In cycling, cadence (or pedalling rate) is a measure of angular speed representing the number of revolutions per minute (r/min or rpm) of the crank, or in other words the rate at which a cyclist is pedalling or turning the pedals. Cadence is directly proportional to wheel speed, but is a distinct measurement and changes with gearing. In other words, the gearing changes the ratio of the crank's rotational speed (cadence) to that of the drive wheel's rotational speed.

Sigma Sport BC 1606L Cyclocomputer displaying cadence
Bicycle cadence graph

Typical cadence Edit

Cyclists typically have a cadence at which they feel most comfortable, and on bicycles with many gears it is possible to maintain a preferred cadence at a wide range of speeds.

  • 60–80 r/min is a typical cadence for many recreational and utility cyclists
  • According to cadence measurement of seven professional cyclists during three-week races they cycle about 90 r/min during flat and long (≈190 km) group stages and individual time trials of ≈50 km. During ≈15 km uphill cycling on high mountain passes they cycle about 70 r/min.[1]

Cyclists choose cadence to minimise muscular fatigue, and not metabolic demand, since oxygen consumption is lower at cadences 60-70 r/min.[2]

While fast cadence is also referred to as "spinning", slow cadence is referred to as "mashing" or "grinding".

Any particular cyclist has only a narrow range of preferred cadences, often smaller than the general ranges listed above. This in turn influences the number and range of gears which are appropriate for any particular cycling conditions.[3]

Sensors Edit

Cadence can be measured via various types of sensors, for example a simple reed switch and a magnet which detects one revolution each time the crank arm passes a point on the frame, or more advanced sensors based on a force sensor (e.g. pedals), torque sensor (e.g. crank arms) or other types of cycling power sensors.

Presentation Edit

The cadence can be presented on a smartphone via Bluetooth, on an LCD display via cable, or on a GPS or cyclocomputer via ANT+, typically mounted on the bicycle's handlebars.

See also Edit

References Edit

  1. ^ Lucía, A.; Hoyos, J. & Chicarro, J. L. (August 2001). "Preferred pedaling cadence in professional cycling". Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 33 (8): 1361–1366. CiteSeerX doi:10.1097/00005768-200108000-00018. PMID 11474339. S2CID 1014622.
  2. ^ Abbiss, C.R.; Peiffer, J.J.; Laursen, P.B (2009). "Optimal cadence selection during cycling". International SportMed Journal.
  3. ^ Kifer, Ken. "Cycling Cadence and Bicycle Gearing". Archived from the original on 2012-02-04. Retrieved 2009-05-03.

External links Edit