Archive | Technique

Eddie gets his gear off.

Look Pro: Get Your Gear Off

by / / 96 posts

When you’re a kid, riding with your hands off the bars is something done for thrills, for style, and to impress chicks. As an older, wiser Velominatus, it can be a handy maneuvre to aid removing or donning extra clothing, taking a feed from your pockets, and to impress women (because that’s how adults refer to…

A fellow asthmatic, Ullrich, climbs l'Alpe d'Huez

Asthmatics

by / / 99 posts

Having asthma is kind of like winning the lottery, except it happens to more people and instead of money you win a chronic difficulty in breathing. I wouldn’t say I’m proud to be an asthmatic, but it’s not information I’m ashamed to share. In doing so, I often discover others who are similarly afflicted, and upon…

East Fork of San Gabriel Canyon

Guest Article: The Line

by / / 48 posts

While the shortest distance between two points is a straight line,  for us road cyclists it is usually not the fastest. @RobsMuir ponders this while riding and retains such complex thinking when done with his ride. That is an enviable skill in itself.  VLVV, Gianni    The Line. The right track. To the sprinter it hardly matters,…

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The Bro-Set Experience

by / / 163 posts

I suspect that whoever first put a set of downtube shifters on a bike immediately knew that while it was superior to having the shifter on the seat stay, it was a design that was going to be improved upon. Not only did it require being seated to shift, it also required taking your hands…

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Veloforma Strada iR

by / / 187 posts

A death is a painful thing to experience. Particularly, I imagine, for the one doing the dying. For those left behind, it takes time to mourn and come to grips with the change; it is an unpleasant process, but such is the way of things. The crack in the chainstay of my beloved Cervelo R3…

Stijn Devolder photo: Team Sky

Paris-Roubaix 2013: Ride the Crown

by / / 94 posts

Was Paris-Roubaix the best of the Spring Classics in 2013? Milan-Sanremo was amazingly photogenic, Ronde van Vlaanderen was inevitable but Roubaix was just about perfect. We all prefer the wet and gray “This weather is good for us” Roubaix yet this race’s drama transcended the fine spring day in the North of France. There is…

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Defining Moments: Hood Position

by / / 87 posts

If I spent half a summer riding with one hand on the tops and one on the hoods, I spent the other half riding with each hand deliberately gripping the hoods differently. As any young Cyclist growing up in the United States in the late 80s, I had a major thing for Greg LeMond. I imagined Greg…

Pantani always moved Sur La Plaque. Photo via BikeRaceInfo.com

Look Pro: Éclatant de Panache

by / / 129 posts

The Prophet was very clear on how best to ride an individual Time Trial; start as fast as possible and finish as fast as possible. As for the middle, his advice was to ride that as fast as possible. The same can be said of climbing; as we covered in Part I and Part II of…

Scrapped carbon and a torn cleat serve as reminders of a sudden crash.

On Rule #64: The Sudden Drop

by / / 116 posts

The severity of a crash exists on two planes, the physical and psychological. The physical is the most obvious and one we busy ourselves with in the immediate vicinity of coming down. Our bodies need time to heal, our kits may need replacing or mending, and our bicycles may need repair work. For weeks and sometimes months, we…

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The Selection Equation

by / / 26 posts

In order to win one must first make it into the selection. The selection, as it were, can take many forms; a lone break away, a small group, or half the peloton. It can happen within the last 500 meters of a race as it does in a sprint finish or, more rarely, from the…

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Look Pro: The Hunchbacks of Notre V

by / / 115 posts

The flat back position is perhaps the greatest lie ever told in sport, provided you ignore any of the racing we’ve seen in the last decade or two. It is possible, I suppose, that when we talk about a flat back, what we really mean is that on an elementary level, all curves are really…

Something has gone awry here. Photo: John Thompson

The Thin Boundary Between Casual and Deliberate

by / / 137 posts

Cycling and crashing are the kinds of things that come together whenever you liberally combine Newtonian Physics, skill, and overconfidence. In other words, I’ve been falling off my bike for nearly as long as I’ve been climbing on it. One of the more memorable crashes of my youth involved the commute home from my high school…

Sean "Animal" Yates corners on the cobbles.

Anatomy of a Photo: Cornering on Cobbles

by / / 72 posts

A lot of things taken for granted in Cycling go swiftly out the window when cobblestones are introduced to bicycle and rider. The notion that your wheels should both be pointed in the same direction at any given moment, for instance, or that that they should in some way be in alignment with the direction…

The classic gear lever

Changer de Braquet

by / / 153 posts

Some people are supremely good at it, reducing complex situations into matters of simple black and white. This isn’t my particular area of expertise; I enjoy wading through the pools of ambiguity a bit too much to go about bludgeoning this beautiful world into absolutes. In fact, I would venture that delighting in nuance is part…

Its in the loose sleeves

Climbing Weight

by / / 275 posts

When it comes to weight and body dysmorphia, we cyclists can go toe-to-toe with any thirteen year old tween who has done their time flipping through the pages of Vogue and Sixteen. However fit and thin we might be, at some point it dawns on us that we’re not as light as we could be.…

Philippe Gilbert's Legs

Having Good Legs

by / / 83 posts

One great mystery remains in this cycling world. I’ve been a cyclist for over thirty years and I still can’t buy a clue. Remember those rides where very early on, as you roll out of a parking lot, or just away from your house, you notice you have good legs. You need verification and after…

Darkness sets in.

Into The Tunnel

by / / 96 posts

It requires a combination of factors to intersect. You need to have already spent loads of time on a bicycle. Enough so that you have an inherent sense of this odd thing with two wheels; you can make it go quickly or slowly, you can steer it around a corner with ease, you know how the…

Copybook under the arm technique. Photo: José Sandoval/Velorazzi

Spitting Image

by / / 84 posts

When I was but a young Velominatus, my poor mother was often horrified/embarrassed/disgusted by my typical boy’s habit of sucking back the mucous from the back of my throat and swallowing it… yes, I know, now you’re disgusted too. Taking me to seek a cure from the good Dr Edwards, he let her down somewhat…

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Guest Article: The Fine Art of Pedaling

by / / 72 posts

Keeper Jim and I came across Meg Fisher during an icy-rain Rule 9 training ride on Mercer Island in March. The first thing that struck us was that there was a good rider up the road, one of the few braving those cold, wet, early morning hours. It wasn’t until we caught up to her that…

Shouldn't you have sorted this out already?

Look Pro(phetic): Muck Around with Your Seatpost

by / / 153 posts

I have a friend who is borderline OCD. He’ll sometimes wash his hands dozens of times a day, doesn’t like sticky stuff, cats drive him to antihistamine hell and there is a place for everything, with everything in its place. This can be annoying, not only for those around him, but especially for himself. It’s…