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ELITE RAMPA Smart(er) Trainer

Posted on Jun 20, 2017

BACKGROUND With the news that Computrainer is shutting down business, this trainer couldn’t have come at a better time. I recently started searching for a new trainer to eventually replace the CompuTrainer. Several makes and models showed promise. Elite seemed to have all the bases covered (see below), so they were my first go-to choice. TYPES & FEATURES First off, what’s the difference between the each of the types of trainers. There’s *INTERACTIVE, *SMART, CLASSIC, ROLLERS, etc. Each of the top trainer manufacturers offer most of these in one form or another. Several come to mind; CycleOps, Kurt Kinetic, Tacx, Wahoo and of course, ELITE. In the case of ELITE, here is their product lines; INTERACTIVE – Trainers that communicate ANT+ or BLU to another wireless device. Communication includes data from the trainer TO the smart display device (PC / Smartphone) as well as data FROM the smart display device that automatically controls the trainer’s resistance settings based on %grade setting within PC apps (ZWIFT, etc.). These trainers usually have magnetic resistance. SMART – Like the INTERACTIVE trainers except...

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LOOK KÉO BLADE CARBON PEDALS ANDRE GREIPEL

Posted on Jun 1, 2017

LOOK KÉO BLADE CARBON PEDALS ANDRE GREIPEL For 2017, there are 4 basic KÉO pedal product lines; IMPORTANT TECH CLEAT TECHNOLOGY Look offers 2 main road (racing) cleats in the KÉO product line. They are identical except one includes 2 anti-slip rubber grip pads (KÉO GRIP cleat), the other (KÉO CLEAT cleat) doesn’t. Advantages/Disadvantages; KÉO GRIP – Anti-slip but slightly heavier KÉO CLEAT – Slippery when walking but lighter (less rotational weight) KÉO CLEATs are included with these pedals. Note; there are holes for attaching the anti-slip rubber grippers so this tells me that they might be the same cleat but one is minus the anti-slip grippers. The main drawback to the KÉO CLEATs is that they are incredibly slippery. You really need to watch your step when walking in these cleats. I highly recommend either the KÉO GRIP cleats or, for $5.99 pick up a set of cleat-covers – see link below. CLEAT FLOAT As a bike fitter in SoCal, I see a lot of pedals and cleats. Some in good condition, most need replacing. 90% of my...

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ELITE FLY Bottle & VICO Carbon Cage

Posted on May 5, 2017

WHAT CAN I SAY? ELITE BOTTLES & CAGES – THEY JUST KEEP GETTING BETTER AND BETTER! ELITE FLY Bottle & VICO Carbon Cage Our previous ELITE bottle & cage review rated the Paragon cage and Corsa bottle a true 5 out of 5. Just about the time you finished reading that review, ELITE upped the ante and introduced a lighter and equally sturdy carbon cage called VICO and the lightest pro-tour bottle called the FLY. Just when you thought you had the best, ELITE has just set a new standard! VICO BOTTLE CAGE DESIGN LIGHT, STRONG and TOUGH. The VICO carbon bottle cage securely held every plastic water bottle I have. Not only tested were the included ELITE FLY racing bottles, but, a dozen more miscellaneous sized bottles from my ‘collection.’ I even tested a plastic (water-bottle-type) tool-carrier. The heaviest water bottle weighed in at 1lb 13oz. (29oz., 822 gm) and I experienced no flexing or stress of the VICO cages. Every bottle I used was held securely. VICO is made from a carbon fiber composite material which provides...

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BERN FL-1 Pavé MIPS helmet

Posted on Apr 26, 2017

  OVERVIEW BERN FL-1 Pavé MIPS helmet BERN is known for their SKATE, SNOW, H2O and BIKE (MTB, BMX, URBAN) helmets. BERN has introduced a top of the line ROAD helmet with MIPS. Called the FL-1 Pavé MIPS, this very comfortable and well-designed MIPS helmet that retails for less than $120! Yes, an actual MIPS helmet with CPSC and EN10787 certifications for under $120. MODEL LINES & COLORS The FL-1 model line includes 4 helmets, 2 MIPS and 2 non-MIPS MIPS: MTB: FL-1 XC $129.99 ROAD: FL-1 Pavé MIPS $119.99 TESTED Non-MIPS MTB: FL-1 Trail $69.99 ROAD: FL-1 Pavé $99.99 The major difference between the MTB and ROAD helmets appear to be an included visor that comes with the MTB helmets. WEIGHT A LARGE FL-1 Pavé MIPS weighed in at only 10.5 oz. (298gm) which is lighter than several other comparable helmets. A light helmet helps reduce neck fatigue, especially on longer rides such as half-centuries, metric centuries, full centuries, Gran Fondos and long charity rides. FIT The FL-1 fit perfectly right out of the box. But, if you...

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ERGON TP1 Pedal Cleat Tool

Posted on Apr 24, 2017

ADJUSTMENT TOOL FOR CLEATS BACKGROUND ERGON TP1 Pedal Cleat Tool I like to stay up on top of what’s new in the market – especially when it comes to bike fitting equipment. So, I got excited when I saw Ergon’s TP1 DIY Cleat-Fitting tool. Having been trained in correct cleat placement and having fit hundreds of cyclists, this review is based on what I have experienced over many years of bike fitting. INSTRUCTIONAL BOOKLET INCLUDED A free 80 page detailed and easy to follow instructional booklet is provided with each TP1. This booklet is divided into multiple sections with each section in a different language. The 23-page English section includes a picture on one page and text instructions on the other. Each text description is an easy to understand set of why’s and how-to’s. The chapters are; Ergonomics for Cyclists Introduction Basic Biometrics Fore/Aft cleat position Q-Factor – width of stance Angle of foot (rotation) Symmetry of the feet Quick installation guide Fine adjustments Glossary Measurement tables Maintenance/Warranty Things missing? Yes, we’ll discuss below. THE GOOD DETAILED INSTRUCTIONAL BOOKLET...

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NORTHWAVE MULTI-APP SPIN/MTB CYCLING SHOE

Posted on Apr 16, 2017

NORTHWAVE MULTI-APP SPIN / MTB CYCLING SHOE BACKGROUND I’ve been asked to host a spin class at a local gym. The first time I taught the class, I used my New Balance running shoes. Boy, was that a mistake. One side of the pedals was fit with an SPD cleat, the other was a standard cage with an old toe strap. Forced to use the standard cage side, those pedals felt like they were cutting into the bottom of my feet for the whole hour…painful! Immediately after the spin class, I started looking for a new pair of high quality spin shoes. Noticing that all of the spin bikes had SPD pedals, my shoe selection was somewhat limited. My requirements were (a) SPD-compatible, (b) comfortable, (c) an abundance of mesh to keep cool, (d) non-slip sole, (e) affordable, (f) not the typical standard clunky looking brown MTB shoe. In my search, I found two that met these requirements. HIGH VISIBILITY SHOES The color of these shoes is bright. They are a mixture of Hi-Viz yellow and neon green. Being...

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TRX HOME SUSPENSION WORKOUT SYSTEM

Posted on Mar 20, 2017

3/2017 TRX HOME SUSPENSION WORKOUT SYSTEMS BACKGROUND My quest for the perfect workout system and I found it in the TRX HOME SUSPENSION WORKOUT SYSTEM. I am a USAC Level 2 coach, bike fitter and certified personal trainer. I am also certified in power-based training as well as a bicycle skills instructor. I coach numerous cyclists including those that race to win and those that just want to have fun staying up on their group ride. Through my coaching and bike fittings, I have been assembling a list of common cycling issues. The main cycling related issued I see include wrong size bicycle frame (ex., usually way too large), wrong size equipment (ex., usually saddle too narrow, stem too long, cranks too long), bad bike fit (ex., usually knees and feet in the wrong position on the bike, saddle too high, bad cleat fit), bad posture on the bike (ex., hips not rotated forward, arched/curved back, slumped shoulders), pedaling incorrectly (ex., usually stabbing at the pedals), lack of good bike handling skills (ex., can’t ride/maneuver the bike slowly, can’t...

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RUMBLE ROLLER – 3 NEW MODELS

Posted on Mar 13, 2017

RUMBLEROLLER TEST BACKGROUND All tests were conducted with the rollers held in the Transverse plane or, perpendicular to the spine. There are other rolling techniques that can be used with the rollers held in the Sagittal plane or, parallel to the spine, but, for these, a longer roller (31”-32”) is required. To test the rollers, I used each one on the following; feet, calves, hamstraings, glutes/piriformis, mid back/upper back, neck & trapezius (traps), latissimus dorsi (lats) and quadriceps. No IT band rolling nor lower back rolling Note 1: At 31”, each roller was wide enough to be able to accommodate rolling both hamstrings at once, both glutes at the same time, both quadricepts simultaneously. I would not really opt for the shorter models except if you were going to take them along with you on vacation or business travel. Note 2: I went into a local 24-hour fitness studio and noticed they had several LONG 4’ and 5’ very hard foam rollers. With 100% exposed foam (no covering), they were already showing signs of hard use. Small pieces of...

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