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Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
CREATED: 03/13/11 by carrie REPLIES: 69
peterr    JOINED: 12/24/12    POSTS: 1
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 4/25/14 7:54 PM

Smiley is the best bike fitter in the area, hands down. He may be the best fitter in the region. He will take as much time as it takes to get it right -- I have seen him several times over the past year and a half for both my TT and road bikes and he has done an excellent job with both bikes. He really does want you to let him know how things are working out after the fit, and he expects you to come back and see him (free of charge) to make further adjustments as necessary to get it dialed in perflectly for you. I've referred friends to him in the past, and those who have gone to see him have had their riding experience transformed (for the better). As others have noted, Smiley keeps a supply of stems, saddles, base bars, and aero bars on hand so he can swap parts out as necessary during the fit. If he doesn't have the part he thinks you need, he will tell you where to buy it as inexpensively as possible and will then mount it for you during a follow up for less money than you would pay your local bike shop. He is extremely detail oriented (he keeps a file on all of his clients with measurements from past fittings) and it has been a pleasure to work with him.

Bottom line: if you spend more than a couple hours a week riding your bike, you should go see Smiley to get your fit dialed in perfectly!

billmart    JOINED: 2/20/14    POSTS: 8
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 5/07/14 6:36 PM

Just finished my initial fit for Smiley, and man does he know what he's doing! All the pains and aches I've had are gone! Smiley was very patient, teaches you what he's doing and how he's doing it.

Very fair man, and after a few days, weeks, or months you can go back to him and tweak your fit.. for FREE!

I had to get some parts but Smiley provides links for where to buy. He has a stockpile of equipment that also help with the fit.

I'd recommend Smiley to anyone who ever asks.

You'll be more comfortable, be able to put down more power (and go faster!)

ashdash's ravatar ashdash    JOINED: 6/4/13    POSTS: 29
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 5/10/14 6:17 AM

As others have posted here, I wanted to highly recommend getting a bike fitting(s) with Smiley. I got in touch with Smiley this winter to dial in my road bike AND help me with a pre-fitting for a triathlon bike, and have been amazed and grateful at the amount of support and attention to detail Smiley offered throughout the purchase and fitting process. Smiley has a unique ability to balance engineering-grade precision (each iteration involved video analysis and testing/re-testing small adjustments) with a deep openness for feedback and listening to how small changes affect the overall feel on the bike.

After we did the pre-fitting, Smiley interacted with me throughout the tri bike search to offer guidance on which bikes would fit well or not, also helping me sort through all the other component variables, and at one point he even spoke with one of the local shops to help sort out some conflicting geometry info we were getting on one of the BMC bikes. I was originally planning to buy a new bike, but Smiley suggested that the right used bike could be a way better value and helped point me to a couple of bikes for sale through the club. I'm very happy with the bike we found, and after I bought the bike, he met with me several times again to tune the fit, swap out the stem and aero bars, and get the cleats on my racing shoes perfectly dialed in.

Thanks to Smiley, I went into my first half Ironman last weekend (St. George) with confidence knowing that my bike would handle well and was set up to optimize both comfort and power. The bike was GREAT and very comfortable on a hilly course (over 4000ft of climbing) with lots of shifting and various road conditions.

Bottom line - if you want to be more comfortable and faster on your bike, go see Smiley. And if you have any questions about my experience with the pre-fitting with Smiley and buying a used bike, feel free to message me.

mikald    JOINED: 1/8/14    POSTS: 18
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 5/11/14 5:21 PM

Yet another good review for smiley. He's a really personable and knowledgeable guy. Getting your bike fit with him will be the best investment you've ever made for your bike. I just had my roadbike fit and it feels great, i rode 65miles today with virtually no back or neck pain, which used to be almost debilitating for me.

Hes now sizing me for a TT frame and helping me decide which to purchase.


Go see him!

Nate's ravatar Nate    JOINED: 2/23/10    POSTS: 68
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 5/13/14 6:55 AM

Smiley has a slick new website up:

http://bikefitbysmiley.com/

JohannaL's ravatar JohannaL    JOINED: 9/8/13    POSTS: 13
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 5/14/14 2:39 PM

I was planning to post the link Smiley's new website, but turns out Nate was faster. :) Here are a few additional words from me anyway: I bought my very first road bike in Finland a year ago after riding my whole life with 3-gear grandma bikes. I survived my first triathlons with my Focus and loved the speed, but I also found road biking extremely frightening. Before moving to DC, I never had a bike fit. Being so new to the sport, I assumed it would not make any sense for me to have a bike fit before getting more practise with the bike.

After seeing this thread, however, I booked a time with Smiley out of a whim. I could not be more grateful for that decision. I do not have a car, so I biked to Smiley's garage through Rock Creek Park (pretty handy actually). I was still quite skeptical if a bike fit could make a difference for someone as insecure as me. On my ride home I was all but skeptical. It made a HUGE difference! After Smiley's life-changing adjustments to the bike (and to the girl - I had never realized how important the core is in cycling!), I felt great on the bike all of a sudden. I was significantly faster, and I felt about a million times more comfortable, relaxed, and confident. Road cycling is no longer scary!

Following Smiley's detailed instructions, I ordered a number of new parts for my bike. Smiley offered that I can order the parts directly to his address - again something much appreciated with someone who does not have a car. I went back just before Peasantman to get these parts assembled. At Lake Anna I enjoyed the biking so much that my smile was probably way too wide to be aerodynamic. ;)

I would like to encourage especially all beginners to contact Smiley early on. Please note that you can visit him already BEFORE you buy a new bike to get one that fits. More information on the pre-fit on the website: http://bikefitbysmiley.com/services-pricing.html

imf8983's ravatar imf8983    JOINED: 1/11/14    POSTS: 9
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 6/06/14 8:35 AM

FINALLY getting around to writing this review and raving about Smiley. The man is a pro, plain and simple. He knows basically all there is to know about bikes and will either ensure that the bike you currently have fits you as well as possible, or will work with you to find the best possible bike for you.

I went through NTP this year, so while I had some general experience with bikes coming into the program, I wasn't as versed as I am today. I was able to find a good deal in February on a tri bike that (I thought) fit me well. Though I was decently fast, after a couple of months I started to feel like something was off--I rode around Haines a lot, so was able to see a number of other riders, and knew that I didn't look like they did when I rode. I decided to reach out to Smiley and went for my initial fitting in early April.

From the moment I walked in, Smiley knew exactly what was wrong with my set up. However, instead of just fixing it and sending me on my way, he took the time to go through every little step, explain everything he was doing, and really teach me about my bike. When the first thing he did--adjust the cleats on my bike shoes--had nothing to do with the bike itself, I knew I was in the right place. He had me get on my bike and videoed me spinning, and explained to me why I was feeling pain in the places I was. After making a number of adjustments, Smiley videoed me again, and you could immediately see the difference in my form. But he wasn't completely satisfied. I ended up being at Smiley's place for over two hours and walked out with my bike changed enough that I could immediately tell the difference on my next long ride. Before I got home, I had an email from Smiley detailing the parameters of my bike and giving me a list of components that I needed to purchase before our next fit. It was awesome.

For the final fit, Smiley not only installed the parts I had purchased, but also made a few other adjustments to parts of the bike that he thought needed a little tweaking. He videoed me again, and the difference between my first video and the last one was like night and day. It's this kind of attention to detail that really sets Smiley apart. For example, when he reinstalled my brake cables, he had issues tightening it to the rear brake caliper and commented that the brakes were after-market brakes that I should consider upgrading. I trust Smiley's opinion so much that I purchased new calipers the next day; lo and behold, two days later I receive an email from Smiley telling me to double check the rear caliper to make sure it isn't still loose--needless to say he was happy to hear I had upgraded the calipers already.

While the fit has helped improve my speed, the thing that I've noticed most is how much easier my rides are now. Instead of feeling tied or starting to feel sore 3/4 of the way into my ride, I'm able to keep going and going without any discomfort. It's made riding so much more enjoyable, and I have no one but Smiley to thank for that.

smaguire2    JOINED: 5/18/11    POSTS: 29
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 8/10/14 12:49 PM

Hello I got my initial fits from Smiley about 2 years ago. It has been bothering me a bit in the past few months, and Smiley kindly (and for only a minimal fee) readjusted the brakes and the handlebars to make it more comfortable on my hands. The ride home was much more comfortable than the ride out ... I can't recommend Smiley strongly enough.

misha's ravatar misha    JOINED: 6/13/13    POSTS: 6
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 8/12/14 12:04 PM

Just wanted chime in and share my praise for Smiley as I recently had him fit me on 2 road bikes. Everything that has already been posted is true – getting fit by Smiley is definitely worth the money and time. It took me a while to make the decision to shell out the cash for a fit, but I am glad I finally did. I did some initial research and consulted friends (MANY have seen Smiley) before deciding to make the trip up to his conveniently located garage for my fit.

I won’t go into all the technical details, but Smiley took care of fitting everything from my cleats to my stem, handlebars, and saddle. He took measurements and tested everything along the way to make sure that things felt comfortable as he made adjustments. If something wasn’t just right for me, he asked questions, helped me figure out what felt wrong, and then corrected it. Further, Smiley was very communicative with me throughout the entire process (verbally and by email) and explained the more technical aspects of my fit in a way that I could comprehend (I'm not terribly mechanically inclined).

He also sent me my measurements and I cannot stress how important this was to me. My brother spent a lot of money on a fit that unfortunately only resulted in a proper fit for his cleats, and, the guy didn’t even give him his measurements.

I went out and rode 100 miles this past weekend following the fit and had no pain or complaints to speak of. The most noticeable difference was that my handlebars were appropriately fit for my body size (I had an 11cm stem when I need an 8cm - how that happened is another story) and it made a world of difference for me, both in terms of comfort and safety. The ride was comfortable and I observed my riding form improving (unlocked arms, straighter back, etc).

Peripherally related, Smiley also stressed the importance of a strong core – an important message my swim coaches have been trying to drive home to me for many months. I do think this is the piece that is missing from my training, so having another person hammer that part home has motivated me to spend more time stretching and doing core exercises.

I highly recommend going to see Smiley if you are looking to get fit. He’s conveniently located and he’s also an all-around good, fair, and trustworthy guy. I come from a family of cyclists and I would send them all to Smiley in a heartbeat if they lived in the area.

kctest's ravatar kctest    JOINED: 1/2/14    POSTS: 19
RE: Best BIKE FIT in the area, hands down
POSTED: 8/12/14 4:45 PM

Yet another Smiley recommendation - this time with an exciting NTP grad twist!

I was a member of the 2014 NTP class with absolutely no bike knowledge whatsoever when I first arrived at Smiley's. My only bike experience was as a child, I'd never clipped in, I had no idea what component levels were, and I certainly had no idea how a bike should fit. I brought him a bike (shout out to Misha's awesome brother, referenced above, for helping me pick it!) that I knew nothing about and Smiley was SO helpful.

I decided to go to Smiley after taking my brand new bike into City Bikes to see if they had any recommendations. The City Bikes guy looked at me, looked at my bike, and said, "Yeah, you need a shorter stem. The one I'd ideally give you is out of stock, but you should be fine on the one I do have in stock. And that one is $80." That wasn't particularly confidence instilling, so I decided to spend the money on a real fit, and GOOD LAWD, it was worth it!

Smiley was INCREDIBLY patient (even as I wobbled around on his trainer) and never made me feel silly or dumb. He was careful, starting at the shoes, explaining why he was measuring from certain points, and giving me newbie tips. The first time I ever rode clipped in was from his house down Beach Drive, and he was such a cheerleader about it! (Not to mention that everything Smiley changed on my bike - handlebars, tape and a stem added up to the $80 I would have paid for the wrong stem at City Bikes...)

Now, I own two bikes (second shout out to Misha's brother, who really should own his own bike consulting business), a Bianchi beater bike to ride around town, and my race bike. I can ALWAYS tell the difference in comfort between the bike I paid Smiley to fit, and the bike I just tool around on. It makes a huge difference when riding anything more than 10 miles.

All said, Smiley is a super helpful guy, I'm absolutely lucky to have him on my "team", and I'll be a loyal customer for life! Highly recommend to the NTPers of the future (and anyone else looking for a good fit).

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