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What gearing should I use for climbing?

A 27 cassette is not a bad idea especially if you are climbing upwards of 10% grades for a significant period of time. Riding with a 53/39, and a cassette that has 10 gears, 12-25 is what many riders use, however changing your cassette will certainly make a difference in your climbing. A cadence around 50 is particularly slow and so if your cadence is dropping below 60 you may consider getting a 27 if you wish to increase your cadence. Low cadences primarily use fast twitch muscles, which tend to fatigue earlier. A higher cadence will require less force per pedal stroke resulting in the greater reliance of slow twitch muscle fibers, which are more fatigue resistant. Using a higher cadence (>80) will be useful for longer climbs and will conserve energy in the long run. Unfortunately you cannot swap out the 25 for the 27. A cassette with gearing of 12-27 is typical for climbing. You will have to put a completely different cassette on your wheel.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.