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Thread: Got a fit yesterday

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    Default Got a fit yesterday

    Got a fit yesterday from a certified fitter. Fancy one, with a video and dots on the joints for computer analysis. Took about three hours. Funny thing, not much changed: seat went down a bit and the handelbars got rotated a smidge. Moving the seat down was probably due to a new saddle that had much less padding than before. My previous“non-professional” fit, the one I’ve been riding for over a decade, was done by an LBS owner who stared at me hard for about 10 seconds, told me the frame size I needed, pulled a stem from the pile and set the seat by eye.

    Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

    I think the best thing was the video. I've known for a long time that I need to work on keeping my chest open and my heel down at stroke bottom. Now I have an aid to help me visualize. Other than that, I'm not really sure that the whole process was worth the effort.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    As its normally said here, most people can figure out how to sit on a bike and ride it. I think it would be most beneficial to review power analysis to see if a position can be tweaked to squeeze every last watt out of your body - then make minor adjustments from there.

    * This can be argued against with Jerk's story about LA riding the Walser TT bike and going faster with lower wattage - but that might be an anomaly.
    Auk's words to live by:
    Blow up and pin a picture of M. Bartoli on your wall. When you achieve that position, stop. Until then, stretch, ride, stretch, ride, eat less, and ride more.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Power analysis would be cool. Those I numbers I would be comfortable with. What irks me about the computer-assisted fit was the reliance on body angles that are highly variable between strokes. For example, if I move my butt a few mm forward or back in the saddle, I can easily change my femur angle from an "acceptable" value to one that says I need to move the seatpost and saddle. These butt changes happened all the time when I pedalled, between strokes when I was seated, when I moved from the hoods to the drops and when I stood up and then sat back down. Who keeps their butt in one place when they ride?

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by summilux View Post
    Power analysis would be cool. Those I numbers I would be comfortable with. What irks me about the computer-assisted fit was the reliance on body angles that are highly variable between strokes. For example, if I move my butt a few mm forward or back in the saddle, I can easily change my femur angle from an "acceptable" value to one that says I need to move the seatpost and saddle. These butt changes happened all the time when I pedalled, between strokes when I was seated, when I moved from the hoods to the drops and when I stood up and then sat back down. Who keeps their butt in one place when they ride?
    Nobody!!! But you understand that. When a guy (me) wants to determine how a rider sits on a bike when peddaling in a big gear with alot of force there are ways to see that. What I do is to have you good and warmed up than shift to a sprint gear out of the saddle taking 20 strokes than sit and peddal even harder. I promise you that the spot you land in will be the place you are most able to knock out the most power...unless your bike is the wrong size and or the saddle is in the wrong place to start with. Given that observation I look at where you try to sit and where you end up sitting. It is pretty common for folks with not enough setback to sit down on the saddle sweetspot than shove themselves backwards to find power...I than adjust the bike rinse and repeat. Get it? Your big dollar fitting should include a guy with the common sense to understand such things or it is a $$$ waste of money.....honey.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    i'm sorry but if the "fitteur" doesn't suggest going out for a spin before and after it just isn't right.
    being static we tend to sit how we think we should.
    watching the standing and sitting along with shifting(on the seat) will tell an experienced eye where you should end up
    the indoor session is to be used to do the swappage or other adjustments not done out on the road.
    "make the break"

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Too Tall View Post
    Your big dollar fitting should include a guy with the common sense to understand such things or it is a $$$ waste of money.....honey.
    Yah, I think the fitter's business must be those who buy a bike from a store without the experience/knowledge/desire to do it properly on the sales floor. I didn't think about the warm up. It's pretty frosty here in Ottawa (-15C on the day I did my fit), but a few minutes to work up a sweat on the trainer probably would have been a good idea. Wasted money? Probably. I'll file this with the used-once saddles in the basement.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by summilux View Post
    My previous“non-professional” fit, the one I’ve been riding for over a decade, was done by an LBS owner who stared at me hard for about 10 seconds, told me the frame size I needed, pulled a stem from the pile and set the seat by eye.
    If you'd been riding the same bike for over a decade with no issues or major complaints, how radical a change were you expecting? I had a similar experience - I joined a new team, part of the deal was a comped fit through the shop. It took about three hours and I came out of it being told that I could probably stand to use some short/shallow bars, but that my saddle height and setback were pretty much fine as-is. Sadly, my lack of cycling ability could no longer be explained away by improper saddle height.

    I find it hard to believe that over the course of the last decade you've made no minor tweaks, nudges, shimmies, etc to your saddle height, setback, bar rotation, etc. It seems to me that for most people - especially newer riders who are getting on a new bike w/o a decade of riding experience - going through a fit session is a way to fasttrack that process.
    michael catano • humble frameworks
    chicago, il, usa • merci

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    I did have relatively high expectations since testimonials from others (in person and on-line) suggested that "professional" fitting could make a big difference to comfort and speed, even to those who had been riding for a long time. I had some knee pain, so I thought maybe fit was an issue. I did do some minor tweaks here and there, but more in the style of "I wonder would happen if I...." instead of a response to a specific complaint. From the imprecise nature of the bio-mechanical data that can be collected, I feel that the computer-assisted fitting (at least the one I got) isn't any better than being eyeballed by a good LBS, the important word being good..

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    It would occur to me that most of the people that frequent this site are moderately to fairly advanced cyclists. Therefore, it would stand to reason that there is a very good chance that you know more about fitting than the guy that is collecting money for it. Only problem is you can't see yourself on the bike from a side view. That was my experience at least.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Been riding 20 years pretty much in the same position. My super duper Retul fit was documented in another thread. The guy wanted me to move up 2cm and forward 2cm. Bottom line I am back to my old position.....

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    I have been lurking and holding my tongue for a while now and have 2 or so good beers in me so here goes:

    You all got to stop hating on people who fit bikes sooo much. If somebody does a crap job, then fine. But not all those who do fittings do crap jobs.

    Geez it is angry in here on that subject.

    There is good and not so good. I get that.

    VS'ers are for the most part on the leading edge and do not need a lot of the help that a good fit tech can give to the recreational cyclist.

    How cool is it to truly know from an unbiased and educated source that your set up is fine? Piece of mind is a good thing in my book.

    I like what Too Tall says. I like the advice/knowledge that a lot of you all impart. Let's keep it in the constructive realm so that those who could use a the services of a fitter to get the numbers for a good custom build experience won't potentially be soured on the whole thing and go by a chiwanese p.o.s. because it is all hocus pocus anyway.


    Anybody have any good anecdotes to share?

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Sola SL View Post
    I have been lurking and holding my tongue for a while now and have 2 or so good beers in me so here goes:

    You all got to stop hating on people who fit bikes sooo much. If somebody does a crap job, then fine. But not all those who do fittings do crap jobs.

    Geez it is angry in here on that subject.

    There is good and not so good. I get that.

    VS'ers are for the most part on the leading edge and do not need a lot of the help that a good fit tech can give to the recreational cyclist.

    How cool is it to truly know from an unbiased and educated source that your set up is fine? Piece of mind is a good thing in my book.

    I like what Too Tall says. I like the advice/knowledge that a lot of you all impart. Let's keep it in the constructive realm so that those who could use a the services of a fitter to get the numbers for a good custom build experience won't potentially be soured on the whole thing and go by a chiwanese p.o.s. because it is all hocus pocus anyway.


    Anybody have any good anecdotes to share?
    I say stop lurking and contribute..

    As to measuring power during a fit, there is one huge issue and it known as "perceived effort". How do you know if the resulting variance is due to positioning changes or a slight variance in effort by the rider. Assuming that the rider is close to optimally positioned to begin with, they are not going to realize large gains from position changes. So, if you see a 2-5% variance following a change, it could be a minor variation in just how hard the rider rode or that they are getting tired/more warmed up/etc..

    I am a firm believer that performance follows comfort. IMHO short & fast TT's might be the only exception. Fitting is really simple in my world; make the rider comfortable so they can ride as long as they want. Correct whatever bio-mechanical flaws you can to prevent injuries. I find it interesting how much everyone here seems to think riding with the cyclist is the ultimate way to evaluate someone. I always watch those around me at group rides etc.. but I can focus much more when I am not also riding my bike.. Key for me is that cyclist has to reach the point of being fatigued as that is when things go south and the flaws show themselves. You would be amazed at how many folks come in for a fit and self-correct during the fit; when they start to get tired the truth comes out. If you are not tired at the end of a fit you have been short-changed IMHO.

    To the comment above about heel position; why do you feel the need to correct what you are naturally doing? Because LeMond pedaled that way I am guessing..it worked for him, doesn't mean it is right for you. Don't try to correct what your body perceives to be right.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Sola SL View Post
    Geez it is angry in here on that subject.
    Angry? I think it is very, very, very meh. But angry?

    I'm getting a fit in a few weeks. My left hip is wacky because my legs are different lengths. I another set of eyes to deal with this very specific issue.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Z3c View Post
    I say stop lurking and contribute..

    As to measuring power during a fit, there is one huge issue and it known as "perceived effort". How do you know if the resulting variance is due to positioning changes or a slight variance in effort by the rider. Assuming that the rider is close to optimally positioned to begin with, they are not going to realize large gains from position changes. So, if you see a 2-5% variance following a change, it could be a minor variation in just how hard the rider rode or that they are getting tired/more warmed up/etc..

    Key for me is that cyclist has to reach the point of being fatigued as that is when things go south and the flaws show themselves. You would be amazed at how many folks come in for a fit and self-correct during the fit; when they start to get tired the truth comes out. If you are not tired at the end of a fit you have been short-changed IMHO.
    Also when making significant changes it also takes the body a while to start to recruit the right muscles that the new position is trying to switch on. With any major position change, give your body a few weeks of low effort before you start to put yourself in the hurt locker, cycling involves a lot of muscle memory stuff. Don't expect to be pumping out extra wattage immediately.
    Comfot + Efficiency = Performance TM

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Now we are talking.

    I worked with a fitter recently and the only thing that really changed was my saddle was raised one cm. I found that I could spin much easier and push one cog smaller with less effort.

    That was a wonderful revelation. I am sure that once I further adapt, it will just get better.

    I will certainly post more on the regular now. Just needed some prodding.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Z3c View Post
    ...Key for me is that cyclist has to reach the point of being fatigued as that is when things go south and the flaws show themselves. You would be amazed at how many folks come in for a fit and self-correct during the fit; when they start to get tired the truth comes out. If you are not tired at the end of a fit you have been short-changed IMHO...

    .
    This reminds me that when i went to Portland to get fitted for a Speedvagen Sacha set up the training/fit bike, and tells me to start cranking then walked away. He'd come back once in a great while mostly to tell me to bend my arms (i'm stationary, no wind resistance, give me a break!). After about 30 minutes or more i'm ringing wet, and now i'm sure i've figured out what he's doing. He's got this training bike hooked up to a generator and he uses all us pigeons to provide lights, power etc. Just line us up for a "fit" each day and presto, no power bill--I'm not stupid. After about 45 minutes i'm looking all over for the wiring and were it hooks in but just before i discovered it, or just before i fell off the bike from exhaustion, he comes in and tweeks some stuff.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by bking View Post
    This reminds me that when i went to Portland to get fitted for a Speedvagen Sacha set up the training/fit bike, and tells me to start cranking then walked away. He'd come back once in a great while mostly to tell me to bend my arms (i'm stationary, no wind resistance, give me a break!). After about 30 minutes or more i'm ringing wet, and now i'm sure i've figured out what he's doing. He's got this training bike hooked up to a generator and he uses all us pigeons to provide lights, power etc. Just line us up for a "fit" each day and presto, no power bill--I'm not stupid. After about 45 minutes i'm looking all over for the wiring and were it hooks in but just before i discovered it, or just before i fell off the bike from exhaustion, he comes in and tweeks some stuff.
    Yep, the floor in a fit area should be spotless from being wiped up after each rider..

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    i've had everything from doing it my way (plumb line and incremental tweaks from a neutral or "proper" position), to the fancy computer fit, to riding with a former pro & coach who knows a bit more than a thing or two and who essentially said one time, "hey, lower your seat."

    the first and 3rd methods for me have proven to be the best, by far. in other words, what works for some won't work for others. ride long enough and you'll figure out what works and what doesn't.

    ironically the computer fit did minor tweaks that while improving my power & efficiency (to relatively trivial levels, mind you), caused unexpected back problems within a month or two. not the fitters fault though, how would he know it would happen given the very minor tweaks. instead i put that blame squarely on god for blessing me with a lousy internal support structure...

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    I had never had a "fitting" until about a year and bit ago.

    HAd ridden for 30 years just fine, then I started listening to all those who kept saying "you will get more power if you lower your saddle a bit"

    Like an idiot, I listened. Had nothing but a continuing series of nagging pains after that and just didn't enjoy riding, but thought - stick it out.

    Then I started hearing people talk about this new "fitting" studio. The BG fit. So I went, end result my saddle went back where it used to be and they suggested a shorter stem. So I tried the shorter stem. Not comfortable, but I figured I'd stick with it and see if it got more comfy.

    A few weeks later I was out riding and found myself in the company of a retired Belgian pro, we rode a while, talked , then he looked at me and said " you sit on a bike good, your stem needs to be longer" ......

    Back to where I used to be, the "fit" didn't do much for me, but a few minutes on the road with someone with a good eye did.

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    Default Re: Got a fit yesterday

    ... duplicated ...

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