With a well deserved worldwide reputation for quality and style, Italian bicycle frame builders continue to impress the cycling fraternity. Gist Italia is a well established and innovative brand, which can be relied on to maintain the interest and praise of professional and touring cyclists alike. Their regularly updated range of accessories, produced ‘by cyclists – for cyclists’ has become an essential part of every cyclist’s equipment.
The range of clothing, accessories and, of course, bicycle frames, has been developed to ensure the interest and continuing desirability of the range. Italian bicycle frame builders use the latest materials and manufacturing processes. The use of carbon-fibre technology, including the very latest manufacturing and bonding methods, has been increasingly used in recent years, allowing the art of bicycle frame design and production to evolve new exciting designs. These latest developments in materials have opened the path for modern bicycle frame designers to refine the aerodynamic properties of their bicycle frames and accessories. This has allowed the modern cycle industry a new perspective on the technicalities of the often overlooked, but essential properties of the bicycle frame.
One of the most advanced developments in recent years is arguably the use of electrically operated gear changers. This has brought about the need for Italian frame builders to re-design their frames in order to incorporate electric, and even automatic, gear changing technology.
Another area of fast development in cyclist’s accessories has been the use of new clothing materials, allowing for greater comfort, design and style for the modern cyclist.
When it’s wet, cold and miserable outside you can still use your bike for exercise if you invest in an Indoor cycling trainer. This useful piece of equipment is a godsend to anybody who needs to cycle regularly, yet does not want to face cold and dark weather conditions.
Gist Italia keeps a wide range of these products in stock and there’s sure to be an Indoor cycling trainer to suit your needs. You’ll find trainers that are best suited to city-type bikes or more robust trainers which can be used for racing bikes, MTB or ATB. Indoor trainers are easy to put together and your cycle will just slot into the required position. You can soon be training at peak levels in the comfort of your own home!
Some trainers offer handlebar controls, so it’s easy to change resistance levels during your work out and achieve the benefits of a tailored fitness workout which has similarities to riding your bike on the open roads or hills. Pedal push adjusters are also a common way to ensure a more customized work out. Other trainers offer a more lightweight, city ride type of training which is ideal for hobby cyclists. Alternatively, if you need to keep your cycle outside you could consider the benefits of installing an exercise bike at home so you can still keep on with cycle training.
Gist Italia also stocks a wide variety of useful exercise bikes, so you can stay on top of your game any time of the day or night.
If you enjoy cycling you’ll probably want to check out what cycling products and accessories are on the market so you can make the most of your hobby. Some accessories are essential items you’ll need to purchase from the start, these include cycling helmet, puncture repair kit and basic safety gear. When you ride regularly though you’ll want to consider the options for making your bike as comfortable and speedy as possible.
If you plan to go touring with your cycle side saddles are a convenient option, much more comfortable than carrying kit in a backpack. You should also consider the benefits of fitting a more comfortable saddle, impacts and pressure from long hours riding a bike with an unsuitable saddle can cause damage to your pelvic area. Choosing the most comfortable cycling gear and gloves is also important when you plan to spend hours riding.
Some additional cycling products that are great for anybody who plans to tour with their bike include mirrors, cycle computers, lights, water bottles and bottle holders and mudguards to protect your cycle against mud and water splashes.
Many keen cyclists enjoy customizing their bikes so they can achieve better speeds and a more streamlined appearance. You can buy rims and wheels to ensure your bike performs at optimum levels on your chosen surfaces or you may wish to purchase a turbo trainer so you can cycle indoors in winter weather conditions.
The variety of cycle accessories you can purchase is endless. One thing you should always keep in mind though is whether the parts you buy are suitable for your cycle.
Cyclists understand the importance of a good saddle when biking on a regular basis becomes part of a regular routine. Smp saddles offer the cyclist comfort and great performance, they’re often chosen when cyclists need high performance saddles and are experiencing some discomfort from regular riding.
Expert Smp dealers will be able to advise any cyclist on the best Smp saddle to suit their needs. These saddles have been ergonomically designed to provide the best seat for cyclists and avoid stress to the pelvic region during prolonged cycling or physical traumas due to impact.
Road cyclists face compression stresses due to prolonged amounts of time spent sitting on the bike saddle, so lightly padded seats are recommended as a minimum. As a rule of thumb Smp dealers would generally advise cyclists to select the most padded saddles for mountain biking, off-road cycling and any cycling that involves stunts or jumps, such as street or trial. The extra padded saddles are advised because this type of cycling leads to even more violent impacts, causing added stress on the cyclist’s pelvic area. The added padding on Smp saddles are better at absorbing the roughness of terrain ridden and more effective at protecting the rider against pelvic trauma.
Choosing the right Smp saddle will also involve analysis of physical build, weight, age, pelvic conformation and measurement of pants size/height/weight to work out whether narrow, normal or wider saddles would be more suitable. There are a range of Smp saddles available for cyclists, so it will be easy to find one that’s suited to individual requirements.
One of the first points to remember when buying or setting up your bicycle is that the road bicycle crankset is the point of transmission of your muscular effort into forward movement on the road and is therefore of the utmost importance.
The choice of cranksets available is bewildering, a difficult choice even for the professional cyclist, and in this brief article we will discuss some of the variations now available.
The measurements of the cyclist, hip to knee, knee to ball of foot and many others all have an effect on the comfort and efficiency of the cycle and its rider. Manufacturers of cycle accessories produce a wide range of products, each with its own special character or peculiarities, some of which I will explain here.
One recent innovation has been the non-round chainring. The thinking behind this idea is to even out the mechanical advantage of the pedals for their full circle of movement, since most cyclists press harder on the pedal which is moving down. Another has been the introduction of electric gear shifters and even an attempt at automatic shifting! The possibilities for designers and engineers to improve and refine this basic part of any road bicycle seemingly remain endless.
There is also the ‘look’ of the road bicycle crankset to be considered. A beautifully fine modern frame, fabricated in lightweight alloy or glass fibre, would not look good if fitted with a 1930s road bicycle crankset and gears! I should also mention that a huge variety of ‘experimental’ cranksets have appeared, such as Bent or Rotor cranks, but ultimately it is your choice. If it suits you, make the most of it.