Abdominal strength

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Jim Riley, Jan 23, 2003.

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  1. Jim Riley

    Jim Riley Guest

    Thanks to all who responded to my question on opening the chest a couple weeks ago. Here's another
    one, this time regarding abdominal strength.

    Various sources state that cyclists need strong abdominal muscles - something about providing a
    stable platform for the leg muscles to push against.

    But is that really an issue? Gravity seems to do a pretty good job of keeping riders' bottoms
    planted firmly on the saddle despite the mighty forces from the leg muscles below.

    Moreover, when there is motion above the waist, it usually takes the form of leaning into each
    downward stroke. Preventing that motion would require an upward/backward force, and wouldn't that
    come from the back, not the abdominals? (I suppose the obliques might be involved too if the motion
    has a side-to-side component.)

    Finally (and this is the really heretical part), I'm not convinced that a little upper body movement
    is such a bad thing. The conventional wisdom is that moving the upper body wastes energy, but it
    also takes energy to hold it very still. It's not obvious to me that the movement always takes more
    energy than preventing it.

    Comments?

    Thanks, -- Jim
     
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  2. Jack Pine

    Jack Pine Guest

    >Here's another one, this time regarding abdominal strength.

    You really should ask Sharron Peters, she can help you out.

    Jack
     
  3. Comutrbob

    Comutrbob Guest

    >Thanks to all who responded to my question on opening the chest a couple weeks ago. Here's another
    >one, this time regarding abdominal strength.

    I read something to that effect. I began doing a ton of abdominals. My wife bought me this video
    called 8-minute abs. It's a tough little workout, but it does the job and it's over rather quickly.
    I did it every single day.

    I had the best season of my life on the bike, but I don't think the ab work had that much to do with
    it. I lost about 10 pounds. That made the difference. And I did that with some changes in diet.

    Here's where the abs seemed to play a key role. In October, I was coming down a little grade with a
    tailwind. I was doing about 30 mph. I came to an intersection and a a teenager talking on a cell
    phone while driving an oncoming car didn't see me and made a left turn -- right into me. It was a
    huge collision. Broke my hip, pelvis and ankle and gave me a huge laceration on my left leg. The
    emts at the scene were very concerned that I probably had life-threatening internal injuries. The
    doctors at the emergency room couldn't believe that I didn't. They said it's very unusual to see a
    broken pelvis and not see internal injuries. They attributed the fact that I didn't to my unusually
    good abdominal musculature.

    So ... I'm really glad I do abdominals. They may not benefit my cycling, but I might not be here to
    continue cycling if I hadn't been doing them.

    Bob C.
     
  4. Kyle Legate

    Kyle Legate Guest

    On Mon, 30 Dec 2002, Jim Riley wrote:

    > Moreover, when there is motion above the waist, it usually takes the form of leaning into each
    > downward stroke. Preventing that motion would require an upward/backward force, and wouldn't that
    > come from the back, not the abdominals? (I suppose the obliques might be involved too if the
    > motion has a side-to-side component.)
    >
    It's all about muscular balance. My lower back would ache on long rides, but I found that ab work
    increased the length of time I could spend on the bike before my back started giving me trouble. I
    chalked it up to the likelyhood that my lower back was quite a bit stronger than my abs, and the
    imbalance was causing the soreness.

    ... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . [email protected] Kyle Legate [email protected]

    Tower of Tongues:Thursday PM:10:30-11:30 EDT:http://cfmu.mcmaster.ca moon
    musick:ritual:IDM:experimental(electronica):minimalism:glitch
    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ...
     
  5. Tom Kunich

    Tom Kunich Guest

    Glad you weren't hurt any worse and getting better.

    "ComutrBob" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > >Thanks to all who responded to my question on opening the chest a couple weeks ago. Here's
    > >another one, this time regarding abdominal strength.
    >
    > I read something to that effect. I began doing a ton of abdominals. My
    wife
    > bought me this video called 8-minute abs. It's a tough little workout,
    but it
    > does the job and it's over rather quickly. I did it every single day.
    >
    > I had the best season of my life on the bike, but I don't think the ab
    work had
    > that much to do with it. I lost about 10 pounds. That made the
    difference.
    > And I did that with some changes in diet.
    >
    > Here's where the abs seemed to play a key role. In October, I was coming
    down
    > a little grade with a tailwind. I was doing about 30 mph. I came to an intersection and a a
    > teenager talking on a cell phone while driving an
    oncoming
    > car didn't see me and made a left turn -- right into me. It was a huge collision. Broke my hip,
    > pelvis and ankle and gave me a huge laceration
    on my
    > left leg. The emts at the scene were very concerned that I probably had life-threatening internal
    > injuries. The doctors at the emergency room
    couldn't
    > believe that I didn't. They said it's very unusual to see a broken pelvis
    and
    > not see internal injuries. They attributed the fact that I didn't to my unusually good abdominal
    > musculature.
    >
    > So ... I'm really glad I do abdominals. They may not benefit my cycling,
    but I
    > might not be here to continue cycling if I hadn't been doing them.
    >
    > Bob C.
     
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