The effect of low- vs high-cadence interval training on the freely chosen cadence and performance in endurance-trained cyclists

Journal article


Whitty, Anthony G., Murphy, Aron J., Coutts, Aaron J. and Watsford, Mark L.. (2016). The effect of low- vs high-cadence interval training on the freely chosen cadence and performance in endurance-trained cyclists. Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism. 41(6), pp. 666-673. https://doi.org/10.1139/apnm-2015-0562
AuthorsWhitty, Anthony G., Murphy, Aron J., Coutts, Aaron J. and Watsford, Mark L.
Abstract

[English] The aim of this study was to determine the effects of high- and low-cadence interval training on the freely chosen cadence (FCC) and performance in endurance-trained cyclists. Sixteen male endurance-trained cyclists completed a series of submaximal rides at 60% maximal power (Wmax) at cadences of 50, 70, 90, and 110 r·min−1, and their FCC to determine their preferred cadence, gross efficiency (GE), rating of perceived exertion, and crank torque profile. Performance was measured via a 15-min time trial, which was preloaded with a cycle at 60% Wmax. Following the testing, the participants were randomly assigned to a high-cadence (HC) (20% above FCC) or a low-cadence (LC) (20% below FCC) group for 18 interval-based training sessions over 6 weeks. The HC group increased their FCC from 92 to 101 r·min−1 after the intervention (p = 0.01), whereas the LC group remained unchanged (93 r·min−1). GE increased from 22.7% to 23.6% in the HC group at 90 r·min−1 (p = 0.05), from 20.0% to 20.9% at 110 r·min−1 (p = 0.05), and from 22.8% to 23.2% at their FCC. Both groups significantly increased their total distance and average power output following training, with the LC group recording a superior performance measure. There were minimal changes to the crank torque profile in both groups following training. This study demonstrated that the FCC can be altered with HC interval training and that the determinants of the optimal cycling cadence are multifactorial and not completely understood. Furthermore, LC interval training may significantly improve time-trial results of short duration as a result of an increase in strength development or possible neuromuscular adaptations.

[French] Cette étude se propose de déterminer les effets d’un entraînement par intervalle à haute et à basse cadence sur la cadence librement choisie (FCC) et la performance chez des cyclistes entraînés en endurance. Seize cyclistes masculins entraînés en endurance participent à une série de courses sous-maximales sollicitant 60 % de la Wmax à des cadences de 50, 70, 90, 110 rpm et à leur FCC afin de déterminer leur cadence préférée, le rendement brut (GE), l’intensité de l’effort perçu (RPE) et le profil du moment de force sur la manivelle. On mesure la performance au moyen d’un contre-la-montre de 15 min conditionné au préalable par une course à 60 % de la Wmax. À la suite de l’évaluation, on répartit aléatoirement les participants dans les groupes à haute (HC, 20 % > FCC) et à basse (HC, 20 % < FCC) cadence pour 18 séances d’entraînement par intervalle en 6 semaines. Le groupe HC accroit (p = 0,01) sa FCC de 92 à 101 rpm à la fin de la période d’intervention tandis que le groupe LC n’enregistre pas de modification (93 rpm). Le GE passe de 22,7 % à 23,6 % dans le groupe HC à 90 rpm (p = 0,05) et de 20,0 % à 20,9 % à 110 rpm (p = 0,05) et de 22,8 % à 23,2 % à sa FCC. Les deux groupes améliorent significativement leur distance totale; le groupe LC améliore sa puissance moyenne et présente une performance supérieure. On observe à la suite de la période d’intervention des modifications minimes du profil du moment de force sur la manivelle dans les deux groupes. D’après cette étude, on peut modifier la FCC par un entraînement par intervalle de type HC, mais on ne maîtrise pas totalement les multiples facteurs de la cadence optimale à vélo. De plus, un entraînement par intervalle de type LC peut améliorer significativement la performance au contre-la-montre de brève durée; cette amélioration est possiblement due à l’augmentation de la force ou à des adaptations neuromusculaires. [Traduit par la Rédaction]

Keywordsmetabolic efficiency; central pattern generators; muscular demands; efficience métabolique; générateurs centraux de mouvement; exigences musculaires
Year2016
JournalApplied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism
Journal citation41 (6), pp. 666-673
PublisherNational Research Council of Canada
ISSN1715-5312
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1139/apnm-2015-0562
Scopus EID2-s2.0-84971623093
Page range666-673
Research GroupSports Performance, Recovery, Injury and New Technologies (SPRINT) Research Centre
Publisher's version
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All rights reserved
File Access Level
Controlled
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online2016
Publication process dates
Accepted17 Feb 2016
Place of publicationCanada
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