So I’m going to get a new bike. I am relatively new to cycling and got a cheap bike (Giordano libro off amazon) to make sure I was going to like the sport after 2 1/2 years and I think I’m ready for a upgrade. my problem is that I’m still not totally comfortable on my bike, experiencing saddle discomfort and occasional knee pain. Do I go get a bike fit on my current cheap bike to hammer down my exact size I need to ensure that my next bike is a good fit, or do I buy what I think I need and iron out the kinks with a bike fitting after.
also I have looked at online bike fitting calculators and have gotten conflicting data. I’m 6’4" 205 pounds with a 37" inseam
Any advice would be helpful. Thanks
If you go to a bike fitter they will often have a machine that is a lot like a bicycle in that it has handlebars, pedals and a saddle but is very easy to adjust and move around the various parts while you’re still on it. The fitter can then use this to tell you which bicycles from which manufacturers are the best fit for your body.
A bike fit before buying is definitely the way to go.
I agree with purgatos about doing it before.
Also, after fitting you on a jig (and thus giving you a spec for a range of bikes that will fit you), many bike fitters will then offer a shorter session for free where they put you onto your new bike and do the fine adjustment needed.
Fundamentally, if you buy a bike and get the frame size/type wrong, it may be that the fitter is unable to adjust components well enough to get the bike to fit.
Great, I will start looking for a good bike fitter, thank you for the help.
I did a ReTul fit from a dude widely respected around here. He made big changes on my road bike and tiny changes on my CX bike, it was a lot of money. I’m super happy that I did it, zero bike fit issues, I always know which size frame to buy in the future, etc.
As a bike fitter and sales person, I want to clarify some terms that might help with the 2 distinct points of interest here:
Sizing: This is the process of selecting a specific bike size (ex: 54cm vs 56cm) for a rider to get the proper foundation for their needs.
- This is not “fitting”.
- It is picking the proper size frame to start. This is critical because aspects of the fitting process to follow are limited via the fixed dimensions of each frame. Yes, we have adjustments via variable or different components, but some aspects are difficult or dangerous to overcome if a person selects the “wrong” frame size.
Fitting: This is the process of taking a given bike and making adjustments and/or component changes to meet the specific needs of the rider, with their personal needs and goals in mind.
- Proper fitting requires discussion with the rider to learn of any known issues and their overall goals with the bike (that should help direct the fit process).
- It includes a physical assessment to see the abilities, limitations, and natural state of the rider. These are also considered in the fit process for making desired adjustments.
- Finally, it includes the adjustments and component changes as need with all the goals in mind.
Sizing should be done with a qualified sales person (who may or may not be a fitter) to help the rider select the “best” size as a starting point.
Fitting follows Sizing, and takes that starting point to a fine level of changes to best suit the rider.
The potential benefit of a “sizing” from a fitter is that they don’t have to be connected to a shop, and as a result are able to make recommendations that are independent of manufacturer. This means you can shop around (online and offline) to get a great deal.
We just sold my girlfriend’s bike which was two-sizes too big to a guy that replaced a bike sold to him which was a size to big; I’m going to a bike-fitter first, buying a bike in the range they recommend, then transferring that fit to the new bike. The consumer is left carrying the water financially when mistakes are made.
Yup. The issue is finding one of these “independent” fitters. Based on my experience, the vast majority are directly employed and connected to a shop (and the associated brands). The solo fitters are out there, but they seem to be the minority.
That is essentially true in nearly any industry. Consumers are subject to their knowledge and that of those they buy from and/or consult with in the purchasing process.
Mistakes get made for a variety of reasons. I have seen a range that stem from under-trained shop personnel, as well as misleading info from the consumer. Knowledge and successful communication are necessary elements to a proper sizing and fitting.
slowtwitch has a listing of fitters. Tell us where you are and we can tell you of fitters we know of.
My fitter provided me with a printed report of all of my measurements after being fitted to my current bike. If I was to buy another bike then we could set up the new bike using these measurements. That may be something for you to enquire about.
Yes, that pretty standard as the result of a full fit. The issue is that mainly focus on the final locations of the contact points. It lacks the detailed geometry of actual bike/frame like the stack, reach, effective top tube and such.
Those are possible to get from the manufacture site, if the report captures the bike make, model and size. But the geo numbers aren’t part of all fit reports. It may well come with the Guru and other fits using an adjustable bike.
Thanks for all the info, I live in Albany new york