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Pedaling Power and Speed Production vs. Technical Factors and Track Difficulty in Bicycle Motocross Cycling

Mateo, Manuel1,2; Blasco-Lafarga, Cristina3; Zabala, Mikel2,4

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: December 2011 - Volume 25 - Issue 12 - pp 3248-3256
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181f90847
Original Research
Press Release

Mateo, M, Blasco-Lafarga, C, and Zabala, M. Pedaling power and speed production vs. technical factors and track difficulty in BMX cycling. J Strength Cond Res 25(12): 3248–3256, 2011—This article analyzes whether there is a determined profile in the production of cyclic and acyclic periods in relation to the phases of a bicycle motocross (BMX) race and whether this profile is related to the variables, Difficulty of track and Techniques used. After an initial test for determining maximum pedaling power (Pmax), 9 athletes belonging to the Spanish national team completed 3 series of 3 different types of races: (a) Complete track without pedaling; (b) Track, pedaling only at the gate start; and (c) track with free pedaling. The triple test was carried out over 3 days and on different level tracks: (a) high difficulty (HD), (b) medium difficulty (MD), and (c) low difficulty (LD). Our results show that average peak power applied in the BMX race was 85.21 ± 2.15% Pmax, coming down to 73.02 ± 18.38% at the gate start and to 51.37 ± 15.84% on the first straight. On the other hand, mean power (MP) in the BMX race is 33.79 ± 8.60% MPmax, with statistically significant differences in relation to the difficulty of the track (p < 0.000; 0.009; higher in the easiest). The mean velocity developed is 34.21 ± 1.0 km·h−1 with significant differences (p < 0.000) in relation to the difficulty of the track. Acyclic efforts accounted for 86.3%, and cyclic efforts accounted for the remaining 16.7% of the overall performance in the race, with differences in relation to the difficulty of the track (p ≤ 0.003). Both power profile and performance (measured as velocity) are dependent on the phases and techniques of the race and are significantly affected by the level of difficulty of the track. The greater the technical level of the track, the lesser the possibility of developing cyclic power and vice versa.

1Miguel Hernández University, Elche, Spain; 2Spanish Cycling Federation, Madrid, Spain; 3Department of Physical Education and Sport, University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain; and 4Department of Physical Education and Sport, University of Granada, Granada, Spain

Address correspondence to Manuel Mateo, manuel.mateo@ymail.com.

© 2011 National Strength and Conditioning Association