Why is a bike fit important?
The human body was not designed to ride a bicycle, but it is a great way to stay in shape and it’s tons of fun! The first bicycle was invented in 1817 and it didn’t even have pedals. Bicycles have come a long way since then, and so has our knowledge and research base on how we should be riding. Riding a bicycle with improper seat height, saddle size and position, crank arm length, etc., can make the experience not only less comfortable, but more likely to result in pain and dysfunction. Common injuries that occur from an improper bike fit and can also be corrected by this approach include neck, shoulder, wrist, back, hip, knee, and foot pain during or after cycling.
What is the difference between a bike shop fit and a physical therapy retrofit?
A local bike shop is both an excellent and appropriate place to begin when it comes to being fit correctly on a properly sized bicycle. They are experts when it comes to bicycles and their parts. Some shops even include a quick and basic fit/seat height adjustment with the purchase of a new bicycle.
A retrofit and assessment with a physical therapist comes into play when you begin to have pain, discomfort, or dysfunction despite that fit. (Of course, you can always come here first as well!) Physical therapists with specialized training in the cyclist population are experts when it comes to the biomechanics of tissue (bone, joint, muscle, ligament, nerve, etc.), the biomechanics of injury, and the ways to treat those injuries. Besides the changes to the bicycle that would occur at a local shop, a physical therapist will also make changes to you following a full off-the-bike assessment of your area of complaint and related tissue.
The treatment program will entail not only adjustments to the bicycle but also proper corrective and skilled exercises to make adjustments to your biomechanics and movement patterns and direct tissue change as well.
Who is appropriate for a bicycle retrofit?
Anyone on two wheels! These services are available for all bicycle types including road, mountain, hybrid, etc., and for all levels of riders from recreational to competitive.
Inquire about our bike fittings by filling out the form below or calling us at (520) 389-5311