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When I Stand Up to Pedal I Am Out of Control

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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

When I Stand Up to Pedal I Am Out of Control

Old 09-30-10, 11:00 AM
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When I Stand Up to Pedal I Am Out of Control

When I stand up to pedal I am out of control. I feel like the bike wants to go side to side and wobble all over the place. What am I doing wrong?
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Old 09-30-10, 11:05 AM
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a small amount of side to side movement is natural when climbing. You have to get some core strength into the hoods of your shifters in order to limit the amount of movement. also you should shift to a more appropriate gear so there is some resistance provided by the system for your increased effort when pedalling out of saddle.
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Old 09-30-10, 11:05 AM
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What bike are you riding? Describe exactly what you are doing.

Is the bike moving more than these?

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Old 09-30-10, 11:12 AM
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Would you describe your pedaling style as slam dancing?
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Old 09-30-10, 11:15 AM
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body is still, bike moves.
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Old 09-30-10, 11:17 AM
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Your bars might be too high or the stem too short. Your center of gravity has to be in a certain place just behind the front wheel to have good control when you are standing on the pedals.
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Old 09-30-10, 11:18 AM
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If you are overweight, the movement will tend to be exagerated. You will need to upshift several gears.
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Old 09-30-10, 11:26 AM
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Don't let go of the handlebars!!!!
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Old 09-30-10, 11:34 AM
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Where are you gripping the bars, the tops or the brake hoods? My wife would grip the bar tops when going out of the saddle and was a bit wobbly, until I straightened her out, and had her grip the brake hoods. More leverage and balance that way. Otherwise, it may simply be a matter of getting comfortable riding out of the saddle.
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Old 09-30-10, 11:41 AM
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don't feet the troll.
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Old 09-30-10, 11:42 AM
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Your sense of balance, no good. Proceed to beach wribbs-san, practice many hours.

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Old 09-30-10, 11:47 AM
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Upshift 1-3 gears
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Old 09-30-10, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by slowandsteady
What bike are you riding? Describe exactly what you are doing. Is the bike moving more than these?
Hey S&S, enjoyed watching your Philly Pro Cycling clip. I was there in a somewhat official capacity photographing the race. Anyway enjoyed your video which captured the "feel" for the event. (I have one lap with video but haven't posted it)
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Old 09-30-10, 11:50 AM
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Originally Posted by valygrl
Upshift 1-3 gears
This, and use the resistance to stand on the pedals.
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Old 09-30-10, 12:04 PM
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3 gears. definitely 3. i hate standing.
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Old 09-30-10, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by wribbs
When I stand up to pedal I am out of control. I feel like the bike wants to go side to side and wobble all over the place. What am I doing wrong?
Don't fight it. Relax. Go with it.

Practice by going as SLOW as you can while standing on the pedals. You'll see.
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Old 09-30-10, 12:33 PM
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It takes a little practice to get used to it.
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Old 09-30-10, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by 53-12
Where are you gripping the bars, the tops or the brake hoods? My wife would grip the bar tops when going out of the saddle and was a bit wobbly, until I straightened her out, and had her grip the brake hoods. More leverage and balance that way. Otherwise, it may simply be a matter of getting comfortable riding out of the saddle.
I don't think this is the right way to fix the problem. You should be able to get out of saddle effectively in both the drops and the hoods. Try sprinting up a short, steep grade on the drops compared to the hoods. There's a huge difference.

I strongly believe poor out of saddle technique comes from riders doing too much to sway the bike. This is perfectly understandable, as the bike swaying is what is observed in pro races. However, the bike will sway naturally.

Try to keep your body straight. Your bike might not be perfectly straight, that is, your front wheel might have slight lateral rotation on them. As long as your body is moving in a straight line, and isn't all over the place, you should be fine. The rest just comes with time.
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Old 09-30-10, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by SteelCan
Hey S&S, enjoyed watching your Philly Pro Cycling clip. I was there in a somewhat official capacity photographing the race. Anyway enjoyed your video which captured the "feel" for the event. (I have one lap with video but haven't posted it)
Love "THE WALL." I get winded just walking up the wall. I can't imagine riding up over and over again.

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Old 09-30-10, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Blackdays
I don't think this is the right way to fix the problem. You should be able to get out of saddle effectively in both the drops and the hoods. Try sprinting up a short, steep grade on the drops compared to the hoods. There's a huge difference.

I strongly believe poor out of saddle technique comes from riders doing too much to sway the bike. This is perfectly understandable, as the bike swaying is what is observed in pro races. However, the bike will sway naturally.

Try to keep your body straight. Your bike might not be perfectly straight, that is, your front wheel might have slight lateral rotation on them. As long as your body is moving in a straight line, and isn't all over the place, you should be fine. The rest just comes with time.
He said tops, not drops.

Still, perfect practice helps.
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Old 09-30-10, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by DScott
He said tops, not drops.

Still, perfect practice helps.
My bad.
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Old 09-30-10, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by slowandsteady
Love "THE WALL." I get winded just walking up the wall. I can't imagine riding up over and over again
Then don't even think about joining us for the 4th Annual Philadelphia Dirty Dozen organized by Colin Sandberg. He chose 13 of the toughest climbs in the Philly area for this year's installment on Sat Nov 6th. (last year was 75mi 10k' of elevation but each of the climbs are in the mid to upper teens). Finishes with The Wall in Manayunk but in all honesty that was easy compared to a handful of the others - especially Port Royal which is just as steep but over poorly-laid cobble stone (basically dumped cobble stone, probably by a farmer back in the day).

BTW as for conquering The Wall, you just have to pace yourself (and have gearing to keep your legs moving). What those pro riders are doing at a race pace is daunting. Even beasts like Ivan Dominquez were hurting at the end.
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Old 09-30-10, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by DScott
Practice by going as SLOW as you can while standing on the pedals. You'll see.
Yep. Climbing a very easy hill standing on the pedals, keeping pace with someone who's walking, will do a lot for your technique here. Slow down, pay attention to your stroke, etc, and with a bit of practice, it will apply itself at higher speeds.

The bike is going to move somewhat ( from side to side ), but the less energy you put into rocking back and forth, the more you can apply to cresting the hill.
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Old 09-30-10, 01:48 PM
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The best thing that helped my climbing technique was getting a single speed bike. There is no concern about whether or not to change gears; it's just the bike and the hill and I realized pretty early on that standing on the pedals was the ony way to go. It helped my balance tremendously, and it translated back to my other bikes.
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Old 09-30-10, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by wribbs
When I stand up to pedal I am out of control. I feel like the bike wants to go side to side and wobble all over the place. What am I doing wrong?
Try holding on to the handlebars. It helps!
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