Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Getting A Seat That Fits — Do You Need A New Saddle?

Symptoms May Include Pain, Discomfort and Lowered Motivation To Ride

How comfortable a seat feels has a lot to do with where your sit bones (those bones you feel when sitting on a curb or bench) rest on the seat. Ideally, those bones will rest on the saddle's padding. If you've been using a seat for a while you can usually see indentations formed by the bones, which allows gauging whether or not the seat is appropriate for your anatomy.

It's hard to predict which seat will be right for a given rider. Sometimes a wider seat solves pain and other times the narrow ones do the trick. It's all a matter of which seat suits your body shape. For starters, the wider your pelvic anatomy, typically the wider you want the seat to be.

Modern Seats Offer Improved Comfort
Over the years, more amazing seats have been designed than probably any other bicycle component. And today, there's still a wide array of models to select from, some with fairly wild shapes. One feature shared by many of these seats is a cutaway in the saddle top designed to relieve pressure on sensitive tissues in the genital area. Our customers have found these saddle types to be particularly helpful for eliminating problems with numbness. There are also models that have softer sections in the center of the seat designed to work the same as the cutaway.

Another pressure-point eliminator is gel. Some seat makers use this in the sensitive areas to prevent pressure that causes pain and numbness.

Wear Cycling Clothing

When trying seats, be sure to do so wearing your cycling clothing because if you're wearing pants with seams in the crotch area, you'll feel the seams and won't be able to judge the seat comfort. Also, after putting on a new seat, it's best to re-check saddle height because the shape of the new one may be a little taller than the one you've been using. If a seat is too high or too low, you'll feel discomfort from the incorrect seat position and won't be able to feel whether the seat is an improvement or not. The easiest way to match seat height is to measure it before you remove your original seat. You'll then have the exact height to place the new seat and you won't have to experiment to find your optimum position.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Getting The Maximum Mileage From Your Cycling Shoes

"Cycling shoes last far longer than other sports shoes. If you take care of them well, they can last five or even ten years!"

For example, you must replace running shoes every six months (or sooner) because the materials inside the soles lose their ability to provide cushioning. Also, regular sneakers are in constant contact with the ground and the soles and uppers wear rapidly. 

Contrarily, if cared for, a quality pair of pedal pushers could last five or even ten years! 

These easy tips will help you get the most from your shoes:
  • Maintaining the fit: We recommend wearing only cycling socks with your riding shoes because these thin socks won't stretch the shoes, which can ruin the snug fit so important for efficient pedaling.
  • Walking: Shoes made for off-road use or touring sport lugged soles and recessed cleats that are made for easy walking. Road-specific shoes, however, are designed for optimum power transfer when pedaling. While these shoes may include heel and toe tabs for walking, it's best to walk as infrequently as possible. Walking flexes the soles and stretches the shoes. Over time, this changes the fit and the stiffness of the shoes, which decreases efficiency and comfort.
  • Moisture: Water won't hurt cycling shoes as long as you dry them properly. To do this, as soon as you get home, extract any removable liners and stuff the shoes with newspaper, which will absorb the moisture and dry the shoes. Do not place the shoes by a heat source Check those cleat bolts so they won't loosen and ruin your ride!because this can damage them. If the shoes are really wet, replace the newspaper after a few hours (the first batch is probably saturated).
  • Maintenance: While not much can go wrong with cycling shoes, we recommend checking the bolts that attach the cleats to the soles about monthly. If these loosen, the cleats can change position, which may cause knee pain. If you have a pair of shoes with buckles that ratchet, they may be attached with hardware. It's a good idea to regularly check that this hardware is tight, too.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Looking For A Bike To Cruise The Neighborhood With, Or Ride Around A Local Park?

The 2014 Fuji Barnebey Series Has An Excellent Design and Features For More Relaxing Rides

The 2014 Fuji Barnebey 1, 3, and 7  are all great choices for a relaxing ride around the neighborhood, to the coffee shop, or to a local park for a well-deserved spot of fresh air and exercise. The key to relaxation resides in the foot-forward frame design. By moving the crank position forward, your foot position moves forward as well. The end result is better control, a lower center of gravity and greater comfort. Plus, when you are ready to stop riding, simply place your feet right on the ground. It's that easy.

The 2014 Fuji Barnebey 1 features swept back handlebars and a spring saddle for comfort, a rear coaster brake makes slowing down a breeze and a lightweight alloy frame lets you steer easily as the road turns.

Main Frame: A1 alloy
Rear Triangle: A1 alloy
Fork: Elios 1
Crankset: Cruiser, 38T
Bottom Bracket: Cartridge
Pedals: FPD, platform w/ Kraton non-slip
Cassette: 20T
Chain: KMC Z-410
Wheelset: Alloy Rims 36H w/ alloy front hub, rear coaster brake
Tires: Vera Seaside, 26 x 2.10”, 30tpi
Brake Set: Coaster
Headset: Cruiser, threaded
Handlebar: Cruiser, sweep back
Stem: Cruiser, quill
Tape/Grip: Cruiser, kraton
Saddle: Cruiser, sprung
Seat Post: Cruiser, alloy

The Barnebey 3 features swept back handlebars and a spring saddle for comfort, a rear Shimano coaster brake makes slowing down a breeze and a lightweight alloy frame lets you steer easily as the road turns. 

The Barnebey 7 features swept back handlebars and a spring saddle for comfort, a 7-speed Shimano Revo shifter for slight changes in road grade,and a lightweight alloy frame lets you steer easily as the road turns.

Come in to Gotta Ride Bikes today to see all the incredible bikes we have in stock, including bikes from Fuji, Scott, and LOOK!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Five Easy Tips For Powerful Acceleration


Stay Steady When Accelerating To Be Quick and In Control

1. Firmly grip the handlebar drops slightly lower in the bend than normal (not quite halfway between the deepest part of the curve and the end of the bar).

2. Keep your elbows slightly bent to help you hold a straight line.

3. Pull evenly backward and down on the handlebar with every stroke.

4. Don't hold your breath -  a common mistake during sharp efforts, even among experienced riders.

5. Keep your head up - another frequent error in technique, because it feels natural for some reason to drop your chin

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Cycling Advice: Shifting Tips For A Better Cycling Experience

Quick And Easy Tips To Improving Your Shifting and Extending The Life Of Your Drivetrain

It is extremely important to learn how to use all of the equipment on your bike so that you can use it properly and get the longest life out of your investment. The Drivetrain and shifting mechanisms are no exception.

An important rule to remember is to reduce your applied pressure on the pedals during shifts. As drivetrains have seen many improvements over the years, and have been designed to shift no matter how much pressure is put on the pedals. However, if you ease up on the pressure just a bit, the shifts will be smoother and your chain, cogs and chainrings will last longer.

Here are some more tips to help keep your drivetrain in great working order:

Keeping Your Drivetrain Clean:

Before we even get into proper shifting, it is important to make sure you keep your drivetrain clean and tuned up to extend the life of your drivetrain. We have chain cleaners for sale in the shop that can help get your chain clean and keep it that way.

Every six months or so, inspect your chain and measure to see if it has been stretching.

Pick a chain pin on the top side and measure to any pin 12 inches away. Links are exactly one-inch long, so you should be able to measure exactly 12 inches between two pins. If the measurement is 12 1/8 inch or longer, it's time to replace the chain.

(Check Your Cogs too!)

Remember: cogs wear out at about the same rate as the chain. If you put on a new chain, you will eventually run into skipping cogs - which is at best annoying and at worst dangerous!

Remember to keep the front rings and rear cogs clean. Stay on the lookout for a post about how to clean your chain and drivetrain!

On The Road Tips:

Shift Before Hills:

Even though the hardest place to put less pressure on your pedals is when you are struggling to get up a steep hill. Try changing gears before the steep part of the hill so you can make the shift with out stressing the chain and pedals.

Front Shifts:

Remember when you are shifting the front derailleur that the chainrings are significantly different in size! This means your derailleur has to work hard to move the chain from one to the other. If you can add some finesse to this shift, you are much more likely to get a clean, smooth shift. And, you'll eliminate problems associated with high pressure shifts such as having the chain come off.

There are three or four set spots (shift ramps/shift gates) on the chainrings to make it shift. The chain (while moving forward) needs to contact these ramps to be pulled up onto or down over the chainring. It is very important to hold the shift until the chain comes into contact with a shift ramp. When the chain is under load (meaning there is force on the pedals) this is the ony spot where the chain will shift. Ideally shifting should be done with little load on the chain. When the chain is under load the derailleur will just flex and laugh at you instead of making the shift happen. When there is no load on the chain the derailleur will be able to move it.

Getting Your Chain BACK On:

Usually, you can shift the chain right back on the chainring if it falls off. This is usually impossible when climbing a hill, as you will lose momentum and have to stop. However, any time you are riding and you can coast for a few seconds, you can almost always get the chain back on by gently pedaling and shifting the front derailleur to move the chain toward the ring.

(When a chain comes off repeatedly, something is wrong and you should have us take a look at the front derailleur adjustment.)

Monday, March 3, 2014

Keep Your Bike Extra Protected With These 15 Tips!

Bike Thieves Are Everywhere. Are You Doing Enough To Protect Your Investment?


Adapted from a article

1. Lock your bike to a secure, immovable object. If you lock your bike to a tree, the limbs can be sawed through. Bollards and signposts are sometimes low enough to pull the bike right over the top!

2. Your wheels are the most vulnerable part of your bike. Make sure that your lock goes through both wheels and the frame. OR, you could use two locks - one for each wheel. There are also locking wheel skewers you can buy for your front wheel.

3. Stealing a bike is not a lengthy process. Even if you are only going to be leaving your bike for 30 seconds, lock your bike up properly.

4. Grab up your lights and other accessories that aren't secured to your bike. Some have even been known to take their saddle to the office or school!

5. It's a smart idea to keep your bike locked up even when it's in your garage. No matter how safe you may feel at your home.

6. When it comes to bike locks - you really do get what you pay for. If you love your bike, buy the
best lock you possibly can. It's a wise investment.

7. If you come back to your bike and it's got a mysterious puncture or damage, walk it home. It's probably been marked in the hope that you'll leave it there overnight.

8. Use a registration service, such as Bike Register, to physically mark your bike with an identifying feature and link it to your identity on the police database.

9. If your bike does go missing, you must report it. The police will only take a bike crime more seriously if they have reason to do so.

10. If you're down to one lock, or are particularly worried about the security of your wheel, taking your front with you eliminates half the risk of theft immediately.

11. Use secure bike parking whenever possible. Even if you have to pay, your bike will be far better protected from theft.

12. Make sure your bike is locked in the most public place possible. Having lots of people around is enough deterrent for most thieves.

13. Make the lock mechanism itself hard to access. For example if you're locking your bike to railings, point the lock mechanism away from the street so it's harder for a thief to attack

 14. Don't leave space in your shackle - any extra space gives evil bike stealing tools the room they need to do their dirty work. Don't give them that opportunity.

15. Most importantly, wherever you're going, please do not forget your lock!