Bike Fitting: Rob Kaplan Breaks Down the Art of Fitting a Bike

Bike Fitting: Rob Kaplan Breaks Down the Art of Fitting a Bike


If you click this option you’re
obviously interested in bike fits. Bike fitting is one of the most important
things you can do for efficiency in power on your bike. If you have a bike that doesn’t fits you
well, you’re not going to do well on a race. One of the first things we do is we
position the foot over the pedal spindle. (Ryan stop straightforward) The ball of Ryan’s foot is approximately right here at your
first metatarsal. It’s slightly in front of the pedal
spindle right here. What you’re trying to feel is, you’re
trying to feel the push with your two first toes,your big toe, and your second toe. That’s going to create the most power
over the most efficient spot which is your pedal spindle. Position your cleats, so that’s just
slightly forward of that. (go ahead and spin again) The next thing we do (stop of the bottom
of this one) as we get your saddle height, you have three bony landmarks on your legs that
you use to do this. One right here is your greater trochanter below your hip. The next one is a boating landmark on the bottom of your femur called the
lateral condyle, down here the malleolus or your ankle.
There’s a device called a Goniometer that you can use that will measure this angle. This angle should be between thirty and thirty five
degrees, it’s dependent upon your riding style. If you’re too high, your hips will start to rock and you’ll start to lose power at the bottom
of the stroke. If you’re too low you’ll also eventually start to lose power and start to get knee pain right in here. (go ahead and spin again.) So he’s position correctly, that’s about what the angle should look
like after we’ve done his foot and his height, we’re going to do his fore-and-aft position, and this is very critical for triathletes. What this is, is how forward you’re sitting
on the seat in relationship to your patella and the crank arm. when i take this level and use this
plane of the level, and putting again feel outside of the crank arm. Once i get the level perpendicular to the ground, you can see how far Ryan’s knee is in front
of this level. He’s approximately four five centimeters in front of the plane that the crank arm
creates. what this is doing for triathlon is it’s using the crank arm as a lever in
the most efficient position. You’re trying to get all the mechanical advantage
out of it. So with Ryan’s it’s lines position slightly in front of the plane of the
outside of the crank arm, he’s using the crank arm as a lever. He’s
getting the most mechanical advantage out of this lever by being forward and
using the entire thing. Also by being forward as he’s peddling, he’s pulling up engaging the hamstrings
and hip flexors which will be warm when he gets off the
bike to run. (go ahead and hop in arrow position.) Also by being little forward in the arrow
position, it’s going to open up this angle. If he was in the normal road position
back, this angle will be so crunched that when he
start breathing heavily, his thighs would interfere with his
breathing. Now that we’ve gotten
Ryan’s foot properly placed over the pedal spindle, his saddle height correctly positioned and his fore-and-aft correctly positioned, then in the only then do we fit his
upper body to the bike. Now for his upper body in triathlon, one of the most critical things is
aerodynamics. You want to be low and you want to have a very small
frontal area eyeing narrow. You don’t want to be so low
that halfway through the race you’re going to be uncomfortable, you don’t wan to be so narrow that your
shoulders, or your triceps are going to seize up. You’re going to be uncomfortable, you’re going to lose concentration on all the technique and your focus of what you’re supposed to
be doing. So comfort is key, aerodynamics is important. So, you can see Ryan’s back is flat. if he was too crunched in (just slide back a
little bit Ryan) what’s going to happen is his lower back is going
to start to seize up. These muscles are going to start to contract because he’s
too crunched (go ahead and spread back out) once he
spreads out like that, that’s going to totally relaxes lower back. That being said he has close to about a 90 to 95 degree angle in his arms right here, you want to be
resting on your bone structure. You don’t want to be holding yourself up with your
muscles, that’s just gonna waste energy and cause fatigue. From the frontal view, Ryan’s arms are going to be as narrow as
he can possibly tolerate. What this does is it helps you slice
through the wind. If you’re wide, you’re going to have
turbulence right here, it’s going to slow you down. If you’re narrow drop your head
down into your shoulders, you’re going to cut right through the wind, and that’s exactly what
Ryan’s doing right now. And once you get all this set, you’ll love your bike, you’ll love your race, and you’ll be rocking.