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Thread: Can we talk about lame fitting?

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by doofus View Post
    them's fightin words
    my bad. let's change that to a trek-riding-wannabe poser. of course there is a difference between the true, unenlightened, doofus and the tragically self-aware doofus, much like Oedipus before and after he "gets it"
     

  2. #62
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    whatever you do, don't set up your bike to look cool. set it up so it works with your body... but try and stay within some functional logical paradigms about where a body needs to go on the thing to make it work well.

    and make sure you're not caught in the now all to common trap of rotating the whole body up and back counterclockwise as a way of chasing comfort.. while completely fighting the way a bike needs to be sat on to work well. just get a unicycle or something instead.

    have the points been made?
    shrink, terrorist, poet, president of concerned cyclists for the abolishment of bovine source bicycle parts and head of the disaffected commie dishwashers union.

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by swoop View Post
    whatever you do, don't set up your bike to look cool. set it up so it works with your body... but try and stay within some functional logical paradigms about where a body needs to go on the thing to make it work well.
    that's not conducive to internet ranting, now is it?
     

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by giordana93 View Post
    I love these posts where we all get to rant and still be in agreement because the collective wisdom is unassailable, right, and shared by everyone, the very definition of orthodox. jeez. so for fun, why don't I throw some dissent /devil's advocate into the pot.

    your job is to design a custom frame for someone (a doofus, we all agree, because s/he has not paid their proper dues yet, so not in our club) relatively new to the sport. you either 1) put them in a proper euro position, they complain of back pain, inability to generate much power, because they ride a bike like a runner, etc., and are never really comfortable with the handling because they can't master holding a straight line because of a depth grip, and they quit the sport--and we get a new thread going about yet another meivici some idiot bought that is now in the classifieds...

    or 2. you recognize the need for growth into the position and sport, so you put them more upright (saab noted 2 inches of spacers) to begin, because they still don't know how to pedal with glutes and lack conditioning for getting the bars lower, but they have the option of either keeping current set up or losing the spacers and dropping the bars a good 5cm without buying a new frame and maybe even slapping on a jerk-approved stem when they really get it, cause yeah, maybe the top tube is a little short, but it was his first good bike, and he really still loves it...

    I'm not saying there are not "less-qualified" fitters out there or mistakes made, but there are many more "less qualified" clients, who, yes, want to buy a big bucks frame. so what's better, option 1 or 2 above?

    the "right" fit for a beginner will not coincide with that of a conditioned athlete, just like the "right" wine for the first-time drinker will taste awful to a connaisseur and vice versa. and you can't call the sommelier an idiot for serving white zinfandel to the former

    I just wanted to break up the retro grouch love fest, cheers
    To me, the biggest distinction to be made is the intended use of the bike.
    In the case of the orignal post, the subject claimed to be a racer and was super fit. It can be argued that he may not be able to ride that particular bike safely in the local crit, where he is diving into a hairpin at 30mph, elbow to elbow with 30 other riders.
    On the other hand, I praise custom framebuilders who will build what a customer wants. My late uncle had been a cyclist for 40 years. He was way overweight, inflexible, and had a short torso and short arms. To some, his bikes were an aesthetic nightmare. However, he rode several thousand miles per year, rode in any weather condition, raised tens of thousands of dollars doing charity rides, and got countless people into cycling. He was the guy who would circle back to help a stranger with their mechanical while others didn't want to ruin their workout.
    Like many on this board, he enjoyed nice things like custom knives, footwear, nice watches, etc.
    I see no reason why he shouldn't be able to order a custom fasterbackwards bike instead of a entry-midlevel Trek whatever that he rode. He certainly had the mileage and experience to know what he wanted/could ride and had no aspirations of racing or even getting faster. Dude just liked to roll down the road at 13 mph and could do it all day long. You don't need 6cm of drop to do that No reason that he shouldn't be able to enjoy the process of picking a builder, frame material, paint scheme, special touches and all of the things that make buying a unique custom frame fun.
     

  5. #65
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    bless your uncle. he can and should get whatever he wants.
    but this is why we have message board. so that we can say this crap out loud without making a real bodycount and because, darnit, we are road cyclists and we are superior.

    keep cycling beautiful, harm fat people.
    shrink, terrorist, poet, president of concerned cyclists for the abolishment of bovine source bicycle parts and head of the disaffected commie dishwashers union.

  6. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by stormyClouds View Post
    I think that the biggest problem in the cases of the Grand Rapids guy and the rower, are that they both jumped into cycling (wallet first) and didn't spend the time rising up the ranks. It seems to happen a lot with people who are athletic and successful in other sports. They feel that because they are far more fit than the average schmoe, that they will skip the apprenticeship, get a pro (custom) frame and become a top racer.
    Since these guys haven't put in long hours in the saddle, they don't know what proper fit is, so they assume that being super comfortable at first is the way to go.
    I strongly agree that these kind of guys would be much better suited on stock, out of the box, race bikes for the first couple of years.
    I think that a lot of the smaller, custom builders would even tell you that, but as you move to the bigger custom builders, there doesn't seem to be an accountable person in between the shop (fitter) and manufacturer to intervene and tell the novice rider what they really need.
    That is a bummer.
    Maybe a bummer. Maybe not. I've been riding for 22 years now. Started on low bars with deep drop. Now I ride double centuries and find myself sitting much more upright and using shallow drop bars. No sense at all in riding for 12+ hours with my nose on the stem. And we all may be surprised when that rower starts winning races even though his position looks wrong to some of us but works well for him.
     

  7. #67
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    Inexperienced and unfit riders + ignorant and unscrupulous fitters = the blind leading the blind.
    Fit is directly proportional to fitness.

  8. #68
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    Those who see my rage as applying only to racing are missing the point. I don't really race anymore (I wish I could, but there is no time to train properly and I work most weekends) but still think a racing bike and a 'racer-like' position is appropriate for most riding. Does this mean the razor sharp race bike like a Pinarello? No, not necessarily. But it surely doesn't mean what I saw yesterday either with a rider who sat too far forward and wasn't stretched out at all, sitting pretty upright.

    Even though I weigh 30+ lbs more than I did when I raced and am now 42 years old, my position on the bike is essentially the same as it ever was. Just now with more beergut.... I don't want to sit higher up. Or be less stretched out. I have ridden bikes with some riser head tubes and think they handle like shit. And my back feels just fine on my current steeds. Folks need to try a more aggressive position before rejecting it. But maybe moving that direction gradually, like TooTall suggested.

    I don't know how to articulate it, but quite simply put, the faster backwards bikes and positions on some bikes we have all seen these days are a pity. I truly believe that riders would get much, much more out of the sport with a flatter back position. And no, it doesn't hurt the back to sit like that, contrary to popular mythology.

    Just my opinion.
     

  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catulle View Post
    Inexperienced and unfit riders + ignorant and unscrupulous fitters = the blind leading the blind.

    "I was equal parts racer, psychologist, best friend and worst enemy.
    The last part because sometimes I needed to find a diplomatic way to
    convince a zealous client that - of the two in the relationship - I knew
    best with regard to what went where and how to accomplish it."

    atmo

    so, tell me about your relationship with your mother...

  10. #70
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    My story is this.

    I wanted a road bike as my nasty $90 MTB with slicks on wasn't floating my boat. I have some disposable income but not a whole lot. I went to a bike shop and actually liked the guy I rapped with about bikes. He says if there was any chance I would race I should buy the Cannondale. When I picked it up (bear in mind I knew nothing about road bikes and had only ridden the demo bike for 3 miles) the saddle was at a random height and that was it.

    I managed to get myself in some sort of a position using Peter White's fitting article and starting riding.

    Some time later my back was killing me and I went to a fitter. They told me my bike was the wrong size and shape and did this to get me going.


    To be fair the dude gave me some advice on core strength and I had gone in the complaining of back pain.

    Several month later it still hurt I went for another fitting with another guy and had a bit more idea of what I wanted. It was much better but my back/hip still hurt.

    I went around and around changing this and that and none of it worked. Then I read Hinaults book, read some of the comments here and changed my fit myself and just put some miles on it. I've got a decent amount of drop, a lot of setback and a longer stem.

    I am more aware of my body and understand the pain comes from a bad peddling motion on one side that now I am aware of I can deal with.

    Since then I feel like I need a longer stem still and raise the saddle a little. I see no need to go lower as my back is horizontal in the drops.



    If I had to advise someone in my position (no pun intended) it would really be to get a bike using the Hinault formula for sizing and stick the miles on it with the vision of the pros in your head when you pedal. Eventually you will understand what you need but you can't buy it.

  11. #71
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    what really sucks to me that there is a resounding sentiment that brick and mortar bike shops suck. they always fit you wrong or put you on the wrong bike.

    i worked in a shop for many years that sold IFs and Waterfords. we were located in an area that had 2 notable universities within blocks of each other (read $$$$).

    frequently i would talk people interested in the full custom jobber into a stock road bike for reasons already listed. namely, they just started riding, there will be no benefit of a custom (yet), you dont know what you want, bla bla bla, etc.

    we would also frequently talk the college commuter upwards away from the cheap-o MTB to a nicer flat-bar road/hybrid/commuter bike. it was not uncommon for us to recommend another bike shop to them, one that would suit their needs better if the situation warranted that.

    we usually ended up being right, and the customer left happy. sometimes we got to watch that newbie cyclist blossom into a full blown roadie/lifestyle cyclist, and they come back for that nicer bike when they realize they outgrew the "entry level" bike.

    so what im saying is, some shops want to do the right thing, and do.
     

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by niedz View Post
    what really sucks to me that there is a resounding sentiment that brick and mortar bike shops suck. they always fit you wrong or put you on the wrong bike.

    i worked in a shop for many years that sold IFs and Waterfords. we were located in an area that had 2 notable universities within blocks of each other (read $$$$).

    frequently i would talk people interested in the full custom jobber into a stock road bike for reasons already listed. namely, they just started riding, there will be no benefit of a custom (yet), you dont know what you want, bla bla bla, etc.

    we would also frequently talk the college commuter upwards away from the cheap-o MTB to a nicer flat-bar road/hybrid/commuter bike. it was not uncommon for us to recommend another bike shop to them, one that would suit their needs better if the situation warranted that.

    we usually ended up being right, and the customer left happy. sometimes we got to watch that newbie cyclist blossom into a full blown roadie/lifestyle cyclist, and they come back for that nicer bike when they realize they outgrew the "entry level" bike.

    so what im saying is, some shops want to do the right thing, and do.
    Well you did the right thing and gave a lot of value.
    You should be proud!
     

  13. #73
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    how's this:
    sublime happiness is being with 2-15 other folks that ride beautifully, can ride an echelon, a rotating paceline, can take pulls at a consistent tempo, and that look gorgeous on the bike.
    after all, this among many other things, is an aesthetic experience...
    and for me..
    even something as a saturday sub threshold ride with 2 other guys that get it... is a kind of satisfying experience that can't otherwise be described and .. is a reason to be.

    because in the absence of that possibility, i think i'd feel dead inside.
    shrink, terrorist, poet, president of concerned cyclists for the abolishment of bovine source bicycle parts and head of the disaffected commie dishwashers union.

  14. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by swoop View Post
    how's this:
    sublime happiness is being with 2-15 other folks that ride beautifully, can ride an echelon, a rotating paceline, can take pulls at a consistent tempo, and that look gorgeous on the bike.
    after all, this among many other things, is an aesthetic experience...
    <cut>
    there's nothing wrong with effete elitism atmo.
    practice makes perfect.
    E2 card carrying member here...

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwightskin View Post
    Here's how to get a proper fit:

    1) Buy a stock roadbike - let the 16 year old at the shop pick the size.
    2) Ride, Ride, Ride
    3) Tweak stock road bike - saddle position, stem, Bars, maybe cleats
    4) Ride, Ride, Ride
    5) Start to understand training and power and heart rate
    6) Ride, Ride, Ride
    7) Understand equipment limitations and trade-offs (weight vs durability)
    8) Determine what kind of riding style fits you (racing, commuting, day ride)
    9) Then sign up for fit session and custom bike.


    Lot's of folks skip steps 1-8. Escpecally folks with money.

    Most people could skip the custom bike too and get an appropriately sized stock frame.
     

  16. #76
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    stock bikes are just custom bikes made for an imaginary person.

    atmo.
    shrink, terrorist, poet, president of concerned cyclists for the abolishment of bovine source bicycle parts and head of the disaffected commie dishwashers union.

  17. #77
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    I think I learn things from discussions like this.

    Thanks.
    T

  18. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by swoop View Post
    stock bikes are just custom bikes made for an imaginary person.

    atmo.


    gets it atmo.
    élan wanted.

  19. #79
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    Is it too much to ask for a fitter who can/will tell me if I'm sitting on the bike properly? Seems like that's often a missing piece of the puzzle, no?
     

  20. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by scrooge View Post
    Is it too much to ask for a fitter who can/will tell me if I'm sitting on the bike properly? Seems like that's often a missing piece of the puzzle, no?
    be the fitter atmo.
    yes, i am serious.
    not everything is or can be tidied and packaged for consumption.
    ride. make notes. what's hurts? do any parts wear fast or ache?
    the saw, if it looks good, it prolly is good is more vaild here than not.
    but nothing replaces what and how you feel.

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