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Climbing Sat or Stood

cube101cube101 Posts: 19
Hi All,
Just a thought I had on my ride last evening...
I'm trying to build up my fitness, particularly by going up lots of those lovley hills (mainly road and gravel/compacted paths) Whats the general opinion on climbing hills, is it more efficient to tackle them sat in a higher gear or drop down a few gears and pump away in a stood up?
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Posts

  • Greer_Greer_ Posts: 1,716
    I think its just down to personal preference and how tired you are. At the start I usually power up them out of the saddle but coming to the end of my ride I'm happy enough to stay seated, drop a few gears and spin - efficient spinning is probably better though and you won't tire out as quickly
  • Stevo_666Stevo_666 Posts: 52,748
    Greer_ wrote:
    I think its just down to personal preference and how tired you are.
    What he said.

    Although I usually start off seated and get out the saddle when I'm struggling a bit towards the end.
    "I spent most of my money on birds, booze and fast cars: the rest of it I just squandered." [George Best]
  • nferrarnferrar Posts: 2,511
    Yeah varying it is best. Seated is slightly more efficient but standing will engage some different muscles so give you a bit more endurance and generally when it gets very steep then standing is easiest (and you risk doing your back in staying seated unless you have a strong core).
  • supersonicsupersonic Posts: 82,708 Lives Here
    Staanding gives you power, and the ability to tackle some obstacles better. Sitting and spinning is more efficient. Most of my climbs call for a bit of both!
  • In this months 'what mountain bike' magazine there is an article about this very issue.
    In short, riding out of the saddle is harder work and only a short term fix. The best way is to stay seated and use the gears to keep a high pedalling cadence and save out of the saddle bursts for short steep sections or to give your censored a rest.
  • roger_merrimanroger_merriman Posts: 6,165
    If it's fire road climb etc, then just sit and spin.

    if it's a rocky rooty climb then out of the saddle, need to have a fair amount of core strength.

    I tend more towards being out of the saddle but find what works no right or wrong answer.
  • Standing.... pushing the bike generally. :lol:
  • frazeredfrazered Posts: 333
    Mainly seated due to traction loss when out of the saddle

    I will stand when attacking an obstacle or totally knackered
  • tlw1tlw1 Posts: 21,101
    Sitting down, with the front wheel in the air
  • stubsstubs Posts: 5,001
    I once tested myself by climbing a shortish climb that started out as a farm track had a rocky section in the middle then was gravelly at the top. Timed myself climbing in and out of the saddle, did several runs over a few days. It made almost no difference I could get to top about 10% quicker stood up but would need a breather to let the world stop spinning. So for overall time sat down in the right gear at least you can pedal down the other side without feeling like your going to puke.

    Stay in the saddle as long as you can but be ready to stand and blitz it when needed.
    Fig rolls: proof that god loves cyclists and that she wants us to do another lap
  • bigdawgbigdawg Posts: 672
    Sitting works better for me unless its a short sharp climb that I wont change gear for.

    A whiel ago I noted that everytine I stood up on a climb my speed dropped unless I wanted my Hr to go throguh the roof, so I pick a gear and slog it in the saddle.
    dont knock on death\'s door.....

    Ring the bell and leg it...that really pi**es him off....
  • edhornbyedhornby Posts: 1,780
    for fitness you need to be seated, and climbing is a tough but effective way of doing it. seated you will be building aerobic fitness but out of the saddle is a form of sprint training but probably not what you need so the seated efforts will build the fitness you are looking for
    "I get paid to make other people suffer on my wheel, how good is that"
    --Jens Voight
  • ollie51ollie51 Posts: 517
    edhornby wrote:
    for fitness you need to be seated, and climbing is a tough but effective way of doing it. seated you will be building aerobic fitness but out of the saddle is a form of sprint training but probably not what you need so the seated efforts will build the fitness you are looking for

    whether you are, are you aren't seated when pedalling doesn't determine the form of respiration your body uses...
  • cyco2cyco2 Posts: 593
    ollie51 wrote:
    edhornby wrote:
    for fitness you need to be seated, and climbing is a tough but effective way of doing it. seated you will be building aerobic fitness but out of the saddle is a form of sprint training but probably not what you need so the seated efforts will build the fitness you are looking for

    whether you are, are you aren't seated when pedalling doesn't determine the form of respiration your body uses...

    All things being equal then you would be right.
    ...................................................................................................

    If you want to be a strong rider you have to do strong things.
    However if you train like a cart horse you'll race like one.
  • YeehaaMcgeeYeehaaMcgee Posts: 5,740
    ollie51 wrote:
    edhornby wrote:
    for fitness you need to be seated, and climbing is a tough but effective way of doing it. seated you will be building aerobic fitness but out of the saddle is a form of sprint training but probably not what you need so the seated efforts will build the fitness you are looking for

    whether you are, are you aren't seated when pedalling doesn't determine the form of respiration your body uses...
    Quite right. Just because you're out of the saddle doesn't mean you have to be sprinting.
  • bigdawgbigdawg Posts: 672
    I am looking at it from a racing point of view, but I can't see any reason to be standing up on long climbs, unless your saddle's too low.

    If you can't sit comfortably and pedal you're in too high a gear - my own standpoint if cadence needs to go below 65 change down.

    Other than anything else standing for long periods of time is damn uncomfortable.
    dont knock on death\'s door.....

    Ring the bell and leg it...that really pi**es him off....
  • YeehaaMcgeeYeehaaMcgee Posts: 5,740
    You spend a lot of time standing on mountain bikes anyway, I don't get what the difference is.
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    I know some bikes geometry make it really hard to stand and climb roadie style. The balance and control on mine just goes to sh!t when I'm stood up and over the bars. The only time I can effectively get away with it is if I'm going up and over a rock, or whatever. Rest of the time it's a sat down climbing hardtail, if I'm out with other riders they're usually fully stood up though doing the same stretches.
  • YeehaaMcgeeYeehaaMcgee Posts: 5,740
    blister pus, I don't quite understand what you mean.
    Surely that would mean your bike is unbalanced when just standing out of the saddle as well? Which raises some concerns about tackling technical bits when you're not seated.
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    I've never been able to put my finger on exactly what it is, but it's specifically when you're fully stood up on a steep climb, when you've got your head over the front, like a roadie climbing. It just becomes very, very unwieldy to a point where it's simply more efficient to sit down.

    All the other bits of a ride where you really are naturally stood or "on the pedals" is fine with great balance and how it should be. But put me on a really steep incline on that bike, stood up like a roadie, and I'll do 20 yards max before it becomes pointless and just sit down and slug it out.

    And I don't have the same problem on my mates Zesty either, even though I prefer sitting, I can stand on that happily enough. So I just put it down to a combination of things and a peculiarity of geometry on that particular bike.

    In fact, I stopped thinking about it after a while and just accepted it. lol.
  • YeehaaMcgeeYeehaaMcgee Posts: 5,740
    Oh, I see, so it's mostly a weight over the front issue? I can see how that would make sense. Maybe the frame is shorter in the top tube or has a shorter wheelbase or something.
  • blister pusblister pus Posts: 5,780
    Actually that's exactly it now you've said it. Look at the spec tab and schematic for that..

    http://www.pipedreamcycles.com/shop/sirius-r853/


    I love it for bombing about on though.
  • cloudynightscloudynights Posts: 351
    if you climb out of the saddle you can bounce your bike about more if on a fs, most effective way is to stay seated conserve energy. remember a bouncing bike going uphill will drain more of your energy
    anthem x with many upgrades
  • YeehaaMcgeeYeehaaMcgee Posts: 5,740
    if you climb out of the saddle you can bounce your bike about more if on a fs, most effective way is to stay seated conserve energy. remember a bouncing bike going uphill will drain more of your energy
    Meh. You can bounce a bike seated or standing - that's more to do with technique than position.
    Standing gives more power, but uses more energy, seated gives less power, but doesn't tire you as much.
  • milko9000milko9000 Posts: 533
    I stay seated nearly all the time on climbs. Quite a few people I ride with seem to prefer to stand and attack it without changing gear though. I normally find I'm overtaking them pretty quickly after their initial burst gives them a head start. I'm also a good bit lighter than all of them so it's probably not an fair comparison, but it always feels more efficient to me to be sat down and spinning fairly fast.
  • pilchpilch Posts: 1,136
    A bit of both, depends on the terrain and what i'm doing... long ball aching fire roads I just zone out & spin, more technical stuff I'm on & off the saddle to get over stuff or power up short sharp climbs.

    When i'm training I alternate between sitting & standing up hills where possible.
    A berm? were you expecting one?

    29er race

    29er bouncer
  • cloudynightscloudynights Posts: 351
    if you climb out of the saddle you can bounce your bike about more if on a fs, most effective way is to stay seated conserve energy. remember a bouncing bike going uphill will drain more of your energy
    Meh. You can bounce a bike seated or standing - that's more to do with technique than position.
    Standing gives more power, but uses more energy, seated gives less power, but doesn't tire you as much.
    youve just repeated what i said :D
    anthem x with many upgrades
  • YeehaaMcgeeYeehaaMcgee Posts: 5,740
    if you climb out of the saddle you can bounce your bike about more if on a fs, most effective way is to stay seated conserve energy. remember a bouncing bike going uphill will drain more of your energy
    Meh. You can bounce a bike seated or standing - that's more to do with technique than position.
    Standing gives more power, but uses more energy, seated gives less power, but doesn't tire you as much.
    youve just repeated what i said :D
    Not really, well, maybe, but what I meant was that you can bounce the bike, whether it's full suss or a hardtail :lol:
  • cloudynightscloudynights Posts: 351
    if you climb out of the saddle you can bounce your bike about more if on a fs, most effective way is to stay seated conserve energy. remember a bouncing bike going uphill will drain more of your energy
    Meh. You can bounce a bike seated or standing - that's more to do with technique than position.
    Standing gives more power, but uses more energy, seated gives less power, but doesn't tire you as much.
    youve just repeated what i said :D
    Not really, well, maybe, but what I meant was that you can bounce the bike, whether it's full suss or a hardtail :lol:
    ok no worries :)
    anthem x with many upgrades
  • jezandujezandu Posts: 10
    Climbing standing actually raises your heart rate so takes more out of you but its important not to exlude it from your training. I tend to sit as much as I can on a longer climb and come over the top strong by getting out of my saddle.

    A good point behind remaining seated on climbs is that it builds up your overall hip strength. This means that even when putting the speed down on the flat sections you will have more strength and produce a higher power output.

    www.followingthechainline.blogspot.com
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