Wednesday 11 July 2012

Maximum cadence

Yesterday Cav tweeted that he and the (remaining) Team Sky TdF team had a maximum cadence competition and he won with 227rpm.  His legs must have been a blur as that is close to 4 crank revolutions a second!

I have a Garmin cadence sensor fitted to my Van Nicholas Chinook and part of my turbo interval training involves a high cadence effort. I can sustain 150rpm for a bit but I'll have to see what maximum cadence I can achieve.

Without a cadence sensor it is possible to determine it from speed and gearing.  Sheldon Brown's website has a useful gear calculator I have used whilst investigating gearing improvements on my Brompton 2-speed. 

For example, on Strava it claims that I average 30.2mph on a 0.3mile segment of my Brompton commute. At 100rpm, the 16" wheels, 54 chainring and 12 tooth sprocket will be 21.5mph, so 30.2mph is going to be about 140rpm.

On my fixed wheel, 700c, 42 chainring and 16 sprocket, my maximum speed is 34mph, which is 165rpm.


  1. jumped onto my IDT after reading about Cav's little cadence eyepopper,and managed 209rpm. Attempted reaching peak cadence twice more, achieving 204 and 202rpm respectively. Stopped after I felt a thigh starting to twinge.
    Cav's a machine.

    1. for reference: IDT = Tacx Satori on resistance setting 5, bike = Giant Trance (rear lockout is no more :( ), 42T chainring, cant remember gearing in the rear.

  2. 209!!! Chapeau.

    I'm going to have to get on the turbo trainer and go for a max effort