In early March my colleague Jen Mcpherson and I rolled on down to Seattle to attend an intensive 2 day workshop on bike fitting. Jen is an avid multisport athlete who has completed multiple Ironman competitions and marathons and I’m a keen recreational road cyclist so our interest in learning the process of getting a rider to the best possible position for comfort and power comes from the heart.
This was an excellent course with both days full of hands on fitting experience. Thanks to the volunteers who attended and gave themselves and their bikes as our working material. But hey, you got a free bike fit!
This is a complex process that I believe physios are well suited to perform. The big picture of getting feet, seat and handlebars in the optimum places is very important. The wrong seat choice, height and position will compromise both comfort and efficiency. Incorrect handlebar height, position and tilt will have a similar effect. Hopefully these basic things are sorted out in the bike shop when your purchase is made and will be close to correct. But it’s the fine tuning and attention to specific individual body mechanics, that vary from person to person, that really can produce the best result. This kind of customizing is particularly important if previous injury is present or if the bike was bought second hand and has never been fit to the owner. As physiotherapists we can assess important body mechanics around previous injury and use that information to produce the best individual fit to the bike.
With the growth in recreational cycling we expect to see even more overuse injuries that are due to improper bike ergonomics. We’ve seen the success of the Whistler Gran Fondo and the numerous other rides it has spun off but not everyone looks comfortable on their bike! Foot, knee, low back, groin, neck are all sites of discomfort that point to a need for fit revision.
Starting in April we will be offering bike fitting as a service in the clinic. Please contact the clinic if you would like to book an appointment.