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HELP !!! Bike set up & tweaking positions ?

Mr*PaulMr*Paul Posts: 33
Can anyone suggest some slightly more advance tips or places to get shapped up for road bike set up and positioning ?

I am by no means new to biking; road or mtb , but more recently have seriously got back into my road riding again ...except for the love of me I cannot seem to get the best position on my bike and I am now beginning to show a few niggling injuries ...stiff shoulders ...and other minor aches and pains ? but I am aware these can get worse if not tackled .

I know there' s hundreds of basic biginner tips out there (all of which I have used as a starting points for adjustments) BUT are there such places that consider ...and I'm no freak of nature ! but length of legs, torso and arms when suggesting positioning on the bike. Most of the articles also speak of physio or chiropracter input into positioning and consideration to set up on the bike .

Where can Mr Joe public get this advice ??? :?


  • doyler78doyler78 Posts: 1,951
    Here's a collection of info by one of the best known bike fitters in the world, Steve Hogg.
  • jacsterjacster Posts: 177
    Whereabouts are you?
    A decent LBS should be able to help..
  • Slow DowncpSlow Downcp Posts: 3,041
    Take a trip to Epic Cycles (with your bike), pay £50 and get fitted. Well worth the money and journey.
    Carlsberg don't make cycle clothing, but if they did it would probably still not be as good as Assos
  • sampras38sampras38 Posts: 1,917
    doyler78 wrote:
    Here's a collection of info by one of the best known bike fitters in the world, Steve Hogg.

    Nice resource there Doyler, thanks.

    I've also been looking at tweaking my seat position and have used pretty much all the standard techniques and still feel there's room for improvement. Found some good stuff in here I'll give a try.

    And MrPaul, are you from Bedford itself or the surrounding areas? Although I've not lived there for 13 years I grew up in Bedford myself and still visit now and then. Family and a lot of friends still there.

    There are a few good bike shops from memory, some in the Town such as michael cycles and a few out towards MK. There also used to be an Evans on Tavistock St if I remember correctly.
  • BhimaBhima Posts: 2,145
    A decent bike shop should be able to help you.

    Or just post some pics of your position(s) on here and i'm sure there will be some people who could help if there are obvious problems.
  • Mr*PaulMr*Paul Posts: 33
    Whow !

    ...that cyclefit place looks great ...a bit too far to take the bike though :(

    "jacster" LBS ? what's one of them ...or am I being really stupid :?

    "sampras38" yes, I'm just outside Bedford itself ! there's no Evans there anymore, Michael cycles has been taken over ...I think, and so far, every other bike shop I've been to in Bedford has uttered me lip service ...huge sucking air through teeth noise "trial and error mate" as though I've only just discoverd what a bike is, attitude :x

    "Bhima" if you think I'm posting a picture of my daft self on my bike on here and not to be greeted by a load of wind ups ...mmm ? ...if you don't mind I think I'll leave that as my last option, please ...nothing personal :wink:

    So if anyone knows of a shop relatively local to Bedford, that could assist ; who won't be too dispariging about a Giant TCR bike just because they don't sell Giant and would rather recomend another brand ...I'd be most appreciative !

    Keep the suggestions rolling , please :D
  • jacsterjacster Posts: 177
    Try Transition Cycles :lol:
  • BhimaBhima Posts: 2,145
    Well, what exactly are your problems then?

    You mention stiff shoulders - your shoulders should be relaxed when on the bike and a common problem people have is not bending their arms enough, hence having their shoulders right up near their ears when they have a "head down" position. Obviously, if you posted pics, stuff like this would be obvious, but you can always take photos and compare them to how professionals have their bikes set up.

    Try to focus on being as relaxed as possible on the bike and see if things change. Perhaps you're just too stiff.
  • Mr*PaulMr*Paul Posts: 33
    No , I am quite relaxed on the bike's just I have had a crash a while ago and coupled with an old rugby injury in the neck after a while I get tingles in the hand, the obvious numbness after a while in the saddle, I've recently started getting a strange sensation above my right knee since resorting to the turbo trainer and I tend to slide back and forth a hell of a lot in the saddle whilst riding ...all leading me to think there's more than one thing slightly off kilter? ...sorry i was being sarcastic about posting photo's; i knew what you meant :wink:
  • BhimaBhima Posts: 2,145
    Sliding backwards and forwards all over the saddle CAN mean that the reach to the handlebars is too far, so when you put your hands in different positions, you feel the need to move to compensate. You could have a bike with a top-tube or stem that's too big.

    If your saddle is not parallel to the ground, it can change your weight distribution quite a lot, so finding the sweet spot is hard.

    You could be subconsciously moving backwards because your arms/core muscles are not strong enough to hold you comfortably in a forward/low position.

    You could be subconsciously moving forward because your saddle is too high, stretching your legs out too far when sat back.

    Do you do much stretching after a ride? Random pains can come out of nowhere, as muscles can get tighter over time, especially if you've got a history of injuries. Stretching will keep your muscles in check with regards to this. This is probably the case with your knee, as long as you've not been tweaking cleats/saddle height recently and you can't find another explaination... A tight IT Band is a common problem for cyclists who don't stretch.
  • ScrumpleScrumple Posts: 2,665
    you could be thinking too much
  • sampras38sampras38 Posts: 1,917
    edited January 2010
    MrPaul, a rider friend of mine lives in Bromham and bought a Trek 1.7 late last year from a shop somewhere between there and MK. I remember him saying what a great service they gave so I'll find and come back to you. I think they were quite big from memory.

    With regards to your current bike position, can you tell us a bit more about, i.e. where specifically do you feel the discomfort?

    I've spent a fair amount of time tweaking my seat position and it didn't happen overnight, plus I still think there's room for improvement. I've also used a lot of different methods and they all offer some merit but we're all built so differently that there will usually be a lot of trial and error.

    From my understanding, 99% of the weight bearing should come from your backside/saddle, and the arms should only be used to balance and steer the bars. If you're finding there's too much weight on your arms you are definately seated wrongly. It could mean a number of things, from seat too high/bars too low, to being too far forward. I would also suggest, you should really be able to hold the hoods comfortably, without having to reach forward. Also if you are reaching too far, you will probably get some discomfort in your back.

    A bike fitting will be a great place to start and you can then tweak it from there. It might be that you need to do a few rides after the fitting to find out if you need to change anything.

    And the obvious question might be, is your bike the right size?

    My 2 bikes are a size apart, so I've had to make some more adjustments on one of them.
  • sampras38sampras38 Posts: 1,917

    Bike shop was Phil Corley Cycles in MK.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    LBS = Local Bike Shop
  • Mr*PaulMr*Paul Posts: 33
    Wow ! Here goes ...i don't mean to bore :(

    ...I'm 6'1" my bike is a Giant TCR Advanced Med/Lge I used to have a Giant SCR Med but that was far too small the TCR is very sightly longer in the TT and a little higher in the steerer tube; I have 172.5 crankes and have the saddle set so when my my heels are on the peddles my knee is very slightly bent at full stretch without tilting my pelvis ...but only slightly because if I have it much lower I don't seem to be able to put a constant power through the peddles anything over half an hour. I have noted my toes do point downward slightly in every stroke, but it does feel comfortable. I recently lowered my saddle because I read toes should not point down (tightening calf muscles to the point of twanging) and since then i get a pain above the right knee at normal riding cadence in the saddle (90 - 110) I get tingling and pains in my hands alot ...I put this down to a weak core, as I had back surgery about 2 yrs ago to cut away a prolapsed disc. So i know I carry too much weight in the arms even though I generally ride "funky chicken" (elbows relaxed)
    Before getting my bike I went to a LBS (get me with the jargon) and tried a few sizes of their stock and got measured up to be a M/L although he said the L would be more appropriate ...felt massive and really over stretched in the arms even though i didn't look overstretched. The stem on my bike is either 110 or 120 mm inverted if i spin it the other way up it just feels like a bread bike ...odd ! The saddle is ever so slightly off parrallel to the ground (nose high) if i ride flat ...numb crown jewells within 15 -20 mins in normal riding on the hoods or i just slide forward all the while; I can ride comfortably on the hoods and on the drops without feeling overstretched but obviously it's what you get used to i guess ? but I do suffer from neck/shoulder pains which I have been putting down to playing tight head prop for far too many years (stopped playing rugby years ago though)
    "Sampras38" I went to phil corleys a few weeks ago and tried talking to one of the lads and as soon as I mentioned my bike was a Giant (which they don't push) he wasn't interested :evil:

    Sorry to burden with so much info ...the more i think about this the more I'm convinced of using Velomotion in MK to size me up :?

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