Steve Hogg is a veteran bike fitter known for his expertise and attention to detail throughout the cycling world. Steve stopped counting bike fit customers after he reached 10,000 over a decade ago but is always fine-tuning and improving his methods for helping riders have the healthiest physiological relationship with their bikes to reduce injury and increase performance. This holistic approach and attention to detail has informed Steve’s evolution and helped him tackle some of the most intimidating and difficult bike fits imaginable, some of which you’ll hear about in this episode. Colby’s own fit technique and approach stem from his study under Steve in Australia. Please check out the IBFI website link in the resources to find a quality bike fitter near you.
Steve’s website: https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com
Spinacci Bars: https://www.ebay.com/itm/324057816576
Bike Fit Resource: https://ibfi-certification.com/
Colby Pearce 00:12
Welcome to the Cycling in Alignment podcast, an examination of cycling as a practice and dialogue about the integration of sport and the right relationship to your life.
Colby Pearce 00:25
Hi, there, listeners, welcome back to Cycling in Alignment. You came back, I’m so happy and getting a lot of good feedback. And I really appreciate it. Also getting some honest feedback, we’ll call it, which I also appreciate. All feedback is good feedback. Because some opportunities are there for me to learn and some are for there for me to have discourse. Let’s have a discourse.
Colby Pearce 00:51
Today’s guest is none other than the world famous, Steve Hogg. Steve is the man who taught me most of what I know about bike fitting. I went to train with him in Sydney in 2013. And I lived there basically for a month, the training is over three weeks long. So I rented an apartment in piermont. For those of you who are familiar with Sydney, Steve’s no longer in Sydney now he’s in Canberra. But at the time, I got to live in Sydney. And that was a really cool experience. You know, you travel the world as a bike racer, and you sometimes see the inside of a velodrome and the inside of a hotel for a week. Did you go to the country or not? Arguably, sort of. But when I rented an apartment in Sydney and went to the grocery store and bought kangaroo steaks and met the people, and did the things and rode my bike to and from Steve studio every day, and then got to ride on the weekends with Steve. Sometimes that involved really long bike rides and beer at the end. You learn a lot more about a country you learn about the culture, you learn about what it’s like to live in that angry bee’s nest that is Sydney that beautiful, angry bee’s nest.
Colby Pearce 02:03
Today, Steve is going to share many of his thoughts and philosophies on bike fitting. And if you’re not familiar with Steve’s methods, this will probably be a pretty good out of the box thinking drill for you. And if you are or if you caught many of Steve’s older blogs that got him a lot of attention and fame, he used to write for cycling news years ago, then you’ll be familiar with a lot of his lines of thought – only now they’re a bit more developed.
Colby Pearce 02:31
One note, Steve has a few challenges with his voice these days. His voice box, his vocal cords are starting to not function at an optimal rate. And so he does speak quite quietly. Jana, our super editor has done her best to increase the sound quality and will hopefully raise the level so that we can all understand Steve and hear what he has to say because he’s got a lot of interesting things to talk about, but bear with us as his voice is perhaps not as clear as it used to be. That said there’s a lot of valuable information to be heard so enjoy the episode.
Colby Pearce 03:15
We have winter here now in Colorado, amongst the fires
Steve Hogg 03:21
So we’re just a bit into fall season.
Colby Pearce 03:23
Steve Hogg 03:25
Fall season follows magpie season
Colby Pearce 03:27
Follows what season.?
Steve Hogg 03:30
Colby Pearce 03:31
Steve Hogg 03:31
Magpie is an Australia like Cora, a black and white launch crow looks like and they’re very angry and the swoop and attack riders.
Colby Pearce 03:41
Colby Pearce 03:42
I had my sunglasses knocked off by one recently. I’ve got a friend, who I ride almost exclusively with him, because he is Paul Kelly, the magpie magnet. Even if there’s a bunch of us on the route, he’s the only that gets swooped.
Colby Pearce 04:00
So you don’t have to be faster than the magpies you just have to be faster than him.
Steve Hogg 04:04
Oh, no, no, you don’t have to run from him, you just ride beside him, he’ll get swopped and they’ll leave you alone for some reason. But poor Kelly.
Colby Pearce 04:12
Just let him get attacked. That’s like my wife with bugs in the garden. She’s the one who always gets bit every time. Steve Hogg. Thank you very much for making time to come on my show today and share some of your experiences with my audience.
Steve Hogg 04:26
It’s a pleasure entering Colby world.
Colby Pearce 04:30
Well, it’s your world, we just live in it. But just to give our audience a bit of context. You’re in Canberra, or is it Canberra? Tell me tell me how bad-
Steve Hogg 04:41
Canberra. Well, I actually I’m just over the border in New South Wales and Jerrabomberra, which if you spell the word Salma jerrabomberra but luckily his Prince jerrabomberra, but you know, culturally it’s Canberra, we’re close to Central Canberra and most are Canberra’s.
Colby Pearce 05:00
And I haven’t seen you since I trained with you which was I believe in 2013.
Steve Hogg 05:05
No yes you did, what about the Indy bike in 2015?
Colby Pearce 05:07
You’re right, I totally forgot about that. Thank you. Yeah, we got the crew the gang back together there the band and we did we trumped on that. And then I missed the reunion you guys had down there for some fun mountain biking at which point one of our colleagues Jerry managed to get a stick poked straight in the eye during mountain biking trip.
That’s right, in the photo, it looks horrendous. Sure, we could not believe the soy bowl actually didn’t get punctured.
Colby Pearce 05:39
It is pretty horrendous. Maybe I’ll reach out to Jerry and ask if he’s okay with us putting that photo in our in our drop for this pod. I don’t know if people want to see that. But it’s pretty-
Steve Hogg 05:49
It’s worth seeing
Colby Pearce 05:50
It’s worth seeing, yeah, it’s one of those photos you don’t want to see but at the same time, you can’t look away
Steve Hogg 05:55
Considering two days later he was all up in his rough and he just had to put drops in his eyes and he could see perfectly.
Colby Pearce 06:01
Steve Hogg 06:02
I’m the luckiest to escape honestly.
Colby Pearce 06:05
Especially in the land of things that want to kill you named Australia.
Steve Hogg 06:10
Ahh that’s being a bit harsh.
Colby Pearce 06:12
You think so? Maybe I’m just, maybe I’ve got some sort of cultural. I’ve been told that too many times thing but I mean, you guys have Huntsman spiders, you’ve got-
Steve Hogg 06:23
They’re nothing, the funnel webs are the ones that’ll kill you
Colby Pearce 06:25
The funnel webs? Yeah,
Steve Hogg 06:27
Most dangerous spider in the world.
Colby Pearce 06:29
Now is that the one you told me when I was there, you said if one of those spiders ever rears up on its legs and charges you, literally, you told me to run? Is that a Huntsman?
Steve Hogg 06:37
Oh no no, that’s a funnel one. It’s one of the most deadly spider there is. It takes about three wacks of the shovel to kill them.
Colby Pearce 06:46
Wow. See, this is what I’m talking about.
Steve Hogg 06:49
Well if you grew up in Australia, you soon learn to do things like shaking if you got footwear and usually the cycling shoes in the garage you never put them on without tapping them in case because maybe you tap it once and a funnel web falls out of your shoe, that’s once in lifetime you saved your own life.
Colby Pearce 07:05
There you go.
Steve Hogg 07:07
It’s why Australia has a million different names because we’ve got so many poisonous things
Colby Pearce 07:10
See? You’re kind of making my case here for me I think
Steve Hogg 07:14
Ah, it’s all good.
Colby Pearce 07:17
Let’s talk about bike stuff, Steve. Please tell us about your background, your education your origin and and I’d love to hear-
Colby Pearce 07:23
Hang on, you said that Nathan had requested a joke
Colby Pearce 07:26
Your right, Nathan did, Nathan Haas an athlete I coach and has worked with Steve extensively requested that we begin the podcast with a joke so I hope you prepared and you did your homework?
Steve Hogg 07:37
No, I haven’t done my homework because I don’t know any cycling jokes, I’ll tell you what I do know.
Colby Pearce 07:41
Steve Hogg 07:42
And I’ll tell you a quick story, which sounds like a joke, but is actually true.
Colby Pearce 07:45
Steve Hogg 07:46
What is the difference between a good bike mechanic and a great bike mechanic?
Colby Pearce 07:50
Steve Hogg 07:51
Well, the great bike mechanic will never use the millet with the customer in the shop.
Colby Pearce 07:55
Exactly. Otherwise known as get a bigger hammer.
Steve Hogg 07:59
The true stoy that sounds like a joke is, I used to have a client called Wistlow, won’t give his full name and he’s known for his role in what is wistlow. He’s the toughest bloke with $1 you’ve ever heard of or seen. This guy used to step out of an S Class bins and forget to bring his money within the pay the normal $2 entry fee for triathlons. That’s how hard he is. Continuing Brony surf club is propping up the bar Ronnie surf club organized together and give a speech and scissoring propping up the bar when I haven’t said to the bar I’ll have a beer thanks and Wistlow is gonna pay you just to check on his beer and literally ran away. This is like running away this particular incident happening now just the mid 90s. Okay, swing campaign Chanel’s first hit the market because of a heavy silver lm DB one of the first light bespoke deep wheels out there. Now quite popular at the time. So he rocks in the shop one nine says Steve, kind of buy some tomatoes from you like he’s doing in five minutes. So that’s fine. Today, a much nicer 12 month term. Remember the numbers on make them up. So that’ll be 1200 and 50 bucks things. He said, but I can get them at ABC cycles for 1200. Normally, I would never have a problem matching a competitor’s price but not with wistow when you give him $1 off because he’s the most miserable person that wears those I want him to do then he said what certain as a champion, you can draw the 50 case that you’re obese, never on a bond from you. So when you walk into the process 450 bucks to do so you’ve been a bit hard on me I might have to do travel away at the end. I thought it’d be entertaining to try and have a bit of a winner. I mean, I said West though you’re a businessman. What do you charge your time he said $200 an hour for me and 50 bucks now for the employees. It’s gonna take at least an hour to get dBc through traffic and an hour back. That’s 400 bucks your time plus five bucks with a pitcher so 50 that makes no sense to me. What do you think? He said, My you’re a champ. Let me think of it and I’ll get back to you. So a week later, you walks ing grinning from ear he says Oh, only Adobe soon got the wheels and I found out I worked at Hilton Head not to spend any extra sales that should open on the day off. So that’s that’s this that’s a bit as good of a story as I got, not a joke, not the best joke. Yeah.
Steve Hogg’s origin story
Steve Hogg 10:19
So then where were we you want you want background education origin?
Colby Pearce 10:23
Steve Hogg 10:25
All right how deep in it do you want to go?
Colby Pearce 10:28
I will let you take us down the journey and the rabbit hole. I know, I think you’ve got a lot of fascinating details in your history so
Steve Hogg 10:36
Fascinating to you perhaps, anyway, not so fascinating to me. I was born in 1956 in a small town 200 kilometers south of Sydney called Merlin. My family been there since the 1840s. They started the limestone mining there, quite wealthy but all went belly up in the depression, they lost everything. So my father used to, he was a limestone miner, he used to lease the quarry, one of what used to be the family quarries, used to lease quarry and he in two other blokes used to chizel into cliffs of limestone, break it up by hand with 16 pound sledgehammers, thrown in the back of a non in 32 Sato truck, which is not road registered in the most unroadworthy vehicle you’ve ever seen, to the point where the petrol pumper died about 30 years before. So they strapped a five gallon kerosene into the roof and fitted by gravity feed into the car then be pumped.
Steve Hogg 11:32
Now burning that limestone was a really, then bag it which is a very hard physical way to make a living. My mother was a schoolteacher.
Steve Hogg 11:40
Now I did well at school, I left school to become a lawyer. Well, so I thought but I’d always been a med football player. Football to me is Rugby League, which is the most violent game in the world. Give you an idea how violen t it is they did a study a few years ago, 105 years of, of top level players and I’ve 109 years worth of players who played in RL, which is the top level, of the lue of that number 50% had played 50 games or less, which is less than two seasons worth and 80% had played 20 games in the list, that’s less than one season, it chews people up. So I came to Sydney as a 16 year old to play footy. I was close enough to six feet wide in American language about 165 pounds and I spent three years running into people who weigh between two and 300 pounds and you can guess what happened? Prgonis that things are broken, when dislocated, most things are dislocated. And what came out of that is it’s 17 years of age and with a left knee that is freshly ruptured porcelain nclr a bought a bicycle on attempt to sell free health risks. Well, that got me stuck in a box I started racing barks
Steve Hogg 12:53
So where do we go from there?
Steve Hogg 12:56
Well fast forward 13 years neither is that a colorful working history. All sorts of odd jobs vary from nightclub bouncer, to bricklayers, to libraries, you name it. I was pretty motivated when I was a brickies laborer. The guy shouted out with my boss recommended twice the work and make twice the money expected me. So I was trapped in a paid slave I was a very well paid slaver.
Steve Hogg 13:20
At age 30, I talk more in a very high paid sales job for multinationals making more money than ever dreamed of. But that led me to come idealistic enough to hate office politics and all the rubbish that goes with it. So I determined to do something would make me happy because I realized the happiest people I’ve ever met, but the ones who’ve done who did for a living what they were chiefly done for hobby. So I was racing bikes fairly seriously at the time so I decided to open a bike shop; that was in September the first 1986 with my wife. Now, we had a normal bike shop, we stock kids bikes. In terms of adult bikes, we had a frame builder on staff mid frame building workshop, and all we did was build and supply custom steel frame bicycles, and do mechanical work. So that’s where biking came into it all out. It was never a conscious decision, just a custom frame lens design basis and I quickly realized the shortcomings of measuring limb lengths and consulting standard tables so I started to formulate some ideas. That’s where it all went.
Colby Pearce 14:23
I’ve known, I’ve definitely knew some of those facts about your history but I was not aware that you guys were manufacturing steel custom frames in your early days.
Steve Hogg 14:30
Well that’s what we did for the first 10 years and then going on is cast still friends kind of lost the gloss than they wanted Ellen in France at that stage. So I became the client distributor for Australia. And then trick or trick bought a client and I lost that agency. Then I became over time the seven distributor and also the persona distributed and still am although not I’m semi retired these days so I don’t push it that hard.
Colby Pearce 14:55
Yeah. And I think it’s so interesting how the market has changed because now we kind of have this almost polarized market where you’ve either got a $12,000 Road Bike that’s completely carbon with Aero bars, and every cable is integrated, and it takes you half an hour to move the stem up or down five millimeters-
Steve Hogg 15:14
It’s a total waste of time, its a joke
Colby Pearce 15:17
Or you’ve got this boutique, custom market on the other side, which is researched, right? I mean, companies like seven and persone and they’re just invaluable,
Steve Hogg 15:26
Yeah, but the drops in the ocean like seven of the world’s biggest custom, unfortunately, only might have been 3000 frames a year. Major, major bar companies make 10s of thousands of a single model. So you know, there’s a drop in the ocean in terms of percentages. But I I don’t like Euroframes. I think, they’ll look up, I don’t I don’t begrudge them. You want to erode trend just figure paid to pay twice as much to have the bike serviced. And the other thing is that there’s no performance advantage anyway. you know, I met a guy, can’t remeber his name, he owns the A2 wind tunnel in North Carolina, which is open 365 those years 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and mostly businesses was NASCAR race, that’s what you call your NASCAR racing teams trying to refine aerodynamics. At the time he told me 25 years of data what the data showed that the frame their contribution the frame the total aerodynamic drag of the bark and water is not measurable. So finished small said it’s true to say that this frame is 15% more net frame if you put the frame alone in the wind tunnel once you get a rolling road wind tunnel with rod on board legs turning around and wheels turning the frames contribution no matter what its profile is so tiny that it cannot be independently measured. So all those people, they’re going fast on the Euroframe, theyre filming a bird case, what I’d just call the new bike effect. Everyone’s performance ramps up when I get a new bike tours, the first virtual 10 weeks goes by.
Colby Pearce 17:00
Yeah, new new bike day is an important day and every cyclists annual plan I suppose if you buy a new bike
Steve Hogg 17:06
Anyway, we’re getting off track here. I’ve got this list of questions you’ve got he please give us a bit your background where you grew up where you studied, who inspired to become a bike fitter? I didn’t study anything other than high school, I was ready to go to uni to become a lawyer. But as I say opted for football, turned out to be a bit of a dead end and gaming still affect me to this day. But it taught me a few lessons. And I don’t regret a moment of it.
Steve Hogg 17:30
Bike fitter, it was never a conscious decision, I should inform we talk from 86 to 96. And what 96 I could see that the early days and see Australia’s early adopters of technology, by 96 50% of the Australian dollar is spent offline and offshore online offshore I should say. And the Australian Australian trade wholesale industry very slow to react I maintain by World standards, very high margins. Because Australia is a small population where the other end of the world’s most populous population, and we’re out of sync in terms of the seasons. So we’ve got more sales per capita than anyone else all mainly small operators operate high margins to survive as much as we maintain. So all I did was we spent 10 years in industry encouraging people to buy offshore online. So that was hurting my business style shop owner, I’m really enjoying the biomechanical side of things, I’m going to get into bike fitting, although I didn’t call it bike fitting at the time, I didn’t know the word existed. Call it a rider positioning. Because I’ve never been exposed to anything else because I didn’t use the internet up 2006. So I wasn’t aware there was a I’d never met anyone out there. By 96. After 10 years of fitting probably several hundred people. I’ve never met anyone who did that what I was doing for a living at that time. Check the first time I met under the bloke it was 2009.
Colby Pearce 18:54
Wow. Rider positioning is arguably a better term I would say. But
Steve Hogg 19:00
Oh, bike fitting rolls off the tongue a little better. How long have you been fitting well, informally from 86 to 96. And formally from 96 onwards. In 96 I didn’t close the shop, I just decided we’re going to become a bike fitting business rather than a bike retailing business. And since then, up till three and a half, three and a half years ago moved to Canada attempt to retire and found that’s not easy. So I started to work 10-15 hours a week to see three new clients a week and probably a similar number of repeat clients. But for that 20 years, I perform an average of I saw an average of 600 800 clients a year at least half of those for complete fits. And the rest were returning customers who have a new pair of shoes or new bike or a developer to an injury over time or whatever. Yeah, I’ve seen a lot of people. Yes. You said how many bike fits have you performed I’ve got no idea. I used to give around I hardcopy fall With the number on the front, and I got the 10,000, or probably 10 years ago, and I just stopped bothering after that, because I changed your soft copy and started numbering thing. But what’s the point of counting? It doesn’t mean anything. Some people do a lot of fits and repeat the same mistakes constantly. Other people don’t do very many at all, and you’re planning to apply themselves to the job and do the task. Well, some numbers don’t really matter. It’s the result that matters. Next question who did you study or who has influenced your fit philosphies? Nobody.
The philosophies behind Steve Hoggs bike fitting and his biggest priorities when performing a bike fit
Colby Pearce 20:33
Well, what I meant by that was, I’m not necessarily thinking your fitting sorry, should have worded the question more clearly. Not necessarily other fitters per se, but who or what have you studied that have influenced your your fit philosophies. That’d be a broader way to say it.
Steve Hogg 20:49
Nothing at all. I tend to like to be the counterpart, I’ve got the kind of mindset, I like to work things out myself from first principles. And sometimes I go looking for reading material to fill in some of the gaps or flush up belittling sorts of games. So I want to start from first principles.
Steve Hogg 21:05
So when I started I’ve been a bit of an athlete and I’ve read, I read a lot as you know, that just about every kind of subject under the sun, I’m an insomniac, sorry to feel 20 hours a day somehow I’ve been a bookworm since the age of three. So um I read widely and I’m interested in a lot of things in order to retentive memory framing and interest me training doesn’t interest me I couldn’t remember it four seconds later. So I’ve read a lot of things and when I first started fitting people I thought I’ve got to have some underlying basis on which to operate and it can be summed up in the terms still email tagline just “comfort plus efficiency equals performance”
Steve Hogg 21:41
And on more principles well that’s simple at the time I just wanted to help build a comfortable with good control of movements and having a breathable. To me that was the basis that was that’s your primitive or was an occasional twist on the fit I fitted 30 years ago and well I can do a much better job now surprisingly, I will admit at the time. So I haven’t actually studied anything in relation, I will inform me or self educator fairly high level but a lot of different subjects and influence.
Steve Hogg 22:09
Jump over, something I’ve got, I’ve got something here in dot form that I wrote for Jerry, Jerry asked me to contribute something to a website he’s part and he asked me to and I called the case the bike and he is very simple in both. Firstly, the central nervous system controls every aspect of human function. Secondly, in any athletic activity, the central nervous system three fundamental priorities are in descending order of importance, number one breathing, number two posture, number three movement. Third point is every measure taken or individually mentioned made during a bkie fitting must be considered in relation to those three priorities and the order in which they are prioritized. Fourth is the desired outcome of a fitting is an efficient athlete and efficiently functioning central nervous system is fundamental. Fifth, the key determinants of central nervous system efficiency are posture alignment and functional symmetry. Sixth the points above are all the information required for thoughtful fit to the bikes their fitting practices on everything else is a detail or standard. That’s my philosphie if you want one for what it’s worth.
Steve Hogg 23:17
Everyone’s hung up on biomechanics in the fitting industry, you know, statistical norms and joint angles, which is meaningless for several reasons. Firstly, the biomechanics itself is the product of central nervous system function. So why not get the central nervous system firing on all cylinders? As the first principle. Secondly all those systems the other based on statistical norms or averages. Statistics are invariably accurate when applied to individual- large populations equally invariably inaccurate when applied to individuals. If accurate we’d all be running around on one testicle and one overy because that’s the average for the world’s population.
Colby Pearce 23:59
Steve Hogg 24:02
And I mean that’s been fun trying to be, that’s a poor attempt at humor, but look, I- last October I had to give an address in Asia to a group of bike fitters over there, most of them new fitters, I won’t name them, but Boulder developed imaging technology 48 of the 50 and I was telling them about barking up the wrong tree, you know. I said all right. I said okay, listen to this thing and I asked them you know, you agree it’s all based on statistics and errors, you will agree? I said okay, a dumber researcher, who amongst you here live in Thailand, which is only about 10 of them, I said okay. Who amongst you here lives in a household of 2.67 people? No one. Who amongst you here owns .76 of a motor vehicle? No one. And the third one, who amongst you here has one testicle or one ovary? No one. None of you are everage. Second, use that system. And that’s again being a smartass. But that’s pretty right. Systems never worked for everyone most of the time for several reasons. One, I don’t believe very much. And two, they don’t, there’s no, there’s no, here we’re gonna put you at that end and you at that. If you’ve shop with the money, you get the system. There’s no entry requirement, there’s no exam. Which means you can call yourself a bike fitter just by buying equipment during a three day course. It’s the biggest problem in bike fitting, currently,
Colby Pearce 25:24
I would agree there’s no standard for the quality of work. For most of these trainings, there’s no guarantee that the person has gone through even assuming the philosophy of whatever, whatever class they’re taking, or whatever system of education they’re buying into is correct. That aside, there’s no guarantee that the student is proficient in that technology- in administering that technology or otherwise. Yeah.
Steve Hogg 25:49
I mean, if you want- if you want to respect or credibility as a job or profession, you’ve got to set some standards, and there are no standards, because bike fitting is largely driven by large corporates associated with bar companies who, who want to make money that’s the first- the first namely overriding concern, and I can understand why. Because if you’re, how can I put this? If you’re a bike manufacturer standardizing as many processes as possible is desirable from the point is it’s not only desirable it’s necessary to keep costs down. But training bike fitters, or so called bike fitters in three day courses, no entry requirement, no exam, spitting them out and saying you’re a bike fitter, go on, use this key, which they cling to at the- often at the- often to the in opposition of all common sense, because it’s all they know. All I know is what they learn, what the screen tells them, which frankly, is, you know, isn’t very much at all anyway. My god, they mark to death a bit how they can see more than the human eye. That’s bullshit. The best tool ever deviced for assessing a human beings function on the bar is another human being.
Colby Pearce 27:00
Steve Hogg 27:01
Anyway, sorry, where are we up to? I’m getting distracted here in on my high horse, which is not-
Colby Pearce 27:07
Well, so you’ve outlined some of your philosophies, that document that you sent to Jerry was very helpful as a big picture idea of where you’re coming from in bike fit. So I guess the next question on our list would be what are the biggest priorities for you when performing a bike fit? You sort of answered that, you prioritize the nervous system, that function in the nervous system of the rider. And how do you prioritze-
The science behind your nervous system and how to get it to fire properly
Steve Hogg 27:27
Well if you get the nervous system firing properly – this probably needs a bit of explanation – So we’ll hear people say “my nervous system is firing properly,” “Well, no it doesn’t.” We have a sense called propriate and I’m telling, you know this Colby some, so I will break this down a bit for your listeners, because I know you’re on top of this.
Colby Pearce 27:44
Steve Hogg 27:45
Proprioception is given to the name, is the name given to an unconscious awareness of your body position in space. Now I use the term a bit more specifically than most, I look at proprioception as the cerebellum’s unconscious awareness of the body position in space. The cerebellum is the part of the brain responsible for integrating information source from all over the body to spit out motor patterns, which are muscle firing sequences to fill the last efficiently performed voluntary and involuntary movements. Cerebellum doesn’t initiate movement. The motor cortex which is near the brain, which determines muscle, which is responsible for movement notifies the cerebellum of the intention to move, cerebellum, quick as a flash, there’s already been a walk, she follow these muscles in this sequence and switch those other ones off and then switch those ones off and the other ones back on you can walk. That’s how we function. And it sounds like a great system, it is, but the potential fly in the ointment is of the 3 billion signals that arrive at the cerebellum from all over the body every second conveying information about load being experienced in relationship to gravity and position in space. Human cerebellum healing process to try to put that in numbers that is- that means that every single second the cerebellum is ignoring 99.99997% of the total information flow. And that’s not a flaw, might seem like a flaw, it’s not a necessity. Because we go vehicle unconscious wiring or stimuli we’d never be able to get anything done we’d be so overwhelmed with stimuli oue eyes would be flashing and we’d be just going to “reset, reset, reset” all the time and never be- not be able to move at all. Evolutionary pressures have dictated a very simple hierarchy. I still have – priorities as to what to serve and what to prioritize processing this the vast amount of information that routinue ignores.
Steve Hogg 29:35
Those priorities, it can be conveyed in two words: force and change. The generation of forces important because anytime we exert ourselves, that’s taken as a priority task as and the best example being if you’re running for your life or fighting for life, you’re literally betting your life in accordance with those actions as well as you can. You’ll do your utmost because survival is the fundamental imperative of all living creatures. And compared to which every other consideration is secondary. So it’s clear cerebellum value in prioritizing any exertion force.
Steve Hogg 30:08
Change is important because if conditions change around your body they step on something sharp or touch something hot or cold or you’re buffeted by strong wind while you’re walking along the edge of a cliff or something like that, excludes all value and prioritizing change. Within the category of force, force generated by the pelvis and legs is given higher processing priority than force generated above the top of the polls, again, it’s an evolutionary imperative at work.
Steve Hogg 30:34
Given that we’re up right, our evolutionary path is to begin to develop to become upright bipedal creatures, and their major modes of unassisted locomotion are in the planet of walking and running. It makes no evolutionary sense at all if while your walking around, or running at any time and concurrently, the same time nodding your head, waving your arms or bending at the waist. If you also collapse the hips, knees and ankles at the same time as while you’re doing that, which is the risk we run if upper and lower bodies are given equal priority. So because the lower body effectively is the postural foundationalism to maintain an upright position, it’s given higher priority.
Steve Hogg 31:10
Now, thing is we’re all riddled with this neurological deficients. These arise throughout our lives not triggered by blows, injuries, surgeries, diseases, food allergies, a million and one things and we don’t have a natural reset mechanism. There’s never been any evolution incentive to develop one and I’ll explain that.
Steve Hogg 31:30
Given a revision of one and a half million times more information in the cerebellum you only ever process at any one time. Let’s assume that Colby Pearce, by the time he gets 30- 40, 20 percents dropped out and I don’t know what it is I’m making up a number. Well, you notice I wouldn’t give a damn Colby because instead of having 1.5 million times too much neuroinflammation to deal with, you’ve got 1.2 million and you’re still like breathing f6, which is always necessary from a genetic point of view to pass your genes on. So where’s the incentive to develop a reset mechanism?
Steve Hogg 31:59
So the first thing I do with a client is reset the entire mechanism. So that they’re dealing with the greatest flow, clarity of flow of information are all over the body, which means they can globally coordinate any further future physical action, including riding your bike, with a heightened level of efficiency. And what do we know, we know we’ve got these deficients all riddled within neighborhood, they occur regularly and routinely. We don’t know because human central nervous systems are incredibly adept at compensating for these, this lack of neural inflammation when something’s dropped dead, like if you break a bone, that the injury or the barrier around that bone will be in deficit at some level after that.
Steve Hogg 32:38
So, sorry I lost the 3d, where was I? Oh, yeah, sorry, each deficit, each drop out presents a challenge to a position in space, which when we met by an immediate compensator response. The problem is we compensate amazingly well, but nothing happens for nothing, there’s five basic problems we need to compensate. Firstly, it doesn’t solve the problem. Consider responses work by shifting a load somewhere else. And when we develop a chronic ache or pain, it’s a signal of the nervous system has exhausted the possibility of further shifting the load. Secondly, your nervous system is dumb. We’re not talking about the thinking apparatus, we don’t – we really want to steer clear of that, because that’s robotbluster bullshit and self delusion in all of us anyway. We’re talking about the lower order stuff that respond- merely response to stimuli. But it’s- it has no long term predictive foresight, which means that those common cidery inverted commas solution mode typically will mean it’s next week next month or next year is larger, more extensive problem. Thirdly, all common set of responses of the very nature increase asymmetry. And as Cycling is a symmetrical activity conducted by symmetric humans, the implications for performance are obvious. Fourthly, every challenge to your position in space, every common set of responses yet another challenge to your position in space to be met by sub compensation, which in turn is met with a sub sub sub sub add infinitum. So it challenges your position in space triggers a cascade of small and small challenges. And most importantly of all, what your body does as your central nervous system instructs the central nervous system learns what your body does. So you walk around been twisted like Quasimodo for long enough that becomes your normal and what you revert to under pressure. Typically, I spend three to four hours fitting people, in the first half that is, getting rid of all that crap and resetting and mechanisms so when I get on the bike all I’ve got to deal with is there positional issues, not their body issues. So sorted out everything is fixable, which is far more than people generally realize.
Colby Pearce 34:40
So, what we’re talking about is, to rewind for a moment just to talk about the central nervous system and how it performs basic actions like running and walking what you’re talking about is an movement endogram, correct?
Steve Hogg 34:52
Correct. As informational input, as an informational input, it’s a voluntary or involuntary wish to perform an action. Well, when you accelerate hard and a bunch or break or corner, our conscious thoughts trigger that sequence but you’re not thinking I’m going to contract this muscle, and relax muscle, right? You think I’m gonna break or corner. And the cerebellum is the part of the body that supplies the information to spit out that muscle frank so you can still allow that to happen.
Steve Hogg 35:18
Because the cerebellum is interesting, it’s several things worth knowing about it. First, it’s got more neural connections to the body than the rest of the brain put together, more than 200 million. Secondly, it can be consciously over written but it cannot be consciously controlled. I’m trying to give an example… Okay, you’ve seen those old movies of jackbooted stormtroopers in the 1930s? You can, you can choose to walk in the streets stiff legged like that if you wish. That’s fine. That’s conscious overriding. But if you’re distracted by a flesh car, or pretty girl or something or loud noise, you’re likely to revert to a much more know unconsciously control walking gait. Because conscious overriding is ceased, and unconscious controllers resume normal service. That’s how it works. So if I throw something to you, you’re going to duck and that action of ducking will arise before there’s an intention to move in a motor cortex. Because cerebellum is so wide up, we can afford to send information back and forth between the various parts of your brain, the moment your eyes see that thing coming at you, and you’ll make an involuntary movement which the cerebellum is hardwired to accept and perform very quickly.
Colby Pearce 36:26
Which goes back to your comment about 99% of all input is ignored. But we- that’s why we monitor so many signals, because we’re constantly- the reticular activating system is constantly monitoring the environment for stress and threat.
Steve Hogg 36:39
You’ve got it, you’ve got it. For instance, can you feel your shoulder? No you can’t. Touch it and you can. When you put a shirt on, you fell it for 10 seconds, then you cease to feel it. Can you feel your forehead? Ask anyone who out there, can you feel your forehead?Touch and you feel it. Because we cannot monitor everything. So it takes an additional stimulus support in most parts of the body before at the unconscious level or the conscious that will become fully aware of it. And the same thing at the unconscious level.
Steve Hogg 37:04
So I’ve worked at the central nervous system priorities as far as movement goes, and I act on those. That’s the basis that I work my fitting techniques around. Get all that system working properly. Because you can only do well repeatedly what you can do unconsciously without thinking. Conscious thought can work but only more conscious thoughts on the job. I define you want to try and constantly control their pedaling technique. Well, they’re 95% hot riding up a steep hill.
Colby Pearce 37:30
Right, right. This is why if you’re going to impact change in pedaling technique, you’ve got to do it at lower intensities first, right?
Steve Hogg 37:36
You’ve got it, you’ve got it. Yeah, I don’t- I’ll stop short of saying you can’t change your pedaling technique, I’ll just say most conscious efforts to do so do from the start because people try and do it consciously all the time. And they can you’ve got to do it on the low intensity. That’s why too when you fit someone the best advice you can give them once you’ve made changes for the first three weeks just ride around and cruise, smell the roses, no pbf it’s nice to pills, no fast punches, right? Because we’ve- when you change someone’s position, you’re stimulating a process of adaptation. There’s no way that process is complete after three or four bike fits. And empirically, I find it takes about three weeks of three to four rides a week minimum, low intensity to break down all motor patterns and learn new ones. And it’s fairly painless process, you do it at low intensity because you’re not under pressure. Whereas if you ride hard within a period, you’re likely to feel weak and powerless, because then you are because you’re firing everything out of sync. Still trying to build motor pattern but for a new position with different relationships and parameters.
Colby Pearce 38:37
Right, right. Exactly. Yeah, of course, that’s an important discussion to have with any client when I’m working with them in a bike fit because and that can present challenges in the season, of course, because if you’re you know, in a normal season, in July or August, if you fit someone ostensibly they could be racing the next weekend, but I have to give them something-
Steve Hogg 38:56
I said “Oh I always have that conversation with people beforehand.” And often, particularly when I meet triathletes, they set themselves a position, it’s not sustainable. I realized four weeks from race, they’re going to struggle. They ring out like “fix me please” and so when you’re right, and then they’ll tell me I’ll say okay, well, how important is this race to this? They say it’s important, so we’ll bring me after your race. Yeah, they says they sound prepared to take as a training exercise and I said, Okay, fine, coming. As a general rule, I will not touch anyone for six to eight weeks before a major event. Because otherwise you’re putting in a situation where they’re gonna crush, you’re going to crush, potential. Some people have blinders, some people don’t and I don’t want to be the guy that changed their position when they’re looking at someone to blame and only might see when it didn’t go very well was that.
The technology Scott Hogg uses during fitting
Colby Pearce 39:49
Okay, so tell us a bit about the technology you do use during your fitting. I know you’ve you’re still on that old, is it a situs Italian trainer that you use that’s kinda-?
Steve Hogg 39:59
No, no that died.
Colby Pearce 40:01
You finally killed it?
Colby Pearce 40:02
I got another one and I killed it too and they no longer make them, they were brillant. 30 kilo fly wil;, they would- the bike is held in by the rear wheel in like an aframe trying to be three to move fifteen degrees or the sort of vertical rod has to make an unconscious effort to hold up. Had the elevator so when you hit a hill the front of the bike rose, according to the hill as the resistance increase.d So yes, brilliant. Now these days I’ve gone real basic I’m just using a, what is it? A kert kinetic, what do they ride in sheen, what are they called?
Colby Pearce 40:37
Yeah, not the rock- the rock and roll one.
Steve Hogg 40:39
Not the rock and roll one, I don’t have room for one now. Oh, and funnily enough that’s been a bit of a progression for me because for years and years I always told everyone you need a trainer that doesn’t hold the bike did up right. Because one it heightens asymmetry to the rider and two riding a bike, you’re riding an unstable mechanism. What’s the point of fitting someone when you want a stable mechanism. Which is why I’ve been using fitting bikes. Well look without trying to be smart or anything I’m not- I’ve gotten to the point where it doesn’t matter what trainer puts them on orbit, it gets the job done. Yeah, I chose that particular trianer because it’ll fit everything from 650 C wheel to a 29 by 2.545 wheel.
Colby Pearce 41:21
Except for those bikes with rad axles where we still have to replace the derailleur handle and get it in the trainer.
Steve Hogg 41:29
I’ve got become fairly well practiced at that
Colby Pearce 41:31
Me too, but it’s still a hassle that I would prefer.
Steve Hogg 41:34
Well, if you know why they exist don’t you? No metal frame manufactuer will tell you but no carbon bike manufacturer really wants you to put you back on a trainer-
Colby Pearce 41:43
On a trainer, right? Well-
Steve Hogg 41:45
I’ll tell you that in confidence, I won’t say that publicly.
Colby Pearce 41:47
Yeah, it’s not made to hold on, to generate, the frames aren’t engineered to handle that force have been locked at the rear axle. That’s not what it’s made for. Right?
Steve Hogg 41:55
Of course, and it could be but then I’d have to be heavier and seeing as an arms race is to have the world’s largest frame-
Colby Pearce 42:00
Right, yeah, could easily- it could be engineered to be in just about anything with especially with carbon composites.
Steve Hogg 42:05
That’s another whinge of mine, a bitter box in general. I was riding in a bunch of wall back, and there’s a guy that lives on the route and he doesn’t meet us at the meeting point, he meets us two kilometers out, to meet outside the front of his house. He waits for us to come along, he jumps on his bike and joins in. Bring in the boggers typical lightweight carbon prime high income carbon frame. He must have been late getting it a bit because as we’re turning, as we’re 100 yards away we see him running to his front gate, getting through the front gate, dumps the bike and on the road, stands on the curb, tries to clip in, slips and fell on his frame, broke it.
Colby Pearce 42:40
Steve Hogg 42:42
That had been a steel or aluminum or titanium frame, he would’ve picked himself up and jumped aboard and nothing would have changed. Might have a bit of paint off and maybe a bruise or a scrape, he broke the top chip.
Steve Hogg 42:52
I had a customer a month ago with a – again a well known American brand of bike, carbon bike, high end, light – supposedly was the lightest frame and all that rubbish. He leaned it up against the podium I used to fit people on which has got aluminium capping on the edges. He leaned it up against there luckily, and it slipped. Slipped and didn’t fall out, slipped down, slid down and seats. The aluminium side didn’t just take the paint off, no, it’s totally delaminated the frame.
Colby Pearce 43:25
That’s what we get for riding these bikes that you know with frames that weighed 750 or 800 grams, right? I mean, they’re fragile.
Steve Hogg 43:32
I remember when still faux weighed 700 grams.
Colby Pearce 43:38
Yeah. Yeah, cycling tend to attract engineering minds. Um, where are we up to?
Steve Hogg 43:47
Basic fitting method? I’ll share whatever you want, so ask questions and I’ll go.
What parameters to look at when picking a saddlebacks height
Colby Pearce 43:53
Well, okay. Tell us about how you would select the most, the functional threshold power of bike fitting, I call it the saddle height. What parameters do you do look at?
Steve Hogg 44:05
Well, several. Firstly, you’ve got to get the rider warmed up and under reasonable load, and usually at a glance I can say it’s too high or too low. And the major parameter I focus on is the velocity of extension of the knee. Simplifying the pedaling action, how it works is like this: the glutes and the hammies combine to extend the hip will push the upper leg down. Same time the quadriceps are trying to extend a straight knee. But the quadriceps can only contract the right the hamstrings lengthen because they oppose each other. Which means the hamstring right of lengthening puts a break and quadricep contraction. Now because the hamstrings are given a higher importance as far as processing goes by the central nervous system. Simple. Then the quadriceps. The body will, the nervous system will attempt to protect the hamstrings from over overreaching. Now to explain that in simple terms, you need hamstrings to stand up. You don’t need quadricep to stand up. So here’s what I call a postural muscle, which means the major functional for borrowing authority site and the major function of a bar is to enable us to hold a position in space, standing or walking. Whereas your quadriceps are not necessary to stand up, they’re are phasic muscles, but the basic function is to generate power from them. So you have your suit on even a little too high, your nervous system will tend to switch off your hamstrings at the moment of overextension. That means the quadriceps, right of contractions no longer restrain and accelerate. So now the hamstrings aren’t acting as a break. So you’ll see a twitch beyond the back of the neck, subtle. We always depends on house to hire the person sitting. The other thing you got to look at. So if I see that, I’ll know they’re too high and act accordingly. The other thing you got to look at is make sure both ankles are working through much the same plane of movement. If one foot is peddling, more turning and the other guarantee that person is tight gas trucks and sylius. So now we’re going to find the deficit that causes that. Well, I’ve usually tackled that before I get on the bike. If I haven’t, I’ve got to find the deficit, neurological deficit that causes that and resolve that. Get them peddling correctly. I’ve already made a determination about leg length before they get on the bike, if they’ve got a very short leg I already know that. So I’ll expect to see one leg overextending because I don’t operate on are youg going to attend your leg length discrepancy, we’re gonna pick up your shoe 10 mil. I look and see how they relate to the bike. Then I’ll make a decision. I had a guy with a nine millimeter ligament discrepancy, which He’s never done anything about. He only needed six millimeters under the shoe that was all it was in his femur. Which really point vertically.
Colby Pearce 46:42
And so what I’ve noticed in my fitting is that topography of the rider, the home base of the rider can play a big role in how they perceive saddle height to be. Well, the first observation I’ll make is that for some reason, cyclists have this weird, especially men, they perceive that if their saddles not high enough, well I shouldn’t generalize that to men, but if they perceive their saddles, not high enough, somehow they’re gonna be giving up power. It’s like, there’s- I don’t know why
Steve Hogg 47:09
No, it’s bullshit.
Colby Pearce 47:10
Yeah, of course, is bullshit. I don’t understand the origin of this cultural phenomenon in cycling it. What is it about?
Steve Hogg 47:16
Well, well, one of the truisms, I’ll just come right in and say, small riders tend to have their seats way too high. Yeah, most other riders have the seats too high. And a few that haven’t too low, usually about six foot six running barks that don’t fit that well. They’re the ones that are usually too low. 90% of people walk in the door end up dropping the seat.
Colby Pearce 47:36
Yeah, I would agree. And so the two things in my mind, or the three things really, that I think are easy to camouflage a dead spot, which your dead spot at the bottom of stroke is going to be much larger, if your saddles too high because you can’t drive through the bottom of the stroke with a flat foot, you use your hamstring.
Steve Hogg 47:51
Of course, camouflaged on the flat because momentum plays a large part
Colby Pearce 47:54
Or while you’re riding a trainger
Steve Hogg 47:55
Or up a hill, up the hill or now but put them on a big load with a 700 kilo floor wheel, like I’ve modified my trainer to seven kilo flow. It’s quite smooth. You put on the big load becomes painfully obvious when the seats to high and if you’re unsure just increase the load.
Colby Pearce 48:12
Yeah. Right. Right. Agreed. But I think that when people ride at moderate, you know, zone two, zone three all the time on Zwift on their trainer, then and their saddles too high, they may not put it together and then they’re just training bad peddle mechanics, you know, for hours and hours and hours every winter or for some people all season this year if they stayed on Zwift.
Steve Hogg 48:33
Well, I’m not a fan of, I’m not a fan of using paris as a determinant for bike fitting because things change on the dime I mean I used to have a velotron at one stage and I loved the idea I could be able to see the shape of the tall curver not just not just the lift, right power balance, but the shape of the tall curve. And I thought that it’d be brilliant for fitting. And you know, it wasn’t because I found that most people within the parameters of this shitty positional, less shitty position have worked out as so- they work at a certain level of efficiency. I was destrought at the first dozen or so people are fitted on a velodrome, I did know, I just fitted them as I would normally fit them, I didn’t look at the power, the torque cuz I found they worse. So I’ve got, I thought oh it can’t be that bad, I’ve got to get them back. So I’ll get them back four to six weeks later and in every single case they were better.So can’t use power or technologies that determinant of how well, how good a fit is on the day of the fit, because you haven’t had any time for habituation.
Colby Pearce 49:30
Well, of course. Right? I mean, that makes perfect sense in the context of our conversation about the central nervous system and how it adapts to new loads and your repatterning movement endogram right?
Steve Hogg 49:39
I’m not saying it’ll feel better, what I’m saying is, for your listeners because the number of people saying you’re gonna use power to make sure I’m putting more power. I say power is the least important thing to worry about that’s the cake, talk is the recipe. Agreed. And I can make you more powerful but also make you injured in about three minutes flat. So you want the greatest level sustainable power. And that’s controlled by fluency and control of movement. Cycling is not about one pedal stroke, it’s about thousands.
Colby Pearce 50:09
Right. Right, fluency, supple muscles.
Steve Hogg 50:12
Control of movement is everything. Yeah. And as I say, I’ve- I measure everything against the nervous systems, three priorities. First thing is breathing. Second thing is stability of posture. Third thing is movement, because you can’t move to acknowledge position. You can’t, you can’t walk before you can stand up without falling over.
Steve Hogg 50:32
That’s another thing too. That’s why we’ve got to have relaxed upper bodies on a bike. The muscles that we breathe with a given higher processing priority than any others. If your using your nose muscles have several potential other jobs they can do. There’s 20 odd muscles using breathing. Eight of which have postural implications. By that I mean, they’re used to breath with which means they need to be able to relax. I’ve – used to resist peddling forces to be awake and stabilized, which means they have to carry tension, which lends to their ability to breathe. And no one’s going to suffocate, but I invite anyone out there listening to this just to do this little test. Just drop your arms by your sides, relax and type the deepest breath you can. You know, bend your arms, bend your elbows to 90 degrees, tense everything you’ve gotten the upper body and try and take a deep breath, you’ll find your can’t. Now, that’s not whats happening on a bike, but at some level, that is always what’s happening on a bike, you’re carrying unnecessary tension, which is in part related to the riders functionality and been taught in large part related to the position on the bike.
Most common syndromes and dysfunctions of athletes on and off the bike?
Colby Pearce 51:36
So Steve, tell us about some of the most common syndromes and dysfunctions you see in your athletes who walk through the door? I mean, you’ve already said that-
Steve Hogg 51:44
On the bike or off the bike?
Colby Pearce 51:48
Well, I’d like to hear both if we’ve got time, if you don’t mind.
Steve Hogg 51:50
Well off off the bike, I can’t remember the last time I didn’t have a client with a pelvic obliquity like electro pelvic misalignment, it seems to be almost universal. Generally poo-pooed by the structural health deficients so I’ve been told by physios, carsos, and on, who cares everyone’s got one. Well because everyone’s got one is why we should care. Because nothing a fixed viable function as much as a elctro pelvic tilt. If you die in the absence of a leg length discrepancy, if your pelvis is tilted laterally, each hip, knee, and ankles works for a different point of movement, each leg reaches a different distance to the floor. Foot morphology changes because they loaded differently. Trying muscle imbalances all created at the spine, shoulder hides all the head carriage organs, all because the pelvis is tilted. So that’s the most common one.
Steve Hogg 52:36
The second most common one is having either one or both Ilia rotated forward or back. Compromise the function of one sector electron more than the other usually. So first thing I do if someone tells me “Ohh as you know, I got a few key tricks that can fix just about anything.” But if someone doesn’t like a sore thumb, the first thing I do is look at their pelvis. That’s how fundamental it is. Always start with the pelvis. It’s so fundamental. I’m deadly serious. Keep laughing, I’m deadly serious.
Colby Pearce 53:06
I know. I know. It’s just perfect example
Steve Hogg 53:07
Well, I got to work – I’ve kind of arranged with the world, the biggest bike shop in Australia, perhaps the world for all I know. That’s the scale is prices, industrial sales 12 to 15,000 bucks a year 10s of 10s of millions of dollars. The 60 staff now can arrange everything religious Give me the space and I come and go as a place. I’ve got this little office with glass walls right next to the cafe and the shopping fronting on Salesforce. And we’ve got to work just I wonder the waitress said, Oh, Steve, you must help me You must tell me so what’s that? And she? She’s the hash. I don’t know she did it making coffee just though she has run off a Finch and hammered around a nerve. Huh? And she said I can’t work on my coffee. Can you fix it as I probably come in, and Ill have a go. And you know, start a check up and she says “No, it’s my hand, it’s my hand.” I said shut up. I gotta do things properly. We’re going to start with your pelvis. So the long and long and the shorter is 10 minutes later, there’s no pain but then she walked out with a square paelvis. Probably for the first time in many years.
Colby Pearce 54:08
There you go. Okay, and what about on the bike? What do we see? What are the most common dysfunction you see on the bike?
Steve Hogg 54:15
One unstable hip. We all see the same, one hip that drops or rotates forward.
Colby Pearce 54:19
Yeah. And what percentage are you seeing is right versus left?
Steve Hogg 54:24
Mostly right, I’d say 90 plus percent right. Less than 10% left. That’s the same everything. Most people need more wedges under their right foot than the left foot, it’s part of the human condition. See at the unconscious level subject to any challenge into a position in space, we all make an unconscious decision to favor one side over the other. I don’t know why it’s just part of the human condition. For reasons that I’ve never quite fleshed out most people even if they’re left handed and left footed five and predict their right side on a bike and power cost on the left. Small percentage go the other way and it doesn’t, again, it doesn’t matter whether they’re left handed or left footed or right hand or right footed. That’s absent of other, well yes, there was a crack in this guy in the sort leg, he had a short left leg.
Steve Hogg 55:07
Now, I do a test to determine whether one cerebellar hemisphere dominates the other in medicine medic control: blindfold stepping test, you know what I mean? For the listeners basically simply I put some ear muffs on someone’s so they can’t hear them, I blindfold them ask them to close their eyes and move the blindfold put one hand on it on the opposite shoulder just start marching on the spot and I keep them there for 60 seconds. Everyone creeps forward because you can spend a lifetime acquainting the walking action with – with stair stepping action with walking without creeping forward. There’s no problem that one of the keys the direction. If turn more than 45 degrees towards one side or the other you have a near inherent neurological bias. There’s a million reasons that can happen I don’t want to speculate in any particular case but it happens. And this guy turned 180 degrees in 60 seconds to the left. Man, his right leg was taking bigger steps becasue he’s got a short left leg – you think you’d be favoring his left leg. Anyway I got him in there on the bike and the thing he’d always been dropping his right hip, no wonder he’s having problems on the left side. Now he’s dropping his left hip because the shorter leg wants to shimmed up the left hip and already started dropping the right one beacuse the, what I’m saying there is he that inherent neurological bias, for who knows what reason which is masked by the fact he had a short leg which is trying to protect by dropping. Once I sorted that out, he started dropping the right hip and I track that to a – he had a genuine drop first round that foot and the other thing I’ve made some real headway in the last couple of years which I need to talk to you guys about, I can fix almost any dropping hip now. When all else fails you look at the, you look at the so as the piriformis and the rectus femoris those same three always seem to be in deficit.
Colby Pearce 56:52
Okay, on the on the side of the drop or on the underside?
Steve Hogg 56:55
On the side of the hip drop. That’s once you take away the normal stuff you know like so so if someone has let’s say if someone’s dropping your right hip and they have the right ilium rotated interiorly which is the most common way right ones go That means the issue is further back on the seat so I’ll twist for the try and fill well what I’m saying is when they fill even on the seat they’re having to twist their pelvis to the right to do it. That’s why pelvic alignment so important on a bike, even off the bike for that matter but doubly So on the bike because we have a lower tolerance for asymmetries on a bike because we’ve linked to an apparatus.
Colby Pearce 57:33
And so this is a great example of just how bike fitting is, wells as one of my teachers recently put it, solving the fractal; it’s like you’re just peeling away layers of the onion.
Steve Hogg 57:42
Oh, there’s always another onion layer.
Colby Pearce 57:44
Steve Hogg 57:45
But this guy, this guy I thought he was going to be a nightmare, he actually turned out to be a real popular effect, I put a longer pedal axles on. He turned out to be very stable on the bike by the time we finished.
Colby Pearce 57:54
Steve Hogg 57:55
Because he stood wide on kilos, he’s standing on two pairs of scales he bought 15 kilos more on his left foot the right foot.
Colby Pearce 58:02
Yeah which isn’t surprising
Steve Hogg 58:07
Yeah but you know, so isn’t it doesn’t mean did not because it was his left leg, someboyd with a short left leg will put more weight on their right leg. The interesting thing was pelvicly even though he had a substantially shorter left leg he stood with his left iliac crest 20 mil above his right side, the short side of the pelvis was high on one sided. By the time he finish he was 10 mil high on the right and my reckin he had a nine mil difference on, nine mil longer right leg that’s a bit right. I gave him a build up for his walking shoes as well. Another point just common sense, on the bike because pretty hard to sit squarely on a bike or whatever every walking step further embeds isometric patterns and motion. So I insist anyone I’ll put a shoe under because they have a short leg, I do I typically walking shoes as well otherwise I want to do with them again. So don’t listen I don’t want to know about them. Most people are prepared to listen. And if they don’t I send them for a 500 meter walk. Typically they feel like the listing one way on the way up and by the time I tell them to come back they convince them on the right track. So there’s a car park opposite the shop that I can see out the window and is a big sign out there called dirty Janes which is the name of a cafed so walk to that sign and back if you doubt me, and by the time they come back, there’s no doubt. Okay, so the two biggest problems though most reasonable problems will sit on and off the bike.
Steve Hogg’s best stories from years in the shop
Colby Pearce 59:36
And, Steve, I wonder if you could share, I know you’ve got some good horror stories from the shop. You’ve already given us some great stories, but in this many years of fitting, I’d love to hear just whatever comes to mind in terms of a good story that you think the audience might like to hear about. It could be a success –
Steve Hogg 59:51
I don’t know what, oh this is a success, but it was – well I’ll tell you the story and you make up your own mind.
Colby Pearce 59:55
Steve Hogg 59:56
I had this gent, this would be 20 odd years ago. He rang me up one day, I was busy at the times with a client, but I picked up the phone because no one else is answering it, we were flat out. And he started telling me about his problems. He wanted to make a booking and 10 minutes in. He still hadn’t told me what the problem was, he’s give me a breath by breath, second by second synopsis of his life for last 10 years. I said look, “Whatever the problem is, I’ve said it before I’ll fix it just make a booking and come in, here’s my wife, she’ll take the booking. Well several weeks later, when the booking time, came this guy walked in, and I thought shit I should have listened. See, he walked in in about two inch steps wtih his knees bent, bobbing up and down, looking as very unstable, like he could barely stay up, right.
Steve Hogg 1:00:39
The story was this: I got him down to where the office was back in those days and I said what’s the story? And he told me he had been a manager of a coal mine. Three years before he bent over to pick up a penny dropped on the carpet something went snap in his back and he collapsed at the legs, he could no longer use his legs. Nothing anyone could find could learn to use his legs again. No one could find anything wrong with him though. He’d seen neurologists, you name it, he’d seen everybody, no one could fix him. So he came across a physio who used to work at the IRS, I used to have some dealings with, she used to send me, she was the IRS women’s physio. She saw female riders that were struggling to sort out their problems and that’s on you. He found her of his own but of his own, but she got him to the point where he could walk, but his atrophies, glutes and hammies would no longer existed or atrophy them and nothing so he had to walk with constant tension in his quads, barely managed to walk at all like walking 20 meters was an effort.
Steve Hogg 1:01:36
So he’s telling me all this and he said Trisha’s got got me walking again. She thinks the next step is to get me back on a bike just on a trainer, riding at some level and center lateral develop new neural pathways and switch my glutes and hammies back on so corresponant with people over the net. I’ve seen everyone, I’ve done everything, I’ve spent 10s of thousands of dollars. No one else can help me. He said now you come very highly recommended what’s your plan, I said, I don’t have a clue.
Steve Hogg 1:02:00
His life was over. Now I said don’t – I hesitate to tell a story like this because it sounds like I’m in good company because no one else has either. So I said all I can do, you said something snapped in your lower back down and find out what it is. All I can do is sit you up. As you are with the world’s worse back.
Steve Hogg 1:02:15
So I had a Canada trial bike at the time, one of their aluminium and try bikes before the slice whatever they’ll call those days, with one of those forward facing profile posts. Oh, sorry. This guy was the most detail oriented person I’ve ever met. He’s telling me about his previous years as a triathlete. He was telling me how, three times a week he’d run 10 kilometers in 35 minutes, 14 seconds plus or minus 10 seconds. That’s it. Everything is quantified now then put in a box. Yeah. Yeah, you know, bike time for a 40 k Olympic trial was one hour, five minutes plus or minus 15 seconds during each ride into the detail like you wouldn’t believe. Anyway. So I had a move his seat back 109 millimeter was really sort of a 30 mil in front of the bottom bracket omitted a bit it mil behind or something like that? He said What’s this? And I’ll put some in bike handlebars. And one of those 45 degree up 10 stems. Said what’s this a bit I’m a triathlete. I said no, you used to be a triathlete. We’re trying to rehabilitate you back into becoming one in the meantime no pressure on your spine at all once you bog up right standing you know with arms up here, pedaling away at whatever level you can just develop open reopen his neural pathways to trying to do. So he left fairly happy with the way I was trying to do things and I said look if he can good come back and I’ll put all your aboslutely try stuff back on so he left seemingly happy.
Steve Hogg 1:03:39
Well be 10 days later I get a phone call he’s crying his heart out he’s saying i thought you know thank you I thank God the day we met I’m cured I’m totally cured out all the honestly through teeth. Something another sense too good. I’m not that good. asking what her thought account might did. Did riser can make the blind see, this sounds too good. What’s going on? He told me that when he got home, he’d been told of his pelvic stabilization exercises on the trainer and the whole just working on his trainer. And he set up a big mirror on the wall so he could see his pelvis so you get some feedback as to what he’s doing properly. But he couldn’t see enough of his pelvis on the trainer. And so he thought well Steve, that big boxy fit, big one, I’ll get a bigger box made because I’m not the most stable person. So I’ll get a big box made one just as high but much wider, sort of put my bike on so I can see my pelvis in the mirror. That took about a week to make the boz, get a carpenter and to make the box.
Steve Hogg 1:04:33
So his first attempt training ride on the box, he’s got to get on the bike and bear in mind he hasn’t been on the bike before since I’ve changed the position and he used to get it when he got on the bike in the shop was hilarious. He grabbed the buzzer one hand the suit with the other hand waving himself up some are flipped these legs over the top chin and dumped himself on the seat. He tries to do that and being a creature of habit and detail is these rituals with CDs. It’s not it’s 109 no further back then it was right. So because it’s incredibly unstable hes toppled forward and he said I’m not my lightweight bike and somewhere else has done the full flip. Because the box was twice as wide as mine is number four flip landed on Islam, lower lumbar spine on the sharp edge of the box. And the box fell on top of him. He’s lying. He’s lying here in his words in those 10 seconds of total agony in a blue explosion in his brain and he was knocked unconscious.
Steve Hogg 1:05:28
So he’s lying here with a bike on top of him, And at some stage his wife comes home. We’re not sure we think 30 minutes later, we’re not sure finds him lying there unconscious on the floor with the bike on topp of him. She panics and calls the ambulance. They come, check him out, he’s fine administer smelling salts, bring him back around, and he can walk normally.
Colby Pearce 1:05:46
Steve Hogg 1:05:49
And he’s giving me the credit. He’s insisting thank god the day we met, it was fate. It was meant to happen. World works in mysterious ways. I said, Look, you know, if you’re handing our the credit, accept that gentleman got on the dame bike.
Steve Hogg 1:06:07
Now he explored this, he later got back to me some months later and he later found. He went and saw someone with a bit of insight and found whatever the original injury was, it has caused a scar tissue to develop around a major nerve plexus, lumbar spine. So the signals weren’t getting through to the lower body in the mind. That’s why he couldn’t walk. And what had happened when he hyper extended his lumbar spine on the edge of the box, he snapped the scar tissue, which is why it hurt like all hell and what knocked him out that `was all the feedback from his lower body that his brain was three years out of practice with receiving right.
Steve Hogg 1:06:41
So yeah, that’s the best story I’ve got.
Colby Pearce 1:06:43
That one’s, Well, there you go.
Steve Hogg 1:06:46
What other what other kind of stories do you want?
Colby Pearce 1:06:48
The world does work in mysterious ways.
Steve Hogg 1:06:51
Please share one story of a kid that really impacted your fitness or change your trajectory in fit. Yeah, I’ve got an interesting one. It’s not a fit so, it was a fit but he wasn’t the problem. So by mid 90s, I developed a bit of reputation, we had a nameless core people wanting a bike fit and at the same time I was writing for the largest magazine out here. And I had a customer his name was David, small guy rode a bike, didn’t know him that well used to come in occasionally and he came in one night he said look I’d like to talk to you about the stuff you’re writing about cycling biomechanics and biking in Australian. I said, alright, well what would you like to talk about? Well, I think you’re wrong. I said “What makes you say that?” Said “well it’s my professional opinion.” I said “whats your profession?” Said “I’m an anatomist.” I said, “How good are you?” Said “I’m a professor, I’m a professor on the Dean of the College in New South Wales University.” And I went, “Well I don’t want to talk to you, you’ll win the argument. So I’ll tell you what we’re going to do. You’re going to come in next week for fitting there’ll be no charge, you go and ride the bike for a month and we’ll come back and talk about the rights and wrongs of the matter.”
Steve Hogg 1:07:53
He came in, I fitted him. He came back a month later, he said, “Look, I’ve changed on your ride normal. Moreover, I think I know why.” And he was very his name was David Tracy. And I’m forever grateful. For years after he would send me research studies, that he thought were bit of the run of the usual rubbish. And he helped me fill in a lot of gaps. So that one didn’t, can wasn’t the fitting, it was just more, becasue I didnt want to argue with a professor of anatomy on the basis of biomechanics or anatomy, because I’m going to lose because of that stage his knowledge was well above mine, I could probably give him a good run for his money now, but I couldn’t in those days.
Colby Pearce 1:08:30
Right. And were you working with a lot of the proprietary methods that you work with now back then with this, with this one-
Steve Hogg 1:08:36
Yeah, but I hadn’t developed internally the same length
Colby Pearce 1:08:38
Near as much, but you were still able to sway his perspective.
Steve Hogg 1:08:43
Well, I was operating on the basis you’re going to be comfortable, you’ve got to be efficient, you’ve got to be able to breathe well.
Steve Hogg 1:08:47
I once saw a guy that was too high and had a lot of tension his arms reaching down and out too far for the bars. I’d seen roadies bike in traps, I knew his position wasn’t wonderful. So we’ll let him work out the rods and threes and subsequent experience off trophy. Yeah. Oh, my god, he did. He was grateful enough to be very helpful to me.
Steve Hogg 1:09:13
So I’m very lucky. I’ve fitted that many people in another areas of health professions. Some of them have taken interest and helped me fill in a lot of gaps. Like if I’m genuinely in doubt about some esoteric detail of human functional anatomy or neural function. I pretty much know who to tap to get a definitive answer.
Colby Pearce 1:09:34
Good. Good research.
Steve Hogg 1:09:36
That’s that’s been really helpful. And it’s just through fitting people over these. Just meeting people that way.
Steve Hogg 1:09:42
I have another example. Last year I have fitted this neurologist, and when he said his neurologist, you’re gonna find this entertaining, he quizzed me on some of the stuff I was doing. Said it was at odds with his view. I gave him an explanation. Said oh that sentence makes sense lets continue, let’s make sense let’s continue. At the end of it I said, Well, did I make sense And he said, Look, he said, what I’ve really made me realize he said, I’m a world class authority on six diseases of the central nervous system. So what you’ve taught me in the last four hours is I know nothing about Nervous System health.
Colby Pearce 1:10:12
Yeah, isn’t that? I mean, that’s been my experience. The deeper I dig in, the more I educate myself about anything, it’s like the sphere of knowledge gets bigger. And inside the sphere is what I will say “no” air quotes, no, but every time the sphere gets bigger, the outside diameter of course, a cruise.
Steve Hogg 1:10:30
Of course, of course, more. I have a boredom threshold, if I wasn’t learning new stuff regularly, i’d throw it in. My life, I’ve been lucky enough to always make a living following whatever my enthusiasm was at the time. Bike fitting, it’s th 35th year and I’m still as enthused as ever, because it’s always- everyone’s a puzzle. Every puzzle is different. And while there are various things, I see enough weird, strange, unusual cases that really make me think hard, but I find it hugely entertaining.
What are some of the most unusual accommodations Steve Hogg has made in bike fits?
Colby Pearce 1:11:04
So that leads me right into the next question. Which is what do you think is the most unusual or what are some of the most unusual accommodations you’ve made in bike fit?
Steve Hogg 1:11:14
The ones I’ve made to riders…well I’ve got to think about that.
Steve Hogg 1:11:20
I fitted a guy years ago, he was an industry rep and he’d had polio you know, the quickest easiest way to describe this guy’s imagine a person who’s five foot seven on the right and six foot tall on the left side. His left side, sorry the other way around, his left side was the functional side, his right side was the dysfunctional side. He had 50 mil difference in foot length, 75 mil difference in arme length, was 40 or 50 mil difference in leg length and limited abilities on his right side at all.
Steve Hogg 1:11:54
I gave him a bit of advice, let him make a lot of money because he always come in and shake hands and you hold out this core of a right hand and give me this feeble little movement handshake. I said, Nick, I’m going to make you some money today. You’re going to do that and so lucky the worst rep I’ve gotten he said I’m good. I said no you’re not you’re too damn nice. You come in here and I say we’re not buying this man you just shut up he biscuit and cup of tea and go see what you do. When you come in the shop. I said I hate shaking your hand because not a handshake. So what you do is said come in next time and shake my- hold out your left hand. Your typical bike shop owner doesnt deal with as much disabilites as I do cuz they’re always embarrassed to be around someone with a disability. Hold up your left hand, they’re reach out with their right, they’ll go “Oh shit, I’ve offended him.” They’ll reach out with their left hand, I said give them a crushing left handed handshake because your left hand is much stronger than most but so then they’ll always remember your and they’ll take notice. He told me he did really well out of that.
Steve Hogg 1:12:43
So he asked me, well on the basis of that he said you seem to have more insight the most he designed about my position you’ll never see him on a bike. I didn’t even know he rode a bike, tended he’d done three hawans. And I said come in after hours because you’re not going to be a quick job and I just don’t want any constraints on time or interruptions. So I got him on the bike and it was like watching a three legged horse gallop. He mistakenly as you mentioned earlier he equated seat height with power. So jacked up the seat ridiculously high, I missed his hip drop, it’s dropping and longer lift like 40 mil and the other nearly 100 mil. Thrashing a bit on the bike and he is twisting forward messingly, and hyperextending his right shoulder to try and reach the bars with his withered arm. He had an appeal lever set up to the front door either in a member friction thumb shift, the reader. I said okay, Nick, this is a bit awkward. What do you expect from this? He said Well, she looked around 100 K to waterfall every Sunday and he said after 50 times serious pain he said it’d be nice to get there and back without hurting. So let’s work on that.
Steve Hogg 1:13:49
So alright where do we start? So I wasn’t advanced, as advanced in the thinking in those days when I’m not easily deterred. I got a fo box of rods, odds, and sods cranks lying around said once every two and a half on both sides. So put 165 in the right side, 175 the left side and drop the 10 mil or drop it drop the 30 mil anyone to get his left leg in a reasonable height. So had to drop it another 10 mil. Sorry 5 mil longer crank on that didn’t even begin to make a difference. So that’ll shim up the right leg the shorter right leg and right foot. I quickly found that any shim beyond 10 mil he couldn’t control a foot on the pedal because he’s very unstable – his limited ability to control his rod later just goes around for the ride. Above 10 mil his foot would just rock over the pedal analogies are starting is still barely any difference at all. Still looks like a three legged horse.
Steve Hogg 1:14:42
So I thought okay and then I had a brainwave. In the early 80s when clipless pedals or mid 80s and clipless pedals first time in the market shoes weren’t drilled for them. So he knows those look pedals which are the first ones used to come with six threaded eyelets The idea is you took your leather sole cycling shoes to the bootmaker he drilled halls fitted the eyelets and you put the plate on when you went new pedals now that alongs that was 10 years in the past I started drawer for these eyelets so that okay the right foot just go the right way just goes around and doesn’t contribute. So if I drill directly into Julie shoes and put the cleat underneath his toes, he can reach further I did that dropped us another 10 millimeter, made a difference but not as much as I would have liked. So the hang on what a bit if I put the other clit on the long leg in front of you heels so I went back beyond what’s near call mid foot players and we’ll be on that and while that stage show that man and I will drop this in another 30 mil because you know that extend the left leg a lot more somebodies click back in at 60 to 70 mil and combined with the cleat underneath the toe the other shoe is he was almost perfectly smooth. He’s going this is fantastic. We’re done. I said no we’re not done. We’re not quite right.
Steve Hogg 1:15:52
I thought there’s got to be a way, now bear in mind his whole right side is small, Davids pelvis is smaller. You know he had a roll settle on and as you know rolls is a subtle a very robust construction with solid steel rails. Set an 18 inch long pedal spin off hardened steel pedal spin. So put that through the seat, no lint on it like that, I’ve bent the sleeve over towards the right side. So that jacked it up on the left and load on the right which enabled me to drop the seat another 5 mil. Then he was as smooth as you and me. You looked weird, but smooth. He goes, “This is fantastic. I feel like electric motor”, but he’s still twisting like massively forward on right torso. What are we going to do about the bars? I said I dont know, you’ve worn me out, come back next week.
Steve Hogg 1:16:36
So I thought about it during the week, even he gave did and tried to bend some or selling any bars title further than I remembered spin Archie’s had recently hit the market and I never saw the pivot i’d appear on the shot. That particular day I was coming back from a training ride in Centennial Park and I saw a guy with a pair of spun arches on a bike, fist business same with a pair on in the flesh. I thought okay, what we’re going to do is going to put one of those behind the bar. So rigged up this bonacci bar behind his right side handlebar so came back about 100 mil. So you could ride with the left hand on top of the banner right hand back about 100 mil that screwed up his films. You know I got a lot of business out of that indirectly because this guy’s a pretty determined guy Nick nice the chip rotting the bunch have been rolling with for years and years and started to get this influx of riders from North Side, Sydney saying, so what are you signed up for? What brings you in? I’d say Nick, Nick. Sorry. No, I’m saying his name. I shouldn’t say his name or calling Nick, which was his name. Not giving his last name though. I say why would he tell you Denise and I didn’t say anything. But he’s been the last one up to the top of the hill for 15 years now he’s booting moon on mobile bodies I asked him tell me to see you.
Steve Hogg 1:17:48
So that was that was that was all and that made me realize there’s literally you can fix just about, you can come up with a solution just about anything if you think long enough and hard enough. And then those days I was riding to physical solutions, like changing equipment or modifying equipment, sorted by symmetries, I’ve found over the years as I learned more discovered more, it’s far more effective to change the body rather than the bike.
Steve Hogg 1:18:13
These days I typically spend two hours getting people’s nervous systems firing properly. And when I get them on bike, the fitting processes is dead easy because I’m not having to work around the client shortcomings in the mind, just trying to sort out their position. At the time spent off the bike makes the time spent on the bike much, much is made to do on much less so for the right amount necessary for the rider. more stuff fixed with a rider before they get on the bike is the actual bike fittings. And that’s where you are going to get together a bit this LVM stuff at some stage.
Colby Pearce 1:18:44
Yeah, definitely. Well, I don’t know if Australia is ever going to let other people from the rest of the world back onto your island because you guys are doing pretty pretty good right now in the era of COVID I think
Steve Hogg 1:18:55
Ah people still welcome but they’ve got a serve fourteen mandatory quarantine on the way in. And you’re taken by police escort from the airport to a hotel. That’s how seriously they take it.
Colby Pearce 1:19:06
Yeah. And then you just have to stay in the hotel room and eat room service for fourteen days?
Steve Hogg 1:19:12
Food is delivered to you, you’re not allowed in or out unless you get sick. You’re checked on daily you know just make sure you’re not sick. After fourteen days you can go about your business. But see we’ve handled well as a nation, because it got serious early that he like we’ve got to stay you know Vittoria which is what probably the population of 5 million people in the Pentagon because they get nine nine new cases in a day. That’s that’s what that that’s serious, like close the borders when they get those kind of numbers. While we’re out and there hasn’t been a single case in only six months now from local transmission. There was a case Yes, though, because the National Capital when a diplomat came back in the country and he tested positive. That’s one case in a city of 500,000, he’s an outsider anyway. Yeah, he’s not a local. So a lot ispretty normal. The only the only constraint currently is restaurants, cafes, pubs, etc. are only allowed to have 50% of the normal carrying capacity.
Steve Hogg 1:20:17
So where we up to?
What is the state of the bike fitting world today?
Colby Pearce 1:20:18
Ah, I think we’re down to the last question, Steve, I just wanted to know, kind of what your overview of, we’ve touched on this a bit, but I’d like to know what your overview of the state of bike fitting is worldwide. I mean, I know we’ve spoken about the fact that many certifications are not, they’re no indication of the level of the fitter. And I wanted to mention, on this point, actually one resource for people, I get this question a lot, I’m sure you do, too. But there is a website called the IBFI, or international bike fitting Institute. And I’ll put a link to this in the show notes. But the web address is actually ibfsi-certification.com. And it’s it’s a resource where someone who is a looking for a bike fitter can go and find some information. They’re objectively trying to be objectively neutral and rate fitters based on the amount of experience and training they have, of course, that’s a pretty holy mess.
Steve Hogg 1:21:13
Okay, just to put a sobering note, theere. I’ve got a bear to push here, and a bit of clarity for interest on the steering committee of IBFI, you know, the thing is, it’s not a perfect system, there’s some changes afoot that have been slow to happen because of COVID, that many people have played the system. Because IBMI gives you points, depending on this training, or the training course you’ve done, you know, it has been because it’s, you know, you’ve got to start somewhere. And it’s an attempt to, to get some objective quantification of fitter quality. But some people have gained the system by doing repeated basic courses and getting points allocated to pump up their ranking. So there’s changes afoot, there’ll be no longer points given for certifications, there’ll be a more practical test, and we’re hoping to work towards something where you cannot be made the highest ranking without being sort of having to put a claim by your peers is that, well, you’ll have to, you’ll have to come to an AGM in whatever country and give a fitting in front of an audience of your peers, and they will judge your quality of work. And by it’ll be like giving a thesis but in practical sense, you give a dissertation both in the physical sense in an oral sense, answer questions and your peers will decide whether you’re rich that level or not. That’s some day down in a track, but that’s what we’re working towards.
Steve Hogg 1:22:39
There’s another thing that’s happening with Abilify to sound, I’m pushing that bearer. There’ll be a website coming up single bikefittersupply.com, where a lot of small time fitters who can’t get access to trade pricing will be able to get access to trade pricing. So if the dollar they’ll have to validate who they are and what they do, but they’ll be able to get access to trade pricing, it’s not up and running yet, but it will be, you know, I don’t have any bear to push there. It’s not my website, I won’t be I’ll probably have some stock on it, because I saw things too, but it’s not my website. So for those who are struggling to get supplies stuff, because they’re small time and they don’t have a shop front or whatever, there is a solution coming.
Colby Pearce 1:23:19
Cool. Okay, that’ll be a great resource.
Steve Hogg 1:23:23
So where we up to?
Colby Pearce 1:23:25
Well, do you have a comment or additional comments on the state of bike fitting? On the whole I mean, it’s, it’s, it’s exploded in the last 15 years. And we certainly have a lot more bike fitters now than we did two decades ago.
Steve Hogg 1:23:39
Look, I’ll give your listeners hints on how to find a good bike fitter.
Colby Pearce 1:23:45
Steve Hogg 1:23:46
And you can you can take my views as a- well it’ll all become obvious. Okay, if you’re looking for a decent bike fitting in Europe, your various people to choose from, firstly, don’t even look at the people who advertise the brand of certification more than advertise their own expertise. So someone is have got this certification that certification 10 other certifications might tell you nothing about the client satisfaction, right or their own expertise and experience look elsewhere. Once you’ve narrowed in the number, I only patronize people who have offer a money back if not happy, guaranteed. And I’ll tell you why that’s important is probably the best decision I’ve ever made nearly dies when I was sort of feeling around I had I was trying to develop a feel of what I was doing, but frankly, did not have a lot of the detailed knowledge and possess. But how can I objectively assess people because most people if you, you know, make them happy that I want to come back and complain most people shy away from confrontation. They just go elsewhere. So I need to give my clients a incentive to complain. So I made it very, very clear to every client advertises in writing. If you’re unhappy with anything I’ve done, I’ll give you your money back. And frankly, most people don’t want their money back. They want the job done. So If you don’t get it right the first time, most people are happy to give you a second chance. Now, the lessons you learn through an unqualified money back not every guarantee a lessons you don’t need to learn twice. In my view is any any practice or belief that holds up empirically, when you give your clients full control of your own financial well being is likely to be valid. So let’s say I’ve learned anything, that anything I say holds up from anything I say that might strike because controversial or unusual, but we have filled up through 35 years of that approach, you know, encourage others to do the same as you do. Because it is a self education tool without power. And the state of bike fitting generally is becoming more accepted, simply because the marketing muscle and money being thrown at it by the big corporates that funnily enough, I get people coming in and saw that full bike fits no rubbish. And what I believe in in the system is the reason I can’t use you don’t advertise the system. And that’s, that’s it, I don’t, I’m not being all the guys out there under retail banner or Buju Fitbit or whatever. Some of them are trying very hard. But what you’ve what they’ve got to do is stop relying so much on technology and start relying on observation skills and assessment skills.
Colby Pearce 1:26:14
Agreed. Agreed. I’ve had similar experiences clients come in and-
Steve Hogg 1:26:21
Well look, the key message to any biker out there everything you need to see is in front of you. It’s called everything you need to know is willingness right in front of it’s called the client. Stop looking at the screen, start looking at the client learn how to learn how to discern the quality of people’s move and not the quantity. All these systems are based on quantity of movement, quantifying them, quantify quantifying is relatively unimportant. And in as an individual sense, what matters is quality. That’s all important. Do we have anything else you want me to rattle on about?
Colby Pearce 1:26:52
I think we have. I think we’ve gone through our list, Steve.
Steve Hogg 1:26:58
Thanks very much for the opportunity. Colby. I don’t have enough too many listeners and my wish you all for the future and get over here sometime or I’ll get to the states and we’ll show you the latest stuff.
Colby Pearce 1:27:08
That would be great. I’d really appreciate that. And if I come there, I’m definitely wearing glasses on every mountain bike ride.
Steve Hogg 1:27:15
Jerry was reading glasses. He’s wearing his little fashion Well, it’s his own fault he tried to pull a mano a mano on a footpath and it was truly we’d riddent over some really treacherous terrain, he stayed up and we’re on the footpath riding home he tried to pull up on an overlying tree with his little fish and glasses on this twig went up underneath his glasses and Rod jam in the soccer bizarre and put it on your podcast scape
Colby Pearce 1:27:41
that’s a good point actually. It’s a safety reminder. I wear protection is important.
Steve Hogg 1:27:46
I mean all this social media rubbish that I don’t subscribe to you I guarantee it’ll go viral.
Colby Pearce 1:27:52
To be the most famous bike fitter in the world. There you go.
Steve Hogg 1:27:55
Or most infamous. He can fit anywhere he survived this, hes got an eye and an eye.
Steve Hogg 1:28:03
well he Jerry was saying a while the surgeon was getting it out of his eye because what happened when he went to the hole you know where that you know took that photo one of the nurses because what happened when when we took him when he got to the hospital. It was a Sunday live feed off period and so the nurse ring and ophthalmic surgeon so there we got this guy with a seven mil diameter 14 mil or 24 mil long stick and he’s off because things are his eyeballs punctured. Now she said now he said I don’t believe it. She said well it’s true that I believe it or not coming in on this apprehension is Yeah, she said well send me send me a photo sharing the photo on your ringer bags and I’m coming straight in jury since you’re in the trails that I got took to get it out of is all ready to go sign up you’re going to buy a lottery ticket might deny every lucky you are by newness for 20 odd years. the luckiest client I’ve ever had. Wow There you go. Jerry Well, this stage assigned to me I think I can still fit in with one I was doomed to fail but also you know the other I’ll make up for it. And you’ll be fine. Like he wouldn’t take his hand away from us all and have to take a handle on it. He’s our jam closes so it’s no fluid, normal cipher type in stretchy corner.
Colby Pearce 1:29:14
Hi there, peoples. Another episode has been completed and hopefully you enjoyed my conversation with Steve Hogg. You’re all smart people. So I’m sure you figured out that Steve is quite an out of the box thinker. He’s also classically Australian, which to me means he’s very Matter of fact. And I don’t know where he sits on the Australian scale of blunt and honest, but relative to most Americans, he will say it like it is. And that was something that struck me when I trained with him, in a very direct and real way, and I appreciated that about him and I think he sensed that by American standards, I can be somewhat direct as well. So we got along in that respect.
Colby Pearce 1:30:04
I also appreciate Steve’s perspective because he’s simultaneously very humble, but also very well educated. So he’s open to being wrong. He’s willing to admit when he makes mistakes. But he’s also done his homework. So if you’re going to have a debate with him, normally, you better have your act in gear. I’m quite certain that you’ll find the insights he gave us in this conversation to be well thought provoking. And if you have questions about them, please reach out to me or you can also reach out to Steve, you’ll find information on his website about how to contact him. We will put a link to his website in our show notes, of course, but it’s just Stevehoggbikefitting.com. So you can go forth and make the search and find it.
Colby Pearce 1:30:54
As always, if you want to reach out to me to know what to do email@example.com. Thank you, once again, for listening. I have so much gratitude for my audience and the fact that this entire project is doing people good. That is the goal of all the work that I put into this and that my production team puts into it as well. So onward!