Bike Fit Case Study: Running Into Niggles
Tracy is new(ish) to triathlon and has a huge potential to progress further in this sport. She comes from a running background and is fairly new to the bike. Whilst there were no major discomforts or issues when riding, Tracy reported some lower limb niggles when running.
When fitting triathletes, I aim to preserve the function of the calves. This is because they are one of the key muscle groups you use when running. It makes sense to reduce the load on the calves during the bike leg (where they don’t have to contribute much) to save them for the run leg (where they do).
To help preserve Tracy’s calves, her cleats were adjusted rearwards. This decreases the leverage of the foot on the calves so they are less fatigued for the run. I also added some additional cleat hardware (cleat wedges) to improve Tracy’s lower limb alignment over the pedal for optimal force production.
Tracy’s final fitted position is a balance of comfort, power production and frontal area. A lower front end can contribute to improved aerodynamics (though it is not the only factor involved).