Setting your bike up properly isn’t just important in ensuring you are comfortable and injury-free, but it can also improve performance and pedalling efficiency
OAG team member Steve is training to cycle the White Rose Classic sportive in the heart of the Yorkshire Dales. While training he became aware of back ache during longer rides, so we got in touch with Dan from Green Wheel Cycles in Peterborough to get some advice and find out if a personalised bike fit would help.
What is bike fitting?
Bike fitting is essentially the process of adjusting your position on the bike for maximum comfort and efficiency when pedalling. Improving your alignment on the bike should also help prevent injuries, and the understanding of cycling fundamentals you’ll gain during a good fit will help you go further and faster using less energy.
The aim of a bike fit:
- Establish the correct bike position for your build
- Understand the correct pedalling technique
- Improve core stability
- Improve cadence
- Understand the importance of cardio
- Discuss the importance of correct nutrition to provide the perfect fuel
- Find the correct training to suit your type of riding or events you are training for
The fitting process
During the fit Dan discussed where any discomfort was coming from, and where extra power could be gained. There are many variables that need to be taken into account to make sure your bike is tailored to your specific needs, and once Dan had diagnosed what changes were needed and explained the benefits he made several adjustments to the seat, handlebars and shoe cleats.
After undertaking a second visual examination of Steve’s new position he also dished out plenty of advice on how to become a more efficient rider – thanks Dan!
How to improve your cycling performance
- CORE STRENGTH – will increase stability, help prevent injury and improve cycling efficiency on the bike giving more comfort and making hills feel easy
- CADENCE – is the rate at which a cyclist pedals, i.e the RPMs. If you increase and train your cadence, you’ll improve your cycling efficiency, allowing your legs to go for longer and recover faster
- PEDALLING TECHNIQUE – is important to ensure that you get the most power from each revolution. Producing more power, more efficiently using full muscle engagement will give you the same power for less energy output and less muscle fatigue
- STRETCHING – will benefit any level of riding. Stretching correctly will reduce the chance of injury significantly and allow you to be more capable on your bike
Bike fit carried out by Dan from www.greenwheelcycles.co.uk