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How Cycling Uses the Hamstrings

Although cycling is commonly associated with big thighs and maybe even a big butt, there are other muscles engaged throughout the pedal stroke. For a rider clipped into pedals, there is an opportunity to engage the hamstrings. By pulling up on the pedals on the backside of the pedal stroke we engage the hamstrings. The … Continue reading How Cycling Uses the Hamstrings

What Causes Hip Flexor Pain While Cycling?

Do your hip flexors hurt when you ride your bike? Hip flexor pain is a common problem with cycling because we flex our hip during every pedal stroke. Let’s look at the muscles that can flex the hip and how they fit into the pedal stroke. We’re going to be using the Gait2392 OpenSim model … Continue reading What Causes Hip Flexor Pain While Cycling?

Lower Body Movement Patterns

Biomechanics at the most basic level is pretty simple. There are key movement patterns that exist based on the body’s geometry and every movement is some composition of these movements. This phenomenon allows us to describe the movement of the body based on a few key values. For OpenSim models these values determine the unique … Continue reading Lower Body Movement Patterns

Overview of OpenSim Models

This article is an overview of some of the OpenSim models we use in this blog. The intention is to help you better understand the capacity and limitations of OpenSim modeling. OpenSim is an open source biomechanics software platform for simulation and data analysis for biomechanics. It contains a variety of tools for evaluation of … Continue reading Overview of OpenSim Models

How Cycling Uses the Glutes and Hip Extension

In case you’ve been living under a rock for the past decade, there is a lot of interest in the glutes among cyclists. Nooo, not just pervy dudes, but everyone: coaches, riders, physical therapists and we’re starting to better understand the contribution of the glutes to the strong cyclist. Hopefully, by the end of this … Continue reading How Cycling Uses the Glutes and Hip Extension

Knee to Chest Mobility

Knee to chest mobility is the most important mobility characteristic of a cyclist. Most cyclists struggle to maintain mobility in this domain and slowly become weaker and less flexible. Let’s look at what knee to chest mobility is and why it’s important. What is knee to chest mobility? Knee to chest mobility is the ability … Continue reading Knee to Chest Mobility

Does Power Output or Cadence Affect Muscle Recruitment Patterns?

Two interesting studies attempted to understand the relationship between power output or cadence and the origin of that power in the body. The first study, “Joint-Specific Power-Pedaling Rate Relationship During Maximal Cycling” by McDaniel and colleagues looks at three second maximal efforts at cadences of 60, 90, 120, 150, 180. Using a few kinematic and … Continue reading Does Power Output or Cadence Affect Muscle Recruitment Patterns?

How Cycling Can Cause Groin Pain (Adductor Pain)

Do you get groin pain while cycling? It’s most likely related to your adductors. Let’s have a look at some of the muscles involved and their contribution to the pedal stroke. We’re be using the Gait2392 OpenSim model for the images. Muscles That Can Cause Groin Pain The muscles of most interest to us are … Continue reading How Cycling Can Cause Groin Pain (Adductor Pain)

The Hunchback Cyclist

Go to any amateur bike race and look around at the riders. How many of them are hunched over in the upper back? The technical term for this spinal alignment is thoracic kyphosis. Some causes of thoracic kyphosis include tight pectoral muscles, tight lower back and glutes, or a tight neck. Cyclists tend to get … Continue reading The Hunchback Cyclist