How to Pedal on a Bicycle
You have just started making a pedal stroke with your left foot. As
the left foot pushes down and hits bottom, the natural inclination
is to transfer power to the right foot and start the right-foot stroke.
Think again. Your work with your left foot has just begun; you
are actually not finished with that first stroke.
As your left foot "bottoms out" on its stroke, act as if you
are scraping some sticky chewing gum off the bottom of your shoe. This
adds power to the bottom and back of the stroke and gets the foot ready
to pull on the pedal. As the left foot is scraping its way back, transfer
power to the right foot. Now, as the right foot is completing its downstroke,
pull up with the left foot. Your left foot should be pulling as your right
foot is pushing.
But hold on! You are still not done with the left-foot revolution.
As your left foot comes to the top of its revolution, act as if you are
stepping over that awful chewing gum you were just scraping off. This
will squeeze a last bit of energy from your left-foot revolution and get
it ready to power through the next revolution.
As you concentrate on getting one foot to do a proper revolution, you'll
feel like you're pedaling with just one foot. But as you get used to the
power transfer and make the transition effortless, you will be able to
get both feet moving in a smooth circle. Push-scrape-pull-step-push-scrape-pull-step
until the square boxes you used to make are nothing but a memory.
Try This: Pedal with just one foot and try to get the
push-scrape-pull-step motionperfected, so that you are delivering a smooth
circle full of power. Do this a hundred times. Now do it with the other
leg. Once you feel comfortable doing this with both legs individually,
start using them both.
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