I just recently purchased a new Argon 18. As logic would have it, I purchased a medium – the same size as I have done in the past considering I was purchasing an updated version of the same make and model from the same manufacture. I quickly set the new bike up with the same measurements off my old bike from the saddle to the bars. Everything was set up identically and I was under the assumption that it would fit as the old bike did.
Well, as you can imagine that was not the case at all. The minute I sat on the new bike I knew something was off. I rode it for a few minutes got off and adjusted the saddle just enough to be able to ride it for a few miles. I played around with this for a few weeks and after several attempts at raising the saddle, lowering the saddle, sliding it back, sliding it forward, adjusting my bars up, adjusting them down, I could not, for the life of me, get comfortable. It really became evident when I took my FTP test, and it was 60w lower than my standard – A sure sign that something was off and not quite in sync.
I was introduced to Dr. Vu and Momentum Physical Therapy and Wellness at the end of my 2017 season when I was being treated for a Rotator Cuff Injury. What I liked about Dr. Vu was his approach to treatment. He was all about finding the root cause of the problem instead of masking the problem with pain pills or medications. He is a movement specialist who has expert knowledge and training in proper body mechanics and movement dysfunction.
After spending a few hours with Dr. Vu and a thorough body assessment that worked its way up the Kinetic System from my toes to my head, Dr. Vu identified that I have a slight decrease in hip mobility of the Left SI Joint and a slight decrease in hip stability and strength to the left hip – the Gluteus Medius in particular. Fortunately for me, my body is pretty symmetric left to right in leg length and pelvic alignment, so that made it a bit easier when it comes to aerodynamics and comfort.
Even though the new bike was the same make, model and size we identified that the frame measurements were considerably smaller on the new frame vs the old. We found that the saddle height was too low and set back which caused my knee angle to be closed and forward in front of my toes leading to my knee pain and discomfort.
In short, we ended up raising my saddle 10mm and forward almost 15mm. We adjusted the cockpit so that it opened up my chest, which in turn allowed for me to breathe better and essentially take in more oxygen. That is a huge difference that not only opened up my hip angle but also generated a 33% increase in power almost instantly.
So, at the end of the day, not only did I walk away with a 33% increase in power, but also the proper tools necessary to help address my lack of hip stability and strength that ultimately will improve my overall bike fitness as well as my health and wellbeing.