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Gross efficiency and cycling performance: a review.

Jobson, Simon A., Hopker, James G., Korff, Thomas, Passfield, Louis (2012) Gross efficiency and cycling performance: a review. Journal of Science and Cycling, 1 (1). pp. 3-8. ISSN 2254-7053. E-ISSN 2254-7053. (KAR id:43673)

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Efficiency, the ratio of work generated to the total metabolic energy cost, has been suggested to be a key determinant of endurance cycling performance. The purpose of this brief review is to evaluate the influence of gross efficiency on cycling power output and to consider whether or not gross efficiency can be modified. In a re-analysis of data from five separate studies, variation in gross efficiency explained ~30% of the variation in power output during cycling time-trials. Whilst other variables, notably VO2max and lactate threshold, have been shown to explain more of the variance in cycling power output, these results confirm the important influence of gross efficiency. Case study, cross-sectional, longitudinal, and intervention research designs have all been used to demonstrate that exercise training can enhance gross efficiency. Whilst improvements have been seen with a wide range of training types (endurance, strength, altitude), it would appear that high intensity training is the most potent stimulus for changes in gross efficiency. In addition to physiological adaptations, gross efficiency might also be improved through biomechanical adaptations. However, ‘intuitive’ technique and equipment adjustments may not always be effective. For example, whilst ‘pedalling in circles’ allows pedalling to become mechanically more effective, this technique does not result in short term improvements in gross efficiency.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled keywords: cycle training; biomechanics; pedalling; pedaling
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC1200 Sports medicine
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Natural Sciences > Sport and Exercise Sciences
Depositing User: James Hopker
Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2014 19:50 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 10:17 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Hopker, James G.:
Passfield, Louis:
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