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Amazing(12 posts)

AmazingJim Burton
Jul 20, 2001 1:03 PM
I know this is old news for everyone with OLN, but watching taped coverage of the battle at L'Alpe de Huez today I was struck by just how smooth Lance's spin is. Mainly I am impressed by his standing spin. He spins at such a high cadence while standing and seems so comfortable. You can really tell when the camera pans up from Lance's legs. When the camera is on the wheels and feet, it is hard to tell if Lance is sitting or standing! His standing spin is just as smooth as his sitting spin. This amazes me because my standing form is so choppy and uncomfortable, especially at higher cadences. And, watching Lance as compared to even some of the other TDF leaders is like watching pros versus amateurs. And the control and explosiveness of that same spin as he looks back at Ullrich and just decides to stop messing around. He just simply went faster! I know that sounds a little silly, but to just simply go faster than Jan Ullrich...not so simple.

Just a little drooling.
spinning vs. mashingDog
Jul 20, 2001 1:54 PM
As much as I admire Lance, don't forget that the second fastest (right now) bike rider in the world is a big time masher. If Lance weren't in the race, would we all be trying to emulate Jan's slow, mashing pedaling style? The point is that we have to do what works best for each of us, not just mimic our favorite pro.

Doug
yepJofa
Jul 20, 2001 2:37 PM
I agree. Lance is certainly one of the great cyclists, but I think this is down to his exceptional aerobic conditioning, extraordinary phiysiology, and aggressive ambitions... his pedalling style is, I think, more or less arbitrary. If this was really a more efficient way of riding, then I think Jan, or Indurain, or Lemond, Hinault or even Merckx would have adjusted their pedalling manner accordingly.
Don't Forget...keith m.
Jul 20, 2001 6:25 PM
Lance used to be a masher too. Carmicheal changed his technique. Turned him into a spinner.
spinning vs. mashingJim Burton
Jul 20, 2001 2:45 PM
You're absolutely right, and I should have given proper credit to Jan. Really, I wasn't even talking about how FAST Lance's spin is, but how smooth. I think that smoothness is worth emulating Lance for enough! And, the fact that Lance was able to drop such an incredibly natural rider and athelete like Jan, (something that could be the reverse on any other given day, I should add) who the commentators are calling one of the best riders ever, is a feat also worthy of emulation. The point is that greatness, in whatever form, is impressive. I just happened to be impressed today with Lance.

Not everyone should spin as fast as Lance. But he has proved that a fast spin will work. Everyone should, however strive to spin that smooth, wouldn't you agree?
yup, smoothDog
Jul 20, 2001 2:58 PM
Yup, he's smooth. I guess he rides a lot. :-)

I try to be smooth, but halfway up a 3500 foot mountain my heartrate redlines, I'm gasping for air, my legs are on fire, and I'm weaving deleriously all over the road. Couldn't be smooth if my life depended upon it. Maybe he's in better shape.

Doug
you're right...Jofa
Jul 20, 2001 3:06 PM
..to be so impressed with Lance, he put in yet another astonishing ride. And my heart wants to attribute that, at least in part, to his spin- as that feels like something I can work on. But my head says that it's snake oil. All the experiments I've seen reported- admittedly two or three, max- have shown that spin 'smoothness' has little to do with actual efficiency; moreover that virtually all of the power of a given pedal stroke is applied within only a few degrees of rotation. A 'smooth spin' is one of the most established holy grails of club cycling, but I doubt it's efficacy. If you reverse the proposition, and say that ragged or uneven pedallers are actually wasting energy which the cunning like Lance are conserving, then it starts to look more untenable. Though he looks great on a bike, I put Lance's successes down to the same attributes as the other greats, from the mashers like Indurain through the spinners like Anquetil... massive cardiovascular efficiency.
sorry Doug...Jofa
Jul 20, 2001 3:08 PM
we're obviously writing at the same time, only myself a little behind you.... (I'm not following you, honest)
spinning vs. mashingcycleguy
Jul 20, 2001 8:19 PM
Had Lance not come along we would be talking about what makes Jan win his 5th tour. Everyone, weather an elite cyclist or not, has different physiology. (ms) What makes you go fast does not make me go fast. One can climb, one can sprint, recover, eat garbage, etc., etc. We just happen to be witness's of one of the greats. His style is only his!!
Agree!!!Canidraftyou
Jul 21, 2001 9:42 AM
I work on what ever im weak at. I had a post in the "Racing" asking about Spinning vs. Mashing or Grinding. I have brought my spinning ability up a great deal, as high as 135 rpm's.. Im a large framed large Muscle head kinda guy, and people ask why I spin, WHY! because im weak at it, the same is asked when I climb hills, they often say "LOL you suck at hills" not all true, but I often work hills. We as society often go with the flow, I was "learned" lol, to go against the grain all my life, when playing football. And when lifting weights, the more the resistance the better. Im sure it also applies to cycling, even if im a puppy in the cycling world, I have to believe that we must work on all area's of cycling, before we can capitalize on the area's we are good at. You cant sprint to the finish if your cardio dont let you stay with the pack. For sure, we all need to work on spinning as well as grinding.

Peace out
The "cannibal"...MrCelloBoy
Jul 20, 2001 2:30 PM
I saw a tape once (that you can find for sale) that featured a clip of Eddy Mercx on rollers. He start out at a modest cadence then works his way quickly up to a pretty fast spin. THEN, he takes it up a couple more notches for a while. It's awesome!
Another section shows him pulling away from the field on a climb, much like Lance. There's a shot of a member of another team sobbing on his coaches shoulder, supposedly in despair after attemting to keep Eddy in check.
The "cannibal"...SteveS
Jul 20, 2001 4:55 PM
I have a couple of old tapes with Merckx and the '89 and '90 TDF with LeMond in them that maybe I should look at but off the top of my head, none of them had the kind of impression put on me by Lance the last few days. His ability to stand and spin for such long spans of time amazes me. Today I even found myself feeling sorry for Ullrich when Lance put the pedal to the metal. Jan just hung his head down, mouth agape, and slowly cranked as he was being left in the dust. Sherwin or Ligget said it first, but they noticed the focus in Lance's eyes and he flew up the road. Whatever it is training, technique, mental focus and toughness, surviving cancer, I am impressed. Looks to me like Lance can be a possible new "Cannibal", more so than LeMond ever could have or anybody in recent years. Thanks OLN, glad I got my dish.