Aldhu Carbon cranks of 155mm for road

What Is The Best Crank Length For Cycling?

September 21, 2023 1285 view(s)

What Is The Best Crank Length For Cycling? 

Your bike's cranks are probably the most important component. They transmit your leg power into the back wheel forward momentum. However, determining the ideal crank length is a balancing act. In this article, we'll go into the details of crank length to help you get the most out of your leg power.

Standard Crank Lengths 

The most common standard crank lengths are: 

· 170 mm 
· 172.5 mm 
· 175 mm

Most of the time, the length of the cranks fitted to your bike will depend on the frame size. For example, a small frame size will usually have a set of 170 mm cranks and large frames, 175 mm. However, you may want different length cranks based on your leg length and height. Therefore, some manufacturers offer shorter and longer cranks, so you're not limited to these three. For example, ROTOR makes cranks as short as 155 mm.

How Crank Length Affects Your Ride 

It can be tricky to choose the perfect crank lengths. But it's easy to determine if you have the wrong length cranks on your bike.  If you experience any of the following, it may be an indication that your cranks are too long for you: 

· Struggling to pedal at high cadences 
· Joint or muscle pain 
· Feeling short of breath 
· Knees touching the handlebars or your chest when in an aerodynamic position 

Shorter cranks don't cause as many problems. Still, you may experience a lack of power and torque when you're pedaling at your maximum effort. 

When you change your cranks for ones of different lengths, you're altering your bike's gearing. In essence, longer cranks have the effect of giving you a slightly easier gear, and shorter cranks a slightly harder gear. 

Are There Advantages Of Fitting Longer Cranks? 

The length of your crank should correlate to your height and leg length. But if you fit longer cranks, you will be able to produce more torque when pedaling at slower speeds. Therefore, longer cranks benefit mountain bikers who need to ride at slower cadences when the terrain is steep or technical.

Are There Advantages Of Fitting Shorter Cranks? 

Shorter cranks can be beneficial if you experience back or knee pain when riding. This is because the shorter length reduces the load on your hip flexors and joints. 
Mountain bikers can also benefit from shorter cranks. They increase ground clearance, so you don't clip your pedals as much on rocky trails. Additionally, cross-country riders like shorter cranks as they help them reach peak power more quickly.

Why not check out our website for excellent examples for all cycling disciplines? If you're looking for a perfect way to upgrade your bike while improving your cycling fitness, consider our INpower and 2INpower cranks with integrated power meters.

These products harness cycling data like never before. INpower's cutting-edge technology delivers the following advantages. 

1. Dual-Sided Accuracy: INpower offers dual-sided power measurement, unveiling your cycling dynamics with unparalleled precision. 
2. Direct Mount Design: Seamlessly integrated into your bike's crankset, INpower ensures consistent accuracy for reliable training insights. 
3. Enhanced Training Insights: Get real-time data on power output, cadence, balance, and more.  
4. Easy Compatibility: INpower fits most major bike frames and crankset standards, ensuring hassle-free integration with your setup. 
5. Bluetooth and ANT+ Connectivity: Sync effortlessly with your cycling devices. Analyze, track, and share your progress in real-time. 
6. Bike Optimization: INpower empowers you to fine-tune your pedaling technique and optimize efficiency, unlocking your cycling potential. 
7. Durable Performance: Built to endure the rigors of every ride, INpower is designed to withstand all weather conditions for year-round training. 
8. Scientific Insights: INpower's data-rich reports help you understand your strengths and weaknesses, paving the path to targeted improvement. 

Final Thoughts On The Best Crank Length For Cycling 

In conclusion, there is no 'best crank length' for every cyclist and their needs. But how long your cranks are makes a difference to your bike's riding characteristics. 

The main thing you should be aware of is not riding with cranks that are too long. This is because it has the most potential to cause problems. On the other hand, the only real downside to going for shorter cranks is that it could negatively affect how your bike fits. But this is often easily remedied by adjusting your saddle height and its position.

If you really want to experiment with crank lengths, go for shorter ones. But you can really benefit by opting for ones fitted with power meters like the ROTOR INpower.