How much do you know about BIKE FIT?

After riding, our bodies may experience a lot of discomfort, especially for amateurs. This is inseparable from our riding posture.

Our riding posture strongly affects our riding experience. After long riding, you may feel discomfort, especially for amateurs. A fixed riding posture cannot be suitable for everyone because everyone is unique. Bike fir can adjust our riding posture according to everyone’s body parameters. In this article, let’s learn about the bike fit.

Riding with a standard posture.

BIKE FIT means to achieve a balance between the rider and the bike. It increases comfort and safety through analyses of the date of the rider’s body, as well as the sport status, riding characteristics, riding style, etc.

BIKE FIT has the following four methods.

(1) Traditional BIKE FIT

The body adapts to the bike by adjusting the riding posture and the position of the feet (allowing the metatarsal balls to be on the pedal axis) which is guided by the ‘Italian Cycling Bible’. It does not consider individual body differences.

(2) Observation BIKE FIT

Observe the physical characteristics of the rider, adjust the riding posture according to different physical conditions, and make improvements based on the traditional BIKE FIT. However, there is no objective reference data and the final adjustment results are almost the same.

(3) Universal BIKE FIT

Based on the formula method, supplemented by body data, the measurement method is improved according to body proportions and data analysis is performed to obtain a more suitable riding posture.

(4) Personalized BIKE FIT

Personalized BIKE FIT can be divided into two forms which are static BIKE FIT and dynamic BIKE FIT.
Static BIKE FIT uses plumb lines and goniometers to optimize the riding posture by optimizing joint angles. Exceeding the range may make the rider prone to injury, or discomfort, or limit the rider’s ability. Because riding is a dynamic process, it only be referred to in theory.

Riding posture angle setting diagram

Dynamic BIKE FIT collects the rider’s data through media such as video and sports status collection equipment. It truly reflects the riding status through relevant data analysis and dynamic elements. Based on the physical assessment results and the rider’s actual demands, as well as the recommended range of data, the three are considered comprehensively to adjust the contact points between people and vehicles, but it is expensive.

Dynamic bike fit considers comprehensively the physical assessment results, the rider’s actual demands and the recommended data to adjust the contact point of the rider and bike. It’s the best but the most expensive way among the four types.

Dynamic bike fit

Is the posture adjusted through BIKE FIT a perfect posture?

We should take power, comfort, aerodynamics, and safety into consideration when we choose the posture. We can reach the up limit if we only chase one aspect. However, the general case is we adjust posture to achieve a relative balance between the bike and us which comprehensively thinks about our needs.

Is the formula method suitable for everyone?

The most widely used formula method is the Guimard-Raymond formula advocated by Greg LeMond and his coach. This formula refers to setting the saddle height by measuring the knee joint and extension angle of the rider. It multiplies the crotch height by 0.883 to get the saddle height. Everyone’s body proportions are different, so the data obtained by the formula method cannot be applied to everyone.

Adjusting riding posture using the formula method

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[1] Phil Burt Guang Huai Zhang. BIKE FIT [M]. Beijing: People’s Posts and Telecommunications Press, 2015.7

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