The Right Fit
When it comes to enjoying the sport of cycling, no single factor is more important than being fit to your bike correctly. This is as true for the novice seeking more comfort as it is for the enthusiast looking for improved performance. At the Great Divide Cyclery we’ve built a reputation in Montana as the shop to go to if you want correct bike fit. We developed that reputation over years by seeking out and applying information not readily available to the cycling market. We are one of the few, if not the only bike shop in the state, that has a fit protocol for every bike we sell . The experience of fitting hundreds of cyclists has also made us realize two important facts;
- The vast majority of bikes being ridden are not fit correctly and;
- Everyone can benefit from proper bike fit.
Those realizations combined with our own desire to increase our knowledge base led us to Paul Swift of Bike Fit Systems. His innovative approach to proper alignment on the bike is rapidly gaining converts as the most comprehensive system of evaluating and improving comfort and performance. After completing his advanced fit course, the Great Divide Cyclery is now Montana’s only Bike Fit Systems certified dealer. Our Precision Fit Service is appropriate for all levels and types of cyclists including road and mountain bike riders. We also incorporate the most current methods for Tri position into our Precision Fit for triathletes. For those interested in taking their cycling to the next level The Great Divide Cyclery Precision Fit is the most comprehensive and thorough bicycle fitting service in the region. Cost is $200.00 and takes 2-3 hours to complete. If you are interested in GDC Precision Fit please contact us for an appointment.
Individual Physiological Assessment
Past injuries, leg length discrepancy and variations in leg structure can have a dramatic effect on comfort and performance. We evaluate all of these factors as part of our Advanced Precision Fit.
The Right Saddle
The bike industry routinely turns out incredible technology to make you faster and more efficient. But until recently it all but ignored the most basic element of comfort…well designed saddles. No cycling company has done more to remedy that deficiency than Specialized. We utilize their Body Geometry Fit System and take an actual measurement of your “sit bone” position to help us determine which saddle “size” is correct for you. We also take into account type of riding and riding experience in selecting the right saddle.
Using a goniometer we precisely adjust seat height to maximize performance and minimize stress on the knee joint and connective tissue. Our adjustment is based on the best and most exhaustive physiological research available.
Saddle Position Relative to the Crankset
Using a plumb bob and an experienced eye we precisely adjust the fore and aft position of the saddle to maximize biomechanical advantage of the pedal stroke. Once again, this adjustment is based on the best available information on pedaling dynamics.
Stem Length & Handlebar Height
Next, we examine the riders reach to the handlebar. This is a combination of the bike’s top tube length (which is set) and stem length (which can be changed). Reach may be lengthened or shortened. Factors such a flexibility, past injury, type of riding, and riding style are carefully considered in determining proper stem length.
The handlebar height relative to the saddle is also given careful consideration. Once again, factors such as flexibility, injury, riding style, as well as simple comfort play a role in determining proper height for a given customer.
Foot Position on the Pedal
If pain is experienced during cycling it is almost always a consequence of poor hip, knee, and ankle alignment. The culprit is generally an improper and/or poorly supported foot position on the pedal. We offer the most comprehensive assessment and solutions to properly support the foot and therefore align the knee and hips for optimal, pain free cycling. Utilizing the pioneering work of Paul Swift of Bike Fit Systems, we offer our customers an accurate assessment of their individual foot physiology and the tools necessary to provide solutions for discomfort and improper alignment. Foot/pedal interface is part of our advanced Precision Fit.
The internet has made information available on virtually every subject and bicycle fit is no exception. This awareness is a good thing. Where it becomes a problem is when it is mistaken for knowledge or where it is applied without qualification. Proper bicycle fit is a case in point. There are many “fit systems” available utilizing formulas or data bases that can provide a reasonable fit for the “average” cyclist. However, at the Great Divide Cyclery we approach fitting from the perspective that none of our customers are average. We simply believe that there are no short cuts to achieving a proper fit. It is a hands on, dynamic process that accounts for individual physiological differences. It is equal parts science, knowledge, and experience with a little art thrown in for good measure. The Great Divide Cyclery has invested in knowledge provided by the world’s most respected bicycle fit specialists and we combine that knowledge with our 22 years of fitting all levels of cyclists to give our customers access to a unique opportunity to improve their cycling experience.