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Tue / Thur AM Arakawa 'hiki' rides


Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
Hi - I'm riding every tues and thurs on the Arakawa doing a fairly specific training session called 'hiki'. Basically we just hook up some old motorcycle tires and drag them behind your bike. I have 3 sets stashed down there.

Schedule - I generally leave Shinjuku at 7.00am (corner of Yamete Dori and Okubo Dori) Ride out to Arakawa takes roughly 35min or so depend on traffic. Then hook up the hiki and drag to the 'crossover' bridge - turn around and drag them back. That takes about 40min to complete both directions. Then unhook and ride home.

Purpose - develop 360 power stroke and full motion exercise for the big muscles. This is not a sprint, nor spin, but slow cadence (around 40-60) under steady state drag. I generally do this out of the saddle to also improve my standing endurance and overall body form.

Anyone can do this - easy to start with just a single tire, then add as you want. Its great for focused training and a good fat burn.

We generally tire the rope around the seatpost - so I wouldn't be bringing any super delicate machine for this.
How different is this to riding into a strong headwind?
I've been tempted to do this but usually can find a strong enough headwind on the river for this kind of training.
Its quite different feeling actually. Even so from a hill or headwind/

1) Its very steady state resistance. It works independent of wind.
2) There is a funky rhythm of the tire bouncing along that gives you pace.
3) You are carrying the spirit of thousands of keirin riders with you.

Wind gives you resistance more in one direction - this gives it to you in both directions. You simply have to drag that damn thing back! The bouncing cadence thing is quite interesting to me - you can really dig down into pedal stroke smoothness - cause small changes in your stroke result in more harmonics on the tire - you essentially hear and feel these small differences more and can work on different parts of your pedal stroke accordingly. Look at it as a very cheap power crank.

Wax on - wax off -- I dunno. But after riding with a 72yo that has beautiful pedal stroke and been doing this more than 40yrs - must be something there...
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