The way in which you grip your sprint bars is important as it can mean the difference between winning and losing (particularly when races are won and lost by thousandths of seconds).
Incorrect grip position can also leave you in a stalled position in race attacks where you lose fractions of seconds whilst regaining a strong hold before accelerating with race bunches, or handicapping your ability all together in maximising peak forces.
There is a correct way in which you should be gripping your bars and this will make a big difference to your performance, say for instance in time trial events where you need to get out of the gate fast leaving no time for readjusting hand positions before taking off.
The below image highlights the correct grip for a sprint bar setup.
You will notice the following:
There are so many different formulas, services and custom fit guidelines around how to correctly fit your track bike.
So much so, we feel it’s all getting way too complicated than it needs to be.
If you’re new to the sport of track cycling, perhaps you come from a road background, or are new to cycling in general, then we recommend you follow a basic set up guide before getting too fancy with modifications.
So where to once you’ve purchased your track bike?
Once you’ve purchased your track bike, working out your correct saddle position, which includes its height (vertical plane) and setback (horizontal plane) is the first place you will start.
Once this is set, it should then be untouched, as you will work on the rest of the set up once the saddle position is set.
When you’re setting up your saddle, it’s very important to note your flexibility and range of motion at the time of set up. You may need to make small adjustments over...
A stock standard 38 or 40 cm (width) handlebar, sometimes even wider is what you’ll usually get from your supplier in purchasing a new track bike and when you’re just getting started on the track, they will probably do the job.
But as you get more experienced and spend more time on the track, you may want to consider a narrower handlebar.
The popularity of the narrower handlebar - particularly with sprint events and becoming increasingly popular across bunch race track endurance events has a lot to do with aerodynamics and race positions.
At this year’s Olympic Games, you may have noticed some of the top track cyclists, - Jason Kenny, Matthijs Buchli, and Kristina Vogel all flying round the track on very narrow handle bars particularly in the keirin events.
In bunch race events, particularly keirins and scratch races, navigating tight spaces between riders to improve your race position is made easier with the use of narrow handlebars....
How do you change your track gears? Are you getting all the steps right?
For those of you who are having trouble with changing gears fluently, our Head Coach Kerrie Meares offers a video guide to successfully change your gears!
The equipment you're going to need to change your track gears are:
A few weeks ago, we put a blog post together offering tips to changing gears, if you missed it - click here and we'll take you straight to it!
TAKE 2 MINUTES AND WATCH HOW TO CHANGE YOUR GEARS - LIKE A PRO:
Let's talk track bike mechanics...
Negotiating gear changes... pedal changes... general bike maintenance...
It can be a painful experience, especially if you've come from a road background, or no real background at all in the sport - particularly when you need something done immediately.
In this blog we're going to talk gearing and guide you through this common practice that most seasoned track cyclists will experience during training or racing sessions.
The gear chart offers so many multiple combinations of chain rings and cogs.
But what do they all mean? And why should you change gears?
Changing gears gives you the ability to alter your pedalling rates. As gear ratios increase, the need for strength development becomes more important.
Small gears generally will help develop your pedalling efficiency, but may not necessarily give you the ability to maximise your force and speed.
Warm up gear ratio’s are generally much smaller than racing gear...
One of the top questions we get from cyclists relates to gearing.
It’s a question asked in training and competition environments, and is a very hot topic in the cycling world, particularly with the evolution of sports science, multiple disciplines of the sport and diversity of athletes that we’re working with.
In saying that, there are a number of additional variables at play, such as your ability to convert strength into power and speed and transference over to the bike.
For example, if you’re participating in a standing 500m timed event, you need to weigh up your ability to get off the mark against your ability to finish strongly and decide...