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  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    sit down for climbs?

    for long sustained climbs is it better to remain sitting , provided that i can get enough leverage and spin? (tall seat and long cranks). I also only have one chainring.. not sure if that makes a difference. But i feel like i lose a little bit of endurance when i stand. like, after i stand, i have only a limited amount of time (a few minutes maybe, on a 15-20% grade hill) before i totally lose it and just stop and get off.

    Is sitting generally more efficient if you can keep balanced and keep an even stroke and max power?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Ktse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Sitting is generally more efficient. Standing is good for shorter, but high bursts of power.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Sitting is more efficient. Standing develops more power. Sit when you can, stand when you must. Another downside to standing is that the additional power may cause you to spin out. If it's so steep that you must stand, you really need to finesse the pedals to avoid spin-out. This sometimes requires downward force on both pedals, requiring even more energy. But it's fun when you can pull it off while others walk!

  4. #4
    Reputation: rkj__'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    long, sustained climbing calls for remaining seated. if there are short, steeper sections on the climb, maybe stand for those.
    When under pressure, your level of performance will sink to your level of preparation.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jervana's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Stay seated unless you feel like you need an extra burst of power--then stand...but beware of skidding out.

    One long and steep climbs (25%-30%) on pavement, I sometimes switch off between sitting and standing, only because it feels like I'm working different muscles.

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Kaba Klaus's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Sitting is definitely the more economic way to ride. Obviously you can rest part of your body weight on the seat. So you last longer. Obvious. Right?

    But you can last longer standing if you go a slower cadence, use click-in pedals (clipless) and continue to do a nice round pedalling stroke. I sometimes do a 10 mile climb in a 42/23 configuration. The climb is typically 7% but has +10% sections and ends on some 2 +12% grade miles. (No - this is not the fast way to climb that hill. I am faster sitting and using a 32/23).
    "Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit." - And I agree.

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    standing is faster.. most people dont have the endurance to really climb standing.

  8. #8
    Reputation: Jerk_Chicken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    I alternate between the two. I will challenge Tom'smoto on the generalization. Many times standing, or standing without finesse can overpower the tire, especially on sketchy terrain like rocks, roots, and combinations of both.

    In my case, I remain seated because I'm riding really sketchy stuff and I'm on a 34+ pound rig with only a 32 t ring up front. As I work my way up either long or steep sections, I alternate many times to keep from burning out by standing and sitting during the climb, with the most important thing being the continuity of pedaling.

    I also find myself needing to climb up for 30 minutes to an hour sometimes. Should one stand the entire time for that?

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Joeboater's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    I don't have the endurance to climb while standing except for short bursts. I also ride trails that have 2000 to 3000 feet of climbing. If I hit more than about 95% of MHR, it really knocks me down for the rest of the climb. I'll stand when I have to, otherwise, I'm seated.
    "The quality of the box matters little. Success depends upon the person who sits in it."
    The Red Baron
    I need a better box

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