Introduction to Bike Fitting
How well your bicycle fits you determines a lot. It can mean the difference between comfort and pain, fast and slow, safe and unsafe cycling.
Proper fitting starts with selecting the right size bike frame. Most of our bikes are not one-size-fits-all, but rather, come in different frame measurements to help you obtain the best overall fit. Frame size is usually measured along the length of the seat tube (the tube which supports a bike’s seat and seatpost). While measurement standards vary a bit between different manufacturers, we can help you determine the ideal range of sizes that would offer you your best match to your body type and riding style.
Determine Your Riding Style
How does your riding style relate to proper fit? Let’s say you want to cruise the bike paths on a bike that lets you sit upright where you get a good view of the scenery. That calls for a different frame size, bike type and fit approach than, say, a time-trial racer who needs to be positioned for optimum aerodynamics and speed.
Better Bike Parts Can Be Adjusted
Beyond frame size, other components of a bike also contribute greatly to a good fit. Take seats, for instance. What's the best height for your bike seat? How far forward or back of center is your correct seat position? The tilt of the seat is also adjustable. Other factors to know more about include: stem length and height; crankarm length; and, what width and shape of handlebars work best for you.
If you've determined that a professional bike fit is your next step, give us a call and will get you in touch with a certified staff member to schedule an appointment. During the appointment, your fit technician will begin with a pre-fit interview to obtain a better understanding of your riding style and goals. Then, key measurements will be taken from the body, including range of motion and flexibility assessments. During the bike fit, you will spend a significant amount of time on the trainer where the technician will use the gathered information to fit your bike to you. The end result is a bike perfectly paired to your unique measurements, making you as comfortable and efficient as possible.
A typical full bike fit is scheduled for two hours, Tuesday-Friday, at either 8 am or 6 pm. Please call the store to schedule your appointment.
Matt Thomas, Exercise Physiologist
We offer three FitTest packages that cater to specific needs. Most cyclists would benefit most from our Basics package. This package is appropriate for the sport cyclist interested in improving their performance (ie. looking to improve their weekly group ride performance or for casual competition). The Power Performance package provides all peak and threshold variables necessary to improve your VO2 max and functional threshold performance for upcoming events. This introduces some more advanced concepts for objective training and structured improvement. Finally, the Full-Tilt bundle is tailored to the high mileage junkie looking to edge the competition by best understanding his/her physiologic potential. This testing is a bit more rigorous, but the benefits are well worth the work. If you are riding with a power meter, this one’s for you. If you have any questions about which testing platform is best for you, just ask!