Cyclist strength training: making it count on the bike

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Introduction to strength training with Jo McRae: making it count on the bike

How to translate off-the-bike conditioning to in-the-saddle performance gains


Focus on phases

To try this drill on the road or turbo, first establish good posture and your normal pedalling style and then bring your awareness to the action of your legs. Stay seated in the saddle and choose a gear where you are pedalling about 10rpm slower than your usual cadence, or somewhere around 65 to 80rpm, but at a steady intensity rather than pushing into it. This is your ‘working gear’ for each ‘side’ to the square described in the phases below.

Working at a cadence between 65rpm and 80rpm, focus on the downstroke, using the quad muscles at the front of the thigh

Down stroke

Focus on pushing downwards (the front of the square) using your quad muscles (front thigh) keeping your knee in line with the pedal as you push down.  This is the easiest portion of the pedal stroke and the one that is often over used, but it’s an easy place to start to get a sense of the connection. After a minute or so, change into an easy gear and spin out to relax.

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