Love hearing the training methods everyone uses.
The variety of what can be done is always interesting to read and analyse.
@Tapeworm. The reason for the tyre is so that the rpm reaches a constant 90 or so. It's a full on maximum effort just to maintain that rpm. I think only a windtrainer with a super massive gear could come close to the feeling.
The reason for the constant rpm is so that no gear changes need to take place, so all power from the upper body goes into the full pedal stroke, both down, and more importantly up...
I think it's the up stroke that gets trained by this kind of training that sees the most benefit in improving snap in the legs.
The other thing it teaches is form, both balance and technique. A good deal of the effort from the upper body and arms goes into keeping the bike going in a straight line, while the other part is in transmitting power down the body and into the legs.
It seems counter intuitive to the upper body and arms initially, but once you have done tyre pulls a bunch of times you find out how much extra power you can get into your legs from your perfecting your arms and upper body form.
Oh yeah, I do agree that full sprints should also be practiced in an low aerobic workout. In summer, I do a 25k ride around a rolling hills circuit with 3 sprints in it of 250-300m, 3k apart. By the 3rd sprint, i'm pretty smashed.
@KWalker Yep, some sprints are from a pack moving at a very high tempo, and so being able to do micro sprints to stay near the front or on a certain wheel, and then having the snap is the thing that wins race. It's not something that can be fully simulated in training (i.e. the micro sprints can't be replicated easily). But I reckon your workouts would definitely help.
It really depends on where you race though. In the country in aus, you might only be racing against 5 other guys in a club race and a proper 250metre sprint effort is what wins races. While in the city, the micro sprinting/snap sprint is what wins races with big fast moving packs. It varies alot based racing level too.
Oh, thought I would add this for some info for thought.
The top track sprinters (world cup/olympic) all sprint at 140-150 rpm every single sprint. Usually towards the bottom of 140rpm, but still all within that range.
The top individual pursuiters (4k/3k) all sit on 120rpm, with the ones that win settling into 120rpm, then holding it, or slightly increasing to 125 by the end.
If you want to know how I came about this info, well, I taped the world track champs when they were on here in oz, and played back the coverage frame by frame counting pedal revs per lap, and using their laptimes to calc rpm.
Also got gear ratios by using a slightly over 250m distance with their rpm
But that's for another post