Bonking

When you don't eat enough. Your fuel and energy levels are so depleted you feel like you're pedalling through wet tar. It’s a shit feeling and also quite dangerous. Avoid by keeping your food and water levels topped up

Bibs

Cycling shorts that act like overalls. You can get cycling shorts with just an elastic waist band, which are easier to go the toilet in, but can be less comfortable than bibs and often cause more chaffing

Cadence

The speed at which you are pedalling, often measured in RPM (revolutions (per minute)

Chamois

A fine layer of cushioning in your cycling shorts (made more comfortable chamois cream)

Cleats

Something which is attached into the sole of a cyclist's shoe. It is a sprung mechanism that allows the cyclist to clip their feet in and out of their pedals

Col

A decent sized hill

Criterium (crit)

A short cycling race that usually lasts less than an hour. Usually on a closed circuit or in a town centre, you repeat one small circuit several times over

Cyclocross (CX)

Somewhere between road and mountain, Cyclocross is an off-road style of racing that is completed on an obstacle course. Requires riding, running and a lot of bike handling skills.

Drafting

Riding behind someone else (less than 3 bike lengths back) and go faster for less energy output

Embrocation

An oil / cream used to warm you up

Fixie

A bike which only has one speed and can’t freewheel

Lid

Another word for helmet

Half wheeling

When you are riding two by two but one person rides slightly ahead of you (as to make you feel your chasing on). Can also cause crashes when the wheels knock

Palmares

Achievements within a cycling career

Peloton

A group of cyclists riding nicely together, in formation for efficiency and safety

QOM

Queen of the Mountain. Awarded to the female who has the fastest time up any given hill

Saddle sores

The unfortunate and often painful result of chaffing for hours whilst in the saddle. You can help reduce this by using chamois cream



Want answers to a question that isn’t featured?
Use the form below and we’ll ask the advisory board.

Name *
Name

Kitty Pemberton-Platt