Cycling Apps You Must Have For Your Smart Phone

1, STRAVA

Image The app allows you to track your rides through your iPhone, Android or GPS device to analyze your performance and even pitch it against your friends and competitors.  By playing on cyclists’ competitive nature, the app provides motivation even when you’re training alone. Continue reading

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So you feel a little overwhelmed by all those speeds? Not to worry. It’s really very simple.

THE BASICS

Most bikes these days have anywhere from 18 to 27 speeds (gears). Why so many you ask? In order to make riding easier over different kinds of terrain where you might go from slow hill climbing to flat roads, you need a wide range of gears.

Mountain, Cross, Comfort and some Road bikes have 3 chainrings on the crank (that thing where the pedals are). These ‘triple’ cranks provide 3 ‘ranges’ of speeds you can use depending on the kind of riding you’re doing. The inner, smaller one, is for slower speeds and hill climbing. The middle one is for medium speeds on flat roads or small hills. The outer, larger one, is for higher speeds on flat roads. For most riding you will probably be using the middle chainring.

The freewheel (that group of sprockets on your rear wheel) which usually has between 6 and 9 sprockets allows you to make minor ‘speed’ changes within the basic 3 ranges.

But why as many as 9 sprockets? The more sprockets there are on the back, the less change in ‘speed’ there is between each shift.

Back in the days of the 3-speeds, when you shifted the gears there was a big difference in pedaling pressure and rate between the different speeds and you had to pedal harder or ease up more to ‘catch up’ to your normal pedaling rate and pressure depending on which gear you changed to.

But now, with a larger selection of speeds available, those differences are much smaller which translates to a smoother transition between speeds. With a little practice, you can find a pedaling rate and pressure that’s comfortable for you and maintain it without having to play catch up.

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