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Group Rides(4 posts)

Group RidesPEDDLEFOOT
Jan 14, 2003 7:38 AM
I'm trying to get a weekly group ride organized in my area consisting of some friends and aquaintences that I have.I'm wondering about the average number of people that your group rides are.Right now I'm thinking of 8 to 10 people.Does anybody have experience doing this and can you share any insight or bits of information that might help.
How many people do you usually ride with when in a group?
8-10 is a good number...Brooks
Jan 14, 2003 7:51 AM
Once everyone gets to know the relative abilities of the others, you can get a good paceline going, get some rest in the back, hammer for your turn ;-0 Throw in some sprints, some climbs, and wait for the group (or not). Too many people and the chances of a wide range of abilities and speed increase, likely causing the group to split apart (which can be ok if there is clear agreement).

Other tidbits: have a ride leader with clear authority to dictate pace and etiquette ("this is a moderate paced ride, no dropping, we stop for all stop signs" or "hammerfest, you are on your own if dropped"), make sure the route is well known to the group, communicate, communicate, communicate.

have fun,
Brooks
an agreed upon cruising speedvelocity
Jan 14, 2003 8:06 AM
PEDDLEFOOT your intuition is on target and Brooks makes excellent points.

If you want to paceline, and develop a sense of teamwork, make clear at the outset what the ground rules are. I suggest having an agreed upon cruising speed so that, once you get going, when people pull, they don't speed up (or slow down).
Yep, and if someone takes off don't try to catch themTig
Jan 14, 2003 9:44 AM
In smaller groups under a dozen, don't let one anxious rider who goes off the front or tries to up the pace mess of the whole group's agreed upon pace. A pace range of say, 17-20, 16-19, etc., is good to agree on in advance. Weather conditions can change this range. Make sure everyone knows that it is OK to speak out if they need to slow down and recover. The policy of no one gets dropped enforces a happy and content group to return each week.

A larger group can split up according to the different pace and distance needs. My weekend group starts off with 60-100 riders, and after the pace builds and the different distance routes are taken, you will end up in a group from 6 to 20 riders.

One LBS that hosts rides has a motto, "No Pride, No Shame". That sounds like a good attitude for a group.

Any group over 4 and under 12 or 16 works out fairly well most of the time. Even different abilities can work well together if the ride is pleasant. Stronger riders can stay at the front for longer to get a good workout. They may also choose the ride to be their easy ride for the week. Weaker riders will see the ride as a challenge. Sharing tips to the newer riders is usually well received by them since they are eager to learn and improve.