No torque workouts in TR?

If you ask a pro rider about his/her favourite workouts they usually answer long endurance rides, 30/30s or similar and low cadence (torque) intervals. I don’t see in TR torque workouts as far as l know. Am l right? Any reason to not include them in any plan?

What do you mean by torque workouts? Many workouts feature instructions to alter your cadence. Lower cadence at the same power means higher torque. Or am I missing something?

He means low cadence intervals.

All of the rcts on low cadence intervals say they are less beneficial than doing the intervals at your natural cadence aka they are harming you.

That’s not to say that’s an unassailable truth, just that the burden of proof is on people prescribing them to give reasons other than ‘they did it a lot in the past’.

My hypothesis is people like low cadence intervals for two reasons. 1, their cranks are too long and they don’t have the neuromuscular efficiency to spin, 2, it feels like hard work but actually isn’t that hard work at the time so you get to feel like you’re doing ‘more’ for less.

  1. They do them because they hate themselves and they talk about them because, hey, misery loves company!



TBHV II (all volumes) Tuesday workouts have force intervals. I do like them: short enough not to cause any pain and same time feels somehow easy Z5 (power, not VO2max).

You can search for individual workouts using term “force intervals”. It does not return all workouts but enough and from there you can select alternatives to find more.

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Specificity is key, do you find yourself riding at high torque+low cadence in your outdoor riding?

If you never find yourself spinning out top gear than you should probably just fit smaller chainrings.

Hey @Jose_Manuel,

We do have a few workouts that incorporate low-cadence drills, but you could incorporate torque training into any workout that you’d like. :slightly_smiling_face:

If anyone isn’t familiar with these types of efforts I’d recommend starting by doing short bits of riding with your cadence slightly lower than normal during a Sweet Spot workout. You can slowly work on continuing to lower your cadence over time and then lengthening the duration of these drills as you see fit.

Over time if things are feeling good you could start to build these into Threshold work and later even some VO2 Max.

Again, ease into it, and be gentle at first! Some elite cyclists have worked up to 10 minutes at 30-35rpm! :smiling_face_with_tear:

These are great exercises to incorporate into early/off-season training alongside some gym work as they are great for building up your neuromuscular pathways. :brain: :leg:


These are great exercises to incorporate into early/off-season training alongside some gym work as they are great for building up your neuromuscular pathways.

Probably a British reference, but there should be a QI buzzer on these forums when Dylan Johnson has debunked something in depth.

Low cadence interval training at moderate intensity does not improve cycling performance in highly trained veteran cyclists - PMC (

The science is unclear, although I can post a study showing performance gains from low vs high cadence training. Why would the pros do it? Why does training my cadence versatility (both high and low) improve my performance?

Saw this on X/Twitter a month ago:

Good stuff except for the snarky X/Twitter remarks :man_shrugging:


But what about muscling up from short sharp hill? Or sprinting after traffic light? All this while in wrong gear (too high) :slight_smile:

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I have been coached recently by the coaching company of Javier Sola (who’s currently coaching Pogacar). The key workouts of the base period were torque intervals and tractor pulls. I trust more the experience of coaches on thousands of athletes than the results of a scientific study on a reduced number of subjects with very limited application.


This past winter I went thru JoinBaseCamp Winter Group training and we did a lot of cadence work, both high and low. And explained the science so I could apply to my own training. Saw excellent return on investment. Similar comments about my coach of 3 years (shout out to Isaiah Newkirk, woot woot).

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John Wakefield is a big advocate of these as well for what it’s worth!

One could always go back to a 10 speeds where every hill was a torque interval. Back in the day I rode 52/42 with a 13-21 cassette.

Take it out of erg and focus on mastering the fundamentals - including your pedal stroke. Its flat here and so easy to spot riders with a sloppy pedal stroke. And honestly, no bullshit, n=1 and all that, its mostly the guys & gals spinning mono-cadence in erg on Zwift or TR.

And one from Coach Tim Cusick over at JoinBaseCamp:

maybe some of you are such naturals at pedaling that you can ignore continual mastery of the fundamentals. I’m not one of those athletes.

Interesting discussion about science vs real torque training practice : Spotify

Check from 51:45

You guys might find the discussions about cadence in these podcast clips interesting and informative!

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