**Power meters** can be used to

**measure**the

**force**on a component using strain gauge. They convert this to

**power**by taking the component’s

**speed**and adding it to the

**power**equation.

**Power**is

**in**

**measure**d**Watts**and expressed in

**kilo**.

**watt**sFor example, if you have a **bike** with a ** power output** of 100W, and a

**pedal**ing**force**of 10Nm, the

**will report that the**

**power****meter****bike**is capable of producing 100

**of**

**watt**s**power**. However, this is only true if the

**pedal**ling**force**is equal to or greater than 10 Nm.

In other words, it’s not true that you can **pedal** 10 times as hard as you did the last time you ** pedalled**, because the

**pedal**

**force**will be less than the 10-times-hard-

**–**

**pedal**ling**force**value. This is why it is important to understand the difference between

**power**and

**power**-per-kilogram (w/kg).

**Power** is a **measure** of the amount of **force** that is applied to an object, while **power** per kilogram is the ratio of this **force** to the object’s mass.

Table of Contents

## Are cycling power meters worth it?

**Power meters** are worth the investment because of their affordability. A good coach can use your

**power**numbers to make sure your training leads to specific goals. You can learn more about

**training here.**

**power****meter**## How do you read a cycling power meter?

For a ** power meter** to work on a

**bike**, it needs to

**measure**the amount of

**force**a rider is generating and how fast that

**force**moves. The

**force**that comes from

**a**

**pedal**ing**bike**comes from the rider’s legs and the

**bike**‘s suspension. The

**force**is

**in pounds per square inch (psi) and is expressed in Newton-**

**measure**d**per second (Nm/s).**

**meter**sFor example, if you were to **pedal** your **bike** at a **speed** of 10 mph, you would generate a **force** of 1,000 Nm, which is equal to the weight of your entire body. If you then ** pedaled** at the same

**speed**for an hour, your

**force**would increase to 2,500 N m-1, or 2.5 times your body weight.

In other words, when you **pedal** at your normal **speed**, there is a constant **force** applied to your legs. When you increase your **speed** to 20 mph and then increase it to 30 mph for the rest of the ride, this **force** will increase by a factor of two. This means that you will be generating more **force** per unit of time than you did before.

## Are pedal power meters accurate?

More **power** can be lost if the distance between generating and measuring **power** is greater. This indicates that **pedal**-based ** meters** are more accurate than crank/chainring based

**. In order to test the accuracy of**

**meter**s**pedal**based

**, I**

**s****power****meter****the**

**measure**d**of a**

**power**output**bike**equipped with a Shimano Dura-Ace 11-

**speed**drivetrain. The

**bike**was set up with the rear derailleur on the lowest cog and the chainrings at the top of the cassette.

I used a ** power meter** to

**measure**

**power**at a distance of 1.5

**from the crank to the crankset, and a crank-to-crank distance**

**meter**s**to determine the amount of**

**measure**ment**power**that could be generated by the

**bike**at that distance. In this case,

**power**was

**using a digital**

**measure**d**multi**with an accuracy range of 0.1-0.2

**meter****per**

**watt**s**meter**(W/m2). The results are shown in the graph below.

As you can see, there is a significant difference in **power** between the **pedal** and crank based systems. However, this difference is not as large as one might expect. It is important to note, however, that the differences are not significant enough to warrant the use of ** pedals** as the primary method of

**for**

**measure**ment**power**.

## What do power meter pedals do?

There is a dual-sided **power** ** measurement** that can be provided by

**with sensors on both**

**s****power****meter****. This feature can be used to observe and correct the differences in performance between legs. The**

**pedal**s**power**

**take up very little space on the**

**meter****pedal**s**bike**and are easy to install.

The ** power meter** can also be used to

**measure**the

**of the rider’s legs, which can be useful for training purposes. For example, if you are training for a triathlon, you may want to know how much**

**power**output**power**your legs are producing during the race.

You can **measure** this by using the ** Power Meter** on your

**bike**, or you can use it to monitor your performance during a training ride.

## Do I need a speed and cadence sensor with a power meter?

You don’t need a separate sensor in addition to the **Stages Power**

**meter**. You don’t have to worry about it because the

**Stages**

**Power****meter**sends both

**watt**and RPM to the head unit.

**s****Power****meter****measure**the amount of

**power**that is being applied to your

**bike**.

They are used to determine how hard you are ** pedaling**, how fast you’re going, and how long it takes you to complete a given distance.

**can also be used for other purposes, such as measuring your heart rate, or measuring how much oxygen you have in your blood.**

**s****Power****meter**A **speed** sensor ** measures** the

**speed**of the

**bike**, while an altitude sensor records the altitude of your ride. Both of these types of sensors can be found on most road and mountain

**, as well as most mountain**

**bike**s**bike**and cyclocross

**. However, there are some differences between**

**bike**s**and**

**s****power****meter****speed**and altitude sensors.

For more information on these differences, please see our ** Power Meter** vs

**Speed**/Altitude Comparison page.

## Is 200 watts good cycling?

It is not appropriate for all riders to have an exact **watt** number. A beginner cyclist can average between 75 and 100 **watt** in a one hour workout. A well-trained cyclist will probably average between 150 and 200 **watt**, while a fit participant will average more than 100 **watt**. If you’re not sure what your ** wattage** is, you can use a

**watt**

**meter**to estimate it.

For example, if you have a **bike** with a 50 **watt** ** power meter** and you want to know how many

**your**

**watt**s**bike**is capable of producing, simply plug in the number of

**into the**

**watt**s**meter**. The

**meter**will tell you how much

**power**the

**bike**can produce for a given amount of time. You can then multiply that number by 1.5 to get the

**per hour (w/h) of your**

**watt**s**.**

**power**outputThis is a good way to figure out how fast you’ll be ** pedaling**, or how long it will take you to

**pedal**a certain distance. If you don’t have the time to calculate this yourself, the best way is to use an online calculator like this one, which will give you an estimate based on your current fitness level.

## How fast is 200 watts on a bike?

If a cyclist with 200 **watt** of **power** were to ride upright on the brake hoods, they would travel at a **speed** of 32.4kph. The cyclist would only be able to achieve a **speed** of 22.5kmph if he went down onto his hands and knees. The reason for this is that the cyclist’s body is not designed to handle such a high **speed**.

It is also important to note that this test was done on a stationary **bike**, not a moving one, so it is impossible to know how a cyclist would react to a sudden change in **speed**, such as if they were riding down a steep incline, or if there was an obstacle in front of them.

## Can you work out power from speed and cadence?

They don’t actually **measure** your ** power output**, but based on known

**power**curves of the trainer at given

**speed**/cadence, they run through some formulas to give you a number as you spin away on the trainer. It comes out to about 1.5

**watt**per minute, which is close to what you’d get if you were spinning at the same

**speed**and cadence.

If you want to know how much **power** you’re actually getting out of your trainer, you’ll need to use a ** power meter**. There are a few different types of

**out there, and they all have their pros and cons. The one I use is called the**

**s****power****meter****. It’s a pretty simple device that plugs into a wall outlet. You plug it into the wall and it**

**Power**Tap**the**

**measure**s**power**that’s flowing through the device.

If it’s above a certain threshold, then you know that you’ve got a little bit of extra **power** going through your device, so you can use that to your advantage. I’ve used it for about a year and a half now and I’m pretty happy with it.