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Cycling In The Cities: Small Change, Big Difference

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(credit: Jupiter Images)

(credit: Jupiter Images)

Who knew two inches would make all the difference? I know, you’re inner voice is probably uttering that reply made famous on NBC’s The Office… but focus people! I’ve been pretty sore on some of my rides lately. My neck, my back, my hips. I feel off. I started asking my friends who have years of riding under their belt and all agreed I should go get a bike fitting. I had no idea such services existed let alone really make a difference. A co-worker and his wife had their bikes fitted after developing some shoulder joint pain and it made a remarkable change. I’ve been so busy I haven’t had time to get a real fitting. Also, there are so many things I’d rather spend $100 on. But I did some reading on the topic and really listened to my body for a few rides and I realized my seat was too low. I’ve always known you don’t want your legs to extend all the way but mine weren’t extending enough. Basically, if you feel pain or numbness anywhere it’s very likely that your bike is contributing to the problem. So I raised my seat two inches and I felt an amazing difference. Mostly I felt the change in my neck. I wasn’t so hunched. Physics, baby. It works. I may still consider shelling out the money for a fitting. If I do I’ll probably check out Freewheel Bike Shop, if only because I have word-of-mouth knowledge that they do nice work.

Angela Keegan Benson is the Assistant News Director at WCCO-TV and a mother of two. On August 1, 2011 she began her quest to live one full year as a bike commuter. Follow along as she figures out how to mesh the cycling culture with the demands of parenthood and an affinity for 4-inch heels. And yes, she’s committed to sticking it out through February storms. For more Cycling In The Cities, follow @Angela_Keegan on Twitter.

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