Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts
21 posts • Page 1 of 1
Depends upon what you are trying to acheive. It is not necessarily a decision about performance as a cyclist would tend to make a few upgrades, even for modest budget that would directly improve performance, though there could be other reasons for doing so.
It's a powertap... you could put it on a $5 bike then 5 minutes later have it on a $5K bike... so if you want constant power data for all rides then of course you would.
Up to you what you want on your bike. If you can justify it to the missus I say go for it.
My powertap training wheels (Mavic Open Pro laced to Elite+ hub) are often on my old steel training bike a 20 year old Giessauf Ultimate frame with a 2nd hand 5600 105 group set, that cost me about $400 to build up + wheels
Even raced on that bike with those wheels
Power/Tap/Metres are a waste of money for Joe blow. Elite cyclists yes, for fine tuning but otherwise no!
I don't suffer fools easily and so long as you have done your best,you should have no regrets.
Just be glad the HRM fad lasted long enough to make them dirt cheap
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
London Boy 29/12/2011
I am not a elite cyclist, probably not quite a Joe Blow either. Been racing a year, can't easily train by HR as I am on beta blockers (also causes problems training by perceived effort and lesser extent training with power).
I do find a power meter a very useful racing and training tool, particularly when:
1) Riding a TT - can manage your effort over 16, 25 or 40km
2) Riding on the front or off the front of the bunch - again you can manage your effort
3) Great training tool once you know how to use it properly, identifying weakness, targeting areas you need to improve in.
So for me definitely not a waste of money.
All TTs and race distances, are about average speed calculations, you can do the same with a speedo and a stop watch!
Do you see them using one in a pursuit or a time trial on the track..nup
If you can't read your legs, in a race or training, then you really don't have a clue on riding.
Like I have previously stated, for elite level and to fine tune yes!
Ummm... aren't they illegal for racing on the track?
But in training...
I would also argue that every tt no matter what the distance is about measuring you effort... your average speed can change due to many things, but your effort will stay the same... how is average speed going to help into a blaring headwind or having a hurricane up your arse?, speeds and efforts vary during tt's, how would you know what average speed to hold unless you had done a perfect effort on exactly the same course in exactly the same conditions?
You don't happen to work for the UCI by any chance?
Not illegal on the velodrome. Just not allowed to see the screen as it is deemed a pacing tool...
http://www.bikeradar.com/road/gear/arti ... nes-33634/
My pursuit bike has a bracket under the seat like those above. For other races I just tape over the screen when racing which passes any commissaire scrutiny.
Naturally the road and TT bikes can have the screen visible.
So wind is not a factor in a TT? Did you only race in velodromes?
My best performance compared to my fellow club member on a 16km TT was on hot blustery afternoon. When I rode the 8km out at 255 watts and 32.5 kph into a 25 kph gusting to 35kph headwind. The 8km back at 245 watts and 42.5 kph, for a new PB, most my club mates did not get within 30 seconds of their target times. Some where over a minute off.
I assume most tried to stick to a decent speed on the outward leg, where as I stuck to effort not speed. So I was reasonably fresh from the return leg, unlike other who turn for home spent.
No road as well
This is the part where you should know your legs and ability!
Of course your average speed will be different in different conditions, you will never be able to do the exact same time if your riding in different conditions for crying out loud.
Maybe we trained smarter when I was racing due to not having all this electronic parafernalia that's around now. If you can't read your legs and perceived effort then there is something very wrong with how you train your body.
Some people (even very goo riders) are not naturally good with pacing (even elite pursuiters make basic pacing mistakes), and so can benefit from use of a power meter to calibrate their sense of perceived exertion, and learn that skill far more quickly than by trial and error.
That was the case with one of my clients, who clearly knew how to ride (he was already a world masters points race champ) but was a poor pacer in timed events. We sorted that out with power data and he now hold two age category world hour records. If left to his own devices, he still exhibits poor pacing tendencies, but is a lot better than he was.
Power calibrates perceived exertion, such that you learn what good pacing really feels like without the meter, and learn how to avoid the common pacing mistakes that even pros still make.
Other people have a greater innate sense of pacing, or learned the craft over many years. The power meter in many aspects of training can help shorten the learning curve significantly.
I agree that this is primarily for those interested in improving performance, but it doesn't matter if you are trying to win the the world road ITT or trying to beat your own PB.
Power meters are not for anyone. If you are a not a pro you don't need one. If you are a pro you don't need one cos you should be able to 'read your legs'.
They don't even work anyways. Pacing to power is a stupid idea. Just go by average speed. Lets say you do Mt Cootha at 20kph av speed. Just sit on 20kph on the easier sections and 20kph on the steeper sections. Use your brakes to slow down if you go over 20kph on the easier sections. That way you get a 20kph average. Who needs a power meter?
If you know your average speed just sit on that even if you are going up or down hill. Av speed is what counts. Wind, terrain etc doesnt matter. Av speed determines all. Wattage is a silly way to gauge workload as watts per kg means nothing in cycling. Pro cyclists are picked up for their average speed ability vs watts per kg.
I average 37kph on my commute to the city. 55kph on the back of a bus. If I ride a 55kph behind the bus, means Im fitter than riding at 37kph into a head wind cos my av speed is now 55kph.
Vegan since 2001.
watts/kg is bugger all too. who is faster of two guys with 5watts/kg? the one who weighs 65kg, or the other at 80kg?
which is why Strava segments are a joke - no way to tell how much is wind or draft assist.
Power readings are certainly helpful, but can they forecast power in 2 weeks, or 2 months?
Watts per kg is watts per kg on a climb. They will both be riding together if they can both hold 5 w/kg. On the flat it would be whoever is more aero at the same watts per kg.
You can tell if someone is drafting a motorbike, bus or car on strava as the segment will be stupidly fast. Increasingly, riders are using power meters and HR data to confirm their effort on Strava.
Vegan since 2001.
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