Thursday, September 22, 2016

Tiny Changes Make A Big Difference

Larry DeMik, at Two Wheel Jones Gilbert, makes an adjustment to my seat height and saddle position while being fit with the Retul Bike Fit System.

Tiny changes make big differences and here is how it goes. Wanting to be more comfortable on my bike yet be more energy efficient I was recently fitted on my road by at Two Wheel Jones in Gilbert. The store offers a Retul fitting in their Velocraft bike fit studio. The fitting first started off with the replacement of my shoe’s cleats. They were moved after some visual measurements were made by Larry DeMik, who also happens to be the bike shop owner. Next, I hopped on the bike, while it was set up in a trainer.  Eight markers were attached to the right side of my body with Velcro dots holding them in place. They were placed on my wrist, elbow, shoulder, hip, knee, ankle, heel and toe. These markers, turn the body into a stick figure in the computer program being used. Each sensor reflects back an inferred light allowing for the 3D effect. Each sensor was giving real-time data to the computer as Larry would not only watch on the camera recording the movement but capture numbers showing the different degrees of movement of the different body parts.  The next adjustment was to my seat height, as Larry could read from the data being collected, my knee was moving in a lateral position. To fix this issue he ended up raising my seat to remove some of the movement. Data being looked at included 

ankeling pattern  
knee extension and flection 
knee forward to foot 
hip angle 
back angle 

After adjusting my seat, I pedaled with one leg at a time.  Of course during this I found out my right leg is more dominant.  When pedaling with my left leg only, I found my pedaling to be pretty choppy.  Walking away I got homework to work on one legged pedaling drills. I also need to work on not riding on my tippy toes, and while my feet are in my cycling shoes, try and pull my toes up while pedaling. Although the computer program is giving information as a guide, it is really up the the fitter, Larry in this case, to determine if the adjustment is necessary and if so at what degree or level to make the adjustment. After dialing in my seat height and adjusting it a little more forward, he dropped my handlebars by 5mm.  As with anything new, the adjustments will take a little time to get use to but when increasing comfort and efficiency everyone should be fit. 

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