Standing up and stomping on the pedals can give you a feeling of power and mastery. But most of the time, it’s dumb.
Seated climbing is more efficient over longer climbs. You use more muscles when you’re out of the saddle, which raises your heart rate by eight percent – and keeping your heart rate lower is important on longer climbs. Standing requires more energy because you work your legs, arms and back, and you use 12 percent more oxygen and energy.
A long climb is a 1.5km or more, and making the decision to sit or stand depends on the steepness.
Here are five techniques to get to the top stronger and faster:
4. Stay Above 60 RPM
- There’s lots of talk about ramping up cadence because Lance Armstrong used to spin at about 90-100 rpm on climbs. But rather ride a constant cadence of about 85-95 rpm when climbing in the saddle.
- A cadence of about 60-70 rpm is as low as you should go in the saddle. Go slower and you lose your fluid pedal stroke.