Cycling Mistake #4: Getting an Amateur Bike Fit

Whether they're mountain bikers or roadies, cyclists are often their own worst enemies when it comes to training. Repair your routine by eliminating these ten common mistakes

Jun 25, 2013
Outside Magazine

Don't buy a bike without getting fitted.    Photo: Glory Cycles/Flickr

You buy online, adjust your saddle height by feel, and wonder why your back hurts, knees ache, and nether regions are covered in golf-ball-sized saddle sores (yes, it happens). While bike fitting still remains a mix of science, art, and trial by error, a quality fit will prevent some of the most common injuries and concerns riders face.

The Fix: Ask around, and find a reputable fitter in your area, says Mayhew. But opt out of any spin-scan analysis. While countless coaches and fitters extol the virtues of pedaling in circles, some of the sport’s top athletes have the least circular pedal strokes when they’re really putting out the power. Instead, ask to focus on comfort and aerodynamics—the power will come.

A good fitter will also help you swap out the components on your contact points—hands, feet, bottom—to maximize comfort and performance, so test out a variety of saddles before you give up on your bike.

Filed To: Science, Sports