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-   -   Velocity Based Training (https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=1183745)

acslater55 09-16-19 11:41 AM

Velocity Based Training
 
Anyone here have any experience using velocity based training (VBT)? I am thinking of buying a BarSensei to help me out in the gym. It costs $375, which isn't too bad, but I thought I would ask here before I made the investment. It seems like it would have application in helping to figure out what load to use to match the velocities seen during sprinting. Some of these sensors can even calculate peak power and average power, which would also help to figure out what resistance has the best "bang for the buck". It seems it would also be helpful in figuring out your particular "force velocity curve" - aka are your strong and slow vs. weak and fast.

Has anyone used one of these devices? Did it make a difference in your training? Do you think it was worthwhile?

carleton 09-16-19 01:17 PM

Over the years, Iíve bought 3 used CycleOps spin bikes with Power Meters all for under $500 each.

That provided the best match for the real world forced that I saw at the track that I could replicate in my home or gym.

One season, nearly 100% of my training was on a spin bike and it worked. Kevin Mansker was also reported to do most of his training on similar spin bikes when he was in top form.

lean88 09-16-19 09:05 PM

British use a device that record the speed you lift the bar. I see it in some video of Phill Hindes.

brawlo 09-17-19 12:27 AM

I think it's fairly widely acknowledged that the only thing that comes anywhere near a gym workout similarity is a standing start. The reality is that even a slow cadence is in the 70-90rpm range for road or track. Could you imagine moving a bar in a leg movement anywhere near that speed, let alone in the more powerful ranges of 120+rpm. Use the gym for strength development, but if you're chasing similarity, just get on a trainer or the track. It will be a far better use of your time

jfiveeight 09-17-19 01:33 PM

VBT will probably get more popular as the cost comes down and people start utilizing it outside of university and pro sports teams. I pre ordered the RepOne for this, they made OpenBarbell which was a very well received system comparable to Tendo and GymAware (the current top of the line stuff and most likely what British Cycling are using). From the research i have seen, non mechanically attached VBT systems are just not accurate enough.

acslater55 09-17-19 01:42 PM


Originally Posted by brawlo (Post 21125706)
I think it's fairly widely acknowledged that the only thing that comes anywhere near a gym workout similarity is a standing start. The reality is that even a slow cadence is in the 70-90rpm range for road or track. Could you imagine moving a bar in a leg movement anywhere near that speed, let alone in the more powerful ranges of 120+rpm. Use the gym for strength development, but if you're chasing similarity, just get on a trainer or the track. It will be a far better use of your time

Thanks for your reply! That is what I am trying to figure out. Is it worthwhile to do any kind of velocity type training in the gym. Things like plyos or "throw the sled" like they recommend on UpUpUp. It seems like it may have some application to the track, but I am unsure how to really spend my time. I am already pretty strong (squat 405 lbs at 200 lbs body weight). Its hard to know whether to add any velocity training in the gym or to just go ahead and do strength in the gym and speed work on the bike. There seems to be people in both camps.

brawlo 09-17-19 06:12 PM


Originally Posted by acslater55 (Post 21126590)
Thanks for your reply! That is what I am trying to figure out. Is it worthwhile to do any kind of velocity type training in the gym. Things like plyos or "throw the sled" like they recommend on UpUpUp. It seems like it may have some application to the track, but I am unsure how to really spend my time. I am already pretty strong (squat 405 lbs at 200 lbs body weight). Its hard to know whether to add any velocity training in the gym or to just go ahead and do strength in the gym and speed work on the bike. There seems to be people in both camps.

It's more of a case of not looking at it like gym = bike, but rather gym helps the bike.

Training is personal and there's lots of things that just work, and there's lots of things that work for one person and not another. There's lots of evidence to support gym work, both strength and power work, being beneficial to training for cycling. There's lots of people that train everything on the bike using the whole gamut of small right through to big gears and are very fast and they do zero gym work. For me personally, I did gym + bike for a long time. My biggest gains came when I dropped the gym and just did bike work and moved into bigger gears.

pi03k 09-18-19 07:14 AM

That's impressive squat. Do you need to raise it much more? How does it transfer to cycling? What are your times? IMHO I would focus on transfering it to cycling and spend money on power meter, track coach, olympic lifting coach.

carleton 09-18-19 12:04 PM

1: Do in the gym what you cannot do elsewhere. Otherwise, why bother?

2: Velocity meters in the gym when doing maximal efforts will simply be fatigue meters. Basically, "I usually move the bar at X m/s but today I'm down to only Y m/s. This means I'm fatigued or about to get sick." In the same way that power meters are used by sprinters on the track.

3: I feel like velocity based training is probably just a neat use of accelerometers and apps in an "Internet of Things" (IOT) sort of way. It won't actually improve training much as weight training is a very, very mature activity (hundreds of years old) and everything under the sun has been tried already and we have culturally kept the best parts. The only thing is that we have to pick the best program for the individual athlete, that's the challenge. What works for 25 year old Johnny who's been lifting as an athlete since HS may not work for 45 year old Jimmy who is new to lifting and athletics in general.

acslater55 09-18-19 01:23 PM


Originally Posted by pi03k (Post 21127543)
That's impressive squat. Do you need to raise it much more? How does it transfer to cycling? What are your times? IMHO I would focus on transfering it to cycling and spend money on power meter, track coach, olympic lifting coach.


Yea I don't think I need to get much stronger, I really think I need to develop speed/power. My times aren't great, but I am new at this. Last year I rode a 12.8 and 12.3 flying 200. Honestly, I get a little nervous at high speeds and I don't feel like I am giving it my all. I do a lot better in match sprints or group races because I actually feel more comfortable or I block it all out when I am racing against others.


I have a power meter. My peak power is about 1790 and 1620 for 5 sec. Not great, but its a start. I am looking into getting a lifting coach, but I am hesitant on a track coach, more so because I don't know any good ones.

sirjag 09-18-19 01:34 PM

wow this whole indoor nascar thing looks neat yall!

Baby Puke 09-18-19 04:47 PM


Originally Posted by acslater55 (Post 21128141)
I have a power meter. My peak power is about 1790 and 1620 for 5 sec. Not great, but its a start. I am looking into getting a lifting coach, but I am hesitant on a track coach, more so because I don't know any good ones.

Where are you based?

carleton 09-18-19 05:49 PM


Originally Posted by acslater55 (Post 21126590)
Thanks for your reply! That is what I am trying to figure out. Is it worthwhile to do any kind of velocity type training in the gym. Things like plyos or "throw the sled" like they recommend on UpUpUp. It seems like it may have some application to the track, but I am unsure how to really spend my time. I am already pretty strong (squat 405 lbs at 200 lbs body weight). Its hard to know whether to add any velocity training in the gym or to just go ahead and do strength in the gym and speed work on the bike. There seems to be people in both camps.

Understand that "throw the sled" simply means accelerate it quickly using an appropriate load on the sled that's light enough to accelerate yet heavy enough such that you don't throw it into the limit screws.

It's simply an explosive effort. It's common to do these with squats. Not full-on jump squats, just start fast and finish slower at the top.

Plyo box jumps achieve the same thing.

You don't need fancy equipment to get the gains.

acslater55 09-19-19 04:25 PM


Originally Posted by Baby Puke (Post 21128424)
Where are you based?

I'm in Denver

Baby Puke 09-19-19 09:30 PM


Originally Posted by
I'm in Denver

Hmm, seems like there would be tons of choices in a coach so near the OTC in CS, though I don't have any suggestions for you locally. If you're down with internet coaching I'd recommend dropping Lee Povey at Performance Cycle Coaching a line: https://cyclecoaching.net

topflightpro 09-20-19 06:08 AM

Slater - I know some coaches in that area if you want suggestions. Feel free to PM me.

acslater55 09-20-19 12:04 PM


Originally Posted by Baby Puke (Post 21130130)
Hmm, seems like there would be tons of choices in a coach so near the OTC in CS, though I don't have any suggestions for you locally. If you're down with internet coaching I'd recommend dropping Lee Povey at Performance Cycle Coaching a line: https://cyclecoaching.net

Thanks taking a look

acslater55 09-20-19 12:32 PM


Originally Posted by carleton (Post 21128017)
1: Do in the gym what you cannot do elsewhere. Otherwise, why bother?

2: Velocity meters in the gym when doing maximal efforts will simply be fatigue meters. Basically, "I usually move the bar at X m/s but today I'm down to only Y m/s. This means I'm fatigued or about to get sick." In the same way that power meters are used by sprinters on the track.

3: I feel like velocity based training is probably just a neat use of accelerometers and apps in an "Internet of Things" (IOT) sort of way. It won't actually improve training much as weight training is a very, very mature activity (hundreds of years old) and everything under the sun has been tried already and we have culturally kept the best parts. The only thing is that we have to pick the best program for the individual athlete, that's the challenge. What works for 25 year old Johnny who's been lifting as an athlete since HS may not work for 45 year old Jimmy who is new to lifting and athletics in general.

The reason I feel VBT can be useful is for optimizing / choosing a weight that will maximize power output in the gym. Whether it be squat or sled press. Also it can keep you honest in terms of did you actually give maximal effort on that rep, since you get immediate
feedback on peak velocity. This graph (Force Velocity Curve) shows that there is an optimal weight/velocity for power production. Whether training in this zone actually has any transference to the bike....I don't know. It seems that for an individual exercise you could try lifting different weights up to 1 RM and get your specific force velocity curve for that exercise. Once that is known you can extrapolate which weight/velocity for that weight would be optimal to produce the most power. The graph shows a large range for peak power, but this becomes more narrow when you know the exercise you are doing and have some data to go on. I know many of these devices will actually calculate peak power and average power. Whether this is worthwhile (for someone experienced in the gym), I don't know, but it seems like it would be a good way to train.



https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...933c8a6711.png

carleton 09-23-19 01:14 AM


Originally Posted by acslater55 (Post 21130868)
The reason I feel VBT can be useful is for optimizing / choosing a weight that will maximize power output in the gym. Whether it be squat or sled press. Also it can keep you honest in terms of did you actually give maximal effort on that rep, since you get immediate
feedback on peak velocity. This graph (Force Velocity Curve) shows that there is an optimal weight/velocity for power production. Whether training in this zone actually has any transference to the bike....I don't know. It seems that for an individual exercise you could try lifting different weights up to 1 RM and get your specific force velocity curve for that exercise. Once that is known you can extrapolate which weight/velocity for that weight would be optimal to produce the most power. The graph shows a large range for peak power, but this becomes more narrow when you know the exercise you are doing and have some data to go on. I know many of these devices will actually calculate peak power and average power. Whether this is worthwhile (for someone experienced in the gym), I don't know, but it seems like it would be a good way to train.



https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...933c8a6711.png

http://www.relatably.com/m/img/most-...82_540x540.jpg

What if I told you that your body already does all of these calculations for you when you are in the gym under load in real-time with instant feedback directly to your brain?

Basically, and especially with power movements:

- You know when the load is too light.
- You know when the load is too heavy.
- You know when you moved it too quickly.
- You know when you moved it too slowly.
- You know how to make adjustments to the weight based on: Current energy levels, heat, hydration, mood, etc...
- You know how to make use of external stimulation: Posters, mirrors, music, coaches or training partners yelling motivation.

This diagram:

https://cimg0.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...933c8a6711.png

Shows what you did do, not what you should be able to do.

I can also show you a similar graph of what a track sprinter does on the bike with a Torque vs Tangential Velocity (pedal speed) plot.

https://i.imgur.com/SVzkegS.png

I can also tell you what your target peak cadence should be on the bike in order for best performance. It's a magic number that shows up time and again :D

The key to all of the above is to:

- Learn proper technique in order to achieve the most gains and avoid injury.
- Don't do any half-ass reps (at least don't count them)
- Stay focused when you have load on you to avoid injuries.
- Log all of your work with a notepad or a more sophisticated app.


How do I know:

- I'm a lead data analyst and data engineer for a living.
- I've been lifting at various levels of frequency and intensity since HS (I'm middle-aged now)
- I've been coached by some of the best athletes and coaches in our sport. (even they couldn't make me faster)
- I've read a lot on the subject of athletic training for sport and particularly how it applies to our sport.

(This doesn't mean I'm right. I'm often wrong here. It just means that my opinion is informed, from my limited point of view.)

carleton 09-23-19 01:45 AM

One word of caution: The gym is a significant, but still relatively small part of winning on the track.

For the average racer who races a fair amount, the changes that come from adding a gym workout are minimal. And having a great gym program, some small gain on top of that. And having the perfect gym program, another small gain on top of that.

Here is a very rough chart that I just made to illustrate how adding gym work makes gains for a trackie (especially a sprinter). A similar chart is in the book Practical Programming for Strength Training used to illustrate a similar idea.

The Y axis illustrates the "gains" a rider will achieve. Basically how fast they are. The X axis is the amount of "Work" put in. The red line is a typical athletes path. Notice how for a given amount of Work, you get gains, but at a smaller and smaller rate. YES they are gains, but at a great cost. If you are at the tip top of the field in this sport, you have to do this to win. But, all of us will achieve a huge percentage of our gains early on.

https://i.imgur.com/idMji6e.png

Having any gym workout (e.g. squats, bench press, military press, all done progressively 3x5) pays off. Getting sophisticated with it won't pay as much.

Minion1 09-23-19 03:16 AM

Those are some awesome posts Carleton, thanks.

acslater55 09-23-19 01:44 PM

Yes, awesome information. Much appreciated and thank you!


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