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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've used a laser to watch my knee movement while on a trainer. Both my knees move away from the bike at the top of the stroke by 1-2 inches. I'm also experiencing lateral knee pain (maybe the IT band?) on both knees (but it is much worse on the left side - old skiing accident). Anyway, am I correct in assuming that I should shim the cleats so that the thick part is on the outside of the shoe? I tried this and it reduces knee movement to about .5 inches but I haven't had a chance to do a long ride yet. Oddly, I moved the shims so the thick part was to the inside and that seemed to reduce the movement to about .5 inches as well!

I'm hoping someone has had a professional fit and can recall what their knees were doing and what the fitter did to fix it. i.e. - knees in = shim thick side in? knees out = shim thick side out?

BTW, I don't know of a "good" fitter around where I live, so I'm trying to tackle this myself. I drove 2 hours to get fitted a few weeks ago and pretty much paid $75 to have my seat height adjusted.

Thanks for any help!
 

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Have you checked the Lemond Fitness site?? It has detailed descriptions on how to use the wedges. I know the location of the thick side is depended on which way your foot tilts. Mine tilts up to the inside and therefore I have my wedges mounted with the thick sides to the inside.
 

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raise the outside...

OOPs, I misread.

According to Andy Pruitt's Medical Guide for Cyclists, the most common problem is the SAME (edited) as yours, where the knee moves in toward the top tube on the downstroke. His picture for the correction shows the inside of the foot raised..

http://www.lemondfitness.com/products/lewedge/cycling_biomechanics.html

I use the wedge to correct a left foot alignment problem. My foot tilts down to the inside, but the correction is to raise the outside, just the opposite of what seems intuitive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
C-40 said:
According to Andy Pruitt's Medical Guide for Cyclists, the most common problem is the opposite of yours, where the knee moves in toward the top tube. His picture for the correction shows the inside of the foot raised, so your correction should be the opposite.

http://www.lemondfitness.com/products/lewedge/cycling_biomechanics.html

I use the wedge to correct a left foot alignment problem. My foot tilts down to the inside, but the correction is to raise the outside, just the opposite of what seems intuitive.
Depending on how you look at it my knees could be said to either move out at the top or to move in at the bottom. Should I correct for what my knee is doing at the top or at the bottom of the stroke?

Thanks
climr
 

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Your knees and feet should, in theory, remain in line through the whole pedal stroke...That's what the wedges claim to accomplish...According to my wife, when she is behind, that is exactly what it has done for me...
 

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You are on the right track, I think.

I re-started riding last year, with an excellent fitting. Last winter I did a lot of power skating, and riding in the snow. As you know, snow will build you some muscles!

This spring, my road bike starts bother my left knee- I'm strong enough again to make a fair immitation of "hammering" up hills. Back for a fitting- result: 2 wedges is now 3 wedges, and the hurting knee pedal shimmed outboard by 2mm. "I dunno- think I'll feel it?" "Maybe not... let's try" says my guru.

I get back on the bike, start to spin, and I feel... Uuuck! I FELT my tendon roll over! I think it rolled in to the correct location, it's too soon to tell- but I think it's gonna be better.

Building certain muscle groups obviously pulls your legs around. Now I can see the benefits of weigh lifting- to even-out the muscle growth. One more thinkg to think about.

'meat
 

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C-40 said:
According to Andy Pruitt's Medical Guide for Cyclists, the most common problem is the opposite of yours, where the knee moves in toward the top tube. His picture for the correction shows the inside of the foot raised, so your correction should be the opposite.

http://www.lemondfitness.com/products/lewedge/cycling_biomechanics.html

I use the wedge to correct a left foot alignment problem. My foot tilts down to the inside, but the correction is to raise the outside, just the opposite of what seems intuitive.
I would think climr's problem is exactly the same no the opposite. His knee moves in at the bottom and out at the top. So the thick part of the wedge would go on the inside. According to the link you provided, this is called "varus" and is the most common (87%). So I would think climr has the most common problem. The picture in the link says a varus causes "the knee to move in towards the bike frame on the pedaling downstroke".
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
C-40 said:
It says to place the shim on the inside if the knee moves in on the down stroke. I guess that's the same as moving out at the top of the stroke? As otheres noted, the idea is for the knee not to move in and out.

http://www.lemondfitness.com/products/lewedge/cycling_biomechanics.html

Ok... so I just got back from a 50 mile ride with the thick part on the inside. Knee pain during the ride was a little better. Post ride it seems much less sore that usual, so I think I'm on the right track. I just used one shim per shoe. I'm gonna take the adjustments slow.

And BTW, the link provided by C-40 isn't part of the instructions (at least not with mine). The instructions just say that most riders should put the thick part on the inside..start with 2 per shoe, go ride...adjust...go ride...etc.. Anyone that buys these things should check out that link though.
 

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Street shoe indicators?

I have been chasing a knee problem for some time now and "Forefoot Varus" sounds like a prime candidate. My question is: are the wear patterns of street shoes an indication of this condition? The shoes I wear most often are worn down on the outside of the sole. Does anyone know how the mechanics of walking relate to the pedal stroke?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
boyd2 said:
I have been chasing a knee problem for some time now and "Forefoot Varus" sounds like a prime candidate. My question is: are the wear patterns of street shoes an indication of this condition? The shoes I wear most often are worn down on the outside of the sole. Does anyone know how the mechanics of walking relate to the pedal stroke?
I'd say you have forefoot varus if your shoes wear like that. I notice it more when running than walking, but I don't have a severe case. I didn't notice the knee pain until I started training for a century with alot of climing.

Probably the best way to diagnose yourself is with a trainer and a laser device that projects a line (you can get these in the hardware dept. of sears etc.). If you line the laser up with your shinbone and kneecap then start pedalling it is very obvious if (and how much) your knee moves. As others have said, ideally it should track in a straight line.
 

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i just recently started using the Lemond wedges. the pain i usually have is on the inside of my knee and upper leg. i followed the instructions and placed 2 wedges with the thickest part on the inside of the pedal. went for the usual 20 mile ride after work. knee pain almost completely gone and hip pain almost gone. after 2 more rides i decided that maybe leg length descrepancies are to blame so from another site someone suggested measuring the legs;

Sit on floor with back against wall. Back erect, hips flush to wall. Heels slightly apart, toes pointing straight up, soles resting on hard surface. Have significant other [or other interested available party] use measuring tape to measure distance from wall to base of each foot. Repeat and average.

After doing this i have now put on 2 additional wedges, thick edges on opposite sides for a level thickness. so on one side i have none and on the right i have 4 wedges. the following 20 miler was painfree. so i'll ride them this way for a while. the real test is when i do a 40 miler or more ride. we'll see.
 

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knee pain

Just my two cents worth, but I have had an intermittent problem with lateral movement of the knees top of the stroke and knee pain, too. Never used the shims. Last year, beginning of season, I concentrated on my stroke, made myself compensate for the lateral movement (i.e., kept my knees straight throughout), and my knee pain disappeared. I even overcompensated for a few weeks, mashing inner to outer (deviating knee medially at the top of the stroke, pushing with inner part of foot/big toe). Beginning of this season, concentrated the same way, and so far, no knee pain. I'm convinced my quads are naturally weak/lazy on the medial side (probably from my duckfoot walk), and with the concentration on the correct, nondeviating stroke, I built up strength medially so that now I only have to occasionally (on lazy recovery days) remind myself to keep my knees straight. I mention this in case you're still having pain using the shims; you might want to try some specific exercises for strengthening medial quads (vastus medialis, maybe gracilis) for a few months to see if it makes a difference. Also FWIW, when my winter beer gut starts to disappear, my knees aren't as likely to move laterally out of the way.
Minstrie.
 

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I've had the same problem with one knee. If your IT band and hip is too tight it will pull your leg outwards on your upstroke. To fix, just stretch the hip and do some IT stretches. No real need for wedges they just mask the problem and do not fix the underlying problems that are causing the pain in the first place.
 

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I also tried the wedges and though they might have helped slightly I found that concentrating of my pedaling form was a bigger help as well as adjusting my cleats to keep my foot pointed a little straight. I went from speedplays where my ankle and knee movement was all over the place to Look Keo with only 4.5 degrees of float. Once the muscles readjusted and strenghtened the pain is going away. I also try to walk with less of a "duck walk" and force my toes straight ahead. Stretching definitely helps with muscle readjustment and pain.
 

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I've been ramping up the miles & climbing over the past couple months and have developed what I believe is minor IT band tightness on my left leg @ the outside edge of the kneecap... and this discussion about retraining your pedalstroke is pretty fascinating. I generally feel fine on training rides, until the group hits a rest stop - that's when things start to tighten up I believe, and I definitely spend that time stretching the band out. I'm not always successful in mitigating the tightness. Towards the end of longer rides of 70+ miles the tightness can become significant. If I can't solve this problem on my own I'm going to plunk down the dough for a pro fitting. But I feel like I'm pretty close to being dialed in, except for the above.

Capt phun & minstrie, can I ask you where your cleats are positioned? Are they directly under the ball of your foot, or slightly behind? And does the position vary for your left foot relative to your right?

Thanks!
 

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When I got fitted the fitted lined up the lazer between my big toe and the toe next to it. Then I am pedaled and for a while and he watched where the lazer lined up on my knee during the pedal stroke. You pretty much want the lazer in the middle of your knee cap lined up with the the big toe. If your knee is going out then you want to have the thicker side on the outside part of your shoe. I have a total of 2 shims on one shoe and nothing on the other. When making these changes you also want to come back and make sure your seat height is correct.
 

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You want to line the lazer up with youe big toe and index toe not your shin bone. Then get the lazer to line up with the middle of you knee cap. This is done much easier by some who does it for a living.
 
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