 37, 225 lbs and have always been naturally strong + naturally big in that my ideal not-fat weight has always been between 190-200. When I say naturally strong I mean even at times when I was never weightlifting I could deadlift way heavier stuff off the ground than anyone I knew, in HS beat most any of them at armwrestling but that didn't translate at all to endurance. When I was in awesome shape at 190, lifting and running a lot in my 20s, my very longest runs were like 3 or 4 miles. 2-2.5 was typical. I never felt like going further.

Last edited by John Redcorn; 06-21-14 at 11:18 AM.
John Redcorn is offline  
Old 06-20-14, 07:26 PM
  #2  
wphamilton
Senior Member
 
wphamilton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Alpharetta, GA
Posts: 15,280

Bikes: Nashbar Road

Mentioned: 71 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2932 Post(s)
Liked 332 Times in 222 Posts
There's no real reason to if you're just getting up the hill, except for working a different set of muscles. Gear down and spin, if that works for you and you're not racing or training, no reason to do it differently.

Everyone's different. I see little guys hopping up all the time, others just keep a steady pace. i'll get out of the saddle if I'm running out of gas and want to keep my speed up, but only briefly. There are some who go up the whole hill standing.
wphamilton is offline  
Old 06-20-14, 08:34 PM
  #3  
cplager
The Recumbent Quant
 
cplager's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Fairfield, CT
Posts: 3,080

Bikes: 2012 Cruzbike Sofrider, 2013 Cruzigami Mantis, 2016 Folding CruziTandem

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 23 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
To add to the above post:

Lighter guys get more benefit standing than heavier ones (although the exercising different muscles works for everyone).

The other reason to stand is because your gearing isn't low enough.

If you can sit and spin, then that's a fine technique.
cplager is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 12:27 AM
  #4  
ThermionicScott 
7-speed cultist
 
ThermionicScott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: CID
Posts: 20,114

Bikes: 1991 Bianchi Eros, 1964 Armstrong, 1988 Diamondback Ascent, 1988 Bianchi Premio, 1987 Bianchi Sport SX, 1980s Raleigh mixte (hers)

Mentioned: 88 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2797 Post(s)
Liked 748 Times in 525 Posts
Sometimes it's more fun to get out of the saddle and power up a hill, though.
__________________
Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
People in this forum are not typical.
RUSA #7498
ThermionicScott is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 02:54 AM
  #5  
MichaelW
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: England
Posts: 12,948
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 17 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Mix and match your styles. I stand to accelerate and sit to spin up.
these days I mostly sit.
MichaelW is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 03:56 AM
  #6  
imi
aka Timi
 
imi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Posts: 3,039

Bikes: Bianchi Lupo (touring) Bianchi Volpe (commuter), Miyata On Off Road Runner

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 76 Post(s)
Liked 56 Times in 43 Posts
Should I be standing up for hills? Why? Why not?

On long hills fully loaded touring I alternate standing with one gear higher, then shift down one gear and sit down.
Well until I'm so knackered I'm just on my granny gear standing or sitting, or stopping and hanging over my handlebars that is!
imi is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 04:45 AM
  #7  
krobinson103
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Incheon, South Korea
Posts: 2,836

Bikes: Nothing amazing... cheap old 21 speed mtb

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Depends on a fast 60 mile ride I'll power up the hill until I lose momentum then drop down and spin - often its faster with an easier gear and faster cadence anyway. If I'm riding 120 miles plus? Nope I spin my way up the hills because I know I'll need that energy later.
krobinson103 is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 07:33 AM
  #8  
AdrianFly
Twilight Requiem
 
AdrianFly's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Lonely Mountain
Posts: 461

Bikes: TrekFX

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Check out youtube of the Tour De France when they are in the mountains. Unless they are attacking or defending they are seated in the climb.
AdrianFly is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 08:01 AM
  #9  
Wanderer
aka Phil Jungels
 
Wanderer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Aurora, IL
Posts: 8,234

Bikes: 08 Specialized Crosstrail Sport, 05 Sirrus Comp

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 202 Post(s)
Liked 82 Times in 56 Posts
Standing also gives your butt a rest................
Wanderer is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 08:51 AM
  #10  
cyccommute 
Mad bike riding scientist
 
cyccommute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 23,993

Bikes: Some silver ones, a red one, an orange one and a few titanium ones

Mentioned: 121 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4103 Post(s)
Liked 1,596 Times in 976 Posts
Your weight doesn't make a difference at to whether you stand or not. If the hill is short and I've got a lot of speed, I'll attack the hill and stand. If the hill is a long one, I'll gear down but I also stand occasionally on long hills to work a different set of muscles. There's really no rule.
__________________
Stuart Black
Gold Fever Three days of dirt in Colorado
Pokin' around the Poconos A cold ride around Lake Erie
Dinosaurs in Colorado A mountain bike guide to the Purgatory Canyon dinosaur trackway
Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
cyccommute is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 08:55 AM
  #11  
fietsbob
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,599

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,315 Times in 826 Posts
a mix of both.. Oklahoma is not famous for its mountains .. where are you riding?
fietsbob is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 09:07 AM
  #12  
imi
aka Timi
 
imi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Posts: 3,039

Bikes: Bianchi Lupo (touring) Bianchi Volpe (commuter), Miyata On Off Road Runner

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 76 Post(s)
Liked 56 Times in 43 Posts
Originally Posted by AdrianFly View Post
Check out youtube of the Tour De France when they are in the mountains. Unless they are attacking or defending they are seated in the climb.
Isn't there one guy who always stands?
imi is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 09:15 AM
  #13  
Wanderer
aka Phil Jungels
 
Wanderer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: North Aurora, IL
Posts: 8,234

Bikes: 08 Specialized Crosstrail Sport, 05 Sirrus Comp

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 202 Post(s)
Liked 82 Times in 56 Posts
Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
a mix of both.. Oklahoma is not famous for its mountains .. where are you riding?
From someone on the left coast ---- actually, Oklahoma is quite hilly...............
Wanderer is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 09:23 AM
  #14  
Northwestrider
Senior Member
 
Northwestrider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Gig Harbor, WA
Posts: 2,466

Bikes: Surly Long Haul Trucker, Gary Fisher Hoo Koo E Koo, Dahon Mu P 24 , Ritchey Breakaway Cross, Rodriguez Tandem, Wheeler MTB

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 31 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Remain on your saddle if you can, it's easier, and you've a long day at work. On the way home hammer up the hills for fun if you like. Enjoy the ride
Northwestrider is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 10:13 AM
  #15  
John Redcorn
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
John Redcorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Tulsa/B.A. OK
Posts: 170

Bikes: Crosstrail Disc

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
a mix of both.. Oklahoma is not famous for its mountains .. where are you riding?
In south broken arrow and south tulsa, plenty of natural hills up and down along the path I'll be taking. 9 miles of my route will be along a turnpike trail. The turnpike alternates a few times between being elevated or sunk in relation to the regular streets, every mile there's an entrance/exit ramp and the trail follows those ramps, have to go up or down to cross those city streets rather than remaining elevated or sunk with the turnpike so 9 good man-made hills too.

Out in Southeast OK there are some big hills that some people call mountains.

Last edited by John Redcorn; 06-21-14 at 10:47 AM.
John Redcorn is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 10:32 AM
  #16  
wolfchild
Senior Member
 
wolfchild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mississauga/Toronto, Ontario canada
Posts: 6,620

Bikes: I have 3 singlespeed/fixed gear bikes

Mentioned: 22 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2092 Post(s)
Liked 902 Times in 454 Posts
There is no right or wrong. It all depends on what type of bike you're riding...I have no choice but to stand up because all my bikes are FG/SS...The only way for me to get up hills is to stand up on the pedals.
wolfchild is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 12:14 PM
  #17  
Dave Horne
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Vught, The Netherlands
Posts: 378

Bikes: Van Nicholas (Titanium) Deveron, Pinion 18 speed, Gates belt, disc brakes; Brompton - 5 speed Sturmey-Archer

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Hills? What are hills?
Dave Horne is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 01:06 PM
  #18  
fietsbob
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,599

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,315 Times in 826 Posts
The Maastricht 'Alps', dude .. try the hills in Liège, just across the border..

Here is a street that is entirely steps .. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Li%C3%A...h_Montagne.jpg

Last edited by fietsbob; 06-22-14 at 11:01 AM.
fietsbob is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 03:17 PM
  #19  
KevinF
Keep on climbing
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Marlborough, Massachusetts
Posts: 2,192

Bikes: 2004 Calfee Tetra Pro

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 24 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 1 Post
Originally Posted by imi View Post
Isn't there one guy who always stands?
Marco Pantani was famous for standing ALL THE TIME with his hands in the drops. Most everybody else will stand depending on the situation, but with their hands on the brake hoods.

As for the OP -- standing vs. sitting... there are pros and cons to doing both. The good climbers I know can do both equally well. Play around. Move around on the bike. Figure out what works for you. Stand through the curves, sit on the straights. Sit through the curves, stand on the straightaways.
KevinF is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 03:36 PM
  #20  
Nermal
Senior Member
 
Nermal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Farmington, NM
Posts: 2,308

Bikes: Giant Cypress SX

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 79 Post(s)
Liked 9 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by Dave Horne View Post
Hills? What are hills?
Places without hills often have headwinds to compensate.
__________________
Some people are like a Slinky ... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs.
Nermal is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 04:15 PM
  #21  
Dave Horne
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Vught, The Netherlands
Posts: 378

Bikes: Van Nicholas (Titanium) Deveron, Pinion 18 speed, Gates belt, disc brakes; Brompton - 5 speed Sturmey-Archer

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 14 Post(s)
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
To be honest, I'll stand when I'm too lazy to shift. There's a slight incline near my house that I take all the time and sometimes I'll stand.

I think we're running out of topics here.
Dave Horne is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 04:22 PM
  #22  
905 
waiting for my name tag
 
905's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 236
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 17 Times in 5 Posts
Originally Posted by Dave Horne View Post
Hills? What are hills?
HILL. Nearly impossible to describe, as individual definitions vary so widely, but you'll know it when you see it. Some go up. Other, more popular ones, go down. Do not panic when you see the 'up' variety. Instead, carefully assess the gradient, mentally flip through your available gears to find its equal, then dismount and enjoy your ability to become an instant pedestrian.
– The Pedaller's A-Z

Originally Posted by KevinF View Post
Marco Pantani was famous for standing ALL THE TIME with his hands in the drops.
What kind of triangle did that make? I'd strain myself just googling it.

Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
There is no right or wrong. It all depends on what type of bike you're riding...I have no choice but to stand up because all my bikes are FG/SS...The only way for me to get up hills is to stand up on the pedals.
Another singlespeeder here, on a steady diet of hills. As the going gets tougher, spend more time out of the saddle than on, each turn of the cranks a little victory. When I had gears I was on the spin cycle.


Really steep hills can cause hallucinations near the summit.
__________________
@jollygoodthen


Last edited by 905; 06-22-14 at 04:36 AM. Reason: Bob Seger and the bite the bullet band
905 is offline  
Old 06-21-14, 07:08 PM
  #23  
krobinson103
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Incheon, South Korea
Posts: 2,836

Bikes: Nothing amazing... cheap old 21 speed mtb

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Lol we have a 4% incline on one of the brevets that the local council labeled at 40%! You look at the 'hill', look at the sign and think huh?
krobinson103 is offline  
Old 06-22-14, 10:44 AM
  #24  
cyccommute 
Mad bike riding scientist
 
cyccommute's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 23,993

Bikes: Some silver ones, a red one, an orange one and a few titanium ones

Mentioned: 121 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4103 Post(s)
Liked 1,596 Times in 976 Posts
Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
a mix of both.. Oklahoma is not famous for its mountains .. where are you riding?
Eastern Oklahoma has some very nasty little mountains. Much worse for bicycling than anything you'll find in the western US. They, like most places east of the Mississippi, run roads straight over the mountains without considering terrain. This isn't in Oklahoma but it's only about 3 miles from the border with Arkansas



The road in the distance isn't another road. And there was a huge valley in between the tops of the hill.
__________________
Stuart Black
Gold Fever Three days of dirt in Colorado
Pokin' around the Poconos A cold ride around Lake Erie
Dinosaurs in Colorado A mountain bike guide to the Purgatory Canyon dinosaur trackway
Solo Without Pie. The search for pie in the Midwest.
Picking the Scablands. Washington and Oregon, 2005. Pie and spiders on the Columbia River!
Days of Wineless Roads. Bed and Breakfasting along the KATY
Twisting Down the Alley. Misadventures in tornado alley.
cyccommute is offline  
Old 06-22-14, 11:04 AM
  #25  
fietsbob
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,599

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,315 Times in 826 Posts
My town has streets steeper than that .. straight up, over landslides, that were just repaved after they slipped.


but I push my bike up those, or actually go indirectly around them a few blocks to get to the top of the hill

not as light and strong at 67 as I was at 30.

so there is .. sit, stand, and get off and push .. traditional British, the 'push-bike' is the one without the engine.

Last edited by fietsbob; 06-22-14 at 12:26 PM.
fietsbob is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.