During every ride, no matter the level of rider you are, there are 3 points of contact while on the bike. Your hands, your feet and your bum. Make sure you have the correct equipment and feel comfortable at these 3 points.
You require properly sized handlebars and reach to make sure the bike fits on a very basic level. Make sure your brake angles, shifters and grips are adjusted correctly to ensure that you can not only reach the brake levers when you need to but also feel comfortable over the course of a long ride. Each of these adjustments combines to form a seamless connection to the bike, which minimizes muscle strain while relieving soft tissue pressure and improving blood flow. Make sure your gloves fit correctly to ensure a comfortable ride.
Having your feet properly aligned on the pedals eliminates stress on your knees and hips as well as any strain on your leg muscles. When correctly aligned, proper cycling shoes and pedals encourage a pain-free, smooth and efficient pedal stroke. The proper shoe and pedal combo will make things comfortable on long rides. Select shoes which feel comfortable and lightweight. MTB often needs the rider to dismount so you will walk in those shoes.
Saddles come in a variety of different shapes, sizes and styles. Each saddle is designed for a specific posture and pedalling style. You need to determine the size of your sit bones for the right width saddle. Adjust the height and position. Don’t stress too much about men’s/women’s specific as long as it’s correct for you. When sized properly and combined with a pair of padded cycling shorts, you'll be comfortable spending hours in the saddle with no pain or discomfort. Proper fitting cycling shorts will ensure a great ride, every ride!