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  1. Hi I am using Ultegra R8000 Dual sided PM, I got it last year in August, in October Stages replaced the left crank arm because of calibration issues. On Saturday I found that only my right side recorded data, went home, replaced batteries, updated the firmware to version 1.6.8. On Sunday's ride it was only picking up left, and power was a lot lower than what it should have been, as after 60km my NP was only 100 Watts. I deleted my PM from my Garmin, when I tried to add it again my ANT+ code was completely wrong. And didn't connect to my Stages at all after that. Has anyone ever experienced something like this? I would love to UPGRADE to something more reliable, but unfortunately with the current Economic challenges it's a bit of an expensive thing to do. So would like to get what I am using working again for time being? Any advice would be appreciated.
  2. Afternoon Hubbers! To those who own or have owned a Powertap wheelset, specifically the G3 ANT+ model, how does one do a software update? I have downloaded, just for the sake of the update, Poweragent. Then I remove the G3 cap from my rear wheel, which has a mini-USB port. I don't know what kind of cable to use to connect to my PC? I used several cellphone charger cables but the computer does not recognise it. Thanks!!
  3. Hi Hubbers! So this product popped up on the FB feed this evening.. http://www.powerpodsports.com/ What the heck?!
  4. Hi Hubbers I’m new to when it comes to power meters :-( Looking for one that will fit my Sram XX1 Eagle groupset, what is the options available? And then....... Do you get a power meter that you can use on your MTB & Road Bike? Don’t want to buy 1 for each bike, is this possible?
  5. Hi Hubbers.... Does anyone know off virtual spinning classes available online or Tablet Apps where you can subscribe and do some indoor spinning sessions? Don't have a smart trainer so only something I can do with normal spinning bike and add some fun and decent workouts ?
  6. I found IQ Square Power Meters and their tech seems to be promising and comes in at a price point that most people can afford. I'd be interested to see some reviews once the devices start shipping in March. Has anyone ordered one?
  7. Cycling is a fairly unique sport due to the ability to be able to get a direct measure of workload. Power meters have been around for a few decades already and are able to measure your power output in real time during training and racing. Immediately after the power meters were first released to the consumer market, they were extremely expensive and heavy, use was limited to certain professional cycling teams and others that could afford them. Recent advances in technology have seen power meters become cheaper and as a result their popularity has increased among cyclists of all levels. In this article, we will provide some insight into how we use power meters with our athletes. Click here to view the article
  8. There are really two ways in which your power meter can be used. Setting the training intensity during interval training. Most cyclists who are introduced to power meters fall under the mistaken impression that the most effective use for their power meter is in setting the intensity. However, this might not always be beneficial (which we will highlight below). Collecting data for analysis after your training. Cyclists love data and if we can measure it, we probably will. However, data is only really valuable if it is correctly interpreted. Power output helps cyclists and their coaches monitor training load and, most importantly, progression. Using the power meter to collect data for later analysis is the more effective strategy. Using the power meter to set training intensity: Before the advent of power meters, most elite cyclists used heart rate as a measure of training intensity. Heart rate in a laboratory setting is almost always linearly related to power. i.e. as power output increases, so does heart rate and the rate of increase stays consistent. It was therefore a useful way to set specific training zones based on a laboratory test done at the beginning of the season in a performance laboratory. However, out in the field (on the road or trail) there are many factors that affect the relationship between heart rate and power. These include dehydration, temperature, altitude, fatigue, caffeine intake, stress and body position. Together these factors can change heart rate by up to 25 beats per minute for the same power output. Power meters measure the amount of work done while cycling. Power output, measured in watts, is the product of force and angular velocity. Power is not influenced by environmental conditions, fatigue or any other factors, which makes it a less variable measure of intensity than heart rate or rating of perceived exertion. Does that mean you should only use power to prescribe training intensity? Although power is a very objective and reliable measure of intensity, doing intervals based on power may not be the most effective strategy. A study conducted by Dr Jeroen Swart at the Sports Science Institute of South Africa examined improvements when training by power or heart rate. They took 21 elite male cyclists and trained them using either power or heart rate prescribed interval sessions. Before and after a 4 week training period, the athletes completed a VO2 max and peak power output test as well as a 40km time trial. To ensure that they had all performed exercise at the same intensity, the average training power outputs and heart rates from all the training session for each group were compared. They were identical. When the performance tests were compared, the peak power output tests showed that the heart rate group had improved by over 5% while the power group had improved by only 3.7%. Analysis determined that the heart rate based intervals were 60% more likely to result in improvement than the power based intervals.If both groups trained at the same average intensity, how can that be? Well, another often cited deficiency of heart rate monitors is the lag between the increase in intensity of the exercise and the increase in heart rate. This can often be as long as 30 seconds. As a result, the heart rate group had performed intervals where the initial power outputs were very high in an attempt to get the heart rate up to the target. Later in each interval, the power outputs dropped off significantly, ending up much lower than that of the power group. The power group, as expected, churned along at an even intensity for each interval. The hypothesis is that this initial surge in the heart rate group could have been responsible for the extra training effect of using heart rate. That said, using power to prescribe training intensity can allow the athlete or coach to progressively increase the target intensity and when this is done appropriately, it can force greater improvements in performance. A power meter can keep you honest during your training and prevent you from soft pedalling during your intervals. If you see your power output starting to drop towards the end of your interval, you are more likely to try and put in a little more effort to keep it at the target wattage. At Science to Sport we use both heart rate and power to prescribe training, depending on the specific session. Setting the right intensity requires analysis of the training data to ensure progression and avoid excessive fatigue. Analysis of your training data: Power meters turn your bike into your own mobile testing laboratory The reliability of power output data you record during a training session makes it a great variable to be able to accurately measure and monitor improvements in training status. If you are able to produce more power over the same time interval, then you are responding favourably to your current training load. While speed up your local climb can be a used as a more crude measure of progression, it will be influenced by wind, temperature or trail conditions if you are on a mountain bike. Power meters turn your bike into your own mobile testing laboratory and allows you to perform your very own performance tests every time you repeat a standardised training session.Power meters are great for race analysis too. If you are working with a coach or perform all your analysis yourself, race data may allow you to determine what went wrong during your race. Did you go too hard too early? Did you make too many surges early on in the race that you paid for later? How did you pace yourself during the race? In addition, knowledge of the amount of work done (in kilojoules) during your training can allow you to fine tune your nutrition to ensure that your energy intake is matching your energy expenditure. How do you monitor training load with a power meter? Once you are recording all your training sessions with a power meter, you are able to plot an accurate Performance Management Chart (PMC). There are a number of different applications that enable you to plot a PMC; such as TrainingPeaks, Golden Cheetah and others. The variables plotted on a PMC include your chronic training load (CTL), acute training load (ATL) and training stress balance (TSB). These are defined in the glossary below.The PMC will give you a snapshot of your fitness (CTL) and how fatigued you are likely to be (TSB). How high a CTL to aim for is dependent on many factors such as your training history, age, work related stress and others. A top professional road rider might aim for a CTL of 100-130 while your mid 40’s exec / weekend warrior will be best off with a lower value such as 65 or 70. How can I ensure that my training load is sufficient? Analysing individual session data will be able to assist you in establishing if your current training load is sufficient to produce optimal gains. Analysing training data will allow you to assess progression. Are you managing to produce a higher average power output for the same interval session? If not, why not? Are you training too hard and not recovering? Do you need to train harder? That’s where an expert coach will come in. They have years of experience and often first hand knowledge through their own racing experiences to guide your training appropriately.As coaches we use a number of metrics to monitor external training load (the stress applied to the body), but also use other measures of stress to ensure that we don’t miss anything. An example is the Lambert and Lamberts Submaximal Cycling Test (LSCT). This and other tests allow us to measure the internal load (i.e. how you are responding to the load). In the meantime, avoid becoming obsessed with the numbers and remember to enjoy your riding as well. Glossary: Acute Training Load (ATL) is a 7 day rolling average of your TSS scores. The ATL can be loosely regarded as a measure of fatigue.Chronic Training Load (CTL) is a 42 day rolling average of your TSS scores and provides an objective measure of fitness. Functional Threshold Power (FTP) is the maximal average power output that you can sustain for an hour. This is the value that the PMC uses to judge the intensity and load of any training session. We at Science to Sport establish your FTP from physiological testing we perform in our laboratory, alternatively, a common method of measuring FTP is to do a 20min maximal effort and to multiply the average power of this effort by 0.95. Training Stress Balance (TSB) is the difference between CTL and ATL and provides an indication of ‘freshness’. Negative TSB values indicate that some acute fatigue may be present. Training Stress Score (TSS) is a score assigned to each training session to quantify the stress of the session. Riding at your FTP for one hour will produce a TSS of 100 points. The algorithms built into the PMC will assign an exponentially higher TSS for efforts that are above your FTP. About the author: Science to SportScience to Sport bridges the gap between scientific research and sports men and women in the field.Utilising scientific tools and experience gained through research and practical involvement at the highest professional and scientific level, the experts at science to sport are able to provide athletes with scientifically validated methods and products which they can use to their advantage during training and competition.
  9. Hello, I am trying to install a Pioneer power meter on my Dura Ace 9000 left crank and it runs into my rear brake caliper. Go me for not doing my research or thinking about that when searching for one. Anyways, the brake caliper is a Shimano Ultegra(see image). Any help or suggestions on the matter would be great! Maybe a spacer on the crank or a new brake? Any suggestions on low profile brake calipers that will make sure it does not run into the left crank? I have a Scott Solace bike for reference. Thanks,
  10. I am looking for a local bike shop that is able to change the battery of a Powertap G3 power meter hub with the proper hub cap wrench in and around Cape Town please?
  11. The P1 measures cadence through a digital encoder, as there isn't an accelerometer. As with all PowerTap power meters, accuracy is claim to be +/- 1.5 percent. Communication with other devices is either through Bluetooth Smart (aka 4.0) or ANT+. The pedals are fully plug-and-play with the AAA batteries giving a claimed battery life of 60 hours. The right pedal is a "slave" pedal that passes it's data to the left pedal to transmit to the head unit. Each pedal has a LED indicator that will flash green once woken and connected or red in various patterns if there is a problem. When battery life reaches 20%, the P1 sends a low battery flag to your head unit, this warning should help prevent complete loss of battery. If the right pedal battery dies, the left pedal will double its output to create a power reading. If the left battery dies, there will be no power reading. Each pedal houses eight strain gauges in the steel axle, spinning on two needle bearings and one case bearing. According to PowerTap, the bearings should be good for many thousands of miles, but you can’t service them yourself. Serviceability is limited to external wear items like the claw, spring, pedal plate and battery cover o-ring. All other internal wear components must be serviced by PowerTap.In addition to the strain gauges built into each pedal there is a "Multipole Ring" sensor with 20 magnets positioned around each pedal spindle. This measures the application of force throughout the entire stroke and identifies dead spots and pedal-stroke inefficiencies. To date, PowerTap is yet to find a way to display this data, but they are working on it and it's certainly exciting to know the tech exists and comes already build in. A green LED indicates that the pedals are on and connected. It turns red when there are complications. Specs Weight: 398 grams (Actual weight of 421g on our test pair) Thread Type: 9/16″ Cleat Interface: 3 bolt Cleat: Red, 6 degree floating Spring Type: Adjustable Elastomer Proven PowerTap accuracy Release Tension: 6-20 Nm Stack Height: 14mm Centre of Pedal: 53mm (measured from crank to pedal) Lean Angle: 25.5 degrees (based on 175mm crank length, 75mm BB drop and 147mm Q-Factor crank) Firmware Updates: Over the air Connectivity: ANT+ and Bluetooth SMART Battery: AAA Battery Life: 60 hours WARRANTY: PowerTap 2 Year Warranty Recommended Retail Price: R17,995.00 Accessories PowerTap Joule GPS+ ANT+ allows the unit to connect with power meters, heart rate straps and other devices and sensors. With Bluetooth, the Joule GPS+ can do a wireless upload to PowerTap's mobile app, which in turn can be linked to auto-upload to popular training sites like Strava and TrainingPeaks. With about 80 hours of internal memory your rides and info will remain safe until you next make it to your computer to transfer the data. The PowerTap Joule GPS cycling computer allows you to upload routes and receive turn-by-turn directions while riding your bike. To do so, create the route using any popular map creation software or website, export the route in .GPX or .TCX file type, and upload to the Joule GPS using PowerAgent.The Joule GPS+ was a joy to use. Simple to set up and understand, taking no time away from riding your bike. Pairing devices was quick and painless and once a connection was established it was rock-solid for the duration of my training. I didn't use the turn-by-turn navigation often, but when I did it was accurate and can be a bonus to riders training a specific route or when out exploring on your bicycle. The screen and the data views are highly configurable. In direct sunlight it does suffer a bit, but not to the extent where you can't see the display. It's route logging is accurate and the GPS signal is solid once acquired. VAM - How quickly the rider is climbing a hill. The rate of ascent in meters/hour. This feature is most effectively used in interval mode. Start an interval at the bottom of a large climb. Stop the interval at the top. See how quickly you're gaining elevation. Normalized Power (NP) - An estimate of the power the rider could have maintained for the same physiological "cost" if the output power was constant. IF - Comparison (ratio) of a ride's normalized power to the rider's threshold value. TSS - Training stress score: an estimation of a ride's total difficultly based on glycogen burned. For more definitions and information, you can visit PowerTap's Glossary. Specs Unit dimensions: 48mm x 69mm x 22mm Display size, WxH: 30mm x 37mm Display resolution, WxH: Combo Dot Matrix Weight: 75 grams Battery: Rechargeable Lithium Ion Battery life: 17 Hours, typical Mount: Front of bar/Stem/Handlebar ANT+: Yes Bluetooth SMART: Yes Memory: 40 Hours second by second Downloadable: Yes – includes power, altitude, TSS, normalized power and other critical power training data Barometric Altimeter: Yes GPS: Yes Accepts data cards: No Intervals: Yes 1 second ride data: Yes Ride Reports: Yes Ride History: Yes History w/Current Ride Comparisons: Yes Workouts: Yes Extras: Out front mount, Stem/handlebar mount, Download/Recharging USB Cable, Quick start guide Recommended Retail Price (Joule GPS+ with PowerCal): R4,995.00 PowerTap PowerCal The PowerCal is a chest strap that converts your heart rate into an ANT+ watts signal that can then be displayed on the CycleOps Joule or any other compatible unit. The calculation is done using an algorithm which quantifies your effort on the bike, providing a real-time 'wattage' number as you ride.Specs: Signal Transmission: Bluetooth Smart (Cycling Power Service, Heart Rate Service, Device Info Service) or ANT+ (2.4 GHz) Operational Temperature: 0-40C/32-103F Battery Type: CR2032 Battery Life: 400 Operational Hours (Bluetooth); 600 Operational Hours (ANT+) The PowerCal is not a waterproof device and should not be submerged in water PowerCal BLE is compatible exclusively with the PowerTap mobile application on iPhone 4S or higher. PowerCal ANT+ is compatible with android and iPhone/iPad devices with use of appropriate ANT+ adapter key PowerCal ANT+ is not compatible with cervos (little yellow computer) or older grey indoor cycle consoles. Recommended Retail Price: R1,495.00 I found the PowerCal a bit gimmicky. I think it will offer a rider a step into power training without the relatively high cost of a power meter pedal, hub or chaining, but for the serious athlete it is not accurate enough. By their own admission PowerTap say that the PowerCal is not as accurate as a power meter and is not intended to replace one. They say that research has shown varying degrees of accuracy based on individuals and types of riding. Fitting the P1 to a bike The pedals are calibrated at PowerTap’s US manufacturing facility and installation is the same as fitting regular pedals using a 8mm Allen key - no need for special tools. If you would like to use a torque wrench, make use of your crank's torque guide. The P1 pedals automatically detect the installation angle, accurate to within 0.5 degrees, and they also learn the crank arm length after a few revolutions using the built-in gyro. The pedal knows its position in the stroke, as the gyro gives a precise north/south tracking. PowerTap recommends that you manually zero the pedals before each ride.Release tension can be set using a 2.5mm hex wrench to adjust between a range of 6 – 20 Nm. The P1 pedal's stack height is 14mm, which is about 3-5mm greater than some other popular pedal systems on the market, so remember to account for this with your saddle height when moving to the P1. Elliptical or oval rings are supported with the P1. The P1 takes 40 individual angular velocity measurements and subsequently 40 power measurements per pedal stroke. Any acceleration/deceleration within a pedal stroke would be measured. Compare this to some other systems that assume constant angular velocity, which typically reports higher power when using non-round rings. On the Road Out on the road, the pedals work very well and in general use there is nothing that will give away the fact that they are not ordinary pedals. Clipping in and out is positive and, depending on the cleats you opt for, there is a good amount of float. PowerTap has ensured the pedals can stand up to plenty of abuse by testing them to extremes - from underwater to high weight loads, and they are confident the pedals can cope with whatever the most demanding cyclist can throw their way. To increase longevity, the metal plate on top of the pedal is replaceable. Once you have the Joule's screen set up to display the fields you would like to view, all you have to do is get going. The Joule GPS+ will start recording your ride as soon as it picks up that you're moving and, as explained above, the P1's will pick up crank arm length and exactly where it is in the stroke thanks to it's host of build-in sensors.Live left / right analysis while riding is great feature over and above pure power figures and that alone gave me enough to work on during the review period. It was especially interesting to see that one leg drops a greater percentage of power when the fatigue sets in. This information will not only help cyclists improve general strength and endurance, but help athletes recover from injuries and ensure that they do not put unnecessary strain on their legs or knees while recovering. Ground clearance is a non-issue to me and should be for most, if not all, riders and so to is the increase in weight (keeping in mind what you gain out of it). I have read comments about their ground clearance, but can't remember ever seeing any road bike rider scraping his pedals going around a corner. If you are that one in a million for whom it may be an issue, chances are that you will end up scraping the side of the pedal before the bottom. Verdict During my time using the pedals I have found them to be very accurate and consistent. There were no signs of spikes or false data on any of my rides, even though I used them in varying temperatures, on the road and on an indoor trainer. The pedals and accessories as tested are well made and the perceived quality is high, leaving me with the impression that it will last for many a season of riding and training.Having access to cadence, power, heart rate and left / right power data while training opens up a plethora of training options. You can now monitor strength training, efforts during high intensity interval training, look after yourself during recovery rides and work on not only increasing base fitness, but ultimate strength and peak performance too. All of this in an easy to use and set up pair of pedals and cycling computer. Left to right: Shimano PD-R540, PowerTap P1, and Look Keo 2 Max. ProsEasy to install Can be moved between bikes in very little time Self-contained means less that can get damaged or lost Two-sided measurement Accurate 2 Year Warranty Crash Replacement Policy Connection to head unit is quick and rock solid User friendly ConsPrice? Weight penalty over standard pedals PowerTap app only available to Apple users at the moment From the Manufacturer: These aren’t ordinary pedals. The P1 pedal is a simple, intelligent and uncompromising design that provides the same proven PowerTap accuracy and reliability. The simple one-piece design easily mounts to any crank and does not require calibration nor installation angle setting, providing a true “plug-and-play” experience. The P1 also features dual band ANT+ and Bluetooth SMART for compatibility with a multitude of head units and smart devices. Plus, the independent measurement opens the possibility for a new set of pedaling metrics previously unavailable to help give you the ultimate competitive edge. We’re proud to offer a 2 year warranty worldwide on all of our PowerTap branded power meters. PowerTap P1 user guide.
  12. Offering a unique solution, the P1 pedals by PowerTap are self-contained units, having all the electronics and battery contained in a 196g pedal. As with other offerings, Look Keo cleats can be used, but they ship with with proprietary 6 degree float PowerTap cleats and hardware. They also offer a 0 degree float cleat option as an extra accessory. Click here to view the article
  13. Would you buy a Stages power crank or a 4iiii power crank for R2500 less? I can get a stages for R14500 or a 4iiii for R11000. Should I buy the 4iiii? Both are Dura ace crank arms.
  14. Hi Hubbers! Experience from being an active Hub user has taught me that many of you are doing imports on a regular basis, so perhaps someone can help a brother out (fellow Hubber). He ordered an item from Canada ey, and he was given a message to say that his package is in this country (arrived on the 8th April), BUT upon going to OR Tambo, the security (at international depot) told him that they don't allow anyone to go in and collect at the EMS counter anymore. There is a poster on the security house's window stating that as of Nov 2016 no collection at the counter. Supposedly the security phoned inside there, they got back to him saying he must go to his local post office which he did and, no parcel has arrived. Is he being anxious for no reason, is it still at customs clearance? Your feedback will be much appreciated! An expensive item being eagerly awaited!
  15. I recently bought a power meter and it worked perfectly for a while. I then changed the battery and since then it's become VERY hungry on batteries. I'm a week out of EPIC and now it seems like I need a new battery daily. A friend mentioned once they start giving trouble they eat batteries (as in they don't sleep), but I'd just like to confirm this. Anyone had this issue?
  16. PowerTap P1S The P1S represents a more affordable way to get the industry leading accuracy and reliability that has become synonymous with PowerTap. The P1S features a gauged left pedal and non-gauged right and like other unilateral power meters doubles the value of the single side to get total power. “While not as good as their bi-lateral brother, the P1, it is a great option to enjoy the simplicity and versatility that P1 users have grown to love,” said PowerTap product manager Justin Henkel. “And if down the road a cyclist decides they want bi-lateral measurement, the P1S will be upgradeable to dual-side measurement. There is no better way to introduce someone to power.” Retail price for the P1S is $699 USD (local ZAR still TBC) and will be available in late 2016. For up-to-date information on when the P1S will be available near you, please contact your local dealer or country’s PowerTap distributor. Advanced Pedal Metrics in PowerTap iOS Mobile App With dual-sided measurement, comes a host of new data. PowerTap’s new Advanced Pedal Metrics hands over the key to Pandora’s Box to unlock an entire world of pedal insights. Cyclists with a set of P1 pedals can measure parts of their pedal stroke that have never been measured before. Constructed to emphasize how one pedals a bike, Advanced Pedal Metrics shines a spotlight on biomechanics as it relates to how a cyclist moves their bike cranks and propel themselves down the road. In addition to gaining pedaling efficiency users will also get instant feedback on how position or equipment changes may affect how they pedal their bicycle. Pedaling insights will be shown in a force vector display, a heat map and polar plot. The Advanced Pedal Metrics are part of the new PowerTap Mobile iOS app, now sporting a completely new user interface. The newly redesigned PowerTap Mobile App also features a multitude of new visuals and functions aimed at helping cyclists get the data where they want it. PowerTap Mobile is a free application that can be downloaded to iOS devices from the Apple AppStore.
  17. For the last 17 years PowerTap has been creating the best power meters to give cyclists the edge that they’ve been yearning for. Last year PowerTap shook up the power meter market with the introduction of the P1 pedal power meter, the most advanced power meter ever developed. Today the Wisconsin-based cycling power meter manufacturer introduced two new products into their portfolio of pedal-based power meters. The first addition is a new power meter named the P1S, a single -sided version of the world-renowned P1 pedal-based power meter. The second is the much anticipated Advanced Pedal Metrics for P1 pedal users, available exclusively via the PowerTap iOS Mobile App. Click here to view the article
  18. If you’re anything like me indoor training can be a bit of a chore, but often the sensible option to supplement training through winter. Even with a decent trainer and the distraction of TVs or iPads, I quickly get bored and uncomfortable. Enter the CycleOps PowerSync and their Virtual Training software. Click here to view the article
  19. The CycleOps PowerSync is an electronically controlled resistance trainer. It’s able to simulate changes in gradient, yep, it can ‘make’ hills. And is programmable to create workouts or just increase / decrease resistance at the touch of a button or the tap of a screen. The PowerSync incorporates a power meter accurate to +-5% using the same technology found in the famed PowerTap variety. Coupled with the CycleOps Virtual Training (CVT) software your virtual cycling world expands. CVT allows you to choose from a multitude of interval, profile (hill) and heart rate based workouts, participate in realtime (or delayed) online races and go “out” on virtual video-based rides. Given my predisposition to avoiding indoor training I was keen to put these new tools to the test. Initial ImpressionsThe CycleOps PowerSync is a sturdy looking unit. Although I was testing on a very smooth surface, it has eccentric levelling feet which allow it to be stable on uneven surfaces. The mounting and operation is much the same as other trainers I’ve encountered. The bike is fixed to the trainer via the rear axle using a specially shaped steel quick release skewer. Adjustments can be made to suit the specific rear axle width The solid bolt-action fixing lever secures the bike in place The good news for mountain bikers is that there is a thru-axle adapter available, however it only supports 120, 130, and 135mm axle spacing and unfortunately no 29" wheels. For that you’d need to look at it’s bigger brother, the PowerBeam Pro, although you'd still be limited to a maximum axle width of 135mm. I tested the PowerSync with a standard 700c road bike and a 26" mountain bike (with a semi-slick tire). Both were easy to mount and had ample space on the rolling surface. The roller should fit tyres up to 2.25" depending on the profile and tread, although I'd opt for a smooth tire on the back from a noise reduction perspective. Models: ANT+ vs. BluetoothOur test unit is the ANT+ version and arrived with an ANT+ iPad dongle. This you’d have to purchase separately if the device you’ll be connecting to doesn’t natively support ANT+. There is also a Bluetooth model available, which although you would have an easier time connecting to, wouldn’t be as widely compatible with the majority of current sensors which are ANT+ based. Accessory: Climbing Riser BlockAmong the various accessories available from CycleOps is a Climbing Riser Block which our unit arrived with. This provides both stability and 3-levels of incline with the option to stack multiple blocks for greater inclines. Mounting a bike Mounting your bike on the PowerSync is pretty straightforward. You’ll first need to swop out your snazzy proprietary skewers or thru-axles for the relevant trainer compatible version. In the box you’ll find a standard quick release skewer included, but the thru-axle adapter would need to be purchased separately. The roller contact surface is smooth and visibly wider than most trainers I’ve used. It’ll comfortably support a wide mountain bike tyre, although for any bike a smooth, trainer specific tyre is recommended. With the bike mounted and power connected we’re just about ready to go. On the bikeGetting on the bike I first noticed the sturdiness of the setup. Although in part this was thanks to the climbing block, even without this accessory the PowerSync felt impressively stable thanks to it’s wide stance. The climbing block added noticeable stability upfront, to the point that I was more than comfortable to get out of the saddle and put a far more pressure on the bars than I'd dare to before. When the wheels start turning you’ll notice a blue led below the roller which lets you know you’re powered up and ready to connect to the app or another device. CycleOps Virtual Training Installing and setting up the CycleOps Virtual Training app was quite simple and intuitive. The app is available for IOS, Android and PC. For testing we used the IOS version on an iPad with the ANT+ iPad dongle. Although the app is a free download there is a $6 monthly subscription fee to maintain full access to all features, but you can start off with a free trial. Once you’ve registered with CVT and entered your profile details you’re good to go. You can then choose from various options for your indoor workout: Free Ride As the name implies in this mode you can decide how you want to ride. You get to adjust your target resistance as you’d like to either structure your own ad-lib workout or just ride. Profile Training If you’re keen to test your legs on a specific routes or just get some simulated hill training this mode will let you follow a real-world route virtually. The app adjusts the resistance automatically to simulate the ups and downs of the actual route. When I first jumped on the PowerSync I was sceptical about how this would feel. I chose my route, the Col d’Izoard, pressed go and hit the Pyrenees. This route is one of many that includes a video feed. When the video mode is enabled a video of the actual route will play based on your speed. You can either stream the video if you have a decently fast connection or download it beforehand. Sure enough as the road kicked up the going got tough. There is a slight delay between the on screen gradient change and what you feel as the resistance gets applied progressively. I was impressed by the difference. The uphills really do make you work and quickly had me searching for more gears as if on a real-world climb. Virtual Partner If you want a bit of company or some added incentive you can enable Virtual Partner. This feature allows you to select a previous ride from other users and compare your efforts. I did a ride around Gordon's Bay with Dipslick using a ride he'd recorded in 2014. You’re also able to quickly create your own routes based on your own GPS files, however this must either be done via the Virtual Training website or the Desktop version of the software. You can also create your own video routes via the desktop, but this is a little more complex. Workouts Power based training is said to be the most efficient and effective and the CycleOps PowerSync makes this easy for you. The Virtual Trainer allows you to select from various existing workouts or create your own. Each workout is based on a specific metric, either: Power, Power / Weight, % FTP or Gradient %. While you could do the same with a standard indoor trainer and power meter, the visual representation of the workout and on-screen cues thanks to the app take a lot of the thought out of it, allowing you to just ride. For anyone serious about their training or just wanting to make the most out of typically limited training time this is a most valuable feature. You can choose from various pre-existing workouts from other users The onscreen graphs and cues make interval training "easy". Or you can quickly craft your own workouts. Online Race Real time online races are one of the cool-factor features of the PowerSync and CVT app. Perhaps it’s a bit of nostalgia back to my misspent youth playing multiplayer computer games, but for me this is a great way to not only make indoor training more interesting, but create added incentive and commitment. Much like entering a real-world race it becomes all the more difficult to back out once you’ve put your name down. The races take place in real time on a predetermined course and use the data from your trainer to pit you against the other participants. You can compete with real people on the same course, at the same time from anywhere in the world. A group of Hubbers have been avidly running weekly races for some time now. FTP Test Thanks to the PowerSync’s built in power meter you're also able to perform a Functional Threshold Power (FTP) test. This test will allow you to establish your capability and then tailor your workouts based on the results. It also lets you benchmark performances and track progress. Be warned though - an FTP test is not for the faint hearted! The on-screen display mid-test Results from my somewhat feeble first attempt. Without the app: Connecting to a head unitIf you just want to ride or forgot to charge your iPad you can also simply connect to a compatible head unit. Most power meter compatible units will allow you to read power-data from the PowerSync, but wouldn’t allow you to set resistance as you could from the app. For this you’d need the PowerTap Joule GPS head unit which can control resistance. My Garmin Edge 510 had no issues connecting to the PowerSync and pulling in the available of power specific data. ConclusionThe CycleOps PowerSync indoor trainer is certainly not an entry-level trainer nor does it come with an entry-level price tag. Thanks to the workout tools and virtual riding / racing capabilities the CycleOps Virtual Trainer app makes riding indoors a pleasure, until the road kicks up that is. If you’re wanting to be a little more focussed and efficient with power-based training or you’re simply looking to spice up your indoor riding it might be worth stretching the budget for. The CycleOps PowerSync is available from Bicycle Power Trading either via their dealers in your area or direct on their website. Retail price: R11,595 Manufacturer's specificationsANT+ (Model 9912) or Bluetooth Smart (Model 9913) compatible. PowerTap power meter equipped for +/- 5% accurate power readings. Some assembly required. Features clutch knob for perfect roller to tire tension each ride. 2" resistance unit roller allows for 650b, 700c, 26", and 27" wheel sizes. Does not fit 29ers or 650c wheel sizes. Precision-machined alloy roller reduces tire wear and slippage. Noise level at 20 mph is a quiet 69-70 decibels. Electronic resistance unit allows for programmable workouts. Controlled resistance lets you set your slope, power, and other metrics. Eccentric leveling feet allow for easy adjustment on uneven surfaces. Comes on the CycleOps foldable Classic frame with spring loaded, bolt-action lever. This trainer is designed to fit common road and mountain bike frames with included steel quick release skewer and has three settings for rear dropout spacing: 120mm, 130mm and 135mm. Trainer tire recommended. CycleOps VirtualTraining compatible. The PowerSync is intended to be used with an iPad or Android tablet running the CycleOps VirtualTraining application and does not come with a computer. Cadence sensor and ANT+ stick sold separately
  20. So, I've recently treated myself to a pair of PowerTap P1 pedals. I've trained with them both on the road and on my IDT. I love the data and the real time feedback. I've suffered through a 20 minute FTP test and have that score. No problem here. On Sunday, I'm riding the R4V race. It will be my first with the power meter. What advice do the gurus on Bike Hub have for me in terms of using my new kit in the race.
  21. Training is defined as the act of performing a given athletic task with the goal of creating a stress to your body’s homeostasis with the intention to trigger signals to cause positive physiological adaptation. In simple terms, after a training session, your performance will first decrease to a point (depending on how hard the training sessions was) and then will slowly increase until your body has adapted, leading to improved performance. This physiological principle was first described in 1936 by Hans Seyle and it is known as the general adaptation syndrome (Figure 1). Figure 1: A diagram describing effect of training stress upon performance, as described originally by Hans Seyle in the general adaptation syndrome. The general adaptation syndrome and its application to training The simplified explanation of the general adaptation syndrome shown in figure 1 consists of an alarm phase and a resistance phase. In brief, the alarm phase is the body’s initial response to the training stress and may be demonstrated by performing an extremely hard session or effort two days in a row. This will normally lead to a worse performance the second day. The resistance phase is the phase after the body has responded and adapted to the training stress. During this phase a repeated very hard effort will lead to an improved performance.An ideal training program should consist of very hard training sessions which are repeated once you have adequately recovered and are within this resistance phase. There really is no way to know when you are within this phase until you analyse the specific session retrospectively. Frequent analysis will inform you and teach you about your body and how you recover from specific training sessions. It is very important to note that each individual responds totally differently to a certain training stress. For example, you may have noticed when training with a training partner and you both perform the same session on a Tuesday, that when you perform the same session on a Thursday, that your training partner feels great and has improved, but you feel sluggish, tired, and simply can’t sustain the same power as what you did two days before. This is a perfect example of two individuals, who respond differently, and again highlights the importance of analysing data to gain knowledge of how rapidly you recover and adapt to hard training sessions. It is also important to note that when we think about the general adaptation syndrome and stress in the context of training, we can’t exclude the effects of other sources of stress on your body. Stress, whether it is training stress or work stress, accumulates and may prolong the alarm phase, or even blunt the resistance phase. Therefore, if you responded positively to 3 days of rest between key hard training sessions in the past, you may need more recovery if you have had a couple of late nights with a lot of work stress. How to analyse your training session? This leaves us with the question: “How should we be analysing our data to ensure that we are improving?” Commonly, hard training sessions consist of interval sessions. The major advantage of training with a powermeter is that it provides you with an exact objective measure of your performance. You should analyse and plot each interval and calculate your “session average” for the specific sessions. Therefore if you do a 3 x 10 minute interval session, and you achieve 410W, 398W and 388 watts for the 3 respective intervals, your session average is 399 watts. It becomes a bit harder to measure performance objectively when you are not training with a powermeter, because measures such as speed and distance may be affected by the wind and other factors. Below we have included an example from an athlete. Figure 2: A diagram showing session analysis of all 4 minute (typically 6 x 4 minute intervals with 2.5 minutes rest) and 2 minute intervals (8 x 2 minute intervals with 90 second rest) that a certain athlete has performed. These sessions are analysed to ensure that the session average (shown on the figure with a short horizontal line) is improved from session to session. Sticking to a standardised training session which is repeated often allows us coaches to compare apples to apples. It may seem monotonous to some repeating certain sessions, but it is difficult to compare 5 x 5 minute intervals to 6 x 4 minute intervals. For this reason, our library of sessions are often limited and would recommend you do the same for you to be able to repeat certain session to ensure that you are progressing. What should I do when I am not improving? Referring back to Hans Seyle, if training is not bringing on improved adaptations you are either not training enough (in which case you are past the resistance phase and detraining has occurred), or in most cases you simply have not rested long enough.The most common error made among competitive recreational, amateur and elite cyclists is that they simply do not include enough rest between training sessions. Therefore, they are training and performing hard training sessions within the alarm phase before their bodies have adapted from the previous training sessions. This will eventually lead to a downward spiral of performance and may eventually lead to a state of overtraining, where prolonged rest is required. However, not to be alarmed, in most cases simply including adequate rest (days) between hard training sessions and ensuring that the easy days remain easy are normally enough to get most athletes out of their ruts. What about the days between interval sessions? Without spoiling an up and coming article feature too much, the principle of polarized training is also very important. In brief, polarized training implies that your hard rides should be very hard and constitute approximately 20% of your training load. The remaining 80% should remain very easy. Therefore, in support of this principle, and in support of the general adaptation syndrome, ensure that your days between your hard interval days remain very easy and do not add significant training stress. About the author: Science to SportScience to Sport bridges the gap between scientific research and sports men and women in the field.Utilising scientific tools and experience gained through research and practical involvement at the highest professional and scientific level, the experts at science to sport are able to provide athletes with scientifically validated methods and products which they can use to their advantage during training and competition.
  22. Last month we discussed the ins and outs of training with a powermeter and briefly touched on the analysis of training data. This month we will discuss how a powermeter can ensure that your training is actually paying dividends. Click here to view the article
  23. On face value the bilateral power measurement looks to be the InfoCrank’s headline party trick, but delving deeper into the product's journey you realise this is just an ice-breaker. The crank itself has been built from the ground up as a hyper accurate power measurement device. This intent focus on accuracy results in what Verve's President, Bryan Taylor, calls a “set and forget” power meter with no need for further calibration, ever. Designing from scratch meant the Verve Cycling team were able to place strain gauges in such a way that only the force which moves the bicycle forward is measured to optimise accuracy. The use of four high quality strain gauges which are compensated for temperature changes means that accuracy is unaffected by temperature fluctuations. Installation The InfoCrank unit includes the crank arms (available in 170, 172.5 and 175mm), Praxis chainrings (Compact 50/34 or Mid-Compact 52/36) and Praxis M30 Bottom Bracket (options for BB30, PF30, OSBB, BSA, BB86 frames). The crank spider has a standard 110BCD which means you’ll easily find aftermarket rings if those ratios are not to your liking. Also included is a BB tool for the Praxis BB - a nice touch since it’s a unique design. Installing the InfoCrank is no different from a typical standard bottom bracket and crank, which if you’ve got the required tools is fairly straightforward. For our test a threaded BB was used which was easily installed with the included BB tool and a rachet. From here fitting the cranks themselves requires only an 8 mm allen key to secure the non-drive side crank onto the spindle. Included in the box are frame mounted magnets (stick on or BB hanger options) which help measure cadence, but thanks to a firmware update released during our test the need for magnets was eliminated. This was a welcome update as the stick on magnets weren’t sticking as well as they should and seemed a bit fiddly compared to the robustness of the rest of the package. The battery compartment for each crank arm is easily accessible on the outward side of the cranks allowing for easy replacement by the user. Each crank requires two SR44 (Silver Oxide) batteries which, although not that commonly available, InfoCrank say are good for 500 hours and are key in maintaining accuracy over time. From my experience these aren’t readily available at the typical stores you might expect to find standard watch batteries. The more commonly found and same sized LR44 batteries will power the unit as a quick fix, but Verve say won’t give the same level of accuracy as the SR44s as these batteries degrade over time. The best would be to stock up on the SR44 type which are available from various sources online and specialist retailers. The InfoCrank speaks ANT+ and should be compatible with most power capable ANT+ head units. Our test model arrived with the navi2coach GPS unit, which does not come included but is available via the same local agent as either a complement to your InfoCrank or a standalone, fully functional GPS computer (price at the time of publishing: R 4180.00). For the bulk of testing though, I had the InfoCranks paired with my trusty Garmin 510. On the bike Before stepping into the world of power, let’s take a more superficial look at the InfoCrank. Aesthetically the cranks ooze function over form with a chunky, industrial feel. Although I quite like the sturdy matte black look, the forged alloy cranks may not be to everyone’s taste. And no, they’re not available in carbon. Back to the important stuff. The multitude of metrics aside, going for a ride with the InfoCrank is no different from any ordinary ride. I say this, because typically a power meter does mean a bit of a phaf having to zero (re-calibrate) ideally before each ride - at least if you want some kind of accurate and comparable data. In this regard the InfoCrank is absolutely hassle free requiring no calibration at any time. In my case pairing with the Garmin 510 was a quick task. The InfoCranks require a full pedal revolution to wake up at which point the yellow indicator LED on each crank will blink on each rotation letting you know that the unit is running. From there it is paired just like any other ANT+ sensor. Initially the only real set up required is to configure your data pages to display the real time power metrics you desire. In addition to the standard power measurements you would expect, the InfoCrank also delivers individual left / right power balance, pedal smoothness and torque effectiveness. While nice to look at on the bike, if not a bit distracting, the true value of all this data is in post-ride analysis. In this respect the InfoCrank is compatible with all major data analytics and training tools (TrainingPeaks, Golden Cheetah, Cycling Analytics, VeloPro, Strava, Garmin Training Centre). You do still need to know what you’re looking at and, whether via a coach or your own study, proper regular analysis is the answer to truly unlocking the power of all that data. Excuse the pun. Accuracy Without a lab and a few more degrees, a true test of the InfoCrank’s claimed accuracy is just not possible. InfoCrank do make some bold claims, taking aim at the original gold standard in power meters, SRM. In their latest accuracy test the InfoCrank fared incredibly well with a maximum error rate of +-0.57% for loads above 17Nm. To put that into perspective, at the top end SRM claims an error rate of +-1% and most others on the market are in the +-2% range. In other independent, more informal tests (read: a DC Rainmaker review) the InfoCrank delivered on the claims and proved to be supremely accurate. Verdict The obsession over accuracy in the design of the InfoCrank creates a distinct advantage in my mind. And that’s not in the data itself, but rather the true set and forget with no ongoing calibration. The resulting elimination of what could be compounding user error and data drift means the data is more comparable over time, which ultimately is what training with power is all about.Of course the independent left / right measurement brings even more to the party and for those who really want to get stuck into detailed analysis of power balance or each pedal stroke you can. All of this does come at a price though, and cost wise the InfoCrank is up there with the best in the business. Is it worth it? Well that depends. If you plan put the data to good use in your training then yes, if not, it is a rather expensive crankset. Specifications CranksDrop forged 6000 series alloy150mm Q-FactorCrank lengths170, 172.5, 175 (Now), 155, 160, 165 (coming soon)SpindleM30 (Praxis M30 BB only)Bottom BracketPraxis M30 BB option supplied per frameFrame CompatibilityBB30, PF30, OSBB, BSA, BB86Chainrings50/34 Compact Praxis52/36 Mid-Compact Praxis53/39 TA SyriusBatteryUser replaceable, SR44 (Silver Oxide) also 303 or 357Battery life Over 500 hrs (operational)Water resistanceIPX7, resists up to 1m immersionSampling rate256 samples per secondWireless communicationsANT+ protocolPower range0 - 3000 WattsCadence range10 - 200 rpmWeightSpider, spindle, crank arms: 690g Chainrings, bottom brackets: approx. 300gWarrantyTwo year warranty against defectsPriceR22 000Local distributorhttp://www.blsglobal.net/
  24. Verve Cycling’s InfoCrank is a relative newcomer in a growing power meter market. The InfoCrank hit the shelves in late 2014 after six years of development and testing. This crank based power meter delivers what is said to be a super accurate measurement from both the left and right crank arms. Click here to view the article
  25. Hi guys Would love your opinions on this. How important is a power meter for mtb racing/training? I used to race and train way more road, with a power meter but I moved over to 100% mtb. Do you guys think its necessary to get power meter for the mtb as well? Much appreciated.
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