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How to master short punchy climbs

How to master short punchy climbs

Short, punchy climbs are notorious for testing a cyclist’s explosiveness, strength, and mental fortitude. These tough  ascents with sharp gradients require a unique blend of power and technique to conquer effectively.

At the heart of short punchy climbs lies the need for rapid acceleration and sustained power output. Whether you’re tackling a series of switchbacks or a single, steep kicker, the ability to generate high wattage in short bursts is essential for conquering these demanding ascents. Hill repeats offer the perfect opportunity to hone this explosive power and refine your climbing technique.

If you don’t do hill repeats as part of your training, you might want to try. Especially if you want to level up your ability to give it on those steep, sharp kickers.

The beauty of hill repeats lies in their simplicity and effectiveness. By repeatedly tackling short, intense climbs, you can target the specific energy systems and muscle groups needed to excel on punchy terrain. Each repeat serves as a microcosm of the race or group scenario. You can simulate the demands of rapid accelerations and recoveries that are characteristic of short punchy climbs.

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Hill repeats provide a controlled environment for you to experiment with pacing and gear selection. Whether you prefer to attack the climb in the saddle or out of the saddle, hill repeats offer the flexibility to refine your approach and identify the most effective tactics for maximizing performance. By dialing in your cadence, gearing, and effort level, you can optimize your efficiency and power output on short punchy climbs.

On most steep climbs, you’ll probably be doing a mix of standing and sitting. If it’s very steep, you may find yourself standing the entire time.

1 minute hill sprints

You’re going to need a hill that takes about 1 minute to get up for this workout.
Start either from a standstill or with a slow roll
Stand up and sprint as hard as you can for the climb
Allow yourself a recovery period of 5 minutes before repeating this interval
Aim to complete this sequence for a total of 5 to 10 repetitions
This will help you foster the explosive power you need on those short climbs.

20 second jams

For this workout, you’ll need a climb that is slightly longer–2 to 3 minutes.
Begin the climb at a tempo level, 76-87 per cent of your FTP. This will simulate a race pace.
When you get to the top, sprint while…

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