Bike fitting: why? Why not?

For discussions about bikes and equipment.
User avatar
Audax67
Posts: 4854
Joined: 25 Aug 2011, 9:02am
Location: Alsace, France
Contact:

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby Audax67 » 18 Feb 2020, 10:58am

Cyril Haearn wrote:The comic, or Cycling Weakly :wink:

I think this is one case where one should try to do it oneself (not pay an expert), as described by 531Colin
The case described above, where a well-meaning LBS person changed the adjustments, is a bit disturbing


A bit like those Scouts who "cleaned up" the prehistoric wall paintings in the Grotte de Mayrières and erased half of them.
Have we got time for another cuppa?

Brucey
Posts: 41464
Joined: 4 Jan 2012, 6:25pm

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby Brucey » 18 Feb 2020, 11:40am

Audax67 wrote:
A bit like those Scouts who "cleaned up" the prehistoric wall paintings in the Grotte de Mayrières and erased half of them.


yesterday's graffiti is tomorrow's art....?

cheers
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

David9694
Posts: 654
Joined: 10 Feb 2018, 8:42am

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby David9694 » 18 Feb 2020, 12:19pm

I was getting a range of aches and pains a few years ago and had a bike fit at Primera Sports in Bournemouth. Being somewhat critical, these only really look at you and the bike, when if you’re getting problems, there are likely to be wider factors. Being unfit with a weak and tight core was and is my problem. E.g. keeping my knees straight, can I touch my toes.
Anyway, we set my cleats to the innermost (i.e. to spread my feet apart) and he sold me a shorter stem. He optimised my saddle height - interestingly, he regarded the bottom of the pedal stoke as parallel with the seat tube, rather than vertical. I’ve been whacking-up my saddles ever since so the knee is just off being fully extended. The lengthways adjustment is in truth pretty instinctive - sit on the saddle and see where your palms naturally land.
It wasn’t that expensive and I’m glad I did it; I think you should only have a bike fit if you’re clear what you want to get out of it.

Cyril Haearn
Posts: 14568
Joined: 30 Nov 2013, 11:26am
Location: Leafy suburbia

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby Cyril Haearn » 18 Feb 2020, 12:31pm

Prices have been described as high and reasonable, no figures yet, anyone care to disclose? Anyone here offered bike fitting?
Thanks
Entertainer, idealist, intellectual, PoB, 30120
Cycling-of course, but it is far better on a Gillott
We love safety cameras, we hate bullies

PaulS
Posts: 74
Joined: 26 Jan 2012, 6:45am
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby PaulS » 18 Feb 2020, 1:52pm

Cyril Haearn wrote:Prices have been described as high and reasonable, no figures yet, anyone care to disclose?


I paid £100 last March for the fitting. Plus cost for any new bits I needed & labour at £40/hour to fit them. Ended up a bit less than £200 total including new bars & stem. I was very happy with that. No prices on the updated website. He used a jig, and transferred my saddle, pedals, bars onto that. Then set up my bike according to the settings on the jig. Felt like a very thorough & professional process. I guess a lot of the value is in the skill of the person doing the job.

https://www.hewittcycles.co.uk/bike-fitting/
Last edited by PaulS on 19 Feb 2020, 8:40am, edited 1 time in total.

bazzo
Posts: 201
Joined: 27 Jul 2012, 7:37am

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby bazzo » 19 Feb 2020, 6:49am

I have four bikes, seat is set at the same height for all of them, I don’t worry to much about length as I use drop handlebars and move positions anyway. I find one much more comfortable than all the others, can’t really explain it. I recently tried the 109% method, which lowered my seat by about 25mm reverted back quite quickly. Maybe it’s time for a bike fit, it does however seem like someone else’s opinion against mine.

Jamesh
Posts: 1556
Joined: 2 Jan 2017, 5:56pm

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby Jamesh » 19 Feb 2020, 7:11am

Like many in here I have too many bikes 6+!!!!

I usually tweek the saddle and bars a couple of times during the initial few rides as im adjusting the gears and brakes etc and then I'm happy with them.

I do have one CX bike with a slipping seat post (covered in grease from the tag along) which I have to adjust regularly. But I usually get it right without hassle and it's not my long distance bike either.

However when I swap bikes with my cycling buddy I find his position is awful and cramped! Despite being the same height as me!

5'10" and frame size 22" btw!!!

Cheers James

User avatar
NATURAL ANKLING
Posts: 12354
Joined: 24 Oct 2012, 10:43pm
Location: English Riviera

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 19 Feb 2020, 11:04am

Hi,
Different length legs?
NA Thinks Just End 2 End Return + Bivvy
You'll Still Find Me At The Top Of A Hill
Please forgive the poor Grammar I blame it on my mobile and phat thinkers.

PaulS
Posts: 74
Joined: 26 Jan 2012, 6:45am
Location: East Yorkshire

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby PaulS » 21 Nov 2020, 2:27pm

Update on my bike fit from Hewitt. Felt great at the time. But after a year and a lot of miles it was really a mistake. Thinking seems to have moved on a lot, particularly regarding saddle height. Putting my saddle so high seems to have contributed to some painful knee damage. I had a discussion elsewhere on this forum, and my saddle is now 35mm lower than the bike fit, and I am slowly building up strength again. If the experts can get it so far wrong, I find it hard to give a recommendation.

Jdsk
Posts: 3921
Joined: 5 Mar 2019, 5:42pm

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby Jdsk » 21 Nov 2020, 2:40pm

How was that saddle height set in comparison to some of the commonly recommended positions?

Thanks

Jonathan

iandusud
Posts: 571
Joined: 26 Mar 2018, 1:35pm

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby iandusud » 21 Nov 2020, 3:14pm

PaulS wrote:Update on my bike fit from Hewitt. Felt great at the time. But after a year and a lot of miles it was really a mistake. Thinking seems to have moved on a lot, particularly regarding saddle height. Putting my saddle so high seems to have contributed to some painful knee damage. I had a discussion elsewhere on this forum, and my saddle is now 35mm lower than the bike fit, and I am slowly building up strength again. If the experts can get it so far wrong, I find it hard to give a recommendation.


Without wishing to comment on or criticise Hewitt's bike fit, I think this demonstrates a potential problem with bike fits. My experience is that bike fit is a very dynamic process. The above example with regard to saddle height is a good example. I find that I need a saddle height that is on the high side of what is considered normal otherwise I get knee problems. Others experience the opposite.

pwa
Posts: 13309
Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby pwa » 21 Nov 2020, 3:30pm

iandusud wrote:
PaulS wrote:Update on my bike fit from Hewitt. Felt great at the time. But after a year and a lot of miles it was really a mistake. Thinking seems to have moved on a lot, particularly regarding saddle height. Putting my saddle so high seems to have contributed to some painful knee damage. I had a discussion elsewhere on this forum, and my saddle is now 35mm lower than the bike fit, and I am slowly building up strength again. If the experts can get it so far wrong, I find it hard to give a recommendation.


Without wishing to comment on or criticise Hewitt's bike fit, I think this demonstrates a potential problem with bike fits. My experience is that bike fit is a very dynamic process. The above example with regard to saddle height is a good example. I find that I need a saddle height that is on the high side of what is considered normal otherwise I get knee problems. Others experience the opposite.


I think bike fittings are for people who don't have the experience to set their own bike up. Once you've established a position that works and has worked for quite a while, you'd be a fool to let someone else start mucking it about based on some formulae that work for quite a lot of people but not for everyone. If you haven't yet found a position that does not produce aches and pains, fair enough, asking an "expert" to have a shot at it might help.

peetee
Posts: 2611
Joined: 4 May 2010, 10:20pm
Location: Cornwall

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby peetee » 21 Nov 2020, 3:56pm

PaulS wrote:Update on my bike fit from Hewitt. Felt great at the time. But after a year and a lot of miles it was really a mistake. Thinking seems to have moved on a lot, particularly regarding saddle height. Putting my saddle so high seems to have contributed to some painful knee damage. I had a discussion elsewhere on this forum, and my saddle is now 35mm lower than the bike fit, and I am slowly building up strength again. If the experts can get it so far wrong, I find it hard to give a recommendation.


How long had you been riding before the bike fit?
Winter had arrived in the land of Kernow. Along with it came wet roads and cool winds.
“Oh, my wheels and coupling rods!” Peetee exclaimed.

drossall
Posts: 5030
Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 10:01pm
Location: North Hertfordshire

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby drossall » 21 Nov 2020, 4:07pm

pwa wrote:I think bike fittings are for people who don't have the experience to set their own bike up.

This makes sense to me. I'm sure there was an article in the Comic a few years back. They went to different bike fitters and got different results, but failed to draw the obvious conclusion (that there may not be a single clear answer).

That's fine if you think you're looking for improvements in comfort and biomechanics, and even more so if you're a novice. However, if you're going in with the idea that there is one perfect answer, you may be disappointed, I suspect. There are principles, and there are different kinds of riding for which different answers may be better. But I think there was a lot of mileage in the old orthodoxy, whereby you joined a club and got advice on position (and lots of other stuff!) from the critical eyes of the experienced riders there. I'm not sure that paid fits will always improve on that free service.

My only direct experience is of being sent to the local coach when I got back pain in my early racing. He made some tweaks, but I think that ultimately a smaller frame, and my body adapting, were also important.

User avatar
531colin
Posts: 13204
Joined: 4 Dec 2009, 6:56pm
Location: North Yorkshire

Re: Bike fitting: why? Why not?

Postby 531colin » 21 Nov 2020, 5:38pm

PaulS wrote:Update on my bike fit from Hewitt. Felt great at the time. But after a year and a lot of miles it was really a mistake. Thinking seems to have moved on a lot, particularly regarding saddle height. Putting my saddle so high seems to have contributed to some painful knee damage. I had a discussion **** elsewhere on this forum, and my saddle is now 35mm lower than the bike fit, and I am slowly building up strength again. If the experts can get it so far wrong, I find it hard to give a recommendation.


****This is the thread Paul is referring to https://forum.cyclinguk.org/viewtopic.php?f=49&t=133557&start=30
Paul, I've been wondering how you were getting on....how is the knee pain?
I wonder if you are still a "toe dipper" with your saddle dropped 35mm for a couple of months?