Pain Relief for Cyclists

Functional Bike Fit

Cyclists have unique needs. Because the cycling position isn’t a natural human movement, it makes all riders more prone to overuse injuries.


While an elbow-driven deep tissue massage is often a cyclist’s weapon of choice to target trigger points release muscle tension, I find it rarely fixes the underlying problem. For your longevity as a cyclist and as a human, it’s important to seek a more long-term solution.


That’s where a functional bike fit and movement analysis comes in. It’s nearly impossible to assess what’s causing pain or a decline in performance while lying down on a treatment table. This is why we have to get you moving on your bike and then watch what happens.


Movement never lies. If appropriate, we’ll do a functional bike fit, where you’ll bring in your bike and ride on a trainer in my office. I’ll watch how your body (the nervous system) responds to each position on the bike and to your equipment.


This is different from a traditional bike fit. I may make suggestions, but I won’t be tweaking bars/stems/cleats, etc. If necessary, I’ll refer you to a bike fitter for this. The changes we make will be to the body itself. We’ll work on providing inputs that make it feel more safe and stable.


Pain cannot be beaten out of the body with rough techniques. We must instead provide the nervous system with the safety and stability it’s seeking. When the nervous system feels safe, muscle tension will naturally decrease, joint range of motion will increase and you’ll be able to train harder and recover faster without pain. 


A functional bike fit gauges how your nervous system responds to the movement you’re asking of it and to the environment it’s in. If the nervous system doesn’t feel safe at any time, it will put the brakes on your movement capacity and even cause a pain response to the movement. Things like past injuries/traumas and structural or physiological imbalances can also cause the nervous system to sense danger and keep you from getting the most out of your time in the saddle.

Once we uncover the underlying issue, we’ll create a treatment plan, customized to you and your unique needs. It often includes movement and/or breathing homework to do daily between sessions. Many clients use these movements as a customized warm up for exercise.


If you’re interested in uncover and treating the cause of your pain or increasing your performance potential, a Functional Bike Fit is the perfect starting point. You can read more about this in the blog post The Secret Sauce to Achieving a Perfect Bike Fit.


**To schedule a Functional Bike Fit, please email, call or text me to set up an appointment. Please do not schedule the fit through the online booking system, as there are days and times for these specific appointments.


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