Drafting Skills

A technique used by cyclist to conserve their energy and sustain higher speeds for longer distances/time. Riders will be sharing the work load in the front and will recover while in the shelter. This technique is believed to save up to 30% of rider’s energy.

How it is done
As seen in the Picture riders

  1. Riders are following each other closely, which is saving them from wind in turn helping them to conserve their energy
  2. Rider in the front takes his/her turn to face the wind, expelling more energy and maintaining the speed.
  3. Rider in the from after leading will move slowly to the left and slow down just a little (38kms) by reducing the RPM aconserve until the last rider passes by, to get to the right side following the other riders at higher speed (40kms).


This process is followed cyclically allowing the group of riders to rider faster for longer durations.

Risks: Many a times riders overlap their front wheel with the rear wheel of the rider in the front and which may lead to a crash involving other riders riding in the formation.

Tips: When you try this for the initial period, do this at a slower speed and maintain a safe distance from the rider in the front, allowing you more time to act.
It is highly imperative that riders maintain their line, especially after taking their turn to lead/pull and when moving out of the line to the slower lane.
Elite riders use their Elbows to signal the rider behind that s/he is done with her/his turn, BEFORE MOVING to the slower lane and slowing down
Follow these rules

  • Maintain a steady Speed/RPM to maintain a steady pace
  • Fast Lane is on the Right and Slow Lane on the Left, keep this as a standard practice for all the rides, at least until you’ll have mastered the skill of Drafting!!
  • Flick your elbow not your bike
  • Slowly change your line to get into the slow lane after you have taken pulled
  • Slow down with your RPM just a bit
  • Wait for the last rider to pass by
  • Increase your RPM and get back in to the line
  • Warn the riders of any hazard approaching (be vocal if necessary)
  • Be cautious when using your brakes



Pic (a) demonstrates the simplest form of drafting done, in relatively head wind conditions
Pic (b) More Complex form of drafting called Echelon done in cross wind conditions.

Caution:  This is a skill based activity which takes months or years to master.

Warning: Only do it under a professionals supervision, ID sports or Cyclozeal will not be responsible for any mishaps/crashes that can happen when doing this activity.

Content  Shared by:

Cyclozeal – Training and Assistance 


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