Effect of gradient on cycling gross efficiency and technique

Marco Arkesteijn, Simon A. Jobson, James Hopker, Louis Passfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of gradient on cycling gross efficiency and pedaling technique. Methods: Eighteen trained cyclists were tested for efficiency, index of pedal force effectiveness (IFE), distribution of power production during the pedal revolution (dead center size [DC]), and timing and level of muscle activity of eight leg muscles. Cycling was performed on a treadmill at gradients of 0% (level), 4%, and 8%, each at three different cadences (60, 75, and 90 rev·min-1). Results: Efficiency was significantly decreased at a gradient of 8% compared with both 0% and 4% (P < 0.05). The relationship between cadence and efficiency was not changed by gradient (P > 0.05). At a gradient of 8%, there was a larger IFE between 45 and 225 and larger DC, compared with 0% and 4% (P < 0.05). The onset of muscle activity for vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, gastrocnemius lateralis, and gastrocnemius medialis occurred earlier with increasing gradient (all P < 0.05), whereas none of the muscles showed a change in offset (P > 0.05). Uphill cycling increased the overall muscle activity level (P < 0.05), mainly induced by increased calf muscle activity. Conclusions: These results suggest that uphill cycling decreases cycling gross efficiency and is associated with changes in pedaling technique.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)920-926
Number of pages7
JournalMedicine and Science in Sports and Exercise
Volume45
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013

Cite this

Arkesteijn, Marco ; Jobson, Simon A. ; Hopker, James ; Passfield, Louis. / Effect of gradient on cycling gross efficiency and technique. 2013 ; Vol. 45, No. 5. pp. 920-926.
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Arkesteijn, M, Jobson, SA, Hopker, J & Passfield, L 2013, 'Effect of gradient on cycling gross efficiency and technique' vol. 45, no. 5, pp. 920-926. https://doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0b013e31827d1bdb

Effect of gradient on cycling gross efficiency and technique. / Arkesteijn, Marco; Jobson, Simon A.; Hopker, James; Passfield, Louis.

Vol. 45, No. 5, 01.05.2013, p. 920-926.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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