Whether you are new to cycling or a seasoned rider, setting up your bike can be confusing. But, doing it right is essential to preventing injury. “If our bike settings are even slightly off, the bike goes from being a power partner to your arch nemesis,” explains Adam Wasserman, a cycling instructor at Flywheel in Scarsdale. For instance, the seat height needs to be properly ascertained. “When the seat height is set up properly, we are able to leverage the full, muscular potential of the quads, hamstrings, and glutes,” he says. He also tells us that knee discomfort most often comes from incorrect saddle position.
So what is the correct setup? “With the pedals held evenly across from one another, we want our forward knee to line up directly above the ball of that same foot,” he sats. Wasserman also warns that you should “not let an instructor set your seat distance using your forearm. This is a ‘rough estimate’ and it does not take into account the stability and alignment of your knee joints.” As for the upper body, the handlebar position is crucial to lessen tension on the shoulders and neck. “Generally, the handlebar height should be around an inch above the height of the saddle. For many people, that may feel too low, so a little higher is likely fine.”