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  1. #1
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    Hands go numb & butt sore - overweight & out of shape - anyone with ideas?

    My hands get numb almost right away when i start riding. Does anyone else have this problem & has solved it some how? Plz let me know.

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    It happened to me when I started riding. I went into the bike shop and the did a fitting for me and changes some stuff around. Basically, you are putting too much pressure on your hands and leaning forward too much. In this case, I just raised my step up so I would not put more preasure then needed.

    Tell me, when you are riding, can you quickly take off your right hand from the bar and quickly touch your nose without having to gain balance before touching your nose? The idea is if you wobble a little, you are putting too much pressure on the hands.

    Are you using a mountain bike or road bike?

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    Its a hybred electric assist. Thanks for your response, i think u r correct, too much weight on hands. I will try raising handlebars up. tx again

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    And dont be afraid to take it into the shop and let a fitting done. The key is to find that one awesome ship that is helpful and treats you like a real person.

  5. #5
    Pedals, Paddles and Poles Daspydyr's Avatar
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    My hands went numb from having to long a reach. I moved the seat forward 1.5 inches. The fitting suggested by chefisaac is good advice.

    Welcome to riding and getting in better shape. We've all gone through a similar set up period. It is worth it for your health. You will enjoy 99% of life more with the better health you recapture.
    I think its disgusting and terrible how people treat Lance Armstrong, especially after winning 7 Tour de France Titles while on drugs!

    I can't even find my bike when I'm on drugs. -Willie N.

  6. #6
    Senior Member szewczykm's Avatar
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    I got a complete fitting at my bike shop and stuff like hand numbness went away. It also made the bike much more comfortable in many other ways. I would add that I went through months of moving this and that as people suggested, but having a pro do it made all of the difference.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Divtos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by szewczykm View Post
    I got a complete fitting at my bike shop and stuff like hand numbness went away. It also made the bike much more comfortable in many other ways. I would add that I went through months of moving this and that as people suggested, but having a pro do it made all of the difference.
    +1
    One of the things a shop can do is swap out the stem which can make a big difference. If you bought the bike recently from the same shop they will likely do it for free as part of the fitting.

  8. #8
    Senior Member BikinPotter's Avatar
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    Yes to all of the advice. Sore butt...your butt will toughen up, but if you continue to have problems, you can look at changing your saddle. DO NOT get a super squishy saddle (a little padding is ok) or one of those gel covers. You'll end up with a wad of hot plastic in your crotch which will lead only to more discomfort. Are you wearing bike shorts? that little bit of padding can help. Don't wear undies with bike shorts. Bike shorts are designed to keep your bottom from chafing while wicking away sweat.

  9. #9
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    stand on the pedals if possible occasionally, stopping at intersections will do,
    that regains circulation ..

    take a hand off the handle bars and then also reduce pressure on them,
    occasionally..

  10. #10
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    At the beginning- about a month and a half ago I had numb hands and shooting pains up my left arm from the wrist. It helped to change the position of my hands and stop gripping the handlebars, just sort of resting my hands on them. I realized when reading your post that the pain went away and I hadn't noticed. Keep at it and don't give up. It gets better quickly.
    ca. 2000 Specialized Expedition
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  11. #11
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    Ride more and see if things change. Seriously.

  12. #12
    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    Also, other things you can do to get in shape will help. A strong body will be more comfortable on a bike. When I started here and had a lot of pain people emphasized doing core exercises. It helped a lot. Here is a great slide show with examples:
    http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/core-strength/SM00047

    If some are too hard, skip them.

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    Climbers Apprentice vesteroid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    Ride more and see if things change. Seriously.

    +1

    Try to move positions...move hands, let one dangle and shale the blood back into it, relax your shoulders, don't lock your elbows

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    Senior Member mprelaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vesteroid View Post
    +1

    Try to move positions...move hands, let one dangle and shale the blood back into it, relax your shoulders, don't lock your elbows
    All good advice, but one of the inherent problems with hybrids/flat bars is that they give you just that one hand position---whereas drop bars give you 4 (tops, bends, brake hoods, and drops).

  15. #15
    Bikesman RedWhiteandRed's Avatar
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    Lose the electric assist. If you are going to ride your bicycle: ride a bicycle.

  16. #16
    Senior Member adrien's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goldfinch View Post
    Also, other things you can do to get in shape will help. A strong body will be more comfortable on a bike. When I started here and had a lot of pain people emphasized doing core exercises. It helped a lot. Here is a great slide show with examples:
    http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/core-strength/SM00047

    If some are too hard, skip them.
    + a billion. Here's the thing -- your core should hold you up -- not your hands. No weight should be on them, just a feather touch so you can steer and brake. It's your abs that should hold you. Beyond getting the fit right, this means holding the grips as if you are barely touching them. Years ago when I started I used to consciously almost lift my hands off. It took about 500 miles and then the core strength came.
    "how do you know you can't swim until you have drowned?"

  17. #17
    MAK
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    Since you're riding a hybrid, try adding bar extenders. They will give you an additional hand position or two. If you're not wearing cycling gloves, they will make a big difference regarding comfort. Regarding your butt...What kind of shorts do you wear? Investing in decent shorts with a good pad will likely help. Don't get a huge gel pad that makes you feel like your wearing a loaded diaper. Quality shorts with a quality pad is a great investment. Don't skimp on the the body parts that actually touch the bike. Shoes, gloves and shorts determine the quality and comfort of your ride.

  18. #18
    Lover of Old Chrome Moly Myosmith's Avatar
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    Good advice above. Another problem I see with some new riders is that they get a death grip on the handlebar and never let go. 95% of the time you can have a quite relaxed grip and still have complete control. Its also good to flex your hands and wrists every few minutes, take one hand off the bar at a time and do keyboarding motions with your finger for a few seconds. Ergon GR or GC 2 or 3 bar ends can help prevent overextending the wrist while also providing a couple alternative hand positions.
    Lead, follow or get out of the way

  19. #19
    Senior Member goldfinch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedWhiteandRed View Post
    Lose the electric assist. If you are going to ride your bicycle: ride a bicycle.
    Depends. I rode some with an older guy who had bad knees. He used to ride a lot when he was younger. The electric assist allowed him to continue to ride, sparing his knees on the hills. It was great for him.

  20. #20
    Duct tape won't fix that slotibartfast's Avatar
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    I used to get numb hands while riding, too. The advice I got was to make sure to keep my wrists straight and not to let them bend too much. Worked wonders - no more numbness. Good luck and good riding.
    It's no matter, no distance, it's the ride.....Stephen Stills...Throughfare Gap

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by slotibartfast View Post
    I used to get numb hands while riding, too. The advice I got was to make sure to keep my wrists straight and not to let them bend too much. Worked wonders - no more numbness. Good luck and good riding.
    i just purchased ergon handlebar grips, they have small bull horns and very comfortable ergonomic grip Grip is wide so it fits your wrist more naturally. they are not cheap but very good. mine were like 38 bucks.

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    If you have Wii Fit, do some planks.

  23. #23
    Senior Member ka0use's Avatar
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    you go, girl!- and KEEP going! i changed seats and it sure helped my lower back. got a cloud 9.
    i made some other changes for med reasons, and getting the weight off the hands made my
    rides better. i stopped thinking about pain/numbness and spend the time seeing the world's beauty.

    cheerleader time:
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    rah rah ree
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    rah rah rass
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    just think- you got yo' se'f a faaaannn club!
    didn't know what you were getting into with those weirdos when you signed on, did you?
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  24. #24
    Senior Member szewczykm's Avatar
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    Resurrecting this thread. A week ago, my seat popped out of position while riding. It had just worked loose while sitting over the winter I guess.

    To this point, the seat was at a setting done by the LBS and it was good. But I didn't really keep track of where it was (I should do that now that I think about it, in case I have to do something with the seat post or who knows what else).

    I put it back to where I thought it was and I started getting some crotch pain I didn't have before. Half way through a long ride this weekend, I bumped the nose down a couple of degrees and it felt WWAAAYY different. Like I was sliding off it. ia couple of degrees felt like 20 - 30 degrees. The difference was dramatic. I stopped, loosened it up and tapped it back a little. It made things much better, but hand numbness returned as well as tired arms.

    I'm going to adjust it again, I think I'll get it back in place with one or two more adjustments. I'm just glad nothing else on my bike has shifted. Imagine how much screwing around I would do trying to get everything back to the way it was. [Seriously, the more I think about it now the more urgently I feel the need to go write down all of the measurements on my bike].

    I guess my point is that one or two degrees on the seat as well as it sliding back or forth a centimeter can shift you from crotch pain to falling off the seat to numb hands and arms. Getting your bike properly fitted can make a major difference and is well worth the money.

    Also, I'm glad that I'm getting molded into my bike well enough that I notice such things. I'm not sure I would have noticed it a month ago.

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