Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Award

Spring 2012

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Department of Kinesiology


The purpose of this study was to determine whether a second-position cyclist benefitted, in terms of decreased power requirement, from the presence of a third-position cyclist. It was hypothesized that the second-position cyclist would experience a decrease in power requirement with the presence of a third-position cyclist compared to the absence of a third-position cyclist, and that this decreased power requirement would be magnified during the faster trials. Twelve trained cyclists served as second-position subjects. Subjects completed 12 total trials each: 2 solo trials at a moderate speed (MS), 2 solo trials at a high speed (HS), 2 MS trials in a 2-cyclist line, 2 HS trials in a 2-cyclist line, 2 MS trials in a 3-cyclist line at, and 2 HS trials in a 3-cyclist line. Significant main effects were observed for speed (p = 0.000), condition (p = 0.001), and speed-condition interaction (p = 0.017). Post hoc analyses revealed significant differences (p < 0.001) in power production between the solo condition and 2-line condition and between the solo condition and the 3-line condition at both speeds; however, there was no significant difference between the 2-line and 3-line conditions (p = 0.216), despite an average power savings of 4.74% more in the 3-line condition. When the HS data for the eight fastest cyclists was compared, the 3-line condition required an average of 26.88 W less (a 9.18% power reduction) than the required power output of the 2-line condition (p < 0.05). Power output reductions within this range of 4.74-9.18% could prove beneficial to performance throughout the course of a long-distance race.

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