Bike Fit FAQ's Part 2
Q - When i begin a ride all is good but when i hit the 40km-50km mark i
seem to get a lot of tension in my lower back/traps and shoulders, Why is
A - After around 40km's if you are in a slightly stretched position on the
bike the front of your core will become slightly overloaded, for the first
few kms this will not be a problem, however before to long your front core
muscles will begin to fill with lactic acid and effectively start shutting
down therefore or the load will be transferred to the rear core muscle
and extra weight will be loaded on the shoulders and hands (also a major
cause of numbness in the hands when riding) It is very important that your
weight is evenly distributed on the bike, sometimes even a few mm's can
make a world of difference.
Q - What is the definition of a good bike fit?
A - A good bike fit should do the following.
- Take in to account the riders position and not necessarily how the bike
looks as there is no guarantee that the bike will be a perfect match to
your body - always adjust the bike to the body and not the other way
around, this way you will have a perfectly balanced rider with maximum
power transfer. remember it is a bike fit and not a rider fit.
- The most accurate way of bike fitting is to perform the fit on a custom
size cycle, this allows you to get an absolute mm perfect riding position
without actually referring to your existing bike, when the fit is finished
all measurements are taken and transferred to the existing bike, this way if
for some reason a measurement doesn't match up you know exactly how far out
the bike is from your custom set up.
- Bike fitter's should never rely on "the eyes only approach", a human eye
is only accurate to around 6 - 7 degrees when an angle is static, when
moving this accuracy can be out by over 15 degrees! using dynamic video
analysis this accuracy range can be brought down to within 2-3
degrees.....remember in a bike fitting a "mm = mile"
- All good fitters in this day and age should always perform a fit in a
dynamic (moving) fashion. Far to many fitters use only a goniometer and
plumb bob to take random measurements, bike fitting is an art and a science
and everybody is uniquely different so every person should be set in
a unique way to maximise their comfort, balance, power and effectiveness.
- Finally, all measurements/bicycle contact points should be taken, If
something happens to your position when travelling or due to an accident
you don't want or need to a have a full fitting, your contact point
measurements will easily transfer your position over to any workable bike.
Q - I had a bike fit yesterday but after my first ride it doesn't feel
great, should i make some adjustments myself?
A - This is a pretty common experience shared by a lot of riders, however
it takes some time in the saddle to reboot your central nervous system/get
all muscles firing in sync etc. this can take anywhere from a day to a few
weeks depending on how drastic the bike fit adjustments were. try
to persevere unless of course it is causing you pain or discomfort. More
often than not after a few rides the position will begin to feel more
natural and you will start to see increases in power and generally you will
feel a lot more comfortable on the bike.
Q - How do i know if i need a Bike fit?
A - Its pretty amazing what the human body can get used to, i have seen
some pretty radical positions where the people riding didn't feel any level
of discomfort, this usually will not last forever and problems will
A few things that can help you identify if you are in need of a bike fit.
- Numbs hands or feet.
- pain in neck/shoulders and or upper and lower back
- Knee pain
- Bad knee alignment, i.e knees kicking out at the top of the pedal stroke.
- The feeling of sliding on the saddle or generally feeling unbalanced on
- The feeling that you are getting as much power from the bike as what you
are putting in.
If you think you are in need of a Bike Fit or a re fit then please do not
hesitate to contact me on 0210682746 or go to www.aucklandbikefit.co.nz to
find out more about our services.