Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Matt Winstead Makes A Valid Point On Adaptation!

As a 28 year old pro Matt Winstead  (Kenda Pro Team) makes a valid point.  Are you chasing your tail?  The "top gun" from Huntsville, Alabama racing at the pro level is another zip code from his home!  Any % of improvement can make a difference if you are willing to earn it!
Neurologically speaking, sponges are just about the simplest members of the animal kingdom. Prick one with a pin and it will contract slowly, but is will only move only a few millimeters beyond the point of stimulation.

Almost all animals reach out or lunge after food; they pull back, crawl, swim, run or fly when they are about to become food themselves. Fight or flight!

We are not sponges! We are much more complex and the more complex the life-style, the more elaborate are the animal modes of receiving, integrating, and respond
ing to information about the external and internal world.  In existing vertebrates, the oldest parts of the brain still deal with reflex coordination of vi
tal functions, such as blood circulation & breathing. The neural connections within the most recent layerings are the basis of memory, learning, and reasoning.

It is the somatic system and its sensory axons that has control of motor functions; carries signals to and from skeletal muscles, tendons, skin.

The spinal cord has both white matter and gray matter.  In cross-section, the gray matter of the cord looks vaguely like a butterfly.  This part of the spinal cord deals mainly with reflex connections for limb movements (such as walking) and internal organ activity. 

Maybe you have been on a farm when a chicken is destined for the stewpot?  Even though the chicken has its head cut off, it still runs around for a
while.  Chicken legs are governed to a great ext
ent by stereotyped reflex pathways in the spinal cord. 

The peripheral nervous system has a somatic subdivision, which deal with skeletal muscles concerned with voluntary body movements.  The cerebral cortex has regions devoted to receiving info from various sense organs (more with the memories of past events, and coordinating motor responses.) 

Cycling is a very active sport!  It is a labor of love, using more the somatic area of the brain concerned with voluntary body movements!  That means your body needs time to adapt to the labor, plus it takes a lot of thinking (mental faculties) to focus to obtain a small % of improvement!  How are your mental faculties, do you coordinate your movements from past events? Do you have the aptitude or talent for change? 

Why is it said?  It's as easy as riding a bike?  The world is not black & white, it is more like the picture somewhere in the gray area that matters, or is it?  

Many think you buy it, get a fit and off you go?  We say, it takes about 30 days of real riding time on the bike for the body/mind to start to work together!  You will hear people say, but my x,y,z hurts and they don't put in the effort or time.  Many go too hard, too fast and don't allow their muscles to adapt!  Its it a gray or white pedal stroke, so it takes a long time to improve it!

No matter your level, you need time for the muscles to get used to the the moves, just like any other sport!  Too many people jump on their bike and want it to feel good from the start, without putting in the time!  This is the very problem with asking a  person how does that feel while performing a fit solution!  The brain doesn't know what you are trying to do, there is not a program in it that says you are going to now pedal correctly, it's not auto, you have to learn it, or better "EARN IT."

Biology - a change by which a organism or species becomes better suited to its environment.

The foot and ankle is a very complex anatomical unit comprised of multiple bones, joints, ligaments, and tendons, all of which can be injured either alone or in various combinations. The small size of many of these structures and the fact that the foot is curved in all three orthogonal planes makes imaging of the foot and ankle particularly challenging!  It is also a long ways from the brain and that makes it very challenging to control!

Matt Winstead writes:

Last year was my first year racing the Wobble-naught CAD & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish solution and I had the best season of my cycling career.  Prior to the WN solution I had travelled to many reputable fitters in the west but had always experienced nagging pains and tight muscles that were hard to pin down and eliminate. I was in essence constantly chasing my tail.

When I first rode the solution I have to be honest, it was like trying to learn to ride my bike all over again!  I couldn't believe how awkward it felt but I paid attention to what WN staff were saying and was determined to give it time.  After several weeks of training on the solution my biomechanics adapted and I developed new nerve firing patterns. 

I remember thinking "I can't believe I ever rode my bike with the setup from before."  It felt that much better but is was admittedly hard to get to that point. During the long season I noticed I wasn't going to the masseur to get "fixed" but actually able to go and focus on recovery, not muscle problems.  At the end of the season after taking time off I got back on the bike and thought it didn't feel right, so what did I do? I started fiddling around with it again and before I knew I was having problems again.  My psoas was locking up, my hips and lower back were tightening up and I was back to chasing my tail.  But really I had gotten away from the fit because I didn't give my body time to re-adapt to the solution again.

I had 10 years on a whacked up fit and only one year on the WN & Myo-facts sEMG/Dartfish so I again had to retrain.  So now I'm back again to full WN & putting the focus on the correct pedal stroke and my psoas has let go, the back and hips letting go and my stroke is becoming natural on the fit again!  

For those that are skeptics I say stick with it, just give it time and then let the results speak for themselves. 

Matt Winstead  (Kenda Pro Team)

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