BikingMan – Top 3 bike fit advice for ultra cycling races

BikingMan – Top 3 bike fit advice for ultra cycling races


Joel, 55 years old I started as a Triathlete in 1984 and my career ended in 2005 I was a PRO triathlete, sponsored by GAZ DE FRANCE I was built for endurance races but I had a “small engine” I was a long distance athlete specialist 53 ironman completed RAAM finisher 1994 Cycle crossing USA, following the tracks of american pioneers in 1999 Why Bike Fitting is important ? My career was focused on long distance with a “small engine” I worked hard to optimize all factors leading to performance Best fueling practices, coaching… bike fitting was one of the major point to look at, especially on endurance racing 1 – BIKE CLEATS 3 things need a good adjustment for ultra racing Front/back foot position Depending on the comfort zone of the cyclist, foot can be put forward or backward Lateral cleat adjustment and Q-Factor: is the distance between the outside of one crank arm to the outside of the opposite crank arm. which will vary according to knee position and pelvis size ADVICE #1: cleat positioning is the FIRST thing to be adjusted it is the most important point to check as everything starts from this area Cleat adjustment for ULTRACYCLING Foot positioned too forward will be overly stretched Foot over positioned in the back will over stretch Achilles tendon On ultra cycling races a neutral cleat position is recommended 2 – SADDLE POSITION it is very important to check saddle height and saddle position which varies according to the cycling race type triathlete, road cyclists ultra cyclists height and saddle horizontal position will be different Ultra Cycling VS long distance Triathlon an ultra cyclist will need to get the most comfortable position more sat “on the back” of the bike because unlike triathletes he will not run after his race Positioning gets close from Tour de France Pro cyclists where muscular fatigue is inevitable little by little, even with stretching exercices leg muscular chain will shorten in time for positioning, it means the cyclist needs to have a lower level for the saddle height to limit the muscles shortening and avoid tendonitis on the back muscles of the legs ultra cyclists need to be a bit “on the back” of the saddle we are talking about millimeters Handle bar + aero bars handle bar for ultra distance needs to be a bit higher to get a back angle not too aggressive but still performance oriented for triathletes/IRONMAN athletes back angle needs to be more aggressive 10 degrees lower, to be get more aerodynamics Ultra distance VS long distance triathlete handlebar will have a different position for triathlon or ULTRA racing for triathletes saddle position will be more forward to help triathletes to use muscular groups with more balance logically the handle bar will be positioned more far forward for IRONMAN races and challenges of 8 to 15 hours Global position and back position can be more aggressive with a quasi horizontal back position whereas for Ultra racing back position will be lean backward for comfort to tackle long hours on the saddle