Know anyone who can benefit from this? Share!

    
 
    MEET THE FITTER

Steffi is our owner, founder and senior fitter. If you see her name constantly mentioned in our reviews, it's because she works with every single one of the customers.

Knowing your fitter, the background and the experience level is important. You don't want to trust your cycling performance and biomechanical alignment to just anyone!

     THE FITTER'S GOAL

Steffi has built A Perfect Bike Fit from the ground up with a specific goal in mind.

"I wanted to create a bike fitting center to provide the kind of services that are needed and not found anywhere else. There is a gap between bike shops and cyclists. Bike shops struggle with quality bike fitting because it's time-intensive.They must focus on sales turnover to be successful. They are pressed for time. Employee turnover also keeps bike shops from maintaining the personnel consistency and depth of knowledge required for proper bike fitting. I wanted to fill service gap for A Perfect Bike Fit customers. My goals is to provide a place where people can come with confidence to get a bike fit that addresses all their needs - without hurry. I want to give all cyclists the time and attention to details they deserve. I want  to bring to the average cyclist the technology and know-how that was previously only available to the Pros. I want to provide the know-how to our customers, so they have the right shopping tools when it comes to a new bike. And I want to cooperate with shops, helping them be successful with their sales process by alleviating the load of detailed bike fitting and sizing and providing them with customers who have been informed and educated on their special needs, so they can close targeted sales that make the customer happy.

A Perfect Bike Fit was born based on this ideal. It serves the greater cycling community providing a bridge between the time-demanding needs of accurate and advanced bike fitting and bike shops pre-sales (with bike sizing services for a new bike) and post-sales (with bike fitting services).

     THE FITTER'S BACKGROUND

Steffi's knowledge accumulated from a life-time in cycling and sports. Growing up, you could hardly find her apart from her bicycle.  A passion for speed and a relentless belief that human power could be improved, Steffi found herself growing up in elite junior athletics programs.

"My bike was my faithful companion when growing up. First it became an endless supply of thrills, constantly providing me with ever-growing challenges for speed, distance and steepness of climbs. Then it became a mode of transportation: it took me to see my friends who lived miles away in the nearby hills and it took me to the track every day for practice. Eventually, my bicycle became my entire life."

Her athletics career started in track and field where she was part of a prestigious junior development program. This is where she was first exposed and learned about sports medicine, biomechanics and very advanced training methodologies in an environment that brought athletes to the world stage. It made a huge impact on her life setting up the background of her eventual profession. Curious and always highly invested in her own personal growth, she absorbed, internalized and made this precious knowledge her own. She was racing on foot, but she insisted on training on her bike and in the swimming pool - a futuristic cross-training methodology at the time.

Track was not to be. After a debilitating injury, Steffi had to switch focus.

"I wasn't the greatest student growing up. Actually, there was a time I struggled to get passing grades. I trained too much and I was always too tired to study effectively. I didn't value school and general book knowledge as much as I should have, thinking I'd be the next track star. The injury helped me pause, see the need for a good education and my potential for growth in life."

And so she went on to train her brain, as she put it. Her passion for mechanical things like bicycles and fascination with speed like fluid dynamics met the entrepreneur within. Degrees in Aerospace and Mechanical engineering came first, followed by a MBA.

Meanwhile, athletics had become a constant companion, but no longer a profession: "Anima sana in corpore sano: the Romans belief in a healthy mind because of a healthy body. Fun with sports and adequate training helped me focus and study better and expand my horizon in many disciplines without the rigor of competition."

But she couldn't stay away for too long. A new opportunity arose organically from her fun with sports.

The turning point for Steffi was in the late 90s when she discovered mountain biking and something just clicked. In less than 2 years Steffi turned Pro. This is were her life took a turn for the cycling world, both as athlete and industry professional.

    RACE RESUME at a glance

          NOTABLE RESULTS

 

2016 5X Elite Track Florida State Champion

2016 5X Masters Track Florida State Champion

2013-16 Rumble in the Jungle 50 mi MTB Winner

2014 Mountain Bike Florida State SS Champion

2004 Norba Nationals Finals Top 5 finisher

2003 Road Texas State Champion

2002 Mountain Bike Texas State Champion

 

She raced many disciplines: road, mountain, track, cross and triathlon (on and off-road). Sponsored by the prestigious Italian bicycle manufacturer Colnago and other Italian brands like Limar Helmets, NorthWave shoes, Biemme clothing and Campagnolo components and support from other manufacturers like Kenda Tires and Answer-Manitou suspension components, Steffi went to race with quite a few accomplishments.

Her passion for bike fitting was born out of necessity: "I hit a performance wall. I felt that I could go faster, that my legs had more. But I just couldn't get all of it down to the wheel. This is when my curiosity, passion for human power and my education converged into bike fitting. I understood that bike fitting was the key to performance. I set out to find how to make it work."

At the time, bike fitting was a secretive field. Mostly art; somewhat science; and fully contained within the Pro circle. There wasn't that much information available. Steffi studied anything she could find and went on to create her first bike fitting protocol and software. "It was somewhat crude, but it worked. It made a huge difference in my performance. I started dominating my local racing scene and beyond. Soon, other people asked to get fitted. This taught me early-on how to deal with the situation of other riders. I learned to transcend my own experience. This gave me the biomechanical understanding needed to develop a system that wasn't simply based on my own experience."

At the time she worked for the prestigious niche manufacturer Colnago bicycles. She had access to Ernesto Colnago himself, the father of performance-oriented geometry design. Ernesto Colnago was the first to build modern racing bicycles based on the concept of rider-bicycle integration. He set the benchmark. And Steffi had a lot of questions for him.

"You can't understand bike fitting if you don't understand bicycle design. And vice-versa. What I learned in my years at Colnago is invaluable."  Her bike fitting technology evolved with growing knowledge and understanding of human biomechanics. She sought to improve on the old-school plum line and protractor methodology which dominated bike fitting for over 30 years. She saw the limitations of static bike fitting and sought a solution. The availability of new technology like lasers and high-speed cameras provided her with the opportunity to put together the tools and develop her own dynamic motion capture bike fitting protocols. In the early 2000s this was state of the art and very few people were invested in developing bike fitting technology. "I never realized I was working on something so advanced. I just needed a better solution for myself and the other cyclists I was helping."

In 2004, it was an encounter on a critical mass ride in Boulder, CO that exposed Steffi to the Retül 3D motion capture technology. She met and befriended the key individuals who were developing this new technology in bike fitting. It was love at first sight. Retül was still a prototype in the early stages and not commercially available yet. They were operating out of a garage-sized warehouse space. To the untrained eye, they might have not looked like much at the time; but Steffi knew the potential and made a mental note that she'd buy the system when possible. She saw how this technology was superior to anything ever conceived to date. The connection that was to change her profession was made.

When in 2006 Retül was first offered for sale, it wasn't financially feasible for Steffi to own it - just yet.

In 2010 gen II of the Retül technology became more affordable. Steffi bought it and introduced it into A Perfect Bike Fit as the next step in bike fitting. As she came to master the Retül 3D motion capture system, she started finding opportunities to make it perform even better. She created a set of complementary and supporting technologies to further enhance Retül and even developed it further.

"I knew what Retül could do. I saw that to maximize its performance and have the best tool for my customers I needed to develop technology to support it and enhance it. I wanted to create the best-of-the-best in bike fitting technology and give to the average cyclist even better services than the Pros.

The fit rig and the sizing rig were born, followed by the Dream Bike software to take Retül data and turn it into custom geometry design. Here we talk about the development of this technology.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Center: the fit rig. Right: the sizing rig

Steffi created a technology-rich environment. She coupled it with her vast experience in bike fitting and human performance. The way bike fitting should be. It made her the go-to person.

     BEYOND THE INNER GEEK

Clearly Steffi is what you'd call a bike geek. Technology, computing, aerodynamics, biomechanics, design, training, nutrition... you name it, she has done it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Corratec brain trust visiting the studio

She has been highly involved with the cycling industry with many connections to manufacturers and Pro cyclists. She has strong relationships with many bike shops that rely on her to provide advanced services to their customers.

This is only part of the equation. It's not enough to understand and design bike fitting and cycling technology. It's how you use it that makes a big difference.

This is where you see Steffi shine like no other.

Her ability to work with a vast variety of cyclists in their disciplines is amazing. It makes her unique in a field were fitters tend to be highly specialized in one riding style only.

She has accumulated a vast knowledge that makes her the go-to person for road, mountain, tri, track and cross.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With "El Diablo" Italian Pro Claudio Chiappucci

She is capable of reading subtle body movements and trace them back to their origins. She can elicit information from her customers to further follow down the rabbit hole the underlying situation.  This helped her develop the fit for injuries protocol that is so unique and advanced, she is approached by cyclists who thought they may never be able to come back to the sport.

She wrote the book on mountain bike fitting. It goes beyond biomechanical performance to include bike handling, weight distribution and center of gravity location.  She is one of the very few who has the desire and the know-how to deal with the most complex of the bike fitting protocols.

She is re-writing the book on aero bike fitting protocol, opening new frontiers of performance. Her knowledge of fluid dynamics and experience in the wind tunnel give her a unique knowledge that is helping debunk the myth of cycling aerodynamics. She has introduced the element of biomechanics together with flow management optimization to traditional and experiential aerodynamics - consistently resulting in 2 mph average speed gain for her customers.

This wide-ranging knowledge of bike fitting comes from her curiosity, extreme work ethics and her own experience racing and riding everything: road, mountain, track, cross, tri. However, the real skill set that makes it possible for her to be competent (some would even say an authority) at so many levels comes from her personality.

Always inquisitive, curious and never satisfied by the easy answers, Steffi is able see things that escape most people. She makes her customers comfortable to discuss personal issues. Her intuition takes her down paths not easily explored and her knowledge of technology and biomechanics allows her to address the littlest nuances needed to make your bike fit perform.

She is the artist behind the technological canvas.

     THE REAL PERSON

Steffi is very adamant in supporting the cycling community. For years, she has been part of many initiatives and organizations to support the growth of cycling.

Never afraid of rolling up her sleeves and helping, she is an outstanding member of the cycling community and is part of many regional activities. Whenever possible, she volunteers and sponsors charitable events and individuals.

Involved with several local mountain biking groups, she donates her time and expertise to build and maintain Virginia Key and Oleta River bike trails and has sponsored The Markham Trails Fund. She is the Race Director of the Gran Fondo Miami. She contributes as ride leader and sponsor to charitable rides like the Annual Breast Cancer Awareness Ride and Cycle Fest.

A prolific writer, you can find her articles in magazines like The Racing Post, Miami Sports Magazine, Activate People Magazine and, of course, on this web site.

She was the directeur sportif of 3 times USA Cycling Club of the Year NorthWest Cyclery and she helped bring USA Cycling Junior Nationals to Houston, TX in 2003 with this club. She sat on the board of the cycling governing bodies of Texas for both road and mountain bike racing and she was a founding member of the Greater Houston Off Road Biking Association - the governing body maintaining 13 trails systems around the Houston Metro area.

A fierce competitor, she is also the nicest person to race with. Well-loved by the cycling community, it's not unusual to hear roaring cheers of her name when she is racing through the start/finish line. She believes in clean, ethical racing that's fun while still gunning for that top spot on the podium. Always with a smile on her face, she maintains close friendships with many of her competitors - and, often, she contributes to their success by fitting and/or training them.

Nicknamed "the bike fairy",  she is often found on the side of the road or trail, fixing the bicycles of stranded cyclists.

"I can't help it. I just can't pass by and see a fellow cyclist in distress and not lend a hand. I can't resist the call of duty. It sometimes frustrates my training buddies who'd like to just go. But I tell them: how can I not stop when I always have a tool in my jersey pocket and I know how to use it? At least, I'll help them get home..."

 

Come meet Steffi. We think you'll enjoy.


Visit Us.       Follow Us.   Like Us. Share Us. Don't keep it to yourself...

© Copyright 2015  APerfectBikeFit.com. All rights reserved.    | For cyclists. By cyclists | Specialized in Bike Fitting, Sizing & Performance |