EMPIRICALLY MEASURING THE ENERGY EFFICIENCY OF OFF- ROAD BICYCLES

  • E. Wang
Keywords: off-road bicycle, mountain, suspension, energy

Abstract

The objective of this study was to determine if the energy efficiency of dual suspension bicycles could be measured quantitatively under realistic race conditions. A SRM Powermeter was used to collect heart rate, power, and velocity data while a group of skilled cyclists rode laps on an outdoor test course. Six different suspension designs were compared. Results indicated that one dual suspension bicycle was significantly faster than the bicycle with front fork suspension only. The results also indicated that a large variation in the energy efficiency between dual suspension designs exists. Proper selection of equipment could reduce a typical race time by up to 3 minutes.