I’ve been working to get all the classroom gear and tools together over the last few weeks. Tools and learning to use them has always been one of my favorite pass times.
Growing up my dad, a mechanical engineer always had some project going on in our garage. For me it offered an opportunity to learn how to use the many tools he had. He allowed me to use them unsupervised as long as I put them back where they belonged and took care of them. That was the beginning of my love of tools and working with my hands.
Years as a framing carpenter took its toll on my body, cycling has always been a form of PT for me. As a result of my injuries I had very specific fitting needs. As an amateur racer my goal was to refine my own position to maximize my performance and aerodynamics to allow me to do a sub 1-hour 40K time trial. I was always a fairly strong climber and all around rider but the pain of a 1 hour solo TT just wasn’t my thing. Once I worked through and balanced my position on the bike to maximize power, aerodynamics and comfort I had no trouble reaching and exceeding that goal.
Between then and now I’ve worked with and fit cyclists of all abilities, that coupled with my own experiences and limitations has helped me understand the differences in body mechanics to help people work through issues limiting their cycling potential. It’s very rewarding when I can help someone work through an issue with their fit.
Fitting is specific to a cyclists body geometry, flexibility and previous injuries. When performed properly it should take into consideration many specific things about a cyclist that machines and computers can’t currently do. If fitting were that simple we wouldn’t need a thousand different styles of saddles. There are lots of new fitting tools coming out every year but fitting is a personal interaction between the fitter and the client. Tools may help speed up the process by establishing a baseline but the fitters ability to diagnose issues the client is having require experience that tools just can’t provide.
We’ll be adding Bicycle Fitting classes to our schedule in the next few weeks. Understanding the properly fit bicycle will open up miles of comfortable efficient riding for you and your customers.