The impact of riding posture on competition

Through previous articles ( http://www.pi-feel.com/bnhs,http://www.pi-feel.com/8frn ), we learned how to maintain a comfortable riding posture. However, to achieve good results, the riding postures of riders are often different from those we have discussed before. In this article, let’s go into the classic cycling events and find how their riding postures differ.

Racing

We take the Tour de France as an example.

As one of the most influential events, the Tour de France has various tracks, covering various terrains such as mountains, plains, and hills, so for different terrains, riders adopt different riding methods, and the posture is also different. We mainly focus on the rider’s performance in hill climbs and flat roads.

On climbs, riders often adopt a more forward riding posture. This is because climbing requires a greater power output, and a forward-leaning posture helps lower the body’s centre of gravity and reduce air resistance, allowing the rider to use leg power to pedal more effectively. In addition, the rider will place more of their weight on the front of the bike, maintaining balance through the support of their arms and upper body. Although this posture will increase the burden on the arms and shoulders, it can improve stability and power output when climbing. 

Take Chris Froome’s climb in the Alps as an example. The Alps is a famous climb stretch in the Tour de France, and its steep hills are a big challenge for riders. In this stretch, Froome showed his excellent climbing ability. He leans forward, almost parallel to the ground, to minimize wind resistance. At the same time, his hands gripped the handlebars to ensure the stability of the bike. Except that, Froome’s thigh muscles are well developed, and he can pedal with great force, while his calves are almost perpendicular to the ground to provide sufficient power. This riding posture allows him to maintain a stable speed when climbing hills and gradually widen the distance from other riders.

In flat roads, the rider’s riding posture is more upright. This is because the flat road pays more attention to speed and endurance. An upright posture helps reduce physical fatigue and allows cyclists to adjust the bike direction more quickly and respond to emergencies. When riding on flat roads, riders will distribute their weight evenly across the front and rear of the bike to maintain balance and stability. Their arms and legs will maintain a certain degree of curvature to absorb road vibrations and reduce body impact. 

Take Peter Sagan as an example. Sagan is known for his outstanding sprinting abilities and flat-road riding skills. On flat roads, he usually maintains a more upright riding position. This posture helps reduce physical fatigue while allowing him to adjust the bike direction and respond to emergencies more quickly. Sagan’s hands easily grasped the handlebars, and his thighs and calves pressed the pedals in a certain rhythm to maintain a stable riding speed. During long flat road rides, Sagan will also maintain an efficient riding state by adjusting his breathing and keeping his body relaxed.

Peter Sagan Tour de France race

In conclusion, when it comes to riding posture in competitions, professional riders generally need to face competition results, so the posture will focus on aerodynamics, and the joint angles of the riding posture are more extreme, so if you want to adjust the bike posture for leisure riding, you should refer to a more comfortable riding posture. For details, please refer to our previous articles. (https://www.pi-feel.com/does-your-bike-100-suit-you/ https://www.pi-feel.com/how-to-adjust-a-more-suitable-riding-posture/ )

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