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Home » Cycling » The Peloton Bike…  Why So Bouncy?!  An Abject Lesson in How not to Cycle.

The Peloton Bike…  Why So Bouncy?!  An Abject Lesson in How not to Cycle.

April 2015
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There’s a new exercise bike out.  It looks an awful lot like the Tour de France training bike but with a handlebar that would never go on a real bike, mainly because the handlebar would weigh more than the rest of the bike, but I digress…  It has a huge screen that allows the user to join in with spin classes in New York – which is actually really cool.  In fact, I really like the concept and I don’t mean to be unfairly harsh towards spin classes.  A few of the guys I ride with participate in them through the winter and they’re always better for it.

What drives me nuts about the commercial is all of the bouncing.  I’ll cop to never attending a spin class, so maybe that’s what they teach. My fear is, obviously, that we end up with a new group of Noobs who think that your’e actually supposed to ride a bike like, well, that.

The video above is the long edition, the shorter TV commercial is almost all bouncy – I nearly got seasick watching it (over, and over, and over again – how much coin did they drop on the launch of that thing?!)…  Take the “out of the saddle” bounce by what appears to be the leader of the class.  Folks, that’s not how it’s done.  Here’s the problem:  All of that bouncing up and down is wasted effort, wasted energy.  That might be cool for a commercial or an hour-long spin class but take that on the road and you can expect all of that bouncing to knock off 2-10 mph off of your average and cut your rideable distance down about 82.64% – not to mention the fact that you’d look awful goofy going down the road.

Actually, to get technical with this, if you bounce as much as they do in the commercial, your saddle is too low.  By a lot.

So, my friends, when on a bike – a real bike, leave the bouncing for your spin class.  You will not look impressive, like a badass rockin’ the miles out your road bike.  You will look funny.  Real cyclists, though they may be jerks, will find it difficult to contain the laughter (no matter how small your top is). Save yourself the embarrassment.

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16 Comments

  1. simonwulf says:

    To this hermit, the ability to have virtual spin classes looks pretty cool. I have only ever hit up one spin class but it was clear to me the point was to burn crazy lots of calories. Not, at least in most settings, to keep good cycling form. That really would have been awesome for me this winter. As terrifying as people can be sometimes we really need the community to thrive. Applies across the board right.

  2. bonnev659 says:

    that is really sad… i been in many spin classes when i was traveling for my last job. loved it but the good instructors told the class and watch them, no need to bounce. let your legs move in circles and focus on that. which i loved… got me to join a bike team from 1 of the instructors i enjoy a lot.

  3. Isn’t the bouncing due to the bike being fixed into place? If it was like the Rock-n-Roll bike trainer I do not think they would bounce as much. I know that when I was at a spin class that I bounced when I came up out of the saddle.

  4. AH15 says:

    Go to a spin class. Migrate to the back. Then you will see why the bouncing is not all that bad. Its motivation, just sayin.

  5. I teach spin at our Y and I race bikes

    in my class we focus a lot on form and specific interval training… that said (and as one of your other commenters said) it’s really more about fun cardio and burning calories to most of my students (attendees) and their level of enjoyment has far more to do with my energy level and music than anything I say

    Spin is to cycling as Aerobics is to Dance

    and bouncing like that will hurt your “taint”

  6. Eric says:

    Spin classes look great for fitness, which is probably what anyone who participates in them is after. Cycling form? Looks terrible. Race training? Put any spin instructor or follower into a crit, even a local one, and they’re toast, if not a danger. Probably great for keeping fit over the winter, but shouldn’t you be on rollers?

    • bgddyjim says:

      Yep, I get it. In fact, if memory serves, I got it then, I was just being pretentious and coy about it.

      As for rollers, my bike handling skills are just fine. When they make rollers with some real resistance, then I’ll think about investing in a rig. Maybe. I kind of like my monotony monotonous.

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