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Equivalent Speed: A New Metric For Cycling Performance

Bollt, Scott A. (2021) Equivalent Speed: A New Metric For Cycling Performance. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 53 (8S). p. 29. ISSN 1530-0315. doi:10.1249/01.mss.0000759392.75434.98.

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While Velocita Ascensionale Media (VAM) can predict performance on steep hills, no such metric for flat terrain exists. Cyclists instead rely on power meters and estimates of air density, drag-area (CDA), and coefficient of rolling resistance Crr to predict ideal speed (IS): the speed they can maintain on a flat windless road. We propose a new parameter-free metric, Equivalent Speed (ES), to predict IS given just speed data. Unlike average speed, V, ES (the distance-weighted average of speed, ν) approximates IS closely. ES assumes constant CDA on a closed loop course. Average drag is proportional to ν², so on a closed course in the absence of wind or braking and ignoring the constant energy lost to rolling resistance, power is given roughly by P∝ν²V. An approximation to third order changes in speed about ES is P∝ν³. Since IS is defined to be constant, V_(IS) = ν_(IS) and we find in this case P_(IS)∝V_(IS)³. ES is then the solution to P=P_(IS) for V_(IS).

Item Type:Article
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Additional Information:© 2021 by the American College of Sports Medicine.
Issue or Number:8S
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20211117-210752702
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Official Citation:Bollt, Scott A. Equivalent Speed: A New Metric For Cycling Performance, Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: August 2021 - Volume 53 - Issue 8S - p 29; doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000759392.75434.98
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:111935
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:17 Nov 2021 23:37
Last Modified:17 Nov 2021 23:37

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