Whether you are new to riding, or someone with decades of riding under your belt, a proper bike fit is a great way to ensure you are comfortable on the bike. Being set up in a comfortable position should be the number one priority of a bikefit. Riding in comfort will allow you to train (and race) consistently, and will also help you to remain injury-free. The longer you can spend riding without injury, the faster and more efficient you become.
Your optimal bike position will change over time for a variety of reasons, including:
As your body changes, so should your bike position. Ageing and injury are two examples of why this occurs.
- As we age, we tend to become tighter in the lower back and hamstrings (for example). If this is the case, then your saddle position and reach might be effected and should be adjusted accordingly.
- If you suffer an injury, then your joint range of motion and muscle function around that joint will change, and your bike position will need to be adjusted to allow for these changes.
If you don’t change your bike position to accommodate any changes in the way your body functions then you will more than likely end up developing an injury.
At The Body Mechanic we use cycling-specific physiotherapy principles developed over many years of clinical practice to assess your body. This body assessment allows us to make sure the position of your setup is specific to you at the current point in time. We prescribe exercises to help improve your hip mobility, lower back flexibility, and efficiency of your gluteal muscles – as these aspects of your body improve, so should your bike position.
The reverse is also true. If you haven’t had a bikefit for a while, and you have been spending too much time sitting at work, then your bikefit should be adjusted to accomodate your new found lack of flexibility.
N + 1
New bike day is always a great day. The new bike might have similar geometry to your current bike. However, more often than not, a bike fit on the new bike will highlight differences in the way you should be set compared to the old bike. This is more obvious if you buy a TT bike or mountain bike, but even two road bikes with similar geometry specs will need to be setup differently to allow optimal comfort and handling.
“You should come and race mate”
There is always someone in the bunch that will suggest this to you at some point. As your riding changes, so should your bike fit. If you decide to splash out and get yourself an aero roadie to dabble in some crit racing, the position you should/could be set in on that bike will be different to the relatively relaxed geometry of your road bike.
Similarly, if you are loving your riding and you start to do longer rides, sportive or multi-day events, then your bike set up should be adjusted to ensure you remain comfortable in the saddle for longer periods of time. This also applies if your general riding volume increases.
The only constant is change.
The bike fitting process is an ongoing one. As your body, bike, goals or riding volume change, so too should your bike set up.
Are you really in your optimal position or are you just tolerating your current setup?
You might not know what you are missing out on in terms of both comfort and efficiency, until you have had a proper fit and experienced the difference.
You can reach your cycling and performance goals through consistent training. A great way to ensure that is by getting a bike fitting.
The basis of a fit with The Body Mechanic is to establish a position which enables you to train for a long time and frequently whilst minimising your potential for injury.
A bike fit at The Body Mechanic is comprehensive- we can fit your body to the bike as much as the bike to your body!
Contact us to book your BikeFit now.