Getting wise with your Wonga!
With the racing season coming to an end, many athletes may be pondering an investment to give them some gains ready for next season. And why not? Equipment and training have never been better in the sports of cycling and triathlon. The pertinent question then is what the best investment is for the best gains to get the best results?
We know there have been wind tunnel studies and even more informal efforts to gauge how much time you can pick up on the bike with different equipment. The following information is by no means scientific, just my opinion, based on my experience, articles I have read, and the stats from some of my athletes.
Investment Tip: Get A Bike Fit Before An Aero Helmet
I get asked this question a lot and the answer is always the same, get comfy on your bike, get fit and strong and then start introducing performance improvement kit.
It appears that longevity in the sport is tied to comfort on the bike. You can buy carbon wheels, tri bars, aero helmets and speed-suits but being comfortable on the bike makes the biggest difference. It also makes sense that a rider would be less likely to suffer injury if they had a fit that worked for their individual body structure. Furthermore, I know myself that if the bike is more comfortable, I am more inclined to go for a ride, thus conferring better fitness results overall. In addition, a bike fit can help athletes find the right geometry to put the maximum power to the pedals. Just ensure that you go to a qualified bike fitter who has years of experience and be specific in your requirements, a road bike fit will not necessarily be a good fit for a tri bar position.
This is not to diminish the value of an aero helmet, some of which come with a hefty price tag that is more than a bike fit. There have been lots of studies/trials done to show a helmet will shave a minute off a 40K bike time trial. It’s just that comfort, injury prevention and efficiency in my opinion are much more valuable.
At some point you might want to get an aero helmet to gain those extra seconds, but first things first – get comfortable and efficient.