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The Feedback Sports Gift Guide

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.

It’s that time of year!! Everyone is busy playing reindeer games; slogging through the mud and snow, spraying each other with power-washers, picking grass out of chains, and the whirring of an Omnium Over-Drive fills the air like the Carol of the Bells, …wait. We got the holidays mixed up with the peak of Cyclocross season. Let’s try that again.  Ahem. THE HOLIDAYS are UPON US!!  And while our products have been listed in several amazing Holiday Bicycle Gift Guides*, we thought we’d put a little gift guide together of our own.  We asked several co-workers to share what their favorite Feedback Sports Product is and why.


The Feedback Sports Gift Guide

  1. Thomas McDaniel (Product Marketing Manager): “The Dual-Sided Pic. It’s one of those tools that forces you to look at your bike differently. When I put it in my hand I automatically want to slow down and pay close attention to how my bike is doing – in that way it’s one of the most important tools in my collection.” – This says a lot because Thomas’s “collection” is…robust.  
  2. Scott Knight (Western Sales Manager): “The Bottle Opener. Because it’s ridiculously over-built and awesome.”
  3. Jeff Nitta (Vice President): “The Velo Wall Post.  I like its simplicity for hanging bikes when prepping them for a ride.  I have one at the end of my garage so I can pump up the tires, lube the chain and check to make sure the bike is ready to go.  When I’m done with it I fold it up and it’s out of the way.”
  4. Sammy Rutherford (Eastern Sales Manager: “My Omnium Trainer!! Nothing keeps my legs in better cycling shape during the off-season.”
  5. Will Allen (Product Engineer): “My favorite FBS product is the one currently in development.  The products we currently have are all great, but what we’re working on for the future is even better.”  Wow. Well played, Will. 
  6. Mike Guinta (Product Engineer): “Eggnog.”  “Mike, we don’t make eggnog.”  “…Fine. Tools. I like the tools.”
  7. Lisa Hudson (Co-Owner/Accounting): “The Velo Hinge because it maximizes the storage space for my quiver of bikes!

And there you have it–straight from the folks at Feedback Sports.


We wish you a very merry Holiday Season.  We hope you enjoy the time with your family, friends annnnnnnnd, we also hope you get the chance to sneak out for a ride. It’s never too cold. Never.

*And finally, here’s that list of legitimate Gift Guides we mentioned earlier, plus a contest that would make someone’s holiday very Merry, indeed. 

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Want to be a better cyclocross racer? Avoid the avoidable, says coach Chris Mayhew.

With the upcoming United States Cyclocross National Championships , we invited JBV Coaching’s Chris Mayhew to share his thoughts on how to prepare for the big race at hand. Mayhew has actively raced for over 25 years – toeing the line at elite cyclocross, road, MTB and time trial events.  He puts on cycling training camps, cycling skills clinics, and rumor has it, he’s also quite the bike mechanic. In other words, Chris lives and dies for cyclocross and has the experience to know what makes a bike racer successful.  Anyone prepping for that “big race” has trained their body to be ready. Chris’s tips can ensure your bike is ready, too.
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You’ve spent months training and analyzing your data, hours researching the right hashtags and filters for your #crossiscoming posts and then on race day all that hard work comes undone from a preventable mechanical. Bummer.

Ben Bergeron says there are 5 things you can control as a racer: sleep, recovery, nutrition, training and mindset. I would add that for bike racing you can also control the initial state of your equipment. That said, I realize it’s challenging to put in the work as a bike racer and then have to be a bike mechanic too. My experience has proven there are two really easy ways to provide the best return on your time and keep your equipment in for cyclocross season.

First, wash your bike.

Bill Marshall (KCCX) getting the job done in fine fashion.

This can take many forms, and it’s somewhat situational dependent. After a muddy ride or race, the minimum you should do is lean the bike up against something and hit it with a hose to knock the majority of the mud off. This will keep your sidewalls and any metal parts on the bike happy along with the cables, if you still have any of those! Spend two minutes on this.

It doesn’t need to be perfect, it needs to be clean enough to lube a chain and see the details of the drivetrain components. The real action happens with a deeper wash, which should happen once a week. Remove the wheels, install a chain keeper, and put the bike in a repair stand. I prefer dropout-style repair stands for washing and detailed work, but also have the luxury of a standard upright repair stand too. Get a bucket, some brushes and some Dawn soap and go to town. This isn’t about being a black shoe, white sock roadie. Think of this as an active meditation with your bike. Clean all the surfaces, making sure some sort of cleaner (soap for the bike, de-greaser for the chain) gets liberally applied and washed off. As you do this, have a close look at the frame and all the moving, rotating and gliding components. Spin the cranks while you clean them and feel for looseness or crunchiness in the bearings (bottom bracket, pedal and derailleur). Think about any issues you had with the bike when you last rode it – the minute I dismount my bike, I seem to forget any problem I had until the next time I ride.

This whole bike wash process should take around 15-20 minutes from the time you fill the bucket until you put the bike back in storage. The main point in all of this is to engage with every part of the bike and catch things like bent chain links or worn cables before they become a problem on race day. This is a great time to quickly check your brake pads too.

So yes, you get a clean bike out of it, but more importantly it’s a bike inspection and preventative maintenance.

In tandem with the above, and maybe even while you still have it in the stand, check your bolts.

You don’t have to do this every week, but once a month run through the stem, seat-post and saddle bolts at minimum. I’m in love with my Feedback Sports Range for this sort of work. You can loosen and tighten any bolt with it (unlike most torque wrenches) and it comes in a very handy little case that keeps all the bits in one place. All my other torque bits are scattered somewhere across my work bench at this point. I’ve taken to just keeping my Range in my race clothing bag as a race day essential.

As I said earlier, bike maintenance is definitely something you can control – it’s called “preventative maintenance” for a reason, and it’s a great use of your time – I’ve witnessed too many races undone by the avoidable. And as with any task, the right tool makes it easier and faster to do, which means you’re more likely to do it.

Racing bikes is hard work, on and off the field. Don’t let all your hours of training and preparation come undone by one loose bolt. Spend some time owning the state of your equipment. Get it clean enough to notice any small issues before they become a race day nightmare. Run through the bolts periodically to make sure nothing is loose and don’t forget the bolts in your shoes. If you want to make all of the above easier  to perform there are some Feedback Sports items that would be worth putting on your wish-list.

Good luck at your races, and remember: you can often make your own luck.

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Thanks for the words of wisdom, Chris! Follow Chris on IG, Facebook and Twitter for more. You can also catch his articles on Cyclocross Magazine. 

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TLC for Your Bike Repair Stand

Your trusty wash and work stand has tirelessly held onto your bike(s) hundreds of times so you can freely use both hands to wash, fiddle, adjust, and dial in your favorite ride to keep it in tip top shape, but when is the last time you gave your stand a little love in return? The nice thing about our line of bike repair stands is that they don’t require much, but with a little bit of TLC and inspection of potentially worn parts, you can keep your stand functioning like the first day you laid eyes on each other.  If you’re into bike maintenance and keeping everything in tip-top shape–why not include your bike repair stand?  Read on to find out how to keep things wash and work  running smoothly, which leads to your bike running smoothly, which in turn leads to adorable canines and world peace.

Now that your stand is dirty from the grime that has come off of your bike from a good season of riding, here are a few helpful tips and tricks to get your stand dialed so you can focus on keeping your bike clean and happy.

Clean it up.

Feedback Sports repair stands are made from premium materials to stand up to the elements, so they aren’t afraid of a little soap and water. Some basic Dawn dish soap in a bucket of warm water will serve as a safe and friendly cleaning agent that’s both easy on the stand and your hands. A soft brush such as the one that you use for cleaning your bike is typically sufficient for removing grime around moving parts and will be easy on your stand’s finish.

(PRO tip: Instead of adding soap first then adding water to create the bubbles, reverse the process by adding soap to water and allowing it to dissolve for a moment. A shot of pressured water will agitate the solution and give you bubbles that will last exponentially longer and be more effective for cleaning).

Shake and dry.

After you give your stand a sudsy bath, grab onto the main center tubes and give the stand a good shake to get some water off of the surfaces. A drop motion followed by an abrupt stop is typically a good method for shaking some of the water off. Follow up with a soft and absorbent cloth over all of the main surfaces to remove any grime you may have missed in the washing phase. Letting your stand hang out in the warmth of the sun will allow all of the non-reachable places to dry out entirely.

(Sunglasses optional; however, your stand does appreciate stylish accessories to accentuate it’s already silky good looks).
Keep things moving freely.

Your repair stand has moving parts that like to stay moving freely. Keeping these moving parts lubricated periodically will protect them during repeated wash cycles and make your life easier when it comes time to setting your stand up or folding it back down.  Give a drop of chain lube to areas such as the barrel nut inside the QR levers or the cam interface of the QR to make the actuation smoother. Follow up with a rag to pick up any excess chain lube that may have dripped.

(Note: Don’t lubricate the main telescoping tube as it will not have sufficient grip for keeping your bike suspended in the spot you want it).
Take a closer look.

Once everything has been cleaned up, a good once over to see how your parts are wearing is a good idea. Pay attention to rubber foot plugs and clamp jaws as they typically see the most amount of wear on the stand. Having some spare parts in your toolbox is a nice way to minimize any downtime in case something does need to be replaced from wear. Replacement parts can be found at the following link: Work Stand Replacement Parts .

Enjoy a cold one.

Finally, don’t forget to grab a cold drink and use your stand’s bottle opener to access the delicious contents inside. Sit back, relax, and take a moment to marvel over your freshly cleaned ride and repair stand.

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Race-Day Warm-up with Amanda Nauman

Though we all know that warm-legs are fast legs… it’s can be hard to know where to begin. You might wonder, “Should I use a bike trainer or rollers?” How hard should I go before a race?”, “For how long?”, “Should I do intervals?”, “Why is my skinsuit so tight?”, “Is my number pinned properly?”.  While we can’t really help you with the last two questions, we did find some experts to share what works for them in terms of the first four.

We asked our friends, David Sheek (Carmichael Training Systems Coach) and Amanda Nauman (known to friends and the cycling community as “Amanda Panda”) of Team SDG – Muscle Monster for some general preparation tips and a warm-up plan to help anyone maximize their race-day potential.

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~From Amanda and Dave~

Our friends at Feedback Sports have really stepped up the game with a solid range of traveling goodies that are also amazing products to have in any garage. Whether traveling to Europe or chasing events around the United States, Feedback has made it easier to be prepared at home and on the road. A few of our favorites are the Team Edition Tool Kit, Omnium Portable Trainer, and Sprint Work Stand which all fit into the bottom of our cases for travel.

Being Prepared: Pre-Event Warm-up

A pre-event warm-up is designed to increase muscle core temperature, start the body’s cooling processes, and activate energy systems. Here’s a step-by-step guide to activating your body for a great performance using the Feedback Sports Omnium Portable Trainer.

Warm-up

It’s pretty common for a warm-up routine to be 45-60 minutes. You need to spend some time at lactate threshold and throw in a few high-intensity efforts to activate the processes related to producing and processing lactate, but you want to do as little as possible to achieve those goals. A generic warm-up includes 15-25 minutes of spinning, 5-10 minutes at LT, and two 1-2 minute VO2 max efforts. Variations of that will typically get the job done. A long warm-up is likely to generate more heat so weather and other variables are taken into consideration.

The nature of your event also plays a role in your warm-up. If your event is going to start out relatively slow, like a road race, then you can minimize the warm-up activities. If the event is going to start hard, like a cyclocross race, then it’s important to activate your energy systems and lactate processing systems.

Variations on the Weather

There is a fine line between activating your body for a great performance and hurting your performance through overheating in your warm-up. After warming up some higher energy systems, your muscle temperature and core temperature are elevated and primed to race. In warmer temperatures it is recommended to cool down for about 10 minutes before going to the start line to avoid any chances of overheating. In cooler temperatures it is recommended to add clothing layers and maintain that elevated core temperature en route to the start line.

Go to the Start Line

If you’re going to be standing on the start line for a long time before you start, as is often the case with cyclocross races, you’re going to be standing still. In this scenario, try to go to the line wearing enough clothing or layers to stay warm. Plan to hand your clothing off to someone with a few minutes to the whistle.

The focus on staying warm during and after a riders’ warm-up routine pays off because you will be ready for action right from the start. Keeping your core temperature at an optimal level enables you to start faster, get to the front of the race, and stay there.

Taking the proper steps to activate all your energy systems through a proper warm-up, all starts with the right trainer routine. It’s difficult to find an event that allows for sufficient open road to correctly hit the warm-up zones that your preparation requires. Traveling with the Feedback Sports Omnium Over-Drive guarantees the freedom to create and execute a routine around an ideal warm-up that will set you up physically and mentally for success.

Time CTS Zone Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE) 10-Point Scale
10 min Endurance Miles (EM) 4-5
2 min Tempo 6
2 min EM 4-5
2 min Tempo 6
2 min EM 4-5
2 min Steady State (SS) 7-8
2 min EM 4-5
2 min SS 7-8
2 min EM 4-5
1 min Climbing Repeat (CR) 8
2 min EM 4-5
30 sec Power Interval (PI) 9
2 min EM 4-5
30 sec PI 9
5-10min EM 4-5
Off Trainer – Head to Startline
10 min Active Cooling 2-4

*Amanda is currently rocking the cyclocross and gravel scene. She and David clearly know a thing or two about race-day preparation. Thanks for the tips, David and Amanda!  We’ll see you (and your Feedback Sports Race Day Essentials) at the Cyclocross Nationals in Kentucky! #pandapower

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Enter our “Wherever You May Roam” Contest!

Upload a pic of you maintaining your ride in the wild, follow us on IG and you’ll be entered to win a Feedback Sports Ultralight work stand and a Ride Prep Tool Kit! The photo with the most votes wins!

  • You can share your entry with friends to gain votes! 
  • Contest ends Sunday, June 24th at 11:59 MST. 
  • Winner will be announced June 25th! 
  • CLICK HERE TO ENTER! 

Big Ring Cycles Grand Re-Opening

Who

Since 1999 Big Ring Cycles has been one of Golden Colorado’s premier high end bike shops that caters to all cyclists. Whether you’re a hardcore roadie, commuter, or only let your tires touch dirt Big Ring has what you need. Their mission statement reads: “At Big Ring Cycles, we are passionate about one thing: the bicycle. We believe that the world would be a better, more cheerful place if more people rode bicycles more often. We’re about the wind in your face, and the sun on your back. We’re about tan lines, the kind that never disappear. We’re about long climbs, followed by fast descents. We’re about commuting, recreating, and of course, racing. We’re about tradition. We’re about passion. And we’re about community. We are Big Ring Cycles, and we’re here to change the world, one bike at a time.”

What

After purchasing the business in 2016, owner Seth Wolins decided it was time for some changes. Over the course of the winter they have been working to overhaul their space to make it bigger and better than ever in order to serve more customers more effectively. After months of hard work they are ready to share it with you! So come one. come all bicycle lovers to the Grand Re-Opening of Big Ring Cycles of Golden, Colorado.

When and Where

Big Ring has huge weekend planned, jam packed with events, sales, group rides and more.

Re-Opening weekend starts Thursday Night, May 17th, with the Kick off Ride which is part of their weekly shop rides including the added benefit of a post ride beer celebration to really start the weekend right. Riders are invited to have a beer or 2 next door at Barrels and Bottles post ride. First round is on us (Big Ring)!

If group rides aren’t your thing swing by Friday night, May 18th, for the BIG PARTY! It is time to unwind, celebrate making it through a few crazy months and thank the Big Ring Family for the support! Smokey J’s BBQ will be on hand serving up delicious food and drinks will be provided. There will be a blind taste testing of the Big Ring Cocktail finalists and the winner will be announced that night!

Moving into Saturday, May 19th, vendors will be on site to answer your questions demonstrate products and keep the good vibes going. So swing by our tent and check out our repair stands, trainers, tools, or any of our race day essentials. Hours are 9am-6pm and the grill will be going from 12 noon to 2pm.

The big weekend caps off Sunday morning with group mountain bike AND road rides leaving from the shop at 8am followed by coffee and breakfast to prepare for the final day of great deals. Hours are 10am-4pm featuring a Trek E-Bike Demo from 10am-2pm.

If you love Colorado cycling, you don’t want to miss this, so come on out and support your local bike shop and enjoy some great events. For updates check out Big Ring Cycles website, as well as connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Hope to see you out there!

Happy Trails from Feedback Sports

Mechanics National Championships (Reno)

We all know our bikes would be useless without proper maintenance. Some of us do this ourselves, while others happily pass it off to the brave, knowledgeable souls to maintain them (for us). Join us for this wildly fun annual event showcasing these unsung heroes.  The Mechanics National Championships will test mettle of the mechanics and highlight their skills.  Entertaining (to say the least), this event is often highlight of Cyclocross Nationals week!  Taking place at El Jefe’s in the Silver Legacy Hotel Casino, drinks and food will be available all night.

Sponsored by:

Intro to Cyclocross Info Night (Ladies Only)

Ladies!! Are you cyclocross-curious? Do you have some cyclocross experience but are looking to learn more? Are you super-experienced but looking to meet more women who ride different disciplines? If you said yes, (which WHY WOULDN’T YOU?!?) then we’ve got a night of fun for you! We’re hosting a party at Feedback Sports headquarters celebrating and learning about all things cyclocross!

There will be plenty of approachable experts to answer all your questions plus wonderful sponsors bringing rad prizes!

General Schedule:
6:00 – Drinks, Food, and Mingling
6:15 – Welcome from BRAC/Feedback Sports and Sponsors
6:25 – What is Cx?
6:50 – Choosing the Right Races & Demystifying Race Registration
7:05 – Best Pre-race/Post Race Practices (featuring Katie ComptonGeorgia Gould and Meredith Miller)
7:25 – Life / Training / Race Balance
7:35 – Intermission / Raffle #1
7:45 – Clothing (But what do I WEAR?!?!?)
8:05 – Basic Maintenance, Bikes & Wheels (It’s not as mysterious as you think)
8:30 – Open Q&A session (more mingling, look at bikes, and clothes)
8:50 – Raffle #2

**MUST RSVP TO ATTEND!**

For updates, please visit our facebook event page. And don’t forget to invite a sister, friend, mom, girlfriend, wife, bestie, etc. The more the merrier!  #cxiscoming#wecanhelp #gonnabeaparty

Ladies Night Out-Campus Cycles

An evening to celebrate Heels on Wheels: Ladies Night at Campus Cycles Denver

Beer, Wine, Munchies & a Chocolate Fountain! Fashion Show with some lovely women from the local cycling community. Plus learn about some great local recreational rides that you might be interested in!

Industry experts will be onsite to answer any questions from: 

  • Bell Helmets
  • Feedback Sports
  • Continental Bicycle TireCrankbrothers, ABUS, Kask Helmets
  • Easton
  • Highway Two: ABUS, Crankbrothers, fizik, Kask Helmets
  • Light n Motion
  • Pearl Izumi
  • WD 40
  • Mavic, Thule, Camelbak

There is more: cycling jerseys, chair massages and shopping at Campus Cycles with a discount!

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Feedback Sports Maintenance App Compatible w/Strava

bicycle repair & maintenance app from feedback sports

Feedback Sports Maintenance App
Now Compatible w/ Strava

Feedback Sports celebrates the 3rd birthday for it’s bicycle maintenance app at this year’s              Sea Otter Classic and they’ve invited Strava to the party.

This free maintenance app was initially designed to log and track all the service/upgrades performed on your bike(s). If you have sticky notes and random receipts stuffed in drawers to help you keep track of when you last did what to which bike, you would appreciate this app. Keeping track of tires, chains, sealant, lube, components, etc. can feel like a full time job. Factor in multiple bikes and it only gets more complicated. The Feedback maintenance app takes care of that. And now, it’s compatible with Strava.

Jeff Nitta (Vice President of Feedback Sports) explains, “Up until this point, push notifications for maintenance reminders were based on time and dates but the number one request from users was to have mileage based reminders.  The most logical solution to this request was to make our app compatible with Strava.”

Now you can link your Strava account for mileage based tracking and maintenance reminders.

  • Want to lube your chain every 100 miles?
  • How many miles ago did you have your suspension fork serviced?
  • How long do your components/tires last?

Your Strava mileage data will trigger push notifications to your phone for all of these common bike maintenance activities.  Annnnnnd it’s free.  Has anyone mentioned this? Get your bikes dialed.  Your bike shop will thank you when you actually have an answer for “When was the last time you maintained your bike?” and/or “what did you do?”

*Available on Android and IOS.

 

Build, maintain, repair and ride with confidence. #feedbacksports