Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Where do you sit, regarding fitting systems?

When you sit on your bike, how do you get your sit bones in the right place on the saddle? How can you find that “home base” from which to move on the bike? Why is it important? How do you learn it? How can a fitting system help you with this important task?

That’s a lot of questions about what seems to be a simple thing. But it’s not. Watch a golfer like Tiger Woods get ready to drive a ball down the fairway. He takes his time to position himself relative to the ball so he can hit it the way he wants. What he wants is to hit the ball with the proper bio mechanics for the desired results. They call this “addressing the ball”. We guarantee Tiger practices this skill religiously. When you place your sit bones on the saddle you are addressing the saddle and setting the stage for your bio mechanical interaction with your bicycle. We call this “addressing the bike”.

Why is it important? Well, as you can see from our example above, in order to drive the bike down the road you want the proper bio mechanics. You can’t get the desired results (a fast bike!) without them. So how do you learn how to address the bike properly? You learn it from someone that knows how; just like Tiger learned how to address the ball. No one is born knowing these things, but at WobbleNaught we’ve spent a long time scientifically analyzing cycling and its bio mechanics. With this knowledge we not only fit you properly, but we teach you what you need to know.

How can any fitting system help me with this issue? Frankly, not all of them do. In fact we believe only we can. Obviously an important part of addressing the bike is finding the relationship between your sit bones and the rest of your bones. Only then can the bike be adjusted to make maximum use of your power. Can a video camera do this? No, it can’t because it only sees the surface. And in this case the surface is hidden under shorts and on top of the saddle. You can’t come to any conclusions about your sit bones with a video camera. If you see someone pedaling improperly you can’t tell from a video whether it’s because they are sitting in the wrong place, or their cleats are wrong, or any one the multitude of things you could change. The idea that this can be done by observation feeds the notion that proper bike fitting is a “Black Art” practiced by high priests of fit. The video camera is an important tool that is best used for teaching and helping the cyclist visualize the proper pedaling stroke. It is a poor tool for measuring a skeleton and its joints.

With our measurement techniques we locate your sit bones relative to the rest of your skeleton, we even account for the amount of soft tissue covering the sit bones. And we do it without getting too familiar with your nether regions!! Once we know where your hard parts are, we can use our CAD solution to put your bike’s hard parts in the right place. THEN we can teach you how to address the bike and drive it down the road with power and finesse. No one else takes this approach and no one else has the tools to do it correctly.

We don’t get to pick our parents, but they pass on to us the physical characteristics we have. Your hips are what they are and we can help you find how to best use what you’ve got. Isn’t that what you want? It’s exactly what we want for you.

So come and see us. You may find out that the saddle you thought was a death sentence isn’t as bad as you thought! Plus, we'll make you faster.

M. McTigue
3rd Nature
Teaneck, NJ

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