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Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness - Page 3

post #31 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
Well, that settles it then. Cycling is too complicated! I'll have to take up swimming.
Now that's funny! I hear golf is a no brainer too.
post #32 of 144
Thread Starter 

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by beerco
Now that's funny! I hear golf is a no brainer too.
Well, it is for now. Now, you just hit the ball and take pride in a good ball flight to your target. But, just wait until they come up with a swing analyzer you can wear on your wrist. Then, we'll be saying, "Oh, no! I was 2 degrees off my swing plane at the top and my clubhead speed was 2MPH slow. What a lousy shot." Maybe we're getting too enamored with data. I mean, look at the times in the Tour de France. Power meters were introduced in the late 1980s. The winner of the Tour in 1988 (pre-power meters) won in 84 hours and 27 minutes. Last year, Lance Armstrong won in 83 hours and 36 minutes. I mean, he didn't even take an hour off the 1988 time for riding around France in the middle of the summer. Go figure.
post #33 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
Maybe we're getting too enamored with data.
Maybe You're getting too enamored with data. All the advice to you I've read here is to "just push on the damn pedals". You're the one who's trying to turn it into an issue.

I brought up golf because golf and swimming are both very very very technique oriented.
post #34 of 144
Thread Starter 

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by beerco
Maybe You're getting to enamored with data. All the advice to you I've read hear is to "just push on the damn pedals". You're the one who's trying to turn it into an issue.

I brought up golf because golf and swimming are both very very very technique oriented.
If data doesn't matter, why have a power meter? As to what I'm trying to do, I thought I was just trying to understand the relationship between different observable variables. I'm glad you cleared up my intentions. And, I'm really glad to learn technique doesn't matter in cycling. One less thing to worry about.
post #35 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
If data doesn't matter, why have a power meter?
To know how much power you are producing... using this for visual feedback when training and post ride/race analysis and goal setting.

ric
post #36 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
And, I'm really glad to learn technique doesn't matter in cycling. One less thing to worry about.
Generally, cycling is a gross motor control sport, where your legs are constrained in the sagittal plane and they don't have much option but to go round in a circle. As Beerco points out this is somewhat different to e.g., golf which requires fine motor skills (although i would imagine that e.g., rifle shooting in the Olympics requires even finer motor skills).

Ric
post #37 of 144
Thread Starter 

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by ric_stern/RST
To know how much power you are producing... using this for visual feedback when training and post ride/race analysis and goal setting.

ric
Actually, I fully understand and appreciate the value of a power meter for training and goal setting. I was reacting to Beerco's suggestion that I was too focused on data. What I am not yet ready to do is to declare HR and cadence as useless feedback information and unplug those from my bike computer. You know, it hasn't been all that long since some pretty credentialed people like Dr. Edmund Burke advocated the usefulness of HR in training. Is he a nut? You sure can't tell it from his resume. As I said in my original posting, power meters appear to be one of the most significant advancements in cycling in the past 20 years. The value of knowing precisely how much power one is delivering to the cranks is huge. My objective is to determine the benefits of power meters beyond the obvious and whether the different products available differ in any significant way.
post #38 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
Actually, I fully understand and appreciate the value of a power meter for training and goal setting. I was reacting to Beerco's suggestion that I was too focused on data. What I am not yet ready to do is to declare HR and cadence as useless feedback information and unplug those from my bike computer. You know, it hasn't been all that long since some pretty credentialed people like Dr. Edmund Burke advocated the usefulness of HR in training. Is he a nut? You sure can't tell it from his resume. As I said in my original posting, power meters appear to be one of the most significant advancements in cycling in the past 20 years. The value of knowing precisely how much power one is delivering to the cranks is huge. My objective is to determine the benefits of power meters beyond the obvious and whether the different products available differ in any significant way.
If you have a power meter, then yes, i feel that HR and cadence info isn't that useful. I'd take a HR monitor for training prescription versus nothing at all (i think, and i hate to speak for others, that this maybe different to AC...?). Hopefully, AC will chime in on that aspect and maybe about EB.

I believe that the SRM and PT don't significantly differ from each other in most respects - i recommend both of them - although they each have pros and cons.

Ric
post #39 of 144
Thread Starter 

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by ric_stern/RST
Generally, cycling is a gross motor control sport, where your legs are constrained in the sagittal plane and they don't have much option but to go round in a circle. As Beerco points out this is somewhat different to e.g., golf which requires fine motor skills (although i would imagine that e.g., rifle shooting in the Olympics requires even finer motor skills).

Ric
I agree with you about cycling being a gross motor control sport, with the athetic action (pedaling) being constrained. But, some would say that cycling technique matters and that techniques can be learned. I read somewhere that Lance Armstrong worked a lot on his pedaling technique in his earlier years because he didn't feel that he was smooth. There is an entire discussion here about pushing up vs. pushing down. SRM has gone to the trouble of developing and marketing torque analysis data collection and analysis. Polar has a power balance feature in their power module software. In the last TdF, I was struck by LA's high cadence up the steepest stages, both on and off the saddle. I sort of doubt that he was born with that technique. We have choices about how we peddle, when and where we push, whether we attempt to push symmetrically or not, position on the bike, cadence. I consider all of this technique. Whether the techniques are different from golf is irrelevant. What I have in innate athletic ability is, unfortunately, locked in. But, I have a brain and (with today's technology) I can choose to process a lot of information about my performance and I can choose to experiment with different techniques to see which allows me to generate the maximum performance for a sustained period of time. Or, I can decide that none of that matters and ride a bike the way I did at age 5 or whenever it was that I first could balance one. Personally, I choose to collect data, use it intelligently and work to improve my technique.
post #40 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
I agree with you about cycling being a gross motor control sport, with the athetic action (pedaling) being constrained. But, some would say that cycling technique matters and that techniques can be learned. I read somewhere that Lance Armstrong worked a lot on his pedaling technique in his earlier years because he didn't feel that he was smooth. There is an entire discussion here about pushing up vs. pushing down.
from the data that is available using force instrumented pedals and iEMG, it appears that better cyclists tend to push down more and pull up less, that less good cyclists who push down less and pull up more.

Quote:
SRM has gone to the trouble of developing and marketing torque analysis data collection and analysis. Polar has a power balance feature in their power module software.
as far as i'm aware the Polar left right balance doesn't *measure* this as you'd need force instrumented pedals to capture such data accurately. Nonetheless, people do change the amount of force that goes to each pedal and this can alter each time you ride. This perhaps one reason why i found the Ergomo i tested to be not very accurate (as it just doubles left power).

Quote:
In the last TdF, I was struck by LA's high cadence up the steepest stages, both on and off the saddle.
where have you been for the other five TdF's ;-)

Quote:
I sort of doubt that he was born with that technique. We have choices about how we peddle, when and where we push, whether we attempt to push symmetrically or not, position on the bike, cadence. I consider all of this technique.
and other riders who have won 5 TdF or other races may or may not pedal at super high cadences

bike position is something else, and wasn't what any of us were including while talking about pedalling

ric
post #41 of 144
Thread Starter 

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
as far as i'm aware the Polar left right balance doesn't *measure* this as you'd need force instrumented pedals to capture such data accurately.
I assumed that the Polar was measuring this, through an interpolation software algorithm. They interpolate power through chain tension and they know the position of the crank through the cadence magnet. Why can't they compute an interpolated force being applied to the crank throughout the stroke?

Quote:
where have you been for the other five TdF's ;-)
I just didn't notice it.

Quote:
and other riders who have won 5 TdF or other races may or may not pedal at super high cadences
I'm not implying that his is the best technique for all riders, only that he must have seen a benefit to have worked hard to develop his technique.

Quote:
bike position is something else, and wasn't what any of us were including while talking about pedalling
To me, bike position is just a part of technique. Maybe more important than others, but just one of the variables I have control over and therefore something to try to optimize.
post #42 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
To me, bike position is just a part of technique. Maybe more important than others, but just one of the variables I have control over and therefore something to try to optimize.
Not "maybe" - definitely more important. Possibly the most important variable. I don't think anyone would disagree that it isn't something to optimise.
post #43 of 144
Thread Starter 

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by ric_stern/RST
Not "maybe" - definitely more important. Possibly the most important variable. I don't think anyone would disagree that it isn't something to optimise.
Okay, but the brain is a pretty powerful computer -- the first parallel processing supercomputer ever built. Maybe it's arrogance, but I feel like I can think about more than one thing at a time, even work on more than one thing on a ride. Surely you aren't saying that none of the rest of what I called "technique" matters, are you?
post #44 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by RapDaddyo
Okay, but the brain is a pretty powerful computer -- the first parallel processing supercomputer ever built. Maybe it's arrogance, but I feel like I can think about more than one thing at a time, even work on more than one thing on a ride. Surely you aren't saying that none of the rest of what I called "technique" matters, are you?
I believe i've responded to all the "technique" issues you've mentioned.

Ric
post #45 of 144

Re: Power Meters and Pedaling Effectiveness

Quote:
Originally Posted by ric_stern/RST
If you have a power meter, then yes, i feel that HR and cadence info isn't that useful. I'd take a HR monitor for training prescription versus nothing at all (i think, and i hate to speak for others, that this maybe different to AC...?). Hopefully, AC will chime in on that aspect and maybe about EB.
I think it depends in part on whether you're the coach or the coachee...if I were coaching somebody else, then I might want them to use a heart rate monitor vs. nothing at all (i.e., going by perceived exertion). OTOH, I don't see heart rate as a substitute for perceived exertion, and for inexperienced athletes use of a heart rate monitor seems to often get in the way of developing/honing perceived exertion. The same, I think, can be said for monitoring of cadence: useful in some situations/individuals, but detrimental if people become overly focussed on it.
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