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Are tall riders disadvantaged?

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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

Are tall riders disadvantaged?

Old 08-19-12, 06:34 PM
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Are tall riders disadvantaged?

So I'm new to cycling, have recently purchased a Trek 1.1 as I ease into the sport. After reading around a bit, it seems the guys who trump in the mountains are usually under 6'. Would being 6'4'', as I am, disadvantage me (competitively speaking)?

This is more just being curious, I don't plan on being that competitive.
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Old 08-19-12, 06:38 PM
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Inudrain was 6'-2". Tall riders tend to be good at the TT, IMO.
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Old 08-19-12, 06:40 PM
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not as much as fat riders are
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Old 08-19-12, 06:43 PM
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George Hincappie is still riding at 40 in the pro peloton, he is 6'3". You're in good company.
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Old 08-19-12, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by ls01
not as much as fat riders are
/thread
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Old 08-19-12, 06:44 PM
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That Brit who just won that big stage race is 6 foot 3.

Ride more, worry less.
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Old 08-19-12, 06:46 PM
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Just watch out for low hanging tree branches...
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Old 08-19-12, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Walter
/thread
lock it.
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Old 08-19-12, 06:50 PM
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I would use it as an excuse.
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Old 08-19-12, 07:03 PM
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I wouldn't think so. I'm kind of tall myself at 5'11 but when a taller guy blows past me I cant help feeling intimidated.
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Old 08-19-12, 07:04 PM
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Thanks for the responses, some gave me a laugh.

Originally Posted by Velo Vol
I would use it as an excuse.
Though I still might just do this.
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Old 08-19-12, 07:05 PM
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In my experience, taller riders are usually slower up the hills but faster in the flats, hence being better at TT.
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Old 08-19-12, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by datlas
That Brit who just won that big stage race is 6 foot 3.

Ride more, worry less.
And that African guy who pulled him up all the mountains is 6 foot 1. Of course, the tall guys who are good in mountains weigh 150 pounds or less.

Big heavy guys like Cancellera (6'1" 180 pounds) are only really great on flat to rolling races.
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Old 08-19-12, 07:27 PM
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Watts per kilogram.
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Old 08-19-12, 07:48 PM
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No
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Old 08-19-12, 09:25 PM
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Yes. More wind resistance to overcome.
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Old 08-20-12, 07:32 AM
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Im 6'4" also and Ill use any excuse I can get for why Im not cut out for racing, though I have to go with poor conditioning if Im really honest with myself
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Old 08-20-12, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by datlas
That Brit who just won that big stage race is 6 foot 3.

Ride more, worry less.
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Old 08-20-12, 07:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Breitling
In my experience, taller riders are usually slower up the hills but faster in the flats, hence being better at TT.
Funny, I would think the opposite should be true, since wind resistance is less of a factor when climbing.
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Old 08-20-12, 07:42 AM
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Old 08-20-12, 07:45 AM
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Old 08-20-12, 07:59 AM
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Yes, it really sucks being tall. I'm 6'5". I can't find bikes that fit, or pants, especially since I'm down to 175lbs since riding so much. 30w x 36l pants anyone? I'm going to have to find a tailor. And then you've got back problems, Marfan's Syndrome. Life just all around stinks being tall. I'm heading out to find the nearest bridge...
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Old 08-20-12, 08:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Adrian_
I wouldn't think so. I'm kind of tall myself at 5'11 but when a taller guy blows past me I cant help feeling intimidated.
In all honesty I feel the same thing sometimes. I am 1.85 meters, which is a little over 6 foot I think. So I am not exactly tiny. Still I find strong tall riders to be pretty physically intimidating. If you want to know what the ideal body type is for a sport, just look at the highest level of competition. We would not see so many tall cyclist if it was some sort of huge disadvantage.
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Old 08-20-12, 08:17 AM
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I'd say 6+ (183cm) foot riders are generally in a minority. The bike market mirrors this. If you look at light weight race wheels many can't handle the weight of a rider that big (85kg). That said I'm 190cm/90kg and don't find myself to be at a disadvantage compared to other riders.
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Old 08-20-12, 08:20 AM
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I am 6'4 and I usually one of the rider at the front of the pack. Ride more worry less, or read/post less and ride more!

Last edited by ahson; 08-20-12 at 08:25 AM.
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