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Old 01-08-2023, 06:30 PM
Nickt Nickt is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 196
Scheduling a First Bike Fit: Should I Wait for Spring?

Looking for a bit of advice ahead of a first fit session.

Over the holidays I was gifted cash to put toward a bike fit - awesome! - and now I have the initial task of scheduling the appointment. Despite excitement and the desire to book the session right away, I'm wondering if it's better to wait until I know I will be getting in more miles and time in the saddle in order to utilize the gift as best as possible?

It's firmly trainer season for me and my mileage and hours are down accordingly, although I'm following training plans. Maybe timing doesn't make a difference at all, or maybe it depends largely on the number of changes made to my fit, but most of the studios allow a follow up session after the initial appointment and I don't want to squander that if my only feedback is from the trainer.

What would you do? All feedback welcome, including "you're over thinking it."
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Old 01-08-2023, 06:49 PM
htwoopup htwoopup is offline
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I know it isn’t answering your question to ask a question but I hope it helps…

Are you more like your “normal” bike riding fitness now, in spring, or in July?

A custom builder once told me the best time to get fitted for a frame is September because you are in your best bike shape and the builder has the winter to build. I didn’t listen to him and got fitted by him in April and he delivered the new bike in November. I have since had to change the stem because the bike is not exactly, perfectly right for me because my position was not what it is after a month or two of riding outside as opposed to the trainer. And I regret it because it would have been even sweeter to have the bike be perfect without jury-rigging since it was built specifically for me.
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Old 01-18-2023, 02:09 AM
sheepdog84 sheepdog84 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2017
Posts: 205
Have you had a fit before?

If not, I would do it ASAP. That way, you can establish your baseline fit, and have plenty of time to adapt to the new position, or troubleshoot any follow up issues that could potentially arise if your current fit is way off, with the fitter in the loop.

Secondly, if possible, go to a fitter that doesn’t solely rely on some laser-based bike fit system (such as retul) but also has some kind of Physio or medical background.

I had a fit in August of 2020, when I was in my worst cycling shape (middle of COVID lockdown), and had a horrible experience. The fitter completely neglected my structural leg length discrepancy, which I had to work out on my own nearly 2 years later, relying on internet guidance and experimentation on the trainer.

Having a trainer and some knowledge or framework for bike fitting can be a double edged sword, so to speak. If you don’t have someone watching you ride, and making non-subjective (as one can make) changes to your fit, you can trick yourself into endlessly tweaking your fit and not making progress (ask me how I know )

Fitting is definitely a process - not just a one time event - and entirely worth it.
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Old 01-18-2023, 08:14 AM
Turkle Turkle is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2020
Location: RVA
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My fit definitely changes over the season. I get way more flexible in my hips - and my tummy gets significantly flatter - by mid-summer. That means my bars get lower.

I once got a fit in the fall, during my peak conditioning. I went for a follow up fit in the winter and the guy said it was like a totally different rider walked in.

I am skeptical that anyone has the "perfect fit" that never changes. It varies with conditioning, injuries, the type of riding you're doing, and who knows what else, maybe the weather.

ETA: I will say that no matter how fit or out of shape I am, my saddle position never changes. It's just the bar position, higher or lower, that changes for me. So if you're looking for a basic bike fit, maybe it's OK to at least get your saddle position dialed in with the knowledge that your bar position might change in the future. But this is just my experience, so maybe this isn't the same for everyone!

Last edited by Turkle; 01-18-2023 at 04:26 PM. Reason: Added another thought
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Old 01-18-2023, 03:33 PM
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AngryScientist AngryScientist is offline
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Is there a reason you are seeking a bike fit? Trying to address something?
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Old 01-18-2023, 06:23 PM
Nickt Nickt is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 196
Thanks for the responses thus far!

Since posting the thread, I decided to schedule the fit so I have that on the calendar coming up.

However, since questions were asked and maybe this will be helpful to someone else in the future, I'll go ahead and answer those and explain the decision making process.

I don't currently have a fit issue, nor so I have any pain on my current set up. My mileage and fitness have continually increased, along with my speed, and I do have a few planned events this upcoming year that I want to optimize for.

While my bike shop has done a good job at steering me in the right direction thus far, I think it is time sit down with a professional and look at things a little more closely. Particularly, I am interested in testing different saddles, as well is experimenting and dialing in my stack and reach (I think I can get longer and lower now as flexibility has increased).

I know I am well within the realm of reasonability in terms of positioning, but at this point, I am 33 yrs young and my body can tolerate some mis-alignments/bad positions that an older me may be less forgiving about.

Ultimately, I landed here: The perfect bike fit and position is a moving target.

That said, the more information I have and the sooner I narrow the field in terms of the what works (and doesn't work) the more likely I am to A) ride faster/more comfortably and B) stave off injury longer.
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Old 01-18-2023, 09:28 PM
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pdmtong pdmtong is online now
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Originally Posted by Nickt View Post
and I don't want to squander that if my only feedback is from the trainer.
you answered your own question.

i wouldn't make the appointment until I was 1) able to ride a lot prior to the fitting and 2) ride a lot after the fitting.
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Old 01-19-2023, 01:57 AM
ryanisinallofus ryanisinallofus is offline
Join Date: Feb 2019
Posts: 33
It depends how far off you are. I apparently kept raising my saddle to due to some knee pain but went to a physio/bike-fitter and he drastically lowered my saddle and put some foam pads under my toes... and the knee pain went away.

It was an embarrassingly large difference.
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Old 01-19-2023, 11:19 PM
giordana93 giordana93 is offline
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maybe a done deal already if it is scheduled, but I would have recommended that anyway (i.e. asap). as sheepdog said, you will establish a baseline--something to be revisited once you get some fitness and flexibility from riding, but the off-season is the time to introduce changes, then see how your body adapts
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