A good bike fit helps you perform better at these three specific things
As a bike fitter, I always advocate having a proper fit through fitting sessions with someone who knows what they are doing, primarily for safety and injury prevention. Performance, or speed, is usually a not-so-distant third consideration.
Beyond getting an injury or getting into an accident, where would you actually feel the advantages of being fit well to your bike? How does it directly affect performance? Are there things that you would do better? Are there things that you couldn’t do had your fit not been adjusted properly?
Here’s a list of how being properly fit onto your bike immediately makes you better:
Turning and braking
The one reason I ride with my clients immediately after adjusting their position is to check how comfortable they look doing turns. This has to do with having a good weight distribution between your front and rear wheels, and how low and stable you can get. A good bike fit will allow you to get long and low, so you can reach drops (if your bike is equipped with drop bars) and be more effective in slowing down and guiding it around turns. A bad fit usually has people sitting too high up, unable to put enough weight and pressure on the front wheel for it to grip and do its job of stopping and controlling where the bike will go.
A good bike fit will allow you to get long and low, so you can reach drops (if your bike is equipped with drop bars) and be more effective in slowing down and guiding it around turns
The same factors that make you better at braking and turning help you exponentially as the road turns increasingly downwards. Gravity helps you go faster, and nowhere is it more important to have control of your speed and direction than when descending. Although counterintuitive to novices, getting low on your bars is key to maintaining control and becoming a good descender. If you can’t do this on your bike, consider making some adjustments.
Being properly fit and comfortable on your bike will make you perform better and endure the distance longer. A good fit allows you to generate power in a comfortable position, which will then allow you to maintain proper pedaling form, utilize core muscles, and relieve pressure on your back. What this means is you go faster, longer. Which is what all of us want, right?