Common Pitfalls in the Group Ride, Part 3: Momentum

The Art of the Group Ride is an interesting site worth spending some time browsing. The three-blog series on common pitfalls of the group ride finishes with this piece about momentum.

While we seldom have a group of more than three or four, when we do, or sometimes even when we don’t, we see some riders scrubbing speed when they shouldn’t and burning energy when it isn’t efficient.

For me, riding a bicycle is always about maintaining momentum. It helps me over the little hills before I know they are hills. I’ve come to actually enjoy standing and powering for a few strokes. Plenty of time to rest once you are over the top–but not at the top. One big momentum killer is the “rest-at-the top.” You’ve been working hard say on a pull and sit up to take a breath at the top. You don’t have much momentum then and you’ll slow severely. By the time you’ve caught your breath, you buddies have already started down the other side. They started the descent with moremementum and likely added a few power strokes before sitting-in to enjoy gravity. And where are you? That’s right, struggling to catch up.

Avoid giving up mementum. The ladies in our group wll crjuise along with us at 15 on the flat but sustain it on the little rises and find themselves slowing without even thinking about it. They should shift more often perhaps. You can stand for a few strokes or shift to an easier gear and spin faster for the same time to achieve the same effect on a short hill.  Sometimes I prefer stading for a few strokes to building up my momentum. When I sit again, I have more momentum to spin easily.  -Corrie

How many times have you found yourself in a bad position in the pack going around a corner or up a hill? And how often during a ride, especially when you’re on the limit, do you actively engage in thinking about the strategy of your position? This pitfall has to do with how you position yourself.

via Common Pitfalls in the Group Ride, Part 3: Momentum.

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