Sport Science and the BBC recreate the first stage of the Tour de Yorkshire

The Harrison Rotation

With the Tour de Yorkshire not long away, BBC Radio Humberside visited the Department of Sport, Health and Exercise Science to discover the effects the first stage of the Tour will have on the human body.

Sports reporter David Harrison was at the University of Hull for a mammoth challenge, cycling the first stage of the Tour de Yorkshire on a stationary bike.

The first stage of the Tour starts at Bridlington and 174km later finish in Scarborough, passing through the North York Moors.

The simulation may not be as glamorous as being out in East Yorkshire and the North York Moors! However, cycling in the laboratory will simulate the physiological stress that the professional cyclists will be under during the first stage, giving a fantastic insight into the race demands.

Dr Andrew Garrett and Chris Wilcox from the Department of Sport, Health and Exercise Science also took turns to cycle alongside David in support of his challenge.

How does the equipment work?

PhD students Damien Gleadall-Siddall and Rachel Burke downloaded the GPS of the first stage of the Tour de Yorkshire, to simulate its distance and gradients on the stationary bike in the laboratory.

David had a video screen in front of the bike to show the twists and turns of the stage, the gradient and even a wind machine to simulate the environment. A professional cyclist was also shown on the screen to track their progress and speed against.

Technical expertise on the day was on provided by MSc student Mark McKeown and technician and PhD candidate James Bray.

What time would a good cyclist take to complete the stage?

A professional cyclist will take around 4 to 4 and a half hours to complete the first stage of the tour. A good club cyclist will take around a solid 6 hours, which is a big achievement.

Take a look at photos from the day on Flickr.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s