Bike Fitting Services
Bike fitting consultations are geared for all riding levels, from recreational to competitive. It will revolutionize how you feel on your bike. A proper bike fit allows you to get the most out of your body while cycling, eliminating current pain and preventing new injuries. During a bike fit with a skilled physical therapist, your bike will be optimally fit to match your body mechanics. You will learn conditioning strategies for safe and effective exercising, and also receive a personalized stretching and strengthening program to perform at home.
A physical therapist trained in bike fitting will also look at you off the bike to determine your strength, flexibility, and optimal position on the bike. Since cycling primarily conditions the quadriceps muscles, strengthening of the lateral hip musculature is important to prevent muscle imbalances. Recent evidence has correlated weakness of the lateral hip muscles – abductors and lateral rotators – to an increased likelihood of anterior knee pain. Additionally, the sustained position of the rider on the bike can lead to muscle tightness – even on a well fit bike. Typically, the hip flexors, quadriceps, and hamstrings can shorten, resulting in the thoracic spine losing extension. A physical therapist can create an individualized stretching and strengthening program to correct muscle imbalances and reduce the chance of injury.
Cycling injuries that do occur are often the result of a poorly fit bike. Improper seat height can lead to anterior knee or IT band pain. Handlebars that are too low or set too far forward can place increased strain on the low back, cervical spine, and wrists. If the cyclist uses a clip in pedal system, proper alignment of the cleat and pedal is vital. Poor alignment can cause knee pain by increasing knee Varus or Valgus forces, and can also lead to foot pain or paresthesia. A well fit bike will provide more efficient riding, which will reduce the chance of injury.
Injuries that may improve from a bike fit:
- Achilles tendinitis
- Elbow, shoulder or neck pain
- Knee, hip or low back pain
- Hand numbness/tingling
- Hip bursitis
- ITB syndrome
- Patellar Tendinitis
- Previous Disc Injury or Surgery
- Total Hip or Total Knee Replacement
Benefits of a bike fit:
- Minimizes the risk of injury
- Evaluates the current cycle-fit and corrects discrepancies
- Evaluates pedal stroke to maximize output
- Leaves the rider with optimal posture, efficiency, and comfort
- Improves cycling performance and maximization of training efforts
Your bike fit includes:
- Bike Fitting – All types of bicycles, and all levels of cyclists
- Posture, Bio-Mechanical, and Musculoskeletal Examinations
- Flexibility Testing & Strength
**Services may vary by location
Health Benefits of Cycling:
The health benefits of regular cardiovascular exercise are well known. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends 150 minutes of moderate intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity exercise per week as a minimum. A 2001 study found that moderate exercise and increased knee usage was not associated with increased knee arthritis later in life. In cases of current knee arthritis, low impact exercise including quadriceps strengthening is typically recommended. Cycling is an excellent low impact form of cardiovascular exercise, that when performed properly, can place very low stress on joint surfaces.
Will insurance cover my bike fit?
It is possible if you have pain while cycling. We will need to do a physical therapy initial evaluation first to determine the medical necessity of the bike fit. If you are not currently injured or in pain, or do not have medical insurance, we offer cash pay rates. Please contact a participating clinic for details and appointment scheduling.