How to Properly Fit A Bike
Bike riding is an excellent exercise, especially for those who cannot handle the impact of running due to previous injuries. You can use your bike to see gorgeous views or run errands, ramping up your cardio the whole time.
Before you start, however, you need to be sure that you are comfortable on your bike. If not, you could end up with injuries and/or discomfort.
Steps to Proper Bike Fitting
Here are some things you need to have checked out before you begin a bike riding program:
- Sizing: Make sure your bike is the right size for you. You should be able to straddle the bike with your feet on the floor. Make sure you are wearing your cycling shoes when you check this, as they may add height.
- Seat/Saddle. You need to be sure the seat of your bike, also called the saddle, is level. If not, you may slide too far forward which will cause discomfort in your hands, arms, and lower back. A tilt too far back can cause pain to your lower back and glutes. In addition, the saddle should also be a comfortable distance from the handlebars. If it is too close, extra weight will be placed on the mid-back and arms; too far away and you will have extra strain on the lower back and neck. We can get you the correct saddle height. We will measure your knee angle when it is the most extended.
- You need to adjust your handlebars so that your back, shoulders, neck and hands will be comfortable. If your handlebars are too high, you’ll place more weight on the saddle., taller riders should have lower handlebars in relation to the height of the saddle. Riders should re-examine their bicycle fit after falls or crashes, because of possible movement of handlebars, brake hoods, cleats, or the saddle.
- Knee to Pedal. Another of our services includes measuring the angle of your knee in relation the pedal. The goal is to be as close to 35 degrees as possible, which will improve your function and eliminate stress to your knee.
- Foot to Pedal. We also want to be sure that the ball of your foot is placed as close as possible over the pedal spindle of the bike. This will help with your comfort and efficiency of riding.
Schedule a Bike Fitting
The only sure way to know if your bike fits correctly is through a professional bike fitting. At IMPACT Physical Therapy, our professionals are experts in bike fitting, and will ensure you find the right fit for comfort and safety. Contact us today to get started!