Researchers at Clydebank’s Golden Jubilee Hospital are in the set-up phase of a study which could give elite cyclists a helping hand to gold medals.

By using advanced 3D technology with infrared digital cameras, cyclists will ride on a static bike while sensors on their body pick up their real time movements.

The research team at the hospital’s Motion Analysis Laboratory will soon be determining if the length of bicycle cranks is important while competitively racing.

Dr David Griffiths, a Clinical Research Fellow at the Golden Jubilee, said: “We will be looking at varying crank length in terms of the power that a cyclist can produce for 20 minutes in an aero dynamic time-trial position.

“There’s some anecdotal evidence to suggest that a shorter crank might allow you to put out more power over a given time period in a time-trial position.

“We’re going to get cyclists going flat out for 20 minutes with one length of crank and do the same test a few days later with either a shorter or longer crank to see what impact that has on their power output.”

Participants in the study will see a real time computer generated version of their own body going through rigorous exercise – showing specific pressure points on the joints, ankles and hips.

Lead Orthopaedic Surgeon Jason Roberts, who is also a multi gold medal-winning cyclist, said: “This research is cutting edge and we believe it is the first of its kind.

“The test will allow us to capture really interesting information about angles and how the crank length could affect your position on a bike as well as your power output.

“We’d be delighted to hear from cyclists who may want to get involved in the study."