Science of Cycling

Science of Cycling

Take your riding to another level with the Science of Cycling. We tap into the latest training, nutrition and gear advice that's born in the lab and nurtured on the open road. INSIDE: - 278 expert tips to ride stronger - Bike-fitting advice & essential gear upgrades - Workouts to burn fat & add muscle - Essential nutrition advice - How cutting-edge research can improve your performance - Training, racing and recovery strategies of the world's best cyclists - Plus much more!

United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited

in this issue

1 min
from the editor…

The omnipresence of power meters and a focus on aerodynamics popularised the appliance of science in pro cycling. It should do the same with you. Yes, for many science reprises memories of staid school lessons and off-white lab coats. But science can – and should – be exciting, innovative and, seen through a performance prism, the key to unlocking more speed. That’s where Science of Cycling comes in, tapping into the latest training, nutrition and gear advice that’s born in the lab and nurtured on the open road. It’s time to aggregate those marginal gains……

2 min
legacy of innovations

01 AERODYNAMIC ADVANCEMENTS Team Sky made much of sponsor collaborations, working with their partners to boost speed and save time. This applied to every conceivable piece of gear, from aero booties to their long-standing bike partnership with Pinarello. The faded image shows their 2018 Castelli Body Paint 4.2b Speedsuit, which cuts a rider’s drag. 02 FOCUS ON WEAKNESSES “More planning goes into a rider’s season now compared to the early 2000s,” says former Sky rider Michael Rogers (pictured). “Riders used to race over 100 days a year; now it’s more like 80. Sky brought that concept in, enabling the coaches to identify and work on weaknesses in training. You just can’t do that if you’re constantly fatigued from racing too much.” 03 RAPID RECOVERY “I remember one of my first professional races was the Tour…

11 min
are aero road bikes always faster?

Believe the advertising and aero road bikes are the greatest invention since the wheel. The bike industry, however, is just that – an industry. And an industry doesn’t thrive if it’s standing still. Where once weight, or lack of it, ruled, now it’s all about curvaceous carbon and concealed cables. But do they always deliver a faster, watt-saving ride compared to traditional lightweight roadsters? Good question… Characteristics of speed The performance road-bike market branches off but, in general, it’s divided into two camps: lightweights and aeros. Trek and Specialized have their ultralight Emonda and aero Madone; Giant its TCR and Propel; Specialized its Tarmac and Venge – you get the picture. Historically, lightweights featured round tubes to aid power transfer and save grams. They don’t strictly adhere to that template now but aero…

1 min
perfect pedalling

Youthful messing about on bikes became serious competitive cycling for me in 1988. My first race-worthy bikes weren’t what I later realised was my ideal size, and my riding position was determined by a combination of trial and error, sage clubmate advice and studying magazine pictures of the pros. Luck, training, plus all the information I could glean saw me through years of racing on and off-road with few problems, save for two over-use knee injuries, but age brings assorted niggles to the fore, and six years ago I had my first bike fit. Applying biomechanical and anatomical knowledge to try and maximise cycling efficiency and comfort, and prevent injury, is underrated, and many riders don’t think they need one until a problem arises. My original fit created some positional information…

3 min
road trip

My quest to find the perfect professional bike fit took me to the salubrious environs of Yeovil, Luton and Milton Keynes. Nothing against that trio of beauty… but who says this job is all glamour?! Neatly set out in one section of the cavernous Tri UK store in Yeovil, the Guru system’s DFU (Dynamic Fitting Unit) has automated saddle and handlebar movements, and can replicate the position of any stock bike model contained within Guru’s database. Bar and saddle can be swapped in moments, crank length is adjustable and you’ll ride your own pedals. In front is a Kinect scanner, which generates rider dimension data and is used to help assess riding efficiency and position. To begin, Tri UK’s John Harfield asked about any pre-existing problems I had, such as injuries, aches,…

3 min
the appliance of science

Selle Italia-backed Ergoview developed the idmatch Bike Lab system, which is mainly designed around science-based biometrics rather than subjective fitter-centred opinion. It’s capable of creating a fully automated rider fit, which can be as useful for the novice rider as an experienced one. Standing in front of a concave background on three marked positions and bending as required, a 3D scanner and its clever software assess your body shape and position without the need to stick any markers on to you. Zyro’s Neil Davidson explains that this saves time and, thanks to the software’s sophistication, increases the accuracy of joint locations. A huge set of measurements is created from the scans, which are the basis for the machine’s initial riding setup, also suggesting a handlebar and saddle choice, which can be…