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Scooteroo
03-09-2016, 02:18 PM
Hi - My new gym has Spinning Blade Ion bikes but apparently no-one was ever trained on the power meter and therefore no-one knows how to effectively use the power/HR/Kilojoules functions. I have tried looking up the Ion manual but it does not explain anything about how to ride using power. Does anyone know of any good place to find such resource material? I hate having all this information right in front of us being calculated but no-one knowing what to do with it. I'd love to teach using this power, but again, am unsure as to how to direct the spinners insofar as what they should be attempting. Thanks for any help!

kickerjoy
03-09-2016, 02:59 PM
There's a course on how to teach on these bikes. Called Spinpower. I went twice, both times to facilities who had just gotten a fleet of these bikes. I wonder if they got a complimentary training at the facility with that purchase. Maybe you could ask your manager if this facility could host a training.

tvano1991
03-09-2016, 07:09 PM
We have Blade Ions and they are wonderful. I've trained all of my instructors on them. Do you have questions on the meters themselves or on how to train with Power? This forum is a HUGE resource of information. Check out the Keiser threads as well as ICI and ICA. Read as much as you can pertaining to training with wattage.

Good links:
http://www.bicycling.com/training/fitness/guide-power-meter-metrics
http://www.active.com/cycling/articles/how-to-train-with-a-power-meter
http://home.trainingpeaks.com/products/training-with-power-ebook
http://joefriel.typepad.com/blog/ (search for power meter - there are a ton of posts and Joe Friel has written a book on the subject)

I can give you my "elevator speech" that I give at the beginning of my classes so riders know how to use the Power Meters, and have a general sense of what the wattage is telling them if you think that would helpful.

The Spinpower class would be nice, but if you aren't in an area where it's offered, it's tough to attend. I've never been able to make it, but our facility may host one next year since we now have 35 Blade Ions.

Hope this helps.

Vivienne
03-10-2016, 05:11 AM
Great links, Tracy. I've done pretty much every cert with power but SPINpower......I'm not going to travel 100s of miles (Montpelier Vermont fixed me of that notion) and one hasn't come up closer.

What's you elevator speech BTW. I use "elevators" for all manner of analogies. One that I use is for managing intensity/how hard you need to work to get "fitter". As in, if your fitness is in the basement, all you need to do is press the first floor button just right and your "fitness car" will slowly move to the first floor and settle. You won't get to the second floor by keep pressing the first floor button...and you won't get there quciker by stabbing at the 10th floor button....etc.etc.

I'll actually still beat the drum for Gino's Cycle Fusion resources. .....and, although I've done that cert once, if Tom Scotto puts another one on in these parts I'll be along to take it.

I like to hear other folks' takes on using power in a way that your average gym member can relate to. I certainly didn't make my classes so technical when I was at the Y that they ought to have put folk off (at least I don't think so......and I still use some of the profiles in a pretend you have power sort of way)......but the class members seemed very polarised in their reactions......loved my take or didn't (I truthfully don't think anyone hated them)

tvano1991
03-10-2016, 01:11 PM
Some of my riders like the technical stuff, and I have materials that I share with them, as well as a FTP ride so they can determine their training zones if they like. Sometimes I'll coach "at a percentage" of their FTP, depending on who's in attendance. I have a lot of regulars, so it really just depends on the crowd.

"As you can see, we are now training with power meters! If you're having a hard time seeing the screen, simply hold down the lightbulb button for three seconds and the screen will stay backlit. What do the numbers mean? The top number is your wattage. Watts are a measurement of power - the higher the number, the harder you are working. Now don't compare yourself to the person next to you because this number is effected by a lot of factors, such as gender, weight, age, how tired you are today, what you ate for dinner last night, and so on. Just strive to improve upon your OWN numbers. Wattage is a function of cadence and resistance; in general, the faster you pedal and the higher the resistance, the higher the number. We will do some drills today to demonstrate how you can drive that number higher.

The second number down is your cadence, or how fast you are pedaling. Right now we are on a flat road with light to moderate resistance, so that number should be between 80-100. Remember, this is your ride, so if you feel that you have trouble sticking within the advised cadence ranges, that IS OK! Find a pace that works for you, and just be consistent.

The third number down is your heart rate if you are wearing a heart rate strap. If you are not, it will be blank.

The bottom number is one of three things - KJ which stands for Kilojouls, which is a measurement of energy similar to kcalories. If you want to talk more about what that number means, see me after class. Time, and if you don't want to watch the clock, push the M until time goes away. OR, distance, so you can see how far you've gone on your stationary bike (ha ha ha!)

If you see the letters AVG on your screen, that means the computer is recording your averages for the entire ride. We are going to be using instantaneous numbers for the majority of class, so go ahead and push that M button until AVG goes away."

That's my schpeil (sp?). It seems lengthy but probably really only takes a minute or so. I also spend some time before class milling about talking to people, especially those newer to class so I can get a feel for if they have any questions or not.

Scooteroo
03-10-2016, 06:01 PM
Tracy - I would LOVE to read your "elevator speech"' if you will share it with me! Anything I can get my hands on will help as I have nothing to go on based on my own internet research. I will definitely check out your links as well. Thanks so much!

Scooteroo
03-10-2016, 06:03 PM
Oops, I just scrolled up and found your elevator speech! I will definitely incorporate it in trying to help my classes! Thanks again!

Scooteroo
03-10-2016, 06:15 PM
Ok, so now that I see not to scroll up from the bottom and reply before reading everything , I have read all the posts! Tracy - what is an example of a drill you will do to demonstrate how to drive the wattage higher? Also, as far as Kilojoules are concerned - my google efforts showed Kilojoules (which was noted as the metric conversion of calories) as a 4:1 conversion - take the number of kilojoules and divide it by 4 to get your calorie count. However, when I tried doing this, my calorie count was next to nothing! So obviously this doesn't work. Another site said to divide by 4 and then times it by 10 to take into consideration the "kilojoules"". The total seemed more in response with my typical calorie expenditure, but not sure where the X10 comes from (Kilo is 1000 ) Other sites sort of negated this idea that they were somehow the same - seems like Kilojoules are more a measure of energy output vs caloric intake? Your thoughts? My riders are trying to compare their kilojoules to the calories they used to see on the old spinning bikes and of course they are nowhere near the same. What exactly are they and can they compare to calories?

tvano1991
03-10-2016, 07:02 PM
NO to the conversion.... I've never seen that. :(

KJs are a measurement of how much energy it takes to generate your net wattage expended in a class, but it does not take into account basal metabolic rate for an individual. I tell my riders exactly that - they get it. I explain that your basal metabolic rate for a given day are the amount of calories that you burn at rest; add calories due to exertion to that for a total caloric burn.

So many people make the mistake of saying, oh yay! I burned 500 calories in that one hour class (for instance)! I can eat an EXTRA 500 calories! Well, not really. You're doubling up on your calories when you do that. If you burn 200 calories per hour anyway (at rest) then you probably only burned an extra 300 calories.

This is a very generic explanation....but good for explaining to the layman.

Now, as far as drills, I've posted a GREAT profile called Power 4x4 drills in the Profile forum. It's a great starter profile for riders and instructors.

You can really use all of your former profiles, just remember that now you can incorporate power into the drills. Examples:

- long seated climb, that gets gradually steeper: Cue riders to increase resistance (power) every minute or so
- long seated flat with gradually more challenging gears: " "
- Tempo segment: ask riders to get to their max sustainable pace and resistance for 5 minutes (you can use this to help determine a "baseline" wattage, too! Like a mini FTP)
- Like Tabatas? Max power :20/rest:10 repeat 8 times (see if they can continue to "meet or beat" their power output from the previous interval!)


Get the idea? You don't have to recreate the wheel. Power is just another tool/measurement by which you can keep riders focused.

Scooteroo
03-10-2016, 08:05 PM
Thanks so much Tracy - I have noted all you have said and will get it into my head so I can repeat it intelligently! But - I'm still a bit unsure as to how to cue the power part - e.g. when you mention above the long seated drills that get gradually steeper to cue riders to increase resistance (power) every minute or so - before I started reading your responses, I thought power would be basically a set number - e.g. 200 (or whatever, as I'm not really sure) if you are in a hard climb but now I'm second guessing that after reading your input that I really can't throw out a general number to strive for as other factors come into play - e.g. as you said, gender, weight, tiredness, food consumption night before, etc. Is that correct? Basically I'm just having riders move their power up from where it had been in a previous interval - but what if they haven't started their power high enough to begin with - eg. those who still sprint without resistance thinking they are getting a lot of benefit (despite my admonitions!!!) Moving power up is obviously the objective, but how do I cue them as to where they should be at the starting point from which to ramp it up?

Scooteroo
03-10-2016, 08:09 PM
Also, what's FTP? :confused: I assume I should probably know, but unfortunately am not sure!

tvano1991
03-10-2016, 09:03 PM
FTP is functional threshold power. Check out those links I included in previous posts for a TON of information, but the gist is that FTP = maximum sustainable power for a 60 minute duration. I conduct an FTP ride using a 20 minute field test to determine FTP, and there are a lot of different methods and short tests out there, but you and your riders over time should get a good idea of what that number is for you. The goal is to improve strength and endurance over time to push that FTP up. More power = more speed (if you're a roadie).

No, you should definitely NOT cue specific power numbers because they are going to be different for everybody. Make sure you're cueing RPE (rate of perceived exertion) to help THEM determine what their wattage is at various efforts. For example, I know my FTP is 164. A moderate effort for me is 120ish, hard is 150ish, very hard is right around 100-110% of my FTP and very very hard is 200+. Loosey goosey numbers, but you get the idea.

That Power 4x4 profile I referenced is a good way to get riders comfortable with those RPE/wattage numbers.

Hope this helps.

tvano1991
03-10-2016, 10:24 PM
I've been noodling on this, and wanted to give you this example to help demonstrate how watts equate to speed.

Rider 1 -
120 pounds, and her FTP is 120. She can ride a road bike at a nice 18mph clip without hitting her anaerobic threshold for a sustainable amount of time.

Rider 2 -
240 pounds, and his FTP is 180. He can ride a road bike at a nice 16mph clip without hitting his anaerobic threshold for a sustainable amount of time.

So, even though rider 2 had a higher FTP, he WEIGHS more, so his power does not equate to a faster speed on the bike. The pros really look at wattage/weight as a measurement to get speed. Obviously we are not going to do that in an indoor cycling class, but it's important to understand that even if you have a higher power output, it doesn't necessarily mean you are a more efficient cyclist.

Does that make sense, or have I muddled you further? :)

CycleGuy
03-10-2016, 11:43 PM
FTP is functional threshold power. Check out those links I included in previous posts for a TON of information, but the gist is that FTP = maximum sustainable power for a 60 minute duration. I conduct an FTP ride using a 20 minute field test to determine FTP, and there are a lot of different methods and short tests out there, but you and your riders over time should get a good idea of what that number is for you. The goal is to improve strength and endurance over time to push that FTP up. More power = more speed (if you're a roadie).

No, you should definitely NOT cue specific power numbers because they are going to be different for everybody. Make sure you're cueing RPE (rate of perceived exertion) to help THEM determine what their wattage is at various efforts. For example, I know my FTP is 164. A moderate effort for me is 120ish, hard is 150ish, very hard is right around 100-110% of my FTP and very very hard is 200+. Loosey goosey numbers, but you get the idea.

That Power 4x4 profile I referenced is a good way to get riders comfortable with those RPE/wattage numbers.

Hope this helps.

And if you are not a roadie: More power = more calories burned

CycleGuy
03-10-2016, 11:50 PM
I've been noodling on this, and wanted to give you this example to help demonstrate how watts equate to speed.

Rider 1 -
120 pounds, and her FTP is 120. She can ride a road bike at a nice 18mph clip without hitting her anaerobic threshold for a sustainable amount of time.

Rider 2 -
240 pounds, and his FTP is 180. He can ride a road bike at a nice 16mph clip without hitting his anaerobic threshold for a sustainable amount of time.

So, even though rider 2 had a higher FTP, he WEIGHS more, so his power does not equate to a faster speed on the bike. The pros really look at wattage/weight as a measurement to get speed. Obviously we are not going to do that in an indoor cycling class, but it's important to understand that even if you have a higher power output, it doesn't necessarily mean you are a more efficient cyclist.

Does that make sense, or have I muddled you further? :)

I don't worry so much about relating power (watts) to speed, but instead use the power/weight ratio as a way to come up with a common number if people want to compare themselves. A ratio of 1, for your female rider, is higher than the ratio of 0.75 for your male rider. This shows that your female rider is a stronger rider in comparison.

tvano1991
03-11-2016, 06:19 PM
Exactly...thanks Cycleguy!

Scooteroo
03-26-2016, 09:48 AM
Thanks Tracy and Cycle Guy! Since I was on this site last, I have been trying to incorporate into my classes what you have told me and/or directed me to and I also listened to the ICA webinars this past weekend on riding with power. I think I'm starting to get the hang of it a bit more but have a few more questions:

1. Based on your example, Tracy, which was confirmed by Cycle Guy, to focus more on Power/Weight v. Power/Speed, it brings me to something I learned in the webinar, which was that a loose number to tell those who are asking what their power output should be is to tell them to strive for their body weight when pushing to their target heartrate That was met with incredulous looks, groans, etc. After classes, I am getting feedback from many riders that there is no way they can get close to their body weight to which I reiterate that it is just a loose number which doesn't take into account whether they are out of shape, overweight, etc. - just a number to strive to get close to rather than having nothing to gauge progress with. I'm still getting the same feedback from what I think are some very fit riders that they cannot get to their body weight. I have been able to get to my body weight when pushing the power and don't know why these fitter riders are having issues with it? I am not in better shape than they are but they left class this morning totally drained - to the point of exhaustion, which has me a bit concerned!

2. This past week I did two 5 minute drills per class. Goal - keep RPMs 90-100 and increase resistance until you are pushing your hardest but not out of breath. At that point, we began the 5 minute timed interval, noting the average power at the end to try and maintain or improve it during the second 5 minute interval done later on in the class. Are these the types of drills you are incorporating into each of your classes? Do you always have several set timed intervals to compare progress each class?

3. The monitor! We have been given no formal training on the monitors other than the "manual" we got online which basically just described the four screens. Despite a lot of time spent playing around with the screens, I am having trouble figuring out how to get the timed interval down for these 5 minute drills to get the average power number. The manual says to hold the Reset button down for 2 seconds but when I do that, everything gets reset. What I am thinking is that I must be in the Averages screen , hit the Reset button once to get it to 0 (which automatically takes you to one of the other screens), time the 5 minute interval and then return to the Averages screen right before hitting the Reset button again to stop the interval and see what your Average Power was. Sometimes when I do that though, it immediately resets the Averages screen and my number is lost. Can you shed any light on exactly how to get these timed intervals and from what screen to start/stop if that even matters?

4. Your Power 4 X 4 profile - Do riders just take note of the difference in power while adding R and maintaining Cadence each set or is there a way for them to actually note improvement each set/interval? (Hard to do as they are each different from one another).

This has been very frustrating trying to learn on my own but I think I'm getting the hang of it thanks to you and the others who are helping out! So, thank you all so much for all the time and effort you have spent assisting me!

CycleGuy
03-26-2016, 08:16 PM
Thanks Tracy and Cycle Guy! Since I was on this site last, I have been trying to incorporate into my classes what you have told me and/or directed me to and I also listened to the ICA webinars this past weekend on riding with power. I think I'm starting to get the hang of it a bit more but have a few more questions:

1. Based on your example, Tracy, which was confirmed by Cycle Guy, to focus more on Power/Weight v. Power/Speed, it brings me to something I learned in the webinar, which was that a loose number to tell those who are asking what their power output should be is to tell them to strive for their body weight when pushing to their target heartrate That was met with incredulous looks, groans, etc. After classes, I am getting feedback from many riders that there is no way they can get close to their body weight to which I reiterate that it is just a loose number which doesn't take into account whether they are out of shape, overweight, etc. - just a number to strive to get close to rather than having nothing to gauge progress with. I'm still getting the same feedback from what I think are some very fit riders that they cannot get to their body weight. I have been able to get to my body weight when pushing the power and don't know why these fitter riders are having issues with it? I am not in better shape than they are but they left class this morning totally drained - to the point of exhaustion, which has me a bit concerned!

This has been very frustrating trying to learn on my own but I think I'm getting the hang of it thanks to you and the others who are helping out! So, thank you all so much for all the time and effort you have spent assisting me!

I wonder if the bikes are properly calibrated? I am not familiar with them, but if your fit people are having difficulty doing 1 watt for 1 pound of weight, then I would question the bikes. If you know of any (outdoor) cyclists who would have an idea of their power, have them ride the bikes and see how they do. Offer them a couple beers for their time and have them test the bikes (beers after the test…)

Indoor bikes, for the most part will not 'measure' the same power as outside with a power meter. For that matter, the watts measured by the power meters used on outdoor bikes (PowerTap, Quarq, Vector, etc.) will all vary between the brands, but typically not a significant amount.

I put my Garmin Vector pedals on a Keiser and typically saw a 80-100 watt difference (with the Keiser being higher). Depending on which bike I used, that went up to as high as a 180 watt difference (again, Keiser being higher than the Garmin). It is possible that your bikes have been calibrated in the other direction, showing a wattage that is actually lower than real power.

Finally, it could be that your 'fit' people are fit, but not efficient in their pedalling. That might impact their power output.

Scooteroo
03-27-2016, 05:01 PM
Thanks for your suggestions as to possibilities. These bikes were recently purchased used through a third party apparently from a facility that had them and supposedly quickly decided to get something else, which I thought a bit odd, so who knows about the calibration. What exactly do you mean when you said my fit people may not be ""efficient"" in their pedaling? If I could direct them in a better direction towards ""efficiency"", I'm sure they would appreciate it, but I'm unsure as to what you meant.

CycleGuy
03-27-2016, 10:26 PM
Thanks for your suggestions as to possibilities. These bikes were recently purchased used through a third party apparently from a facility that had them and supposedly quickly decided to get something else, which I thought a bit odd, so who knows about the calibration. What exactly do you mean when you said my fit people may not be ""efficient"" in their pedaling? If I could direct them in a better direction towards ""efficiency"", I'm sure they would appreciate it, but I'm unsure as to what you meant.

Efficiency is not likely to explain completely the difficulty in achieving the 'loose' power target of one watt per pound, but there is a technique to pedalling that people learn. An example would be a smooth, steady application of force to the pedals versus someone who is 'stomping' on the pedals and does not have a smooth transition throughout the pedalling rotation. Being able to relax the upper body (particularly the abdominals) and focus on the work the legs are doing; belly breathing.

My go to example has always been the sub-three hour marathoner who could not swim more than 100 metres without having to stop, gasping for air. Cycling doesn't have such a dramatic reliance on technique and breathing management, but…

Why do you consider these people to be fit riders? Do they look fit? Because they attend multiple classes per week? Or have been attending for years? Maybe they have never really been challenged on the bike before. Just perhaps'ing…

tvano1991
03-30-2016, 08:51 AM
4. Your Power 4 X 4 profile - Do riders just take note of the difference in power while adding R and maintaining Cadence each set or is there a way for them to actually note improvement each set/interval? (Hard to do as they are each different from one another).

Yes, I just have riders take note of the differences in power. As you said, the sets are different from each other, but that's part of why we do it. I'm trying to show them that they may be more efficient riders at different cadences than they are others. It's just a good way to get them used to keeping an eye on their power output during a ride.

You're doing a great job teaching yourself how to best utilize these meters! Your riders are lucky to have you...

Scooteroo
04-02-2016, 04:43 PM
Thanks Tracy! My education has been greatly enhanced thanks to you and Cycly Guy !