Power Training Chapter 3: Limiters

A limiter is a physiological, mechanical, environmental or other circumstance that constrains or ‘limits’ performance. Put in terms of power, we would say that there are a variety of factors that can limit how much power we can produce. Consequently, as we work towards improving our power, we need to understand how these limiters can impact our degree of success in reaching our goals.

Different Types of Limiters


  1. Author

    You have a couple of questions or comments that should be responded to, so let me take each one at a time:
    1. Heart Rate Training is Dead? The trainer said you never have to go back to heart rate training. This post and the one that followed it should more than easily dismiss this comment as ignorance at best, irresponsible at worst.

    2. Just Using Power Makes You Stronger. You can definitely get stronger using power alone as your training tool. Not also using heart rate won’t prevent this, but it may very well prevent you from becoming efficient – there is a difference. Why not increase your understanding of power and its affect on your body.

    3. Everyone Has A Maximum. Of course, this is quite true. However this is true for the pros in every sport as well. This does not mean therefore that we shouldn’t try to improve. If that were the case, professional athletes would never practice but just show up and win. We all have limits, some are gifted to have a starting power before they train that may be higher than the best power we could ever work to develop – but that doesn’t mean they can beat other similarly blessed individuals if they train smarter and harder.

    It’s all relative to yourself, who you ride with, who you compete against, and how far you can get towards your own maximum. Most humans don’t get very close to it at all in their lifetime.

  2. The facility I teach at just bought the new Spin ion bikes. We all had training on them. At this facility even though it is spin certified, they never did teach heart rate training very much. Now that we have these bikes, the training said we don’t ever have to go back to heart rate training. From what I am reading above this is not true. Also, it seemed that she said you could continue to get stronger. We were told to test every 6-8 weeks to let the riders know they are getting stronger but again on what I read above it seems that everybody had a maximum they can achieve. Am I reading that right?

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