arm & leg powered bike

Discussion in 'Recumbent bicycles' started by Pipin, May 12, 2003.

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  1. Pipin

    Pipin Guest

    Are there any bikes designed to be powered by arms and/or legs? I think this would give the most
    balanced workout possible, depending on a person's body type, the terrain (uphill or downhill) and
    our fatigue state. I am much weaker in the upper body, so I would like to develop strength. However,
    precisely because I am weaker in the arms and shoulders, I couldn't maintain propelling myself with
    those muscles exclusively. I'd like to go back and forth and sometimes use both legs and arms. How
    would this work? Two ratchets? How would they be connected so that they could be engaged and
    disengaged while peddling at any speed?

    Margaret
     
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  2. stpi

    stpi Guest

    See www.aviroute-rowingbike.com

    Pipin wrote:

    > Are there any bikes designed to be powered by arms and/or legs? I think this would give the most
    > balanced workout possible, depending on a person's body type, the terrain (uphill or downhill) and
    > our fatigue state. I am much weaker in the upper body, so I would like to develop strength.
    > However, precisely because I am weaker in the arms and shoulders, I couldn't maintain propelling
    > myself with those muscles exclusively. I'd like to go back and forth and sometimes use both legs
    > and arms. How would this work? Two ratchets? How would they be connected so that they could be
    > engaged and disengaged while peddling at any speed?
    >
    > Margaret
     
  3. Jeff Wills

    Jeff Wills Guest

    "Pipin" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Are there any bikes designed to be powered by arms and/or legs? I think this would give the most
    > balanced workout possible, depending on a person's body type, the terrain (uphill or downhill) and
    > our fatigue state. I am much weaker in the upper body, so I would like to develop strength.
    > However, precisely because I am weaker in the arms and shoulders, I couldn't maintain propelling
    > myself with those muscles exclusively. I'd like to go back and forth and sometimes use both legs
    > and arms. How would this work? Two ratchets? How would they be connected so that they could be
    > engaged and disengaged while peddling at any speed?
    >
    > Margaret

    Bikes or trikes that are propelled exclusively by arms are called "handcycles". Any search engine
    will reveal some of these machines- which can be really sophisticated.

    For ratcheting cranks, you could use Powercranks: http://www.powercranks.com/hometext.html

    There's a local lady who has a has an old Tatch Manuped hand & foot cranked recumbent *bicycle*.
    It's got the cranks synchronized- it doesn't look like the rider's hands would clear her knees if
    they were arranged any other way. It's got a Shimano 4-speed internal hub with a coaster brake, so
    the rider doesn't have to remove her hands except to shift.

    (BTW: It's a moving-crank front-wheel-drive bike, similar to a Flevo. Add the handcranks and you've
    got a bike that *looks* totally uncontrollable. It's fun to watch- but I've never ridden it myself.)

    I've put up old photos of the original Tatch Manuped, taken in the '70's:
    ftp://www.ihpva.org/incoming/Manuped1.jpg ftp://www.ihpva.org/incoming/Manuped2.jpg

    Jeff
     
  4. Neither of those URLs for the Manuped pictures would work for me. Is there any suggestion you have
    for viewing them? Is the Tatch Manuped you described the one made by Fred Tatch? If so, I rode an
    improved version of it in 1986. I should say, I sort of rode it, as it was the most difficult
    bicycle to control I can imagine. Fred had the technique to ride it mastered and I knew only two
    other people who could make it go at its best. Fred once took it on the 26-mile road course that the
    local DF-bike racers used, some of them world-class riders. Without any hard effort, he broke the
    existing course record by more than two minutes. No fairing was used.

    Note that the original designer and builder of the Manuped was John Reynolds. Fred made
    many improvements to his own version and it was controversial whether it was a different
    bike or a variation of the original. Legal action was involved, but I am unclear about how
    it was resolved.

    I believe that arm and leg-powered bicycles can be much faster and better for developing
    physical strength and condition. There are a couple of companies that make arm and leg-powered
    recumbent tricycles. They are a great experience to ride, but unfortunately, they aren't cheap.
    They go for around $4,000. (U.S) and up.

    Steve McDonald
     
  5. John Riley

    John Riley Guest

    "Pipin" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Are there any bikes designed to be powered by arms and/or legs? I think this would give the most
    > balanced workout possible, depending on a person's body type, the terrain (uphill or downhill) and
    > our fatigue state. I am much weaker in the upper body, so I would like to develop strength.
    [...] The most balanced workout would be a combination cycling and strength training in a gym.
    Strength training (weight lifting) is the only thing that really allows you to specifically target
    muscle groups in a balanced way. You would need to start with a trainer, but if you join a gym, they
    provide this. You can do this at home too, but you might still want to start with a trainer to get
    the right exercises and the correct form. You might injure yourself if you just try to wing it.

    johnriley1 (at) rogers.com
     
  6. John Riley

    John Riley Guest

  7. Eddie H

    Eddie H Guest

  8. "Eddie H" skrev...

    > > Not that I have anything against the French, but that thing is bleedin ugly. :) Get something
    > > stylish like this: http://www.rowingbike.com/
    >
    > A "rowbike" costs only about one third of a "rowingbike": http://www.rowbike.com/ A sliding seat
    > is closer to rowing action than a stationary seat.

    Quite. I was only commenting on looks tho. :)

    M.
     
  9. John Riley

    John Riley Guest

    Besides arm cranking, there would be rowing, I suppose:

    http://www.itt.edu/warren/ (scroll down for the rowing bike)

    johnriley1 (at) rogers.com
     
  10. "Mikael Seierup" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > "Eddie H" skrev...
    >
    > > > Not that I have anything against the French, but that thing is bleedin ugly. :) Get something
    > > > stylish like this: http://www.rowingbike.com/
    > >
    > > A "rowbike" costs only about one third of a "rowingbike": http://www.rowbike.com/ A sliding seat
    > > is closer to rowing action than a stationary seat.
    >
    > Quite. I was only commenting on looks tho. :)
    >
    > M.

    I can't imagine staying upright on that French machine would be any too easy. It looks tall,
    awkward, heavy and inefficient. Considering their cars, they probably think it looks great. <g
     
  11. Gary

    Gary Guest

    "Pipin" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > Are there any bikes designed to be powered by arms and/or legs?

    My bike cost and arm and a leg. Does that count?
     
  12. stpi

    stpi Guest

    Michael Perry wrote:

    > "Mikael Seierup" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:<[email protected]>...
    > > "Eddie H" skrev...
    > >
    > > > > Not that I have anything against the French, but that thing is bleedin ugly. :) Get
    > > > > something stylish like this: http://www.rowingbike.com/
    > > >
    > > > A "rowbike" costs only about one third of a "rowingbike": http://www.rowbike.com/ A sliding
    > > > seat is closer to rowing action than a stationary seat.
    > >
    > > Quite. I was only commenting on looks tho. :)
    > >
    > > M.
    >
    > I can't imagine staying upright on that French machine would be any too easy. It looks tall,
    > awkward, heavy and inefficient. Considering their cars, they probably think it looks great.

    But American cars ARE huge, heavy and inefficient...
     
  13. Eddie,

    > A sliding seat is closer to rowing action than a stationary seat.

    A properly designed fixed seat system (such as the banned "sliding rigger" system*) uses the same
    rowing action as a sliding seat system.

    I have ridden thousands of miles, in the hills and mountains of Virginia, on just such a fixed
    seat system.

    On a sliding seat bike, your center of mass moves back-and-forth more than two feet per stroke. This
    makes handling tricky, at best.

    Because of moving the entire mass of your torso, sliding seat rowing is inherently inefficient. Your
    speed will vary by several mph each stroke. On steep enough hills, you could actually end up going
    backwards during part of the stroke!

    *If you think the upright biking fraternity is a bunch of Luddites, check out rowing. ;-)

    Warren
     
  14. Michael Perry wrote:

    > I can't imagine staying upright on that French machine would be any too easy. It looks tall,
    > awkward, heavy and inefficient. Considering their cars, they probably think it looks great. <g>

    Compare and contrast:

    http://www.ucad.fr/pub/virt/mp/citroen/ds/graphics/dsdia05.jpg

    http://www.vintagegavel.com/images/1955%20Chevrolet%20Bel%20Air%20Two%20Door
    %20Hardtop.JPG

    :)

    Dave Larrington - http://www.legslarry.beerdrinkers.co.uk/
    ===========================================================
    Editor - British Human Power Club Newsletter
    http://www.bhpc.org.uk/
    ===========================================================
     
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