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51 SPEEDSHOP & Guru Fit Academy

February 19, 2015

 

I’m happy to announce that 51 Speedshop (Myself and Dave Ripley) will be joining the Guru Fit Advisory (not to be mistaken with the Guru bike company). We will be responsible for creating and teaching the level 2 TT/Triathlon courses.

 

In my opinion, Guru has a great opportunity with their fit school.  First, they've assembled a "Fit Advisory" who are not employed by Guru. Most fitters on the Advisory have attended or have taught at many of the other leading fit schools.  All fitters work in the commercial fit environment, with real world fit experience.  This is helpful because they see and face the same challenges as you while working with a wide range of rider profiles.

  

Second, although we will be using the Guru fit bike, which is an experience in itself, what we will be teaching is not proprietary to that system.  Everything you learn can be implemented with whatever fit tooling you own.  

 

During the TT/Tri course, we will focus on what I feel is the number one fundamental in bike fitting. 

 

What does a good TT position look like?

 

Many fit schools spend a lot of time on items that I feel are putting the cart before the horse...human anatomy, physical assessments, how to operate advanced fit tooling, memorizing data ranges, etc.  I’m not saying that these items aren’t important (if you buy fit tooling, you need to know how to use it), but many fitters get overwhelmed and are never taught the basics.  

 

Background

I’ve always been obsessed with proper technique no matter what the sport. I had my first formal bike fit education with Dan Empfield, creator of the FIST protocol.  I might not use the FIST protocol as written, but my view on how a TT bike should be ridden matches Dan's vision.

 

A few years later, I began working for Retul.  I was fortunate to be there during the early stages and part of the building process.  I gained valuable hands on experience and utilized the technology to put a metric to what I saw.  I was able to learn from Todd Carver about the fitting process within the commercial fit business.  With Todd's lead, we created and taught Retul University (now extinct and operated as BG fit), which we would end up teaching all over the world.  

 

During my time teaching Retul U, it seemed that most fitters were soley focused on how to use the technology.  Not all, but many would struggle to learn anything about actual fit because there was just so much to learn from a technical standpoint.  A lot of new or inexperienced fitters were so overwhelmed that they probably still have their heads buried in their computers trying to make all the numbers work.

 

I’m a fan of new technology and feel that fitters need the right tools for the job. New technology makes fitting more precise and time efficient.  But, you do need to invest in your fitting knowledge and education because no tool is going to do it for you.

 

This is where we step in...We are going to get back to the basics.  The basics will work for 95-99% of your clientele. The premise, no matter an athlete's size, shape, or ability...All TT positions share similar characteristics. Rider’s should be comfortable, biomechanically sound, and aerodynamic.

 

The only reason we ride in the TT position is to reduce aerodynamic drag in order to get the most speed for a given effort.

   

We believe there is a right way to ride a TT bike.  There isn't ONE right way, but there is what we call a Range Of Right. For example, there is no right knee angle, hip or back angle, but an acceptable range that we will teach you. Our goal once you leave this course is to be able to quickly identify athletes that are outside of this range. We want fitters to be able to stand on the sidelines during a triathlon and quickly spot good positions vs bad...and if bad, how it can be corrected.

 

We will use a number of visual cues along with demonstrations to teach fitters how a rider should posture aboard their TT bikes.  We will also teach how to select and position a rider's contact points in order to promote that posture.  

 

Every fitter will get the chance to get on the Guru fit bike to experience the TT position for themselves. You will gain first hand knowledge as to what it feels like to sit on an uncomfortable saddle or how important it is to have your weight supported on the front end of the bike.  

 

We will also talk about...

 

  • Crank length, which can improve comfort, biomechanics, and aerodynamics

  • Rider expectations & adaptability to fit

  • Bike Selection and optimal configuration.

 

Our first class will be March 11-12.  Click Here to register

 

Hope to see you there!

Mat

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