Episode 56 - Aaron Dunford

October 16, 2019 26 min read

Episode 56 - Aaron Dunford

 

Catch Aaron Dunford, founder of Fusion peak Professional Cycling in this episode of the ALl Torque Podcast. Aaron is originally from Vancouver Island Canada and moved to Australia to start his business.

In this episode, Aaron talks about cycling, bike fitting, and everything in between. With formal training from Serotta, Trek Bicycles and some of the worlds’ greatest fitters, he has accumulated knowledge and ability to fit existing bikes, whether it’s road, time trial, triathlon and mountain bike along with custom cycling prosthetic design and construction.

In this episode we cover:

  • The story of how Fusion Peak in Sydney, Australia started.
  • Aaron tells us about the services they offer such as aerodynamic analysis, size cycle and frame design, bike fit, shoes and cleats, mountain bike suspension and cycling prosthetic and innovation and also 3D printing. Let's talk about.
  • Interesting tips on bike fitting and improving your performance.
  • How they became known in the industry and how they help cyclists improve their performance, bikes and gears.
  • The changes that mountain bike fits and suspensions can bring to your cycling.
  • Aaron tells us about working with Gerard Cushion, how long he built the prosthetic, and the period it took him to test the product and have the success he achieved.

Links

Transcript:

FELICITY:

Welcome to the All Torque podcast, where each episode we interview an inspiring person to share their story with you. I'm your host, Felicity Dales, managing director of Body Torque.

This is Episode 56.

I have here today Aaron Dunford, the Founder of Fusion Peak Professional Cycling Fitting in Fairlight, New South Wales. “Ride hard. Feel good.”

Aaron’s background started in Vancouver Island, Canada where he lived on a farm and started mountain biking as a kid going to college and hating it, to doing search and rescue, learning first aid, becoming a Ski Instructor at Whistler and doing ski patrol, moving to Australia and starting his business.

With formal training from Serotta, Trek Bicycles and some of the worlds’ greatest fitters, you have the ability to fit existing bikes, whether it’s road, time trial, triathlon and mountain bike along with custom cycling prosthetic design and construction.

Welcome, Aaron.

AARON:

Good day. How are you today, Felicity?

FELICITY:

Good to have you. Oh, great, thank you. Thanks for joining us. Tell us, Aaron, how you came about starting Fusion Peak in Sydney, Australia?

AARON:

Well, when I was growing up, I ended up sort of having quite an amazing opportunity as a young man to work on commercial fishing boats in the summer and I spent a lot of winters skiing. So I was able to work about six months of the year and then take the winter off, collect unemployment insurance and sort of ski my life away.

FELICITY:

Right.

AARON:

One season, I ended up meeting a beautiful Australian Ski Instructor who sort of captured my heart and from there we ended up getting pregnant somehow and at the end of the season, coming back to Australia to start a family and yes, make a life here.

So one of the first things that happened when I got to Australia was I met my soon-to-be father-in-law and he asked me whether or not I was going to be sort of getting into the work that I was doing in Canada or would I be doing for a job and got into the cycling industry, started working at the bike shop down in Manly. And from there, basically, just started learning about mechanics and how to work on bicycles and how to sell bicycles. And eventually, my interest sort of got a little bit curved in the sense that I thought I may know quite a bit about what’s going on and I wasn't really challenged much anymore.

So the fitting side of things came into it through a friend of mine who had recently been for a bike fit with a man named Steve Hogg. And he said, “You’re in the industry and you’re looking for something new. This could be a really cool avenue. This guy fits bikes and makes a living out of it, so it's something you can potentially do." So from there, I quit working at the bike shop. I went to Serotta New York and did some training with Paraic McGlynn, which was really, really fun and a good way to get my foot in the door.

When I got back to Australia, I had the first second-generation size cycle, which is a fit bike, one that you can sort of move the seat and handlebars around and change the crank line and stuff like that. So I had a little sort of advantage and yes, just leverage off of that and started doing bike fits out of the basement of the house. And we fit; it’s about 8 years later I think and still going, and yes, loving every minute of it. So it’s been a really, good, good journey and I'm really sort of excited to be able to do something that I’m passionate about.

FELICITY:

That’s fantastic. And you’re still in the sporting industry like starting off with fishing and then skiing, that’s quite a contrast, isn’t it? And then, now in the cycling industry, so you're really in that sporting space.

AARON:

Yes, always outdoors. I can't; yes, I don't really like to get boxed in, I guess. And the other thing is, it’s interesting, is all the jobs that I've ever had, I’ve always been very self-motivated. If you don't have the guts and the drive to get up at 4:30 in the morning, jump in a freezer, stack frozen fish for an hour and a half before you even think about breakfast, then you’re not going to make it. So it's just one of those things now; I'm really driven to help each client that I get and do my best for them. So it’s obviously a different work but that sort of drive is still there. So it's quite good; I enjoy that.

FELICITY:

Fantastic. So you offer quite a few services such as aerodynamic analysis, size cycle and frame design, bike fit, shoes and cleats, mountain bike suspension and cycling prosthetic and innovation and also 3D printing. Let's talk about.

AARON:

Yes. Well, the aerodynamic analysis is something very new. I just hooked up with a company called Velogicfit in New Zealand, purchased a little bit of computer equipment, and really what that's about is looking at body positions for people. So giving people an idea of how they can change their body position on the bike to make their aerodynamics work a lot better for them without sort of too much, I guess too much detail, really. It's kind of looking at elbows in, head up, head down; these kinds of things.

It's not really the best equipment if you're looking at the fabric of the jersey and how that’s fluttering in the wind. But if you want to get an idea of how much time you’re going to save on an Ironman course with your elbows 2 centimetres wider apart, that tool is really, really good for that and we can sort of look at sort of dimensional things with regards to the bike plus the body position and then how that's going to affect the overall time in aerodynamics on the course.

So, yes, just getting into that stuff. Again, it's really sort of exciting to find new things but I kind of feel sometimes that what you already know about certain things is usually what you find in the future as well, depending on what it is, obviously. But narrow is good, low is good, but you got to be able to breathe and you got to be comfortable, so this is where that tool sort of comes into play.

I've been doing full bike fits the whole time; that’s something I started with. So taking a bike, measuring it up, looking at the rider’s position on the bike and sort of making adjustments there. Taking into account flexibility, mobility and setting up shoes and cleats is obviously a big part of that as well. So I can do things separately, you know, if someone just had a pair of shoes that they wanted to set up, that's fine. We can go ahead and do that and they can leave the bike just as it is. But it's always really difficult to do that for me because once I get them pedalling, I always see things I want to change.

FELICITY:

Yes.

AARON:

Yes, so that’s sort of the bread-and-butter work that way. With regards to the prosthetics, that was a really amazing project that got to do with a gentleman out in Dubbo where I was doing a bunch of fitting in Dubbo and I got an email. I think it was probably a couple of days before I left. It said, “Good day. My name is Gerard. You’re going to be seeing me on Wednesday afternoon. I just wanted to let you know that I'm a below-the-knee amputee on the right-hand side. I hope this doesn't change anything or negatively affect the work that we’re able to do together.” And I sent him an email back, just say, “No, I look forward to it.”

And when I met Gerard, he had a prosthetic made for cycling that was essentially a stick with a cleat on the bottom of it. So it was just a post coming from below his femur down to sort of where your heel would be and then the cleat was mounted on there. So, immediately, what I noticed in Gerard's pedal stroke was the fact that he was essentially pedalling as if someone was pedalling with a normal cleat in one position on the forefoot and then a cleat on the heel on the other leg. So it was really dramatic throwing down the right-hand side hip and really not having much stability.

So I sort of took it on board to make a few changes and I said, “Yeah. Okay. We’ll do our best today. But I'll get back to you.” And I think it was probably about two months later, I got back to him with an idea that I had about using an old mountain bike frame all cut up and sort of chopped into pieces and then welded back together to make him what essentially function as a human foot. So it was an articulated ankle and then sort of where the forefoot is and up to the tibia and fibula, we attached a suspension shock so it actually gave him dampening in the movement of the ankle. And once we had that, all we had to do was make sure that that cleat sat in the exact same position as the cleat on the other side. So it was just like setting up another foot for him really in the end.

FELICITY:

Right.

AARON:

And yeah, just when it all finished up, I wasn't quite sure how everything was going to work. But first few months went really well and I've never heard from again, so I think he’s probably still using it. I do get customers every once in a while from Dubbo, too, and they go, “Oh, yeah. I know Gerard. I’ve seen his prosthetics.” So yes, really cool.

Eventually, I sent the idea to a company in Seattle called Fabtech. And this was really an interesting story because they were keen. They were, “Oh, yeah, it's really cool. We love your design and we really like to see it.” So I built them one and I built it well. It was absolutely, really, really nice. It was the best one I've made because I knew my dimensions, I knew the design, I knew how to refine it. And I made a really, really nice one and I sent it over in a James Bond-style suitcase with all these cut-out foams, stainless steel and you flip the lid and you open it up, the pedals were there, the cleats were there, the cranks were there, it was all; it was gorgeous. And I've never heard from them again.

FELICITY:

Oh, really?

AARON:

Yes. They even, they paid me in Australian dollars instead of American dollars so I got a little bit…

FELICITY:

Less. That’s right.

AARON:

But it’s tough, you know? Like, what do you do if some big prosthetic company wants your stuff, and you go, “Oh, yeah, I’ll help you.” And then, you don’t hear from them again. So if it ever shows up on the market, that would be a really interesting thing.

I think, to be perfectly honest, I can’t believe that nobody has asked me to make them one for Olympic track racing or something because the design allows the rider to push super hard through the down stroke and then through the back of the pedal stroke that shock actually returns the energy through the knee and the femur and foot over the top of the stroke again. So you’re saving a heap of energy and you're using a lot less hip flexor with regards to the amount of muscle recruitment needed to get the slid over the back of the pedal stroke. So I always thought it was really cool, but apparently, it was, yeah, I don't know. I don’t know what happened, maybe they put enough energy into it.

The gentleman in Seattle always spoke about amputees coming back from tours of duty in the military and stuff like that as well. So you've got a double-edged sort of situation there were you've got men that need exercise that you probably deal with their health and mental health and well-being really good. But they may have had a real bad injury, lost the use of a leg or something like that. So it was one of those things where I was really keen to go forward with it. But yeah, it kind of fizzled out.

FELICITY:

You never know, by word of mouth and with this, you never know who knows who. So hopefully that we could propel that forward because that's a fantastic offering and leverage for people to enjoy their life more, really.

AARON:

Yes.

FELICITY:

The more you enjoy, the more you want to be out there, don't you?

AARON:

That's right, yes. And then, I figure, you're just helping humans come home, their blood pumping, they're better fathers, mothers or caregivers. You’re just playing a really helpful role in society when you feel good.

FELICITY:

Yes, that's a beautiful thing. Are there any tips, Aaron, you can give our listeners on bike fitting like where you’re changing some aspects of people’s style when you were talking about fitting them up. Do they need to actually change the way they were pedalling or doing something? Is that anything that you could feedback on?

AARON:

Absolutely. It's really important, yes. I mean, it’s kind of square one. It's a funny one because you could sit someone on a bike, not touch anything and get them looking pretty darn good. It may not feel quite right because everything's put out of whack, but generally, body posture is paramount. You really need to be working on posture when you're talking about bike fitting because of the fact that it has such a big role.

So, a lot of times you can make big changes on a bike or with shoes and the person is going, “Yeah, it feels good.” But they’re still going to sit kind of crooked and have sort of a poor posture in the upper back or the neck; these kinds of things. So it's really hopeful when you're working with people to be able to give them good cues to help them think about where their body is in space on the bike, how they’re using their muscles to let the power to push the pedal stroke. And then, how that changes over time throughout the ride or how it changes through different terrain when you’re going uphill or downhill; so all these kinds of things.

But definitely, the biggest thing with regards to the cycling position is utilizing your gluteus maximus muscles and really making sure that they're working hard, because if they're not, you’ll find that there is going to be a situation where you just have other muscles doing a lot of work that really don't need to be sort of working so hard. So you definitely really get good muscle engagement by using your glutes and making sure that that stuff is working with you well and doing the majority of the pedalling.

So once you’ve got that, the rest is kind of, I would say, it’s easy. But it’s definitely a lot easier to maintain sort of good posture, good pedal stroke with regards to where the knees are sitting over top of the feet and all that kind of; all the little sort of nitpicky stuff that you notice when people aren’t doing something correctly.

FELICITY:

Well, if you had that synergy, you’re just much more in alignment. And like you say, you enjoy it more and perhaps, also not get an injury from over; like for instance, I have my knees in and other people have their knees really wide. Yes. So, I’m sure that they could cause damage.

AARON:

Yes. Actually, I think Steve Hogg said it best was with people riding with their knees, I would like that, it's not a matter of, sort of whether or not there is knee pain. It's whether or not or when they're going to get their knee pain.

FELICITY:

Right. It’s just a matter of when.

AARON:

Yes. And it’s one of those things where you have to then figure out, “Okay, is that because of the way that the hip is sitting with regards to the pelvis and sort of how their skeleton is shaped? Or is that because there’s muscle tension? Or is that because they’ve got a big gut and their legs can’t stay in tight as they forward over the bike?

So yes, there’s lots of different stuff but with regards to any advice, comfort is absolute keen. Like it’s really important to be as comfortable on your bike as possible because if you can do that, if you can achieve good comfort for the duration of the rides that you're looking to do, say you’re not doing very long rides; well, that's what you do. As long as you’re comfortable for those, that's fine.

But if you’d want to go further, want to race on a bike, you want to put in some effort, that comfort again; it’s really important even over any other factor because of the fact that if you are comfortable, you’re going to get off the bike after a hard training ride and you’ll be able to recover well, you’ll be able to get back on the bike and do it all over again without injuring yourself.

So I always sort of have a hard time sometimes when I hear people talk about sort of the important things in bike fit with regards to, “Oh, I got to be aerodynamic. Oh, we’ve got to be this or that,” when really, comfort is paramount. And once you’ve got that, then you can create situations where it become more aerodynamic because your body is more able to be lose in a comfortable position and you can actually move around as opposed to being stuck because of something overextending or something like that.

FELICITY:

Triathletes are very particular with their gear. Some people have personal issues that you’ve been able to help them with such as aerobar extensions and with 3D custom printed performance insoles with custom metatarsal pads, custom adjustment screws for all Campagnolo lever sets, so custom adjustable saddle and custom straps for faster transition with the shoes. How do people know about you? Is it word of mouth in that instance?

AARON:

Yes. It’s all word of mouth, really, I think. Some people go to Google and they just find me that way. But generally speaking, word of mouth is absolutely, is really important for me and it's always a really nice compliment when you help someone and a week later, you see a spouse or a friend or a family member; that always a really nice sort of compliment.

And as far as the rest of all that sort of customized gear goes, really, what I think I try to do in the industry is just push the envelope a little bit past what is normal and what is sort of acceptable from; well, not acceptable, but what is accepted as sort of normal positioning work because there really shouldn't be limitations. People have so many different things that are different about them; their bodies and their preferences and the way they like to do things that then, sort of comes into the cycling industry when you can say, “Oh, can we make that a little bit better for you? Be nice if we could. You know, it's not really in the adjustment left here but maybe if we use a longer screw, we can make that adjustment or maybe if we drill a little hole here and adjust this there, we could sort of move something a little bit more.”

So, I'm really in the camp that I don't like to say NO and I don't like to stop when I know things could be better. So the 3D printer was a really cool sort of investment in the sense that it allowed me to do things that hadn’t been done before. Some things worked really well, some things broke straight away. So you never really know what you’re going to get. But right now, bread and butter with that printer is making shims and wedges for shoes, so I tend to use a little bit of wedging with regards to cleat position and sometimes a shim if you’ve got shorter legs or sort of really asymmetrical positions on the bike. And with the printer, I'm able to make shims and wedges all in one piece.

So, for example, if you needed three 4-foot wedges and you had to have 5 millimetres of shimming on the right-hand shoe, rather than having two shims equaling 3 mil and 5 mil and then 3, 1 to build wedges, I can put that all together in one piece for someone to put your name on it. So it's quite cool in the sense that you can make use of the cleat correctors that sort of help with that.

And then, yes, when I was doing shoes and things like that and cutting up people’s triathlon shoes and putting straps on it, it was just one of those things. I was really excited to just try something different. See if I can help people that hadn’t found that there was an issue with the product. So yes, it’s all about just looking at sort of how to rejig something if they can work a little bit better or perform a little bit faster or smoother for someone.

FELICITY:

Absolutely, yes. Shoes can be tricky, I found that it could be tricky actually because they’ve got the sort of the wire; the zigzag wire and the circular thing, the latch. Yes, I find those a bit tricky so I wouldn’t have those shoes for an event like a triathlon and when you’re in transition.

AARON:

Exactly. Whereas some people, honestly, they're totally happy to do that. I even had one gentleman tell me while he was watching his wife’s transition time, he couldn't figure out why at T2, it took her so long, or sorry, T1, when she was transitioning from her swim to her bike and at the end of the race, she said, “Oh, because I was drying between my toes.”

FELICITY:

Oh, wow.

AARON:

She was not concerned about time but definitely, comfort was paramount. “I want to make sure my toes are dry.” So, you never now, honestly.

FELICITY:

That’s right.

AARON:

It's just one of those things; but with shoe stuff, it is about the foot. You really need to make sure that the shoe and the foot work together really well and that you’re not to trying to squish a big foot in a small shoe kind of thing.

FELICITY:

No. You want to be comfortable, that’s for sure. Is that an area of the business you’d like to grow? As I imagine, everyone would love customized stuff?

AARON:

I think it is. I think it’s sort of happening organically, because I do. I have started making some setback plates that I'm sending out there, which is a way to get a Shimano cleat on an Italian shoe get a cleat a little bit further back. A lot of Italian shoes put the holes quite far forward and the certain stability in people’s pedal stroke sometimes coming back a little bit helps quite a lot with triathlon as well that can do a lot to help with cough, through relaxation; trying not to recruit so much sort of lower posterior leg muscles.

So I'm making more of those and I guess in that sense, they’re not really costumed in the sense that everybody could use a pair. But yes, I don't know; when people present their needs, I’ll help them with it. And it’s a hard one because I don't really have the ability to think outside of the box of customers that I have. So someone's not asking me to make something, I'm not thinking about making it.

FELICITY:

Right.

AARON:

So I really make something or try to help with something when I'm presented with those challenges. Yes. So it’s just one of those things. That’s why it’s fun getting the weird and wonderful customers because you can just see all the stuff and try to help with all these different things. But yes, I’ll keep sort of trying new things and printing whatever it is that I need to make. If it works, it works. If it doesn't, you know, back to the drawing board.

It's been a good experience learning CAD program as well. So it’s quite a powerful 3D CAD program; so you get to build things basically, out of your head, so it’s quite cool.

FELICITY:

Yes. It’s quite very creative and great that you’re curious and also willing, basically, as well to do that. You worked with Gerard Cushion. How long did it take from that to build that prosthetic and to test it for him to be, for it to be successful, to have the success that you did? What period of time did that take?

AARON:

It was about six months. It was about six months for making the first, like when I first started, it was on a piece of paper. I still have the napkin; it’s one of those napkin jobs. And I was just going through my head, I was like, “How am I going to get this guy a foot and an ankle with a cleat on it?” And I just started playing and all of a sudden, I started to see just the body. Like, why would I try to change what sort of humans have evolved to do so well with our feet?

So I build a couple out of Lego with my son and then once we had the Lego models going, then the next thing I needed was basically some parts to actually start making something that he could push on because he’s got to be safe. He can’t have something that’s going to fall apart. And a friend of mine had dumped an old mountain bike at my house and I asked him if I could use it to do this project. He was happy, too. It was great.

And so, we started cutting it up and I flipped a few parts around and I essentially used what was a suspension linkage system where there was a linkage bar that had articulation just like the ankle did and essentially looked like a foot on a seat tube and basically just started with that and then started to figure out how I could put a cleat on the front and then the shock. Again, it was just one of those things; it came together just in the workshop, just playing and cutting.

I made a lot of silly mistakes, obviously. There’s things that didn't work out. But once I had a good design, I got a welder to help me just finish up a few of the details and went out to Dubbo with it and fitted them up and it worked. It worked really, really, well. I was really impressed and again, it's one of those things where the ability to adjust what I built was I think in six different dimensions. So you could change the height of the foot just as you would be making his tib fib, or tibia and fibula longer or shorter, you could rotate the whole prosthetic so that could turn in or turn out with regards to how you wanted to have the femur sitting over top of the foot or the knee there or where the knee would be.

And then, from there we could also change the toe point. So I could actually make it so that when the prosthetic was in its rested state, it had a flatter heel or a more tow down position. So that was something that was really elegant as well, I thought. Because what you could then do is look at his other leg and go, “Oh, okay. He’s sitting with maybe 35° tow down and let’s try it out. Let’s set that up to about there.” And then, when he pedalled, it just had this symmetry that worked really well.

The other adjustments that you could make where with regards to the cleat position, so you could move the cleat all around as you would on a normal cycling shoe; we used, I think he was a Shimano. But the one that I sent to Seattle was a Speedplay because a Speedplay just gives you way better adjustment. Like, you just no…

FELICITY:

No flexibilities.

AARON:

Yes. And then, the last adjustment that we could make with the prosthetic was to actually change the shock itself. So you could change the pressure in the shock and you could also change the speed at which it rebounded so you could make it sort of feel a little bit slower and more, maybe a little bit; how would you describe it? It's a sort of a hard description but you could basically change the speed at which it worked. So you could flick really quickly or you could make it sort of work a little bit slower with regards to how fast it was opening and closing the ankle joint through the dorsiflexion that you’d get as you push down through the pedal stroke.

So yes, it was really cool to sort of be able to not only build something like that but then install it and then help set it all up and have it sort of work for him. And again, it's one of those things; I’d be more than happy to do it again, but it's just I haven't had anybody that needs one. So, yes.

FELICITY:

Well, having done it once, Aaron, I'm guessing it would be a lot quicker the second time around because you’ve already done all the hard work as far as working it out.

AARON:

Yes, absolutely. And I think I would go about it in a similar way, but obviously, there’s other stuff I would change and it could be at the point, too, that I’d do three. Maybe just make a couple of them at the same time because you’ve got stuff going. But again, you could do; it could work in the sense that it's one piece that would fit anybody that has a below-the-knee amputation that way because of its adjustability. So it can work for a short person, tall person; any kind of discrepancies with regards to what the other side of the body looks like, you could measure and match and work out really well.

FELICITY:

Yes. So when you’re setting it up, you’re mimicking the other side of the body?

AARON:

Yes. Why not? What else is there? You can’t try to reinvent the wheel?

FELICITY:

Well, it makes sense. No, that’s right. It makes sense. So yes, that’s good to know.

AARON:

Yes.

FELICITY:

Yes. Are there any funny stories that you can share with us, Aaron?

AARON:

Yes. Well, I guess I actually have to ask my wife this because I'm quite serious about things sometimes. I don’t remember all the funny stories, but there is a really good one. I used to do quite a bit of sort of off-road touring with some mates of mine and we used to, each year, do a bit of an offshoot of the Tour De Cure, which is a big charity ride in Australia.

FELICITY:

That’s right. Yes.

AARON:

And one year, they had Jens Voigt on the ride and I was really excited to meet Jens Voigt. And I had some mechanical problems that I’d sorted out earlier on in our trip up in the Ballarat to Bendigo section of the Gold Fields track and somehow, Jens had heard about this. So when I met him, I shook his hands and he goes, “Oh, are you the Canadian that fix the Durano with the elastic band?” And I said, “Yeah, yeah. That’s me.” So it was really heartwarming to meet a big hero of mine and have him recognize me.

FELICITY:

Who’s already heard of you?

AARON:

Yes, what I did. Because it was a complete Derailleur malfunction, a spring blue and the whole Derailleur was just hanging in the dirt.

FELICITY:

Wow.

AARON:

I fixed it up. I pulled in a bunch of elastic bands around it fixing it. It worked a little bit for a few kilometres and then I was able to fix the bike and cast a race.

FELICITY:

Yes, awesome. Well done. You would have saved that person’s, well, credibility, I guess because they could ride the whole ride and not get stuck at the back.

AARON:

Well, it was me. It was my Derailleur, yes. I had to fix it. I always save the best work for my…

FELICITY:

Well, you did.

AARON:

Yes. Yes. It’s really cool.

FELICITY:

And you also do mountain bike suspensions, tell us what you do there.

AARON:

Well, it’s actually included in a mountain bike fit as well. So at the end of a mountain bike fit, when you’re comfortable, you got the position right, feet are feeling good, shoes are all dialled in, we’ll look at the sag of the bikes. So able to, on the winter and it’s quite cool because you can actually get someone kind of really pushing and bouncing on the bike and you can watch how fast things return and sort of how the suspension move. So you can set up sag, first of all, to make sure that they're sitting in the right position with their weight on the bike. So what happens on the mountain bike is when you sit down, essentially, you enter into the travel.

So that means that if you're riding along in the trail and the wheel drops away, it's not losing contact with the ground. It actually has some ability to push away from the bike because it's not fully extended when you're sitting on it. So it’s usually 25 to 35% depending on sort of what type of riding you're doing. So we can go through and set that up. And then, what I'll do is look at the rebound and any kind of dampening settings there.

So we got people bouncing really hard on the bike and see how fast the front fork returns compared to the rear suspension and you can get them working really evenly at your best situation. Because once the bike is working evenly, it means that when you’re riding it and you go through corners or obstacles, the front and the back are working very symmetrically together and you don't have one part of the bike working really quickly and one working slowly or vice versa. You’ve got everything moving really smoothly.

FELICITY:

Right.

AARON:

So I tend to spend a little bit of time at the end. And then the nice thing about that, too, is really just teaching people like, “This is what this button does. When you flick it this way, it slows down, it speeds it up,” and giving them a good idea of how to do it themselves. Because oftentimes, if you teach people how to do their own staff; you just don't, it’s not that you don’t hear from them again, but you don't really need to be there to hold their hand to do anything, which is a bit of a goal with regards to fitting, too, just again, back to posture. If you do your posture like this, it should help the knees. If you do this, this will really help that.

And just really teaching people, giving them the skills to be able to look out for themselves out there and if they do you have issues, I'm always there to help. But it allows me to then put my effort and time into new clients and help other people. Because it's a bit of a tough challenge in that sense as they grow, eventually, you get to the point where you don't have any more time in the day so you’ve got to kind of be able to sort of really give people the ability to help themselves.

FELICITY:

Yes, that’s right.

AARON:

So yes, good challenge, though.

FELICITY:

Yes. And once they’re up and running, then if there’s an issue, they can come back to you but, hopefully, there isn’t and then they can just move forward; move on really, enjoy life and ride.

AARON:

Yes, exactly. Yes. That’s just it.

FELICITY:

Well, I’d like to thank you, Aaron, for joining me today. It’s been insightful and I’m sure our listeners can either investigate some of the tips that you’ve mentioned when it comes to bike fit and the other aspects. They can check you out of your website, which iswww.fusionpeakcom.au. And we’ll have all those details in our show notes on our website, which is bodytorque.cc.

Or they can call you on 0449 665 151 and we’ll also have those details in our show notes so that anyone can contact you if they’re interested in anything that we've discussed, on what we’ve discussed on the podcast today. And perhaps, if not for themselves, for friends. You never know; there’s always people out there that need help in various aspects of what you do because you have such a broad offering with road, time trial, triathlon, bike and custom cycling prosthetic. That’s really interesting. So yes, wishing you all the best moving forward and thank you for joining us today.

AARON:

Thank you, Felicity. It’s been fun chatting with you. And I really appreciate all your questions about sort of the technical and creative side of things, too, because it really is about sort of that idea that you can sort of just go above and beyond, just moving the sit up and down and back and forth; you can actually sort of set someone up in ways that they never even maybe imagine until you get in and you start sort of feeding the ideas and the creativity. So I appreciate all of that. And yes, I look forward to maybe getting some kick one day from you guys.

FELICITY:

Absolutely.

AARON:

I haven’t done that yet. I think I should.

FELICITY:

Next stage.

AARON:

Yeah, exactly.

FELICITY:

Absolutely. Thanks, Aaron.

AARON:

You're welcome. Thank you, Felicity. Bye.

FELICITY:

Thanks for listening to the All Torque podcast. We'd love it if you would leave us a rating and review on iTunes. This helps us to deliver content you want to hear about. Please take a moment to share it with your friends and family on Instagram and Facebook. I'm Felicity Dales, see you next episode for another story of inspiration and motivation on the All Torque podcast.


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