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Knee! Can any of you fit guru's help me?(9 posts)

Knee! Can any of you fit guru's help me?MVN
Jul 23, 2003 11:32 AM
I just got a 5200 a month ago, and I've put 650 miles on it. I also got a used Selle Italia MaxFlite TransAm GelFlow saddle to replace my Koobi which began giving me problems. The SI is great comfort-wise, no numbness or perineal pain whatsoever. However, my left knee hurts on the inside of the knee-cap, top tube side. Granted, I put as many miles as possible on the bike recently because of the excitement of a new ride and all, and my saddle height is the same as before, but I'm having trouble finding the right fore-aft position with this saddle. I've also re-aligned my left cleat which helped a little, but the pain is still there. A buddy of mine told me I needed to lower the saddle a few mm's, but that didn't feel comfortable, so I put it back where it was. Could it be that I rode a LOT more than usual this past month, or could it be that I just haven't found the right spot fore-aft yet? This bike's geometry is different than my previous ride, the STA is 74 deg. instead of 73.5. I don't know how much difference that makes, though. It's gotten so that my knee twinges even while walking, whereas it never did that before. I've read before that if you have frontal pain in the knee, the saddle is possibly too low. Is that correct? I've read so many things lately about pains and fixes I'm confused. And frustrated to boot. Anyway, I'm just venting. But if anyone can help me, please let me know. I'll supply any fit information you need to get me closer to a solution. All replies eagerly awaited.

No news hereCrankist
Jul 23, 2003 12:00 PM
Just the obvious. See the doc. Stay off the bike for a couple of weeks. Ease back into higher mileage.
Wholesale changes in bike fit can bring this on; it may not return if you allow it to heal thoroughly first.
Sounds like my kneesLLSmith
Jul 23, 2003 12:15 PM
If your saddle height is ok try movung your saddle back a bit.This should help.Until the pain is gone stay off the big chain ring and ice the knee after each ride.
Crank Length?PsyDoc
Jul 23, 2003 12:32 PM
Is the crank length different from your old ride? I know that my right knee hurts like your left knee when I ride my "rain bike," which is a converted Specialized HardRock with 175mm cranks. My road bike has 172.5 cranks and my right knee does not hurt when I ride it. But of course, my right knee has a good history of getting banged up due to a misguided youth. Regardless of what others say, I can tell a difference between a 172.5 crank and a 175.
Crank Length?MVN
Jul 23, 2003 12:49 PM
The crank's are the same length. I still have the other bike. The geometry is different, though. I'm just wondering if the seat tube angle could be involved. The Trek's STA is 74 deg. and the GT's STA is 73.5. The cockpit on the GT is a little longer b/c the top tube is a little longer even though they are both 54cm frames. I'm thinking maybe I just went nuts the first month I had it, lol. I had just finished Grad. school and I had plenty of time to ride, which I did. Sometimes it feels good, like I finally got everything right, then the next day it will feel a little off. I guess I'll still play with the saddle fore-aft. The lbs owner said he would help me figure it out. He has all my measurements from a previous fitting. I really wanted to fix it soon since I'm going to Florida Friday and I wanted to take it with me. I may just leave it home and take a few days off the bike, though. Anyway, thanks for your help.
Anything is possible...funknuggets
Jul 23, 2003 12:45 PM
Fit is likely the number one thing that people have issues with and is often one of the most difficult things to tinker with when people dont know your height, weight, riding style, inseam, frame size, stem length, cranklength, bike setup, your physiological history, etc... No one is going to be able to accurately assess your maladies without seeing you ride either. So, unfortunatly you likely need to do some research on bike fit and start with the standard rules of "thumb".

Typically, if you have front knee pain, then move the saddle back, if you have pain behind the knee, then move your seat forward. Also, seat height problems often manifest themselves in lateral pain, ie: the hips and inner/outer knee ligaments. Someone with a low seat height, will often bow their leg outward at the top of the stroke, etc... but then again when you raise your seat, you also move your position back slightly.

Since you have already accrued some level of injury, I would focus on that first. Get that feeling better, and then start assessing your fit issues, otherwise you might complicate things. Then, make a slight modification, which by the rule of thumb... I would move your seat back... start by about 5mm at a time, and dont ride more than 20 miles or so in a light spinny gear at a time to monitor your issue.

Look at the rest of the "rules of thumb", for post height "when seated with your shoes off. Dangle your legs evenly straight down on both sides with no tilt to your bike or hips. Swing your crankarm to its lowest position (6oclock) and your heel should just barely graze the pedal in a horizontal position. Then, a common one for seat fore/aft include the "Plumb bob (bolt tied to a piece of string works too) from front of knee directly (bisects) over pedal spindle when crankarm is forward horizontal (3oclock)".

There are a handful of other halfway useful ones, but these will get you in the ballpark. New bikes and new pedals seem to be very detrimental to fit. Sorry if this is too simplistic, and best of luck in your recovery.

So sayeth the funk,
You may have just hit the nail on the head, so to speak...MVN
Jul 23, 2003 12:56 PM
I noticed the other day while riding that my left leg goes outward at the top of my stroke. This happens frequently, too. I didn't realize that my saddle could be too low. My lbs guy told me last year that I had room to raise it if I wanted. I may try that after a few days off the bike. Thanks!
Raise the saddlePaulNYC
Jul 23, 2003 4:11 PM
I'd raise the saddle. Typically pain in the fron of the knee indicates a low saddle, while pain in the back is a too high saddle. I adjust the for aft postioning of the seat to get my new over or a little behind the pedal spindle.

be careful.
It could just be your added miles.High Gear
Jul 23, 2003 5:01 PM
My left knee acts up every once in a while. I found it's due to my tight Quads torquing my kneecap out of alignment. I just stretch them by pulling my foot back up to my butt and hold it for 10 seconds while keeping my back straight. I told a cycling friend at work and it worked for him too.