The Bike Needs To Look Like The Rider - Andy Pruitt

Dr. Andy Pruitt is the Director of the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine. He has more than 35 years of experience as a specialist in Sports Medicine. He's also one of the world's experts in bike fit.

I can attest to getting a proper bike set-up. For years, on my old Cannondale I would develop low back pain after as little as 1.5 hours of riding. When I bought my Cervelo Carbon Soloist, I went through a thorough bike fitting, following the guidelines in Pruitt's book Andy Pruitt's Complete Medical Guide for Cyclists. I can now ride more than 5 hours at a time with no back pain issues.

Small improvements in your position mean not only better comfort on the bike, but better power on it too. As Pruitt has said, "The bike needs to look like the rider."

Did Bike Fit Determine Gold?

When I was at the 2003 World Cycling Championships in Hamilton, ON, Canada, I was mesmerized by the time difference between Michael Rogers' 2nd and Uwe Peschel's 3rd on the podium - 0.56 seconds to be exact, after riding 41.3km! What made that even more important was the eventual stripping of the Gold from David Millar for his EPO use. Rogers became the 2003 World Time Trial Champion.

Imagine yourself winning Gold by only 0.5 seconds. That could easily have come from your ever-so-slightly-better bike fit.

Pruitt Consults With Team Saxo Bank

Pruitt is also the main mind behind Specialized's Body Geometry product line. As pro cycling's Team Saxo Bank is riding Specialized equipment this season, Pruitt recently spent some time with the team reviewing their set-ups. See this surprisingly frank report of his review from cyclingnews.com.

Get Your Own Fit Just Right

I'll be posting tips about bike fit, including a few counter-intuitive things to consider.

In the meantime, it would be worth your time to either get to your local bike shop and have a proper bike fit review. Or you could pick up a copy of Andy Pruitt's Complete Medical Guide for Cyclists and start working on it yourself.