The Evolution of Fit
- Injury and Recovery -
In Parts 1 and 2 of this 3-Part series on bicycle fitting, we covered how bike fit is affected by age and by workspace ergonomics. For our third installment, we discuss how your fit can be seriously affected by injury and how a proper fit can be the best remedy for recovery on and off the bike.
Injury is not limited to broken bones and crashes, it also includes repetitive use and overuse injuries (see Scott’s article on racing in Spain last year here) and almost any level of strain or discomfort that lingers beyond a few hours. For example, recurring knee pain, neck discomfort or hot spots on your feet are considered injuries. In this article, we highlight any pain or discomfort that would keep you off the bike for any period of time. The point is this: you should be comfortable on your bike at ALL times. We firmly believe that through a professional bicycle fitting by an experienced bicycle fit technician, you can ride pain-free and greatly reducing injury and strain.
Studio Velo has prioritized fit for over a decade, ensuring that every new bike sale includes a professional bicycle fitting to guarantee a proper fit from the beginning. As your body changes due to age or injury, you might sit differently on the bike and thus require adjustments to once again achieve the perfect fit. Depending on the cause, we will most likely make fit adjustments to reduce certain forces on the affected area. We may also make equipment recommendations like new shoes, saddle, or other important touch points on the bike needing attention.
For an injury like recurring knee pain, our fit team might recommend potential changes to your bicycle position to ensure a quick and pain-free recovery. Our first priority is to uncover the cause of the pain and ensure that your position on the bike does not increase the pain you are experiencing. Once we’ve determined the possible cause of the pain, our goal is to protect the knee by ensuring your saddle height and saddle fore and aft are accurate. Using our Retul fitting system, a tool designed to measure sub millimeter accuracy, we ensure the accuracy of knee tracking and overall leg alignment throughout the pedal stroke. Nearly all knee injuries respond to cycling’s miracle recovery effects on the knee.
Longtime Studio Velo client Steve Reale shares what riding means to him and how Studio Velo has helped him keep riding happy and healthy:
Every since I was a little kid, the bike has been a place of happiness for me. As I got older, the happiness continued, but time on the bike also became a place of peace - one where I could sort out thoughts, deal with life, and recover from injuries in a non-impact way. For nearly a decade, Studio Velo has provided me the the best equipment, the perfect bike fit, and a sense of community. In particular, Colin's skills have been critical in helping me recover from a reconstructed knee and a separated shoulder. Thanks SV Team!
Studio Velo Founder Scott Penzarella emphasizes the importance of bike fit in recovering from an overuse injury resulting from an endurance mountain bike race:
Tackling a 7-day mountain bike stage race last summer in Spain (read more here) resulted in extreme tendonitis in my knees, due specifically to racing my mountain bike on extreme conditions (read: steep climbs, wet mud, and long distances) when my body was not used to the bike or the intensity. Upon returning from Europe, a slight change to my fit, coupled with rest and recovery, got me back to racing quickly and pain-free.
Ensuring an accurate fit and regular fit check ups are an integral part of recovering from injury and avoiding injury in the first place. After a serious injury, addressing your bike fit is just as important as any form of physical therapy. The team here at Studio Velo has worked on solutions for many different injuries. With over two decades of combined fitting experience by our team of fitters, we have the arsenal of tools, knowledge, and resources at our disposal to help you recover and stay on the bike. Let us help you keep riding healthy and pain-free today!
Questions about fits?
Contact us: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 415-380-1882