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We tried professional bike fitting – is it worth it?

By Adam Marsal

You can choose from an endless number of models when buying a new bicycle. But what if you want to take your cycling to the next level? Let’s see how professionals fit your bike exactly to your needs.

Faster, better, longer…

Initial physical assessment - professional bike fitting

So what is the main reason for getting a tailored bike? When your body is set in a position that encourages a full range of muscle engagement, you will produce better power, ride faster and have better endurance. If we translate it to normal language, the whole point of a bike fitting is to make you sit more comfortably, ride longer and more efficiently.

Science combined with passion

Professional bike fitting at Festka

To learn more we visited a shop belonging to Festka, one of the leading European producers of hand made bikes tailored exactly for their owners. The brand founder Michael Mourecek guided us through the whole process of bike fitting. If you think it looks like rocket science, you’re right. All the measurements, calculations and evaluations are not far from landing on a remote planet. But at the end of it all, there is a perfect bike.

The process

A comprehensive bike fitting ensures your joints and muscles are held in neutral and biomechanically “friendly” positions. This results in greater comfort and a smaller likelihood of injuries and muscle imbalances. There are more steps and the complete process takes almost two hours. It also costs money. Prices vary by country but usually it is around 100 euros.

Let’s start with the fun part

In the beginning the fitter conducts an initial physical assessment of the rider, and at this point he can find rider’s concerns about performance, pain, or any other issues the rider hopes to lessen during the bike fit.

Professional bike fitting at Festka

Then white markers are strategically placed on eight anatomical points of the rider: the wrist, elbow, shoulder, hip, knee, ankle, heel, and toe. As the rider pedals, sensors gather real-time, three-dimensional data of the rider’s pedal strokes and movements. In the end the rider’s data are compiled into a report for analysis. The fitter can then adjust the rider’s bike to serve his needs better or draw the blueprints for the frame building.

Is it worth the money? It depends on how serious you are about cycling but if your routine is driven by performance, you are going to love that increase in efficiency.

Please tell us what you think in the comments below.