Training & Nutrition - Clip-On Aero Bars
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02-15-10, 02:05 PM
I have a Trek FX 7.5 (fitness hybrid) which is currently clamped into an indoor trainer. I am looking for some clip-on aero bars as I am doing intervals and like to stretch forward when working on my speed. Any recs as I am not 100% sure what I should be looking for?
Thank you -- I am very much a newbie.
02-16-10, 07:37 PM
Depends on how low you want to go and if you care about aerodynamics. If you just like being low and don't care about aerodynamics, these might be a better bet:
(disclaimer: I've personally never used them)
If you care about aerodynamics, you should probably try and figure out how low and how far forward/backward you want your aerobars compared to your handlebars, and try to make a purchase based on that (some are really close to the bars, some are much higher, some are somewhat adjustable). I'm not sure what the best way to figure that out is, probably just to rest your elbows on the bars with various heights of blocks, and try to figure out what feels the best, and if it feels like you want your elbows to be more forward/backward.
02-16-10, 08:55 PM
I guess I for one don't get it. That's a pretty nice bike, not cheap, with decent components.
So you want aero bars to get comfy on the trainer when doing intervals? Aero bars will not make you comfy on the trainer. Aero bars do make you more aero when in motion, but they also reduce the amount of power that most of us can produce, by restricting our heart and lungs, and changing the musculature involved in pedaling. So aero bars aren't at all optimum for intervals, where you want to maximize your output. They are good for high-speed steady-state cruising, like in a time trial, which is what they are for. When I do intervals, unless I'm specifically training for time trialing (TT), I sit up, straighten my back, open my airway, and concentrate on perfect pedalling.
My other issue is that as a newbie, you really don't want those things on your bike. They are an invitation to unwanted excursions into various fixed and moving objects with unpleasant results. It takes a lot of training time to get comfortable with them, and unless you are going to be doing TTs or very long fast rides, there's no reason to add a pound to your bike's weight, and endanger yourself and others.
That said, I do have a set of aero bars on one of my road bikes, and when spring comes I'll be spending 2 or 3 half hour periods a week on them, all alone on a quiet road, getting smooth and comfortable again.
But if you want to get more comfortable positions on a bike, a road bike with dropped bars is the ticket. They've been configured like that for well over a century for good reason. That's not what you have, so either get mentally comfortable with your machine or get a second bike - a road bike. It's good to have many bikes.
I have the Profile Aero CGT bars. According to profile they are made for road bikes. Very adjustable, look great, about 500 and something grams. Incidently I use them for at least half the time I'm on the trainer and more than that when on the road. I really don't feel it decreases my power much. About the only time I'm not on them is when riding in town or climbing a steep hill. I love em and would never last 30 + miles without them.
02-17-10, 06:02 PM
Thank you everyone. I apologise if the question was a stupid one, there are no clubs around here so I am slowly learning by trial and error and asking stupid questions. I will put on some drop ends (the cheap and easy option) and see if that feels better. I bought a hybrid as I didn't feel safe/comfortable with drops at the time but I am beginning to regret that decision. I really love my bike but I guess I am slowly becoming more confident. I think I may look into buying a cheap used road bike this spring and dip my toe into riding with full drops.
Thank you and I am sure I will be asking something equally daft and uninformed soon.
02-18-10, 08:10 AM
I don't think it was a dopey question. I think that you're less concerned with aero bars, per se, than with finding a way for the trainer to be more comfortable. At least from a visual standpoint, that's what it looks like aero bars would do. You might also consider putting on something like a butterfly bar, (http://www.vwvagabonds.com/Bike/BikeHandlebars.html) which would give you more hand positions and wouldn't require changing shifters, etc. They used to have them quite cheaply at Nashbar.
02-18-10, 10:00 AM
On a road bike, most folks maybe spend 5% of their time riding with hands in the drops. Most used hand positions are 3 different ways to hold onto the hoods, so hood positioning and bar shape are important in that area. People also ride a lot with hands on the bar center section and on the curved section of the bar top. The drops are really used only for pulling a paceline or long slogs upwind solo. Still, even if you never use the drops, road bars have a lot of hand positions.
When I started back into cycling a few years ago, I bought a Trek 7.5FX too. After my milage started to increase, I added Syntace C2 aerobars to allow more hand and arm position. This helped greatly for me.
When I got to rides at 50 miles and higher, and really got into road cycling, I went to a road bike, and still utilize aerobars for long endurance rides.
02-27-10, 07:01 AM
I have a Trek 7.2 set up with Butterfly bars & Aero bars. I have had the aero bars for some time on my flat bar as well. I for 1 love them and use them quite a lot. I commute to work 18 miles each way at my max daily commute with a loaded bike. That said it does take a little time to get use to ridding in them. You controle the bike more with your entire body rather than just the bars. I pick and choose when I am in the aero bars because I am away from the brakes & shifters. I love the Hybrid for a lot of reasons and the Butterfly treking bars have made a big diference. I don't care for drops myself & the flat bar showed it's limitations very quickly, it is a personal choice.
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