Sunday, September 28, 2008

Cyclocross Season is on and bet your life fans love the rivals!

What makes for good racing?  Jealous rivalries!  North American cyclocross races mean fans watch riders racing for their own interests and for sure, have their heroes!  Fans love rivals competing in the same field for superiority e.g. Tour de Whatever, Football, NASCAR, PGA, etc...   

Cyclocross is not some team road race with a strong team, up to nine members in control as they dominate.  If you didn't know, in road racing, a large squad can rule over smaller teams and it is rare that a underdog has a chance e.g. basketball, etc...  You ride as a squad, for the strongest, not for your own interests.  You see it all the time in crits!

That is not the case in Cyclocross!  Cyclocross is hard, yet only about one-hour long and it requires one's best skills and hard effort to place in the top five.  What is going to be the outcome of this season depends on the rider and what that rider brings in skills, effort, etc... We are very pleased to have 2007 series winner Georgia Gould (Luna) racing at the top again.  It does look like Kate Compton is going to be her rival and we love it. There are others who are getting faster and that is going to turn up the heat at these high performance fun filled races. 

High performance in cycling comes from the correct interface of a motivated human willing to learn and push their limits. Your basic fit solution equals a basic performance (close, but no cigar!), so if you want to go hard you have your bike solution right!  A race car, ski boots, etc... change for the event.

Clearly the industry doesn't care if you ride hard or not, how much effort you put forth, as long as you buy a bike from them?  In fact, that is why they have such upright bikes.  Perhaps that is why so many of the top racers use our high tech to help them learn how to ride harder. This is very simply to understand!  Things change when you go hard, race with more speed, climb mts., etc...  If you want to go harder, go faster, then we can help you.  We do it all the time, just ask any of our 15,000 plus users if it made a difference for them.  The only problem here is they all had to learn to pedal, to learn to get more aero and on and on.

Look! Don't go to the ski shop to learn how to ski!  Don't go to a ski school to learn to race. Don't go to the golf store to lean how swing better or to make it through the PGA school. 
You don't go to the experts and teach them?  You get the idea!

Learn the game!

To separate yourself from the pack with cutting-edge techniques, training, and racing information, you need to go where you can learn your optimal pedaling! Is pedaling hard not what we want to do on a bike?  Understand, that you will pedal hard when you go uphill and you need to make more power.  It will tax your body and if your bike is not setup for that, you will hurt!  How you make it hurt less depends on how you set your bike up!

I was just on the phone with Hunter Allen on the subject of power.  Many in the industry (coaches, etc...) did not buy into his understanding of power just a few years ago. It has been through his spirit, determination, and guts that has made a mark in the industry.  Their software is will used.  Hunter has seen first hand, us teaching people how to make more watts and more than once.  He has even had people from around the world come to us to use our high tech.  It makes a difference!

It takes much spirit, determination, and guts to rival the basics of the past decades!

In cycling competition there are many types of races, in which the competitors cycle all together and strive to pass the finish line first.  Then you have time trials, in which individuals or teams try to do a certain distance in the shortest time possible e.g. drag racing.  And then we have the mtb bikes and  cyclocross bikes where tactics and success depends on real choices harnessed through the bike.  A road bike fit doesn't work here!  So why use a basic road bike fit solution for this type of racing?  

In the last type of race, the performance improvement is ultimately due to an improvement in the relationship between muscular power produced by the individual cyclist and the energy lost.  In most cases, you can't get on a wheel and get pulled by four to five people like road racing.  

Perhaps that is why we see so many fitting ideas within road cycling?
It has been said if you are 1cm to 2cm close on fit solution, call it good?

In golf it is said that 1/000th of a degree = 20 yds!
Why not have that degree of attention in cycling?

In all sports,  attempts to qualify one's abilities are going on!   From a mechanical point of view, in cycling, it is the mechanical power generated by the cyclist that is most directly related to speed!  Sure factors such as strength & endurance contribute to this mechanical power in some way. Furthermore, you need more mechanical energy to climb mountains, (to overcome gravity), along with power to accelerate if you have any chance of being in the running of most races.  Here is where the correct fit solution pays off!

We feel that if you are in the top 5 of any given race, you are in the race, then it comes down to good vs. bad luck e.g. flats, chain drop, falls, etc...  You have to have your A-GAME and a bit of luck!

Many times the cyclocross course is on grass, sand.  To accelerate in grass, it is very important that you learn how to address the bike for a sprint.  So some track racing skills could be of help during the low end speeds!  We know that you need to have the drops in the correct space for sprinting.  Then on the top end, you have to generate enough force while moving at high speed and that determines performance. We know that it takes about 200 to 250 watts to be generated to compensate for a power lost to frictional forces at speed.  This is only a guide!
Power comes from your brain and how you address the bike!

Once again, a road bike solution is not a tt solution, nor tri , or a mtb , or a cyclocross solution. They are all different games!  Don't be shocked if someone rides away from you after obtaining the newest hyped fit road fit from your mass market dealer!  

Large mass market dealers want you to buy a bike and that is what ever bike they can get to be a bike dealer!  The focus is about getting you on a bike in a static form and out the door you go. There is a major trend from the mass market groups to get you to sit upright.  When you sit upright, sure if feels better while your in a trainer!  But when you get into the real world of cycling, your performance goes away!

Do you think a retail store really cares how you ride?  They don't make their money teaching you how to ride. They also don't want to be a training center.  In most cases, they have so much vested in the stock, buying it in Oct., and pay it off by July, only to do it over again.  They have to focus on moving hard-goods and soft-goods.

The same holds true for any golf club company who places their clubs in x,y,z, store.  They make their money by the sell of the clubs, not your score!  Do you think that they care about that 1/000th of a degree that equals the error of 20 yds. Do you think they care if you hit the ball 325 yds.  For the most part, they are not set up for that.  That's OK!  It's just good to understand!

We have made a mark in the bike fit industry, and even had one of our new dealer's in N.C., asked to leave a mass market retail store after one of the stores worker's went to get a Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish fit.  What is funny about this is, the worker loved his new fit over the mass market basic fit and his game improved.  We hope he keeps his job!  This happens more than you know!  Understand that large mass market companies can hold a gun to the head of their dealers!  Wait until they see the 30% price increase coming.

Clearly, we know how the mass market guys push "their way or the highway" on their dealers! In fact they don't want after market products when they make them.  So you have about 3 thousands stores like this. Our solutions and results within the many different cycling events has upset the apple cart of the upright design!  That is good, as it will rival them to improve their fittings and bikes.

Rivals are good!   In our game, we see basic bit fit solutions getting pushed on the retail store. They claim 3D, yet still use a plumb line, 2D because they use a cam, copy us with lasers, video tools like Dartfish, etc... But they are not us and they did not blaze a trail!  We did!  We are the real deal and we are the only company in the world who has a legal contract/partner with Dartfish.   The same people said, our way didn't work?  Now they attempt to copy?

Those people didn't care about bike fitting only a few years ago, and even many of the reps said we would not make it.   Not until they started seeing and learning that their bikes are not moving like they use to have they come up with their own school.  For years, they always said it was their bike.  Myth busting is making a difference! 

Wow!  You mean the bike really doesn't make that much of a difference?   That the person riding it will do better to learn how to ride it and work on their pedal stroke?  That is not what mass market retail has been pushing on us these many years!  

While at Interbike, thousands attend, to check out the night CrossVegas race.  It has become quite the event! This year's CrossVegas was even larger than last year. Big guns like Lance Armstrong came out for the racing.  The sport is really growing and most people can afford it. And having Lance attend during a time when the federal government  is looking at a massive bailout plan for Wall Street doesn't hurt the sport.  Money is tight, and these bikes are within reach of our pocket book.

It is not about the bike brand, rather the human motor and their focus! In this game, you don't need a high priced bike.  You do need a good motor, a will to race, and a good bike fit solution that allows you to use your skills.  People have different skills and different skills show up at these kinds of races.  That is why this type of cycling is so fun,  you see a lot of different courses bringing out the many different skills. 

When you race on grass, it really taxes you pace!  You need to be able to make a lot of power out of the hole and with the wrong bike set up , you loose the power to attack, so forget about catching someone ahead if you don't have it right.

So, how did we do? We are very pleased with the Luna Chix's Gould and Nash  racing against US Champion Katie Compton (Spike).   Seems like things are equally matched for the season and that makes for good racing.  That means the small mistakes will make a huge difference. Just one un-clip and the the other person can get away! 

That was the case in a sharp corner for Nash, as she watched Compton get away.  Georgia Gould was also setting-up a attack (a tough act to catch up), but crashed over a barrier, doing a swan dive into the soft grass, then dropped a chain and was dropped by the leaders to take third-place. Even with all that a 3rd place is super.  Great results!

Why take your ideas to racing?  That is the best place to test "what works" and that is why we follow it!  Even with the results, the world stills learns slowly. You always hear about people who are old school (I have been doing it for 20 years) and why change?  

Now comes the racer!  The truth is, they don't want the others to have the fit solution?  Would you? When you know they are going to have to work harder each and every race.  That is what drives them to learn how to pedal better, faster, etc...  IT'S HARD WORK TO LEARN!

There are many fitting systems today!  There are many mass market systems that are placed in their stores (bend over touch your toes).  They all have their approach!  But come race day, it is the Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish solution that is always in the running!  Because we care about fitting you and then teaching you what you need to work on.  We don't push you on our brand bike,  sit upright, then call the 1cm to 2cm good to go!  We measure you to the mm!  The upper body is a counter weight for the work of the legs.  Learn how to play the game!

Grab any golf club, you still have to learn to swing it.  Sitting upright is not learning how to play the game.  OK, your not Tiger Woods or Lance Armstrong, but attempt to learn the game.
You will get better if that is your focus.

In golf it is said, to be off 1/000 th. off = 20 yds. error, at contact with the ball.  That is the same level of focus we are after!  We care about 1/000 th,  as we want you to make the perfect pedal stroke each and every time.  They add up!

Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish makes a difference and if you have not used our services, then you might be off that 1/000 error?  In racing, you attempt not to guess, rather win and that is why our racers do well.  They work very hard on each stroke!

In the grass, coming out of the corners, you need a very quick sprint e.g. track racer to keep pace.  If you have a strong sprint, you can attack those who just sit on the saddle expecting to come up to speed.

We are also glad to see Sue Butler Monavie Cannondale getting 6th place with such a high power race. 

Elite Women

1. Kate Compton  (Spike)
2. Katerina Nash  (Luna)
3  Georgia Gould  (Luna)  WN & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish
6.  Sue Butler         (Monavie Cannondale)  WN & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish

Do you want to go harder?  Go see one of our dealers!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sue Butler (Monavie Cannondale) takes her first UCI win!

Debates are common in the science of physiology.  Heavy arguments come forth in many areas and even more so that Lance Armstrong is coming back.  Lance's come back re-ignites the debate whether Armstrong made his leap to fame through post-cancer weight loss or a more efficient pedaling, or if he made his gains through doping.

All this while the domestic cyclocross season is now under way and  Sue Butler (Monavie Cannondale) is kicking some butt and she has not had post-cancer weight loss and she does not get her gains through doping.  So the day she spent with Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish  inside & outside, working on a more efficient pedaling must have made a difference.  

Many times what goes on with a given fit or while on a trainer, even with some sort of video is not what happens in the real world. We took time with Sue after setting up both her bikes to a 10% grade just north of Boise and worked on her game.  We found some things that she didn't know she was doing. Then we went back to the shop and showed her how to improve!  She has!

Sue Butler just took the victory at the Full Speed Ahead Star Crossed event at Marymoor Velodrome, in Redmond, Washington, near Seattle.  Even against Canadian National Champion Wendy Simms and pros like Kathy Sherwin. This is her second win within a month!

Pacific Northwest cyclocross conditions greeted racers & crowds of thousands with rain! Sloppy, slippery, serpentine mess for a race. Perfect!  What better way to test you and your bike skills.  You and your bike need to be one in these conditions.

The women's race quickly became a two-rider affair from the gun, with Sue Butler's new found speed,  taking the hole shot and opening an early lead and she did not look back.  Canadian Champion Wendy Simms was the only woman able to bridge and match Butler's new season race pace, and the fast paced pair road away from the field.

"Sue had a good start and was super smooth," said Simms. " She got away early, but I was able to bridget up to her.  I got a little gap on her and tried to drop Sue, but Sue was super strong and bridged back up, so I had to sit on her wheel and she got away."

Simms said it was Butler's speed on the straights that neutralized her ability to make an attack stick.  " I was doing the corners well but Sue Butler was super-fast on the long straights, where she bridged back up." 

Sue Butler is 37 years young and this is her first UCI elite win of her career.  She did win the National Masters women 35-39 championships in cyclocross last year.  She has been working with Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish during this time and learning how to race faster.  Sue is very willing to learn and it shows in her recent results!  She is also coached by Kendra Wenzel.  

Congrats on your second elite victory Sue!

Namrita O'Dea & Andy Applegate Dominate in GA!

Wobble-naught users, Namrita O'Dea & Andy Applegate, ascend to the top of the podium at the 12 hours of Dauset.  Namrita, a 55nine Performance co-owner, repeated her win of one year ago at this event in middle GA.  Andy Applegate of VeloSport Performance, took an early lead and held it to the end and was the only solo rider to make the cut off for his 14th lap.  

That's 140+ miles in just 12 hours.  This is the second year this race has been dominated by Wobble-naught users....!  Given there are so many ideas on fits and fitting systems, it seems everyone has come up with something. I do believe there is a trend starting in southern mtb scene!

Is there something in the Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish that makes you faster than others.  Yes!  Results are the end all on what works best or not!  Our fit allows you to ride your bike better, longer and faster.    

There is no better way to test your fit than one of the 12-hour, 24-hour races. 

Congrats to both Namrita & Andy.

Nat Ross & Rebecca Rusch wn Payson Stampede!

Nat Ross & Rebecca Rusch take yet another win at Payson Stampede 24-Hr MTB.  These people are tough.  

I was just at Rebecca's party last Saturday, as she showed pics of her 2nd World 24 hour win.  
It was a late night, but fun.  Not the best preparation for the next race, then a major fire in her community.

Rebecca passed this on to me... She is a part time firefigher/EMT in Ketchum, ID. She has been doing this for about 3 years.  She spent the early part of last week working a major fire that burned two commercial buildings on Main Street in Ketchum.  The biggest structure fire reported in the town of Ketchum has ever seen.

The call went out at 3am and she worked straight through till 3pm. The next night, is was her watch from midnight until 10am the next day.  That was Tuesday and the next day left for Arizona.   Again, not the best preparation for a 24 hour race, but she takes her race.

What can we say about Nat Ross, he is also a tough bird!

They both head to Interbike and more long hours.  If you go to Intebike, look them up!
They are both very friendly and are true mtb pros.  Show them the respect they need!

No these are not road racers, but they are just as tough.  They don't have a team to work for them.  MTB needs your support, these folks need your support, and yes these people are the real deal.  If you don't think so, you go race them for 24 hours and see how you hold up!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Armstrong & Team take Snowmass.

Un retired 7-time Tour de France champion and Colorado pros take the 3-man division.
Lance Armstrong, Len Zanni and Max Taam take it by 6-minutes ahead of Team Beaver Creek.

When you are in the public eye, you are going to hear everything  "old vs. new".  Lance Armstrong puts some light and his intentions clear.  His real reason is the "fight against cancer."  I think most of us had one of those yellow bands to show support for the fight a few years ago. 

I suspect that a large % of us have lost a close family member from cancer.  I did, I lost my mother at a time when I was at age 23.  It changes your life!  With that, we welcome his efforts! 

Lance pointed out that he is also not happy with the media using "old generation vs. new."
In our view, he would be voted as the world's best and certainly most famous bike racer in any bike contest.  Old or new, Lance Armstrong brings attention to the sport.

I lived in the ritzy Colorado mountain town for about 6 years.  Training on most of the trails e.g. Red Mountain, Aspen to Snowmass to Buttermilk,  Aspen to Crested Butte etc...  It will kick you into shape!  

Taking the "Livestrong" message to all countries around the world is a good thing!    And we can applaud that also!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Opponents heated! Armstrong vs. Wiens at Nat Ross 12 hr-Snowmass, CO!

A opponent is someone who is very driven, competes, fights another in a contest, game, or argument; a strong rival or adversary.  A person who disagrees with or resists the practice of another.  And that seems to be the case with Armtsrong vs. Wiens.  Can we say Lance doesn't like to take 2nd place! 

Was it the guy who won so many medals at the games swimming, and it has been said he is the best man in sport, or was it that another Armstrong took a gold? 

Can you believe it?  Two Armstrong's in the game and they both don't mind mixing their bike practices against anyone in the world.  It seems if you hold the name Armstrong e.g Lance Armstrong or Kristin Armstrong and you wish to race either the "male or female" Armstrong's, you will will have a very real opponent.  You better bring your A-GAME!  Both the male and female can contest what you do!

Its like NASCAR, cycling has strong opponents and they don't like not winning a race and they don't tuck their tails between their legs in anything they do!  In truth, it is both Armstrong's ease for them to contest, rival others in their sport.  That's what makes this sports top entertainment, you get people who's response to a trying situation makes for a good show! 
They get Triple AAA psyched!

Big names at the inaugural 12 Hour - Snowmass, CO this weekend. Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish dealer Nat Ross, race director of the new 12 Hour of Snowmass cross-country mtb race this Sunday, Sept 14th let the news out that the seven-time Tour winner is going to be part of a three-man team at his new 12 hour event. 

While lots of things in cycling are far simpler than companies would have you believe, there really is "rocket science" that can make a difference! And that science is within the human mind, not just the bike. Bike fitting was once considered a luxury for the top riders. A "could be" or a "will be". Refusing to make the investment, will make a quantifiable difference.

Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish has made a impact in bicycle manufactures to take the time to better understand and teach the value of fitting. That is why major brands have come up with some basic fit programs to earn more credit for their dealers!

Nat Ross, who has a great genetic ceiling like Lance Armstrong, knows better than anyone what racing at race pace for 24 hours can do to the mind/body/soul. Your technique, training, equipment and bike in competition and extreme conditions (hot, cold, altitude) taxes you around the clock. That is why Nat Ross is in our camp! Nat pointed out that the 12 hour event is much less taxing, requires less super human focus to the details. You don't get recovery time like rub down after 5 hours, a nap, as the fatigue sets in! Warning signs for each cyclist's unique needs crop up!

Up to 80% of the variability in training stimulus and you learning performance can be attributed to genetic influences. Choose your parents wisely!

You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make them drink!

Too often, the racers who do these very taxing races have not been viewed as "real world" and become a topic of controversies. The extreme energy needs of these long-lasting events deals with more technical aspects of equipment, aerodynamics, nutrition and biomechanics. That is why our racers are the top racers in the world in these kinds of events. You can't have basic ideas about the pedal stroke here, the smallest of details will show up, or as so often you can't even complete the race.

When you push the mind/human motor/bike to that level, you really see what works or not. It seems that training science is a relatively soft science, meaning that there is no one truth. Different methods may work for different people, and we know of different cyclists and coaches will have different opinions and preferences. Competition is good and looks at methods that make a difference. Several methods have been developed, some become popular but then disappeared off the scene again!

Look at what the car racing world learns from their 24 hour competition. I think almost everyone knows of the 24 hours of LeMons! That is where the opinions and preferences are really tested!

No question our sport has lost much interest with all the crap that has been be going within it.
There are so many races and so many different types of races, leading to subcultures. Many are pro road, and look at anything else as not important. Things really have gotten out of balance with this kind of thinking and the sport was going down hill fast!
When the great Lance Armstrong retired, so did much of the interest, the money, leading the industry not get behind it. Since road racing is such a team sport, and Lance is going back into the European road peloton, he could, with a strong team take number 8! If anything, its going to get the whole world watching and that is what we need (FANS). We don't have anyone in the sport that gets an eye within the media like Lance Armstrong.

In the mean time, in the now, we are very pleased to hear the news that Lance Armstrong is coming back into the sport by racing this weekend. He is so needed to keep the interest in cycling going in the USA and take note, he is not road only! The interest of cycling in the US really went down hill when he retired. Truth is, there is no one alive in the industry/sport that can impact the sport like him.

Other super news is Lance Armstrong is going to race at our Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish dealer Nat Ross.

Nat Ross has a new 12 hour race in Snowmass, CO. Nat Ross is a big name and he is even going to be placed in the Hall of Fame in 24 hour mtb racing.

This is no question going to spark interest in the sport. No one brings more interest to the sport than Lance Armstrong!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

LOTOJA 2008 - Back to Back Wins For Jenn!

Twenty-four-hour energy expenditures of cyclists are among the highest. You may expend up to 9,000 kilocalories per day. With such high energy expenditures, it is often difficult to just maintain your energy balance. So think about your bike fit and how that works on your game!
If it is not right in the big mile races, game over!

There are many concepts within any social group (culture). Cycling is no different! There are many different kinds of events (tt, road, mtb, track, tri, etc...) and rest-a-sure all racing do the best they can what ever the event (40k, 24 hours, 1oo miles, etc...)

Given there are so many kinds of cycling events, you might find you are better at one event over the other. Pua Sawicki, who just had her best season ever and well known for her 24 hour racing just took a 24 hour race, then did a stage race of many days around 10,000 feet plus pointed out to us when she attempted to race at Brian Head, UT. She won the Stage mtb race, but did not have the legs to race the following weekend. The real win here is she learned that you need sufficient time for resting recovery. More time may be needed after travel across time zones.

Although it is impossible to be good at every event, we are so pleased to get the news about our endurance athletes doing so well.

What better place to test the ideas about your best bike fit!

Boise's Jenn Halladay rides away solo for about 80 miles again. This is her second time doing this! The race is 208 miles long, and she informed us she had a head wind for the last 50 miles as they headed towards Jackson Hole, WY.

Jenn also pointed out that her hip felt stronger. Jenn did go down in a race this past spring, breaking her hip in a crit.

This is not a small event, about 1000 riders. She said she was amazed how many of the stronger male's asked her if they could get on her wheel due to her fast solo pace. All while she focused on the correct pedal stroke.

She is a nice person, so she just pointed out that she has her own pace as she rode away.

Another way to think about this is to analyze how the cyclist actually generates the pedal force. This is a complex mechanical question.

A interesting fact is that the direction of muscle contribution to the pedal force is fully determined by the position of leg and crank! Clearly, it means that muscle forces must be interrelated in such a way that the sum of their contributions yields the desired value of the total force.

Jenn is glad she has used our services and knows what that is! It is even written on her stem!

Monday, September 08, 2008

Tahoe Sierra 100 NUE Series Final - Bishop!

The final race of the National Ultra Endurance series had a strong field for racers for the final race of the NUE series/year.  Here are the results of the final race.

Team-mates Jeremiah Bishop (Trek/VW) and Chris Eatough (Trek/VW) decided to roll across the finish together.  Jeremiah has put together a good season and that is not easy to do with the likes of the Chris Eatough's.


1. Jeremiah Bishop (Trek/VW Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish) & Chris Eatough (Trek/VW)    7.02.58
3.  Evan Plews (Scott/Capitol)        10.44 back.
4. Harlan Price (           14.47
5. Mark Santubane                            32.59

Friday, September 05, 2008

UCI Road Master Worlds - Austria

Americans get 4 medals at Worlds in St. Johaan, Austria. And it seems that most of the success comes from the west.  Idaho, Utah, Colorado,  and California seem to do well.  Perhaps mile-high rides make great rider's!  Can we say the playground makes the player! Look at the success Idaho has with the gals.  

If you race in this part of the world, you can measure your efforts against the men/women of the world, no problem. 

Idaho's Richard Feldman has taken almost all of the tt races in Idaho and backs it up at worlds as he takes a Sliver in men 30-39 tt., and Utah's Ken Louder, Jeff Louder's dad places a very respectful 11th in men 60-64 road with Kenny Fuller, CA taking the gold in men 60-64.

Western USA has some super roads with super climbs to ride.  If you have not had a chance to go west, you might want to check it out.  The fall is a super time of the year and once you get out of town, the roads are very open, very little traffic.  

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Specialist or Naught, Analyzing your Position(s)!

We get phone calls all day long with questions on what is the best position? What is the best crank length, stem, etc... What is the best hip angle or foot angle?

As we perform each fit, or better understood as CAD solution, we still have to teach you your options on how to pedal. We don't think there is one position and know that to be true from many other sports.  

 It is fun to learn!  Rather, it's better to think of a zone of movement "in & out of balance". Take golf, skiing, etc..., if you have more clubs in the bag, you have a better chance to perhaps score your best round. In skiing, you don't use DH skis for SL! Point here, there are too many shots/strokes golf and too many ski turns, all requiring different needs.

So why is there basic idea that one fit takes care of all your needs?

There is always a  need to present readers with thoughts and concepts arranged in some logical order. This is very hard as reading is very much a monologue, and it is inflexible once the text is set.  The words are like arrows, as they are shot, they do not return!

All individuals in sport need a presentation that makes sense, it is a educational process and you learn your whole life.  So the challenge is evident.  Every generation shapes the potentials of the next generation.  Any time you have change, you have a revolution. Older educational institutions will resist such change as we seek to tap human potential in a creative manner, constipated or slow moving by the linearity of systems that currently guide us.

There are learners preparing to become actively involved and immerse right away in the practical suggestions.  And there are also many who will not fully understand and need more clarification.  That is where the Dartfish feedback with the correct instructional methods brings brilliant order to the many.   Till now many have had uncharitable experiences with much regret!  Learning now takes place faster and with more permanent results, peak performance becomes the rule, rather than the exception.  The results are what they are.

What is it you want to do? If we know what that is, then we can look at you as a specialist! Analyzing you for one position is not going to allow the specialist in tt, tri, road, mtb, XC to be their best! These are different games that require different moves "in & out" of balance, leading to different bike setup! The only thing basic here, is the world basic.

In all of the above, comfort or peace of mind that many top guns use our CAD and sEMG/Dartfish to obtain their top performance is good.  Knowing that you have used something that has a track record and that has provided results through the years is also helpful. Sure there are going to be people who often complained the its feels "unnatural" to them. Now condider the static and sometimes contorted body positions expected to assume a position.  No wonder the sport seems difficult.  Many thousands quite the sport in frustration, convinced that they were just too uncoordinated to master it.

Take pro tri Ali Fitch who races in a sport (tri) that has no position limits, who just set a new course record here in Idaho, then went to Canada taking  a 2nd. Why is this good, well our dealer at 3rd Nature in N.J. performed the solution. We should point out that Ali is not from America, she is from a top cycling country down under. Oh yes, there is the American, Netherlands, English, French, etc... ways, as they follow the contributors and colleagues of that country.

We realized long ago that the way to learn any sport, is concentrate on just a few simple and functional skills that can be felt, repeated easily and remembered by the body.  The mind plays just as important a role in learning a move as the body does.  It can either slow progress by creating anxiety and/or unrealistic expectations, or it can dramatically speed up learning by increasing confidence and concentration as we have seen so many times.  Look at the results!

I want to point out that Ali had a bad crash a few years ago and broke her back. She now rides without pain and is fast after working with 3rd Nature.

Sure there are many other things that need attention, like your fall training, a coach to kick you into gear or on course. Keeping your iron up high, as the RBC's levels need to be correct, as they carry most of the O2, and much more. All motors need O2 to work and if you are not dialed, allowing for the motor to obtain O2, you can't make the system go longer or better.

Now comes the problem with road racing or better (team sports). This is where everything gets fuzzy on what is it you need to do? You can have specialist on that team who can ride on the flats, then sucks on the hills, and they do a job to help take the team win. Then you have a certain course, that demands a different specialist. You get the point!

So, what is the answer? In the USA low % grade roads are the norm, made for cars, trucks and not bikes. They don't make roads straight up the hill or a ridge!

What if you live in a flat area of the world, then what? Ouch! You might not ever know what you need? A good hill is a super palce to test, to learn what works best! Hum! Kristin Armstrong used Bogus Basin Road about 7% grade (the road to the ski area) to train on her tt bike here in Boise, ID.

But on a mtb/xc bike you do go up steep trails or a steep ridge, so the mtb/xc bike needs a position that works in that area. Do not motorcycle dirt racers slide up on the gas tank to keep the front wheel down and hold a better line? So a basic road bike fit doesn't allow you to find the balance of needs!

Yes, a aero position is important, once you get to a speed that causes the drag on the certain areas! On most hills, the speed is not fast enough to obtain that position. We know from hard effort events like tt, track, mtb, xc that a stable upper body makes a difference. If you watched the games, you perhaps noted that Boise's Kristin Armstrong spent much time with her hands on her climbing option verses the area option.

Like other sports, where the hands go, the rest of the body has to follow! They are attached to you!

Fact! You can't change Newton's laws! "For every motion, a opposite force is needed to maintain the balance." So your upper body needs to be able to allow the legs to work under the upper body mass, in space, standing or sitting, going at slow speed or fast speed or on what ever grade!

Take track, options for handling skills and power might be better over being more aero. Boy, did the UK drive that point home at the games! Being too aero can cost you!

Options are good! Take the big chain ring difference that Kristin Armstrong had on her tt bike. It had a huge drop to get her on top of the climbing chain ring, placing a issue of the chain jumping off given distance of change. If the chain jumps off, you don't always get it back on fast enough to win!

So analyzing you position becomes more of

"what is it you want to do?"

Perhaps that is why our solutions work well within tt, track, mtb, xc. We provide that person with their best solution or option's on what they want to do!

Football season, so check out the team sport and note they even have specialist teams. So keep this in mind when you seek a basic fit. The linemen are not the running backs and they have a different job and body type! Yet, they both have a job to do for the team.

One thing is true, they both need to stack their bones for power, and allow the best range of motion of their joints, and the best line of pull of their muscles. Or they get taking out of the game. Plus, they use high-tech like Dartfish video to review their games before and after.

A new season is coming, and we are out on course, tt, tri, mtb, xc, track and providing you with the plays that make a difference!

Sad, but true, most people in cycling don't review their game? So they use power and hire a coach to review the watts and that only shows the sum of the effort that comes mostly from your brain. That doesn't show you what your body is doing in space!

We are out on course, in the real world, on the hills, trails, etc..., and we are seeing people like Sue Butler who was just here in Boise, ID obtain 2-3mph on her bike, just by changing her brain! She just had her best season ever, her coach Kendra Wenzel said Sue has gain 30 more watts this season alone! Now that is cool! All because she know more what she needs to do!
How else do you learn!

What's in your game?

Monday, September 01, 2008

NMBS Series Finals - Brian Head, UT

How do you know you have the correct bike setup?  

Perhaps the best way is to race over a season and see how many podiums you can stand on within a series.  That is not easy!

This season had many top guns going to World Cups e.g Georgia Gould to earn points, in order to make it to the games.  Long hours on planes equals no recovery.

Think about it, if you can obtain a top 5 or even a top 10 over a series is super.  We do stay in touch with the racers.   We just got off the phone with Pua Sawicki, who just took the stage race at Brian Head before this final NMBS Final and she pointed out that the legs where a bit dead from all the racing.  Pua - "Fast twitch is not the same as slow twitch."  Regardless, she just had the best season of her life! 

Can we agree that Georgia Gould had her best season being #1, and Lea Davison had her best season.  There are others, like Sue Butler and the list goes on.

Take Jeremy Horgan-Kobelski (Gary Fisher/Subaru) who just claimed his 1st. XC win this season at the series finals in Brian Head, Utah.  This is not easy to take a win or even place in the top 5.  Just have one flat and that will cost you e.g. Bishop this NMBS Final.

If you don't follow race results, you don't see the trends, you only see who is the winner of a given race.   

We know, that its hard to race at a certain percent e.g. 70%, 80%, etc...  The word is "RACE" and that means you go and it hurts, dead legs or not! You have the motor or not on that given day, and hope you did all the right things.  The last thing you need is to think that your bike is not right.  You also have no control of flats, etc...  Can you say stressful!

Now look at teams, what a season Luna Team had.  They had countless podiums, as they saw victory after victory through the 2008 season and not just here in the USA. 

Luna is the top ranked team in the world this year!

Even with NMBS titles on the line, both Georgia Gould and Katerina Nash nailed down both Short Track & XC.  Katerina Nash took the NMBS Short Track on Saturday and team-mate now new Olympian Georgia Gould took the XC title.  This last race had Pua Sawicki (Ellsworth) & Lea Davison (Trek/VW) who where tied for fourth place in the championships with 709 points at this last race.  Good stuff!

Series Standing

1. Georgia Gould   Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish
2. Katerina Nash
3. Heather Irmiger
4. Lea Davison  Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish
5 Pua Sawicki    Wobble-naught & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish