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cyclocomputers(7 posts)

Oct 5, 2001 5:27 PM

i'm a fairly new rider but i thought that a computer may help me train. i was considering the vetta rt77 ( because it has cadence; at the moment i'm not sure if i could be riding more effectively. any other suggestions? thanks

Skip the Cadence feature...Cima
Oct 5, 2001 6:04 PM
And go with a Heart Rate Monitor instead. You will get a much better idea of how hard or not you are riding.

I have found the Vetta computers to be reliable, and they have all of the necessary features needed in a cyclometer. They are also fairly accurate when properly configured for wheel size.

absolutely agree w/ cimajacques
Oct 5, 2001 6:25 PM
A computer cadence readout will lock your brain you into meaningless numbers. Optimum cadence is a matter of feel. It changes with your fitness level, the terrain, the group you're riding with, the wind - a hundred things. Best way to achieve good cadence is to ride behind someone smooth and fast, watch their feet and match their rate of rotation by going through your gears.

If you need to know a number, once a week count how many times one foot comes around in 15 seconds and multiply by four. Write it down in a log. A smooth 100 is very good for a beginnig rider.
I'd say that cadence is important...nigel
Oct 5, 2001 6:16 PM
...especially for beginners. When I started out, I had cadence, and I feel it helped me greatly to pedal efficiently. I found out that pedaling 85-100 rpm was quicker than what felt normal for a little while. I'd been pedaling about 70-80, pushing too big a gear too slowly, which slowed me down.

At this point, I don't use a cadence computer, since I can usually gauge my cadence accurately if I feel the need; it's normal to pedal efficiently now--didn't take all that long, either.

I agree that a heart rate monitor is an amazing tool, but I'd advise a new rider to stay focused on pedaling in circles (pulling up and pedaling smoothly), pedaling at efficient cadences, getting comfortable on the bike, and working on climbing and/or sprinting technique--for the fun of it; don't knock yourself out initially. Enjoy riding and putting in the miles. As you get more and more serious--and feel confident and comfy on the bike--you can "graduate" to a heart rate monitor. I'm actually glad that I didn't focus on heart rate and effort initially--I appreciate it much more now, and use it much more wisely that I don't have to worry about technique, cadence, and positioning.

I use a Sigma Sport PC-14 with great pleasure--and results, by the way. :) A super buy for $69.99 at Even gives you calories burned!

Have fun, and get the cadence computer!

absolutely agree w/ nigelElefantino
Oct 5, 2001 7:11 PM
I use both my Flight Deck (which has virtual cadence) and my CardioSport, and I've been riding for years. It's like watching your speedo and your tach. You can get used to it.
Oct 7, 2001 9:42 AM
Cadence is one of the biggest areas for mistake for young riders. The most common is mashing too big a gear at too low a cadence. Hard on knees, taxes one's ability to learn to ride really long mileage, overproduces lactic acid.

I could not agree more strongly that one's first cyclocomputer should include cadence. When I first began riding seriously 10 years ago, a cadence adapter helped me really take my cycling to a new level. It largely dictated when and how I shifted. While I don't use one anymore, I don't think I could have acquired that improvement in technique without being able to monitor cadence, or at least it would have required a lot more guess work.

You'll ride faster, more comfortably, longer, with easier recovery once you get cadence down.
re: cyclocomputersslanham
Oct 5, 2001 7:08 PM
I also like the cadence feature, especially for a beginner.