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FAO Bike Fitters - Lower leg pain


ouzo
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Since changing my saddle I've developed lower leg pain. I would not call it shin splints, and its not calves, it runs in between the 2 and the pain is close to the ankle.

Google search tells me its saddle height. Now when I installed the new saddle I had to drop the height to get it to the same distance from top of saddle to center of BB. But perhaps my measurements are out, although they cant be that far out. Can a few mm make me have the problem ?

 

The other measurement I tried to get spot on is bars to saddle position. But determining where to measure to on the saddle was a bit of guess work.

 

Old saddle was a Fizik Arione, new one is a Fabric Scoop Shallow.

 

Any suggestions before I reluctantly spend money I dont have on a follow up bike fit ?

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Did you verify the plus/minus height by being able to just touch your heel on pedal at max extension? I'm happiest at that, plus about 2mm in height. I have never had success with inseam measurements. Sounds more like fore/aft position could be your position. Once I'm happy with that setting I mark the rail with a black permanent marker. I use a plumb line (string with heavy-ish nut) and should be in line with pedal spindle from bone below knee cap. I also prefer saddle slightly more back and found I had been too far fwd, moving back made huge difference.

No doubt someone will find a scientific way to shred what I have posted but this works for me.....

PS: I have a slightly different setup on my MTB with a slightly lower saddle.

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4 minutes ago, love2fly said:

Did you verify the plus/minus height by being able to just touch your heel on pedal at max extension? I'm happiest at that, plus about 2mm in height. I have never had success with inseam measurements. Sounds more like fore/aft position could be your position. Once I'm happy with that setting I mark the rail with a black permanent marker. I use a plumb line (string with heavy-ish nut) and should be in line with pedal spindle from bone below knee cap. I also prefer saddle slightly more back and found I had been too far fwd, moving back made huge difference.

No doubt someone will find a scientific way to shred what I have posted but this works for me.....

PS: I have a slightly different setup on my MTB with a slightly lower saddle.

I've had a proper bike fit done and a subsequent follow up visit. the measurements I used were what the bike fitter gave to me after the last visit.

 

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4 minutes ago, ouzo said:

I've had a proper bike fit done and a subsequent follow up visit. the measurements I used were what the bike fitter gave to me after the last visit.

 

I've been riding for 23 years and had a fit twice and hated them both, and rather went by instinct with some guidance as per what I suggested. If you're struggling with the bars to saddle either contact the bike fitter or try my method.

If you've been riding for a while - what does it feel like? Try to analyze and compare. It can even happen that one rides for years on the wrong setting and get it "right" and your legs don't like the change.

I have a simple rule - If my knee fronts get sore, too low, knee rears, saddle too low. I suspect if its feeling something like shin splints it may be fore and aft and your toe section of your foot is rotating a lot to compensate. There witll be good info forthcoming from those smarter than me.....Good luck

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3 minutes ago, love2fly said:

I've been riding for 23 years and had a fit twice and hated them both, and rather went by instinct with some guidance as per what I suggested. If you're struggling with the bars to saddle either contact the bike fitter or try my method.

If you've been riding for a while - what does it feel like? Try to analyze and compare. It can even happen that one rides for years on the wrong setting and get it "right" and your legs don't like the change.

I have a simple rule - If my knee fronts get sore, too low, knee rears, saddle too low. I suspect if its feeling something like shin splints it may be fore and aft and your toe section of your foot is rotating a lot to compensate. There witll be good info forthcoming from those smarter than me.....Good luck

After the bike fit(s) I was the most comfortable i've been on the bike in decades of cycling.

Shortly after the saddle change I did my longest ride ever, a 100 miler. After that I've been feeling like I'm missing a few watts (I only had a few to start with). Thought  it was just fatigue, but then concentrated on what was happening with my body when I wanted to use the watts and realised I've been protecting the legs from the pain described in my first post.

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Ouzo when my saddle was a few mm to high my hips rocked side to side, and I got some discomfort in my lower back.  just my 2c worth ....

 

 

Will watch to hear what the fitters add to the discussion.

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if pain is more in the calf - achilles area it's mostly saddle too far front or cleats/ foot position foot too far back

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23 minutes ago, Brakepad said:

if pain is more in the calf - achilles area it's mostly saddle too far front or cleats/ foot position foot too far back

nope, not calf, more to the side. Follow your outer ankle straight up.

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For that I'd check cleat position. I know its just a saddle but it might just be a use injury that would have occurred anyway, especially now that youre getting distance under your belt. Check cleat alignment particularly making sure feet parallel or my preference, slightly toes in but very slightly...

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7 minutes ago, love2fly said:

For that I'd check cleat position. I know its just a saddle but it might just be a use injury that would have occurred anyway, especially now that youre getting distance under your belt. Check cleat alignment particularly making sure feet parallel or my preference, slightly toes in but very slightly...

Cleats were set during bike fit. 
i would lean to them being a problem if it was only one leg hurting, but it’s both legs. And the only thing that has changed since then is the saddle. 

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Saddle width the same? I've had pain towards outside of calf when I put too much weight on outside of foot where it contacts pedal. Remedied by riding with knees closer to top tube. I'll be surprised if pain above outside of ankle is saddle but I'll watch keenly....

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7 minutes ago, love2fly said:

Saddle width the same? I've had pain towards outside of calf when I put too much weight on outside of foot where it contacts pedal. Remedied by riding with knees closer to top tube. I'll be surprised if pain above outside of ankle is saddle but I'll watch keenly....

No, new saddle is wider. Fizik Arione are generally narrower than required  

 

But according to Fabrics website my required width fits into the width spectrum of the saddle. 
but you might be onto something. 

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Do you still have old saddle?

Some bike shops ( Spez?) Have a device you sit on which measures your sit bones. Good luck. Hope you get it sorted.

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Could it be the tibialis anterior? If you raise your toes you'll feel it bulge just below the knee. After my fractured pelvis I wasn't using my glutes properly and compensating with the tibialis anterior on the down stroke. Developed over use. Cyclists often need to do off the bike work to strengthen the glutes and make sure they 'fire'. Maybe also try move your cleats back as far as they can go. You won't lose power, promise.

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Thanks for the input folks. It might not be anything to do with the saddle afterall.

Concentrated on what I was doing this morning and realised I was riding with my knees further apart than normal, so made an effort to ride with them closer together. It felt much better.

I'm thinking its probably muscle fatigue and or tightness in the upper legs causing this. So will make an effort now to do some more stretching and massaging.

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This may or may not be relevant but is the contact point your sitting bones make with the saddle in the same spot in relation to the top of the seatpost? 

This may have shifted your fore or aft position on the saddle slightly? 

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