Last year saw the Steve Hogg Bike Fitting Team grow from five to seven fitters, and the team’s growth throughout the world will continue in 2016. Steve Hogg’s patented methods and unparalleled training offers his team of bike fitters and their clients the best approach to becoming “one with the bike” available today.
The team is always trying to improve not only because of its “money back if not happy guarantee,” but also because they all love bikes and helping people ride them to their full potential. The sharing of knowledge is essential to being a member of the team which is what brought most of them together to 2015’s Interbike in September.
“Most of our group have never met so it was with a sense of anticipation that I boarded a plane for Interbike,” Hogg said. “I have a lot of respect for each of the people that have trained here. They each made a significant commitment in both time and money coming here in an attempt to further their fitting education, all are infatuated with bike fitting and want to be the best bike fitter they possibly can.”
“In 2012, I spent nearly a month living in Sydney training with Steve Hogg to become a certified fitter under his methods,” Colby Pearce said. “Although only four of the six certified fitters (along with Hogg) worldwide could make the trip, it was a great experience.”
While Interbike is a bike industry show where many new products are unveiled, the show meant something different for the team, according to Jerry Gerlich. “Although I did see some great new products at the show, the real learning happened at the hotels where I met with Steve Hogg, Scherrit Knoesen, Colby Pearce and Mark Dwyre as a group for the first time.”
Dwyre said, “From the day I registered; Interbike, for me, was going to be less about the latest and greatest offerings from the industry and more about meeting up with Steve Hogg and the other bike fitters that he has trained, some that I had yet to meet. Getting together with these like-minded fitters to share stories and new ideas would be fantastic.”
According to Pearce, the team met each night during the show for private fitting discussions “interlaced with various stories and a few beverages.” The group frequently converses via email and Skype, but Interbike offered the fitters a chance to meet in person and exchange ideas at a heightened level.
“We shared tips on functional assessment techniques, optimizing tricky clients, war stories on crashing stationary trainers and jokes about funny situations we’ve seen through the years,” Gerlich said. “Wednesday evening was a real eye opener as Steve passed along some new postural/functional remediation tips.”
“Steve had plenty of new information to show and demonstrate and this was accompanied by interesting contributions and insights from the whole team.” Dwyre said. “One of the many highlights was spending an evening with the other SHBF’s testing foot correction and demonstrating new techniques.”
The evenings were intense with each member of the team bringing their fitting insights and experiences to the table. Hogg recalled the discussions this way…
Evening 1: We met as a group and played a few fitting “games” which established that we are all still on the same page. This is important as quality bike fitting is all about judgment calls; when to intervene and when best to leave alone. We found that we were each seeing the same shortcomings with function or position and applying similar remedies. Most of all it was an information sharing and education session as each of us has different experiences, different clients and while there is a lot of overlap, each of sees a different part of the fitting universe.
Evening 2: We had invited a group of like-minded people to our second session. These are bike fitters with whom we feel we share an ethos but who were largely unaware of the detail of the patented methods we use. This group comprised Jessica Bratus of Fitmi! (www.bikefitmi.com), Chris Balser of Bicycle Fit Guru (www.bicyclefitguru.com), Tim Gresh of GreshFit (www.greshfit.com), Blake Vatne of Contender Bicycles (www.contenderbicycles.com), Thomas McDaniel of BMC HQ in Switzerland (www.bmc-switzerland.com) and the inventor of the POWERbahn indoor trainer, Scott Radow (www.powerbahn.com). Colby had invited Scott to show us his compact and very, very cool take on indoor trainers.
First, we put the invited group through our foot correction protocols to give them an insight into the general thrust of how we go about solving problems which started a lengthy discussion about neural function and the ability of the CNS to respond to altered inputs caused by shimming, wedging, arch support, etc. Scott gave us a rundown on the POWERbahn using Colby as test rider. The POWERbahn has far and away the most realistic “real world” feel at all resistance levels of any trainer I’ve seen. When the Sidea SB4 that I use for fitting clients finally calls it a day, the POWERbahn is what will replace it.
With Pearce helping demonstrate the new trainer, it allowed the team to get to work. Dwyre said, “Colby allowed me and the others to critique his position while he rode a POWERbahn trainer. It was encouraging to note that we all saw similar issues with Colby’s set up.”
“Heads were spinning with curiosity,“ Gerlich said.
According to Gerlich, the team used the opportunity to show some like-minded fitters some of the unique techniques they use to optimize function and test for optimal foot correction using Hogg’s patented process. “Heads were spinning with curiosity. All said and done, the other fitters, Chris Balser in particular, were amazed at the simple, yet powerful, techniques Steve has developed.”
All the team members agreed the Interbike summit was a great success and are already looking forward to the next time they can get together. Pearce said, “Hopefully, we will meet again in coming years to continue and solidify our thinking, critique and expand each other’s methods, and refine our practice.”
“I was so glad to have been part of this group,” Gerlich said. “I am still digesting the new stuff Steve taught us and look forward to applying the techniques on my fitting and gym clients.”
Dwyre said, “I left feeling invigorated and already excited for our next reunion…”
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