In this article, I’m going to talk about what it means when people say you’re running a ten percent gradient in cycle racing. You may not understand what I’m talking about, but if you get into professional cycle riding and start looking at the charts and compare the way you’re doing against other riders, it becomes pretty evident what the significance of that number is.
First of all, to win, you need to be able to ride your bike without putting any pressure on your body whatsoever, and without putting any stress on your joints. And there’s a point at which a ten percent gradient can make the difference between winning and losing, and that’s why professional riders run those charts.
If you look at most professional racing, especially on road bikes, there isn’t that much of a difference between the average and the winning percentage at the end of the race.
Why is that? Because the difference between what the average person can do and what the professional’s average can do is a ten percent gradient. That means that the professional riders are riding at a level of exercise that’s significantly more than what anyone else is riding at. Now, if you can manage to ride your bike as hard as you can, without putting stress on your body, and still win, isn’t that impressive? I think so, and I’d like to explain why.
What is a ten percent gradient in cycle racing?
There’s a lot of reasons why you might ask: What is a ten percent gradient in cycle racing? The answer is mechanical effort. When you pedal, your leg muscles contract, pushing down on the pedals and making the rear wheel spin. When you brake, your leg muscles relax, pulling the back wheel into line with your front wheel.
And that’s it. See how simple it is? Simple in the sense that there’s only one thing to focus on, and that’s your pedal pedaling efficiency. In other words, don’t try to do too much. You should be riding with the pedals as hard as you can because this will maximize your pedaling efficiency. This applies whether you’re going fast downhill or fast up the hill – you should be pedaling hard enough to maximize the speed at which you pedal.
But it doesn’t stop there. To understand what is a gradient in cycling, you need to know something about road surfaces. A road surface can have a high or low gradient.
For example, a road that has a low gradient is smoother, thus more likely to allow people to pass each other easily. On the other hand, a road surface with a high gradient is rougher and more gradual. This means that it’s harder for people to cycle over it. If you ride through a smooth road, you’ll be able to keep your speed up for a longer distance, since you’ll not have to deal with the bumps that are normal on rougher road surfaces. However, if you ride on a rough road, you’ll have a hard time keeping up, since your speed will decrease as you go along.
So, back to the question, “what is a ten percent gradient in cycle racing?” The answer is simple: if you can keep your speed up over a longer distance, you can get further faster. And this is exactly what you need to do when you ride on a road with a low to moderate gradient. When you ride at a constant speed over a gradient, you’ll always want to accelerate, but you also want to pedal as little as possible.
This is the key to the question, “what is a 10% gradient in cycle racing?” If you ride fast enough, you’ll go very far. If you pedal slowly, however, you won’t go very far. Therefore, if you’re looking to go fast in a bike race, it’s important to find a course with a lower gradient and make your moves at a constant rate of speed. This way, you can keep up your speed and not waste energy. You can increase your efficiency by finding courses with low gradients, as well.