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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 05-06-13, 10:18 AM   #1
Bearen61
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Need help with pedaling...

This may sound like an unusual request, but I figured if anyone could help, they would be on this forum. I am a 51 yo male, 330#, who had both hips replaced back in October 2011. I really want to get on my bike and start riding, but I am having trouble getting my leg up on the pedal to start a ride. I know I can hold onto something and pull my leg up, but that is not realistic when out riding and stopping for break or something. Can anyone suggest an exercise I could do to help with getting the strength up so I can do that myself? What I mean is that when you push off and you have the left pedal in the down stroke, I can't get my right leg up enough to get mt foot on the right pedal. I don't clips or anything on the pedals, not anywhere near comfortable with trying something like that yet.
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Old 05-06-13, 10:21 AM   #2
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Ouch. That's awful ... wanting to do something but having a difficult time even starting. I really don't have any valid suggestions for you, but perhaps a recumbent bike would be best for you right now.
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Old 05-06-13, 10:42 AM   #3
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Thanks for the suggestion, I've thought of that, but no money in the budget. I have my mid-90's Giant ATX760 that I had fixed up after my hip surgeries...just need to figure out the leg thing :-). Hoping I can figure out an exercise to strengthen the legs to be able to get my foot up on that darned pedal. I bought that bike new and only rode it 3 times...it's time to break it in!!!
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Old 05-06-13, 11:07 AM   #4
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Can you use a stationary bike? I'd get comfortable on one of those before venturing out on a regular bike.
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Old 05-06-13, 11:12 AM   #5
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I'm not a doctor or PT so take it with a grain of salt. These worked for me. It looks like 7 would be one you could easily do, but all of them helped out with my aductor strain. Most can be done watching TV. Take it easy though, they're harder than they look if you do multiple sets.

http://www.physioadvisor.com.au/8118...litation-e.htm

Another thing to consider is a bike trainer where you can fix the bike in and get on anyway possible. The act of pedaling will naturally strengthen the muscles.

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Old 05-06-13, 11:26 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Bearen61 View Post
This may sound like an unusual request, but I figured if anyone could help, they would be on this forum. I am a 51 yo male, 330#, who had both hips replaced back in October 2011. I really want to get on my bike and start riding, but I am having trouble getting my leg up on the pedal to start a ride. I know I can hold onto something and pull my leg up, but that is not realistic when out riding and stopping for break or something. Can anyone suggest an exercise I could do to help with getting the strength up so I can do that myself? What I mean is that when you push off and you have the left pedal in the down stroke, I can't get my right leg up enough to get mt foot on the right pedal. I don't clips or anything on the pedals, not anywhere near comfortable with trying something like that yet.
The best solution for you is a trike. There are many styles of trikes for adults with the Schwinn trike being the least expensive.

I strongly recommend that you switch to a trike ASAP to limit the possibility of a fall that could severely damage your new hips.
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Old 05-06-13, 11:37 AM   #7
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Is your seat too low? If you can sit on the seat while stopped for most bikes it's too low. If you can't start out with the seat up and doing the first pedal standing, then a stationary bike or trainer will be needed.
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Old 05-06-13, 11:43 AM   #8
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Does your bike come with gears? I would suggest you always start pedaling in a low gear so its easy to push off; as the bike starts rolling then make the gear harder (shift up).

This all take some practice but you might be a candidate for pedals - where you clip in. Your "start" leg is always attached (clipped in). Your trail leg is on the ground (your butt should not be on the saddle - if it is your saddle is way too low but I understand for newbies thet are more comfortable that way). To start. the pedal is at 3 o'clock and you push down. At the same time lift your butt onto the seat and just start pedaling. Don't worry about clipping in the other showe until the bike starts rolling and you have some speed.

I have bad hips (my right needs replacement) and because of a back problem, my left foot drops but I have no problem starting my bike. I just remember to start in a low enough gear... but frankly it sounds like a trike is an excellent suggestion.

The other thing to build up strength, is to weight lift. Attach a 5 lb belt to your ankle and lift up and down while holding onto a counter.
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Old 05-06-13, 12:22 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Bearen61 View Post
This may sound like an unusual request, but I figured if anyone could help, they would be on this forum. I am a 51 yo male, 330#, who had both hips replaced back in October 2011. I really want to get on my bike and start riding, but I am having trouble getting my leg up on the pedal to start a ride.
Is your problem one of strength, or range of motion? In either case, given that one-and-a-half years have gone by since your surgery, it sounds to me like the solution involves a good bit of physiotherapy... or more... and for that, you ought to be seeking advice from someone(s) professionally trained, rather than from us, here. Sure, anecdotal experience is helpful, and first-hand even better, but your physiology is unique to you, and you should not take shortcuts. "One size fits all" -- even "One size fits most" -- is unsuitable in this instance. Be wary of well-intentioned advice (but not mine, of course ).
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Old 05-06-13, 12:55 PM   #10
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Is your problem one of strength, or range of motion?
That's what occurred to me too. My wife is staving off a hip replacement as long as she can and she has tremendous difficulty swinging a leg over the top bar but not getting her foot on a pedal. That seems like quite a motion limitation!

I'd look into something that won't fall over on its own (trike) because I'd hate to fall on my surgically repaired him.

Maybe somebody else with a new hip can chime in but I didn't think your range of motion would be that limited after the surgery.
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Old 05-06-13, 01:32 PM   #11
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Is your problem one of strength, or range of motion? In either case, given that one-and-a-half years have gone by since your surgery, it sounds to me like the solution involves a good bit of physiotherapy... or more... and for that, you ought to be seeking advice from someone(s) professionally trained, rather than from us, here. Sure, anecdotal experience is helpful, and first-hand even better, but your physiology is unique to you, and you should not take shortcuts. "One size fits all" -- even "One size fits most" -- is unsuitable in this instance. Be wary of well-intentioned advice (but not mine, of course ).
This is good advice. A quick trip to the doctor should sort out the path to take.
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Old 05-06-13, 02:40 PM   #12
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...Maybe somebody else with a new hip can chime in but I didn't think your range of motion would be that limited after the surgery.
I don't have a bionic hip, but my lady friend is scheduled for one next month. The doctors say that afterward, she can do anything now does. There are no limitations. We'll see.
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Old 05-07-13, 10:52 AM   #13
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Thanks all for the advice. I think a bike trainer will be a good place to start, anyone have any experience with them? Range of motion is not a problem, but strength probably is, I have pulled out the old PT sheets to start doing some of those exercises again. The link to PhysioAdvisor reminded me I have those...Thanks!!
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Old 05-09-13, 12:37 PM   #14
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Trainer came yesterday, hoping to try it out tonight after a trip to the fitness center.
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Old 05-10-13, 08:02 AM   #15
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You might want to discuss this topic in the Hip Replacement forums at BoneSmart.

I had both knees replaced, and while its been almost all gain, I've lost range of motion in my hips, oddly enough. I'm slowly regaining it, but still, its annoying.
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Old 05-10-13, 12:00 PM   #16
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Neil...excellent suggestion. Completely forgot about BoneSmart!
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