The Warning Signs that you're Cycling in a Bad Position
Are you Saddle Sore?
Do you have Back Pain?
Do you have Pain in your Knees?
You could be Increasing the Risk of Injury
If you're spending a long time on two wheels and feel unexpected aches and pains afterwards, then the chances are you're cycling in the wrong position. This post will go through the details of the warning signs that indicate you are in the wrong position, and what you can do to address these issues.
If you find your back aches after a long ride then the chances are your seat is either too high or too low. An adjustment of a few centimetres can make all the difference to your back. If your saddle is too high you have to arch your back too much to reach the handlebars. This puts excessive pressure on your lower back and this is why you are in pain.
If you find that you shoot along the flats but struggle with hill climbs, your seat is probably too low. This puts your energy and force through your back and as such causes pain. A saddle adjustment will probably make the world of difference.
As with any sport which requires leg power injury to the knee is common. With cyclists, it occurs when knee ligaments are put under strain, normally when the saddle is in the wrong position. Experts recommend that your leg is in a straight line when you complete a pedal stroke. This ensures the power is coming from your thighs and calves, keeping your knee ligaments stress free. If you find your knees are feeling it after a ride, try moving the saddle backwards and forwards to achieve the right cycling position.
Although associated with beginner cyclists, it is not just naivety and a lack of padding that may be the cause of your saddle soreness. Often experienced cyclists sit on the wrong part of the saddle and as such their frame is not supported adequately. If you constantly sit on the tip of the saddle, it is because your saddle is too far away from your handle bars. Unless you adjust your saddle to reduce the distance to your handlebars you will always suffer with saddle sores and your chance of injury increases.
If you find your fingers are numb on every ride then you are probably putting too much pressure on your arm and finger joints. Pro riders often ride in a position where their upper body is supported by their core strength and not via their arms and hands. As such, they are not putting undue pressure on their arm joints and fingers. They are also more aerodynamic.
If you find your fingers are numb, try taking the pressure off your arms by supporting your upper body through your core. If you cannot do this, try raising the handlebars and work on your core strength.
If you find you have aches and pains in unexpected places try adjusting your saddle and handlebars in accordance with this post. You will soon find your rides are a lot more comfortable and rewarding.
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submitted on 11/04/2015