It has taken some time to put together this post, because I wanted to be able to figure out the best way to accurately describe the bike fitting I received from Steven Carre at Bike Effect. The fitting was one of the best cycling related experiences I have had, and I wanted to convey how important a fitting is to achieve complete comfort on the bike. The fitting started on a Saturday morning, and was a two part affair. My bike was attached to the stationary platform, and I was asked to hop on and pedal. Steven just watched. He studied my movements and my position. He asked what felt good and what bothered me when riding, in addition to the typical amount of mileage I ride. I told Steven as much as I could, hoping it would be sufficient to guide him in the fitting. I wasn’t feeling all that uncomfortable on the bike, but any ride longer than 50 miles was definitely a struggle. So, after watching me, and getting answers to his questions, Steven proceeded with a physical inspection of my body. My leg length and spine alignment were checked, and my flexibility tested. This part of the fitting was incredibly detailed and time consuming. Steven’s background and thorough training in the subject were readily apparent. I discovered that I have a slight curvature of the spine that makes it look as if my legs are different lengths. They are not, it is just the way my body compensates for the curvature. It was refreshing to learn more about my body, as well as some solutions to remedy the problems. I only wish my doctor spent as much time with me. If he did, I would be an incredibly well informed and healthy person. After the physical assessment, small changes were made to the bike. The saddle came down a bit, the bars went up a bit, and there were significant changes to my cleat position. In addition, new insoles were put in my shoes. Lastly, I sat on a small gel stool for a measurement of my sit bones. This alone was worth the price of admission. I had never found a saddle that allowed me to ride long distances without feeling sore. It turns out my sit bones are set quite far apart, and that a 155cm saddle is what I needed. None of the saddles I had tried were the right width, meaning my sit bones were never positioned correctly. Essentially, the saddle was being jammed into an area that really does not enjoy that type of pressure. So, a new saddle was purchased, the components were adjusted, and I was back on the bike to see how it felt. Steven watched me again for a bit, and part one was complete. I was sent home to ride. The two part fit is for a reason. Once everything is analyzed and set, you are able to go home and try out the changes. This gives you time to get used to it, and check that everything is working correctly. The second part of the fit comes after you’ve ridden for a few weeks and had the chance to really get a sense of the changes. I felt pretty set minus a small amount of pressure on my hands. I mentioned this in part two, and another slight adjustment was made. Now it all felt perfect. I have since ridden many hundreds of miles, and the improvement is astonishing. For the folks who have power meters, I’m sure visible gains are made. For me, it is about being able to ride 80 plus miles in comfort. This is something I was never able to do before. Steven’s thoughtful and thorough approach to bike fitting has made riding an absolute pleasure. It is a time intensive process, but worth every minute, as being able to ride in comfort is well worth the time spent in the shop. Call Bike Effect to make an appointment with Steven, and you will be rewarded with an experience that thoroughly improves your cycling.