Bike fitting

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Truing Your Frame - Fit Your Bike to Avoid Injury from "Outside Bozeman"

By Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS
jason@excelptmt.com

from Outside Bozeman Magazine

Spring 2014 Issue

Fit your bike to avoid injury

While cycling is relatively easy on your joints, because of the constrained position and

repetitive nature of the sport, it can be easy to develop overuse injuries.

These injuries are often attributed to ramping up training mileage too quickly or being improperly positioned on your bike. Training errors can be avoided by following a proper training schedule. Fitting your bike to your body—not the other way around—helps achieve proper positioning.

It’s best to see a professional bike-fitter at a physical therapy clinic or your local bike shop, but here are some tips to alleviate common pains associated with cycling.

Foot/Ankle

Achilles’ Pain
Cause: foot positioned too far back on pedal
Solution: move foot forward on the pedal by moving your cleat further back

Arch Pain
Cause: foot positioned too far forward on pedal
Solution: move foot back on the pedal by moving your cleat further forward

Knee

Anterior Knee Pain
Cause: saddle too low and/or too far forward
Solution: move saddle up so there’s a slight bend in the knee at the bottom of the stroke

Posterior Knee Pain
Cause: saddle too low and/or too far back
Solution: move saddle so there is a moderate to slight bend in the knee

Spine

Lower Back Pain
Cause: stem too short
Solution: get a longer stem

Neck

Neck Pain
Cause: bars too low
Solution: raise your bars by getting a more upright stem or moving headset spacers from the top of the stem to the bottom

Jason Lunden is a board-certified clinical specialist in sports physical therapy at Excel Physical Therapy in Bozeman and a clinical BikeFit Pro Fitter. For more information on bike fitting or injury prevention, visit excelptmt.com/bikefitting.

Advanced Training News…we’re at it again!

By Tiffany Coletta
tiffany@excelptmt.com

David Coletta performing a bike fitting David Coletta, physical therapist and co-owner of Excel Physical Therapy of Bozeman and Manhattan, recently completed the BikeFit Clinical Level 2 advanced training in Seattle, Washington.  His instruction included upper level road bike fitting and tri-bike/time trial bike fitting.  David provides bike fitting services out of the Bozeman location and offers both health insurance billing and cash pay options. 

Excel PT offering Free Bike Fitting Screenings at GVLT Longest Day of Trails 3-6pm

By Tiffany Coletta
tiffany@excelptmt.com

Friday, June 20, 2014

Montana Ale Works from 3-6pm

2014-LDOT-Poster-FINAL

David Coletta, MPT, CMPT and Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS of Excel Physical Therapy will be providing free Bike Fitting Screenings at the Longest Day of Trails Headquarters in Bozeman, Montana. Come by with your bike to learn how David and Jason can help fit your bike to your body. Reduce pain while riding as well as increase your cycling performance. Free Specialized water bottle with every free Excel PT Bike Fitting Screen!

Click Here for Excel Physical Therapy Professional Bike Fitting information.
 

This GVLT annual dawn-to-dusk (6am–10pm) bike-a-thon and membership drive takes places on the Friday in June nearest the Summer Solstice. It highlights GVLT’s work to expand, improve, and maintain our community trails. Headquartered at Montana Ale Works, the event features bike rides for all ages and abilities on Bozeman’s Main Street to the Mountains trails, with an evening celebration at Montana Ale Works and live music from Jawbone Railroad.

For a $35 donation to GVLT you receive a $5 gift certificate from Montana Ale Works and a wrist band to participate in the cycling activities. For a donation of $50 or more you will also receive a $5 gift certificate to Montana Ale Works, a wristband to participate in the cycling activities AND a gift certificate to a local retailer.

Click Here for more Longest Day of Trails event details and information.

What is a Professional Medical Bicycle Fit?

By Tiffany Coletta
tiffany@excelptmt.com

What is a Professional Medical Bicycle Fit?  A Medical Bicycle Fit is aimed at injury treatment and prevention for cyclists of all abilities, from recreational to racer.  If you have neck, back or knee pain, saddle sores, or hand and/or foot numbness, your bicycle probably doesn’t fit you properly.  Correct cycling position is key to improving performance, optimizing comfort, decreasing pain and preventing injuries.

Medical Bike Fit appointments include biomechanical evaluation to determine cycling posture and pedaling mechanics, video analysis of body positioning to detect problems in cycling form, comprehensive muscle, and a joint and bicycle evaluation to improve you’re cycling mechanics and reduce risk of cycling-related injuries. Flexibility and strength testing as well as exercise prescription for injury prevention and pain reduction are also included, followed by static and dynamic assessment to correctly position the saddle, stem length and angle, pedal-cleat interface, among other adjustments.

Most insurance plans can be billed if you are experiencing pain as a result of your cycling activity.

Jason Lunden, DPT, Sports Clinical Specialist, is a Certified Bike Fitter and provides Professional Medical Bicycle Fit appointments in our Bozeman office.

Medical Bicycle Fit Performed by Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS of Excel Physical Therapy

By Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS
jason@excelptmt.com

A Medical Bicycle Fit at Excel Physical Therapy, is aimed at injury treatment and prevention for cyclists of all abilities, from recreational to racer. If you have neck, back, or knee pain, saddle sores, or hand and/or foot numbness, your bicycle probably doesn’t fit you properly. Correct cycling position is key to decreasing pain and preventing injuries as well as improving performance.

A bike fit performed by a physical therapist includes a biomechanical evaluation to determine if your cycling posture and pedaling mechanics need improvement. You’ll receive a comprehensive muscle, joint and bicycle evaluation to improve your cycling mechanics and reduce your risk of cycling-related injuries.  The cycle fit will include both static and dynamic assessment to: correctly position the saddle, specific recommendations on stem length and angle, and a particular emphasis on the pedal-cleat interface among other adjustments. The goal is to allow you to ride farther, faster and without pain.

We also work with cyclists interested in improving cycle-specific strength, flexibility, and performance.

Jason Lunden DPT Bike Fit

Jason Lunden DPT, SCS

Medical Bicycle Fit Evaluation and Consultation

•   Examination and treatment of acute and chronic injuries that include spine-related pain, knee pain, iliotibial band friction syndrome, heel-cord inflammation and hand and/or foot numbness or tingling

•   Cycling-specific muscle imbalance evaluation, including flexibility and strength-testing.

•   Bicycle Fit assessment: a biomechanical assessment is performed of your posture on your bike, including the fit of your seat, handlebar and stem, as well as the interface of your shoe, crank and pedals. We combine that with your ergonomic and aerodynamic body positioning on the bike. Based on our assessment, we will “fit” your bike to you for a more anatomically balanced and strength-oriented ride.

•   Video analysis: a frame-by-frame analysis of head and torso positioning; trunk stability; upper body placement; hip and knee alignment and pedal cadence to detect problems in cycling form

•   Cycling-specific exercises to enhance strength, flexibility and muscle balance, in order to minimize re-injury or injury.

Bike Fit FAQ’s:

Why should I get a bike fit? A bike that is not fitted properly can cause pain, discomfort, and decreased performance while riding. By getting a bike fit from a specially trained physical therapist, you’ll ensure that you get a bike that fits you and also learn techniques to help improve your riding. A bike fit is beneficial to cyclists of all levels, whether you are an cat 2 racer or a novice rider, a bike fit will improve your overall experience cycling.

What are the benefits of a bike fit?

A physical therapy bike fit will help you learn to find a balanced place on the bike, which will reduce the amount of wasted energy and extra muscular movements. We teach pedal mechanics that will result in a smooth, circular movement that reduces strain on your muscles and joints and helps you to ride more comfortably and efficiently.

What should I bring to my bike fit?

In order to get a proper evaluation and fit you should bring your bike, cleats, and cycling attire.  If you keep a training log bring it to your fit too, as it will help the physical therapist determine if training errors are contributing to your injury.  Also if your bike has a carbon frame and/or components please bring your torque wrench to ensure proper adjustments are made to your bike.

What does a bike fit cost?

A bike fit is charged by the hour, and most fits take two hours. Your physical therapist my also recommend additional treatment sessions to properly rehabilitate your injury.  A medical cycle fit is typically covered by insurance, as part of rehabilitation from your injury.  For performance enhancement, a bike fit is a fee for service charge.

Contact: Excel Physical Therapy, Jason Lunden, DPT, Sports Clinical Specialist

406-556-0562 Bozeman

jason (at) excelptmt (dot) com

Could you benefit from a bike fit evaluation?

By Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS
jason@excelptmt.com

Professional Bike Fitting

Bike adjustments and strengthening tips are generalizations, and may not work for your individual needs. If you have tried the above suggestions without success or want an individualized fit, you would benefit from a professional bike fitting.  The fitting I perform is both a static and dynamic bike fit, where static measurements and adjustments are combined with a dynamic movement analysis and orthopedic examination. A proper bike fit is a marriage between the bike and the rider, so one needs to look at both the bike and the person when performing a bike fit.  Getting a professional bike fit can significantly reduce pain associated with your riding, reduce the chances of developing future overuse injuries, and perhaps, best of all improve, your performance.

Resources:
http://www.serottacyclinginstitute.com/BikeFitBasics.html
http://www.competitivecyclist.com/za/CCY?PAGE=FIT_CALCULATOR_INTRO&INTRO_LINK=NOREDIR
http://velonews.competitor.com/tag/bike-fit

Could you benefit from a bike fit evaluation?

By Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS
jason@excelptmt.com

Muscular Imbalance and Pain

In addition to an improper bike fit, muscular imbalances can lead to overuse injuries in cycling. For example, weakness at the hip muscles can cause the knee to be improperly positioned at various points during the pedal stroke. The improper positioning of the knee can result in an overuse injury. Therefore in addition to getting your bike properly fit, focused hip strengthening and pedaling drills are usually required in order to rehabilitate knee pain associate with cycling.

Could you benefit from a bike fit evaluation?

By Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS
jason@excelptmt.com

Bike Adjustments

Fortunately there are many adjustments that can be made to your bike that can allow you to ride with less or no pain if you do develop an overuse injury. Typically these adjustments start down at the cleat /pedal level, then move to the saddle, and then, ultimately, reach the stem and handlebar. In most cases, the cleat should be centered under the ball of your foot. Your saddle height should be adjusted so that there is a 25-35? knee bend at the bottom of your pedal stroke.  Handlebar height is much more variable between cyclists. In general, you want the handlebars to be high enough so that your lower back is comfortable, but not so high as to create too much of an upright position that compromises performance.  Finally, the stem length should allow your shoulder angle to remain at 90?, or less, when your hands are on the bars.

"Jackie was super wonderful and helped my healing process immensely! She is extremely kind and intelligent and I would not have improved without her. Thank you!! :)" --K.L., Bozeman patient

View more testimonials from Excel PT clients »