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  1. #1
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Lower back pain=weak core?

    Hi everyone,
    By the grace of everything holy, I just completed a MS-150 ride this weekend that I'd been training hard for (hooray for a middle-aged fat woman!) I live in a very flat area with no hills; 3/4 of this ride had some mighty hefty hills.
    The first day went well. On the second, though, we had some pretty significant wind and rain making the hills even harder to climb.
    The good news is that the old legs feel absolutely great! The only thing hurting is my lower back. I don't think there is any injury- just muscular pain. I've not experienced this on any rides before done on the flat.
    Have you guys experienced lower back pain before after riding, and do core strengthening exercises help?
    Thanks in advance!
    One mile at a time

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ursa Minor's Avatar
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    Ouch sorry to hear about your back. Mines been hurting this last week and keeping me off the bike.
    Not sure what hurt it. Anyway good luck with yours (and mine!).

    Charlie
    Grimly determined to have fun.

  3. #3
    Draft Producer Fastflyingasian's Avatar
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    the answer is generally multi part. assuming your "fit" is spot on then its usually your posture while riding. its easy to slouch when your on the bike for long hours. if you don't catch it then its not going to feel good. i end up doing a lot of on bike yoga if i do that. naturally if your core is unable to cope then you will not be able to hold yourself in the proper position for the duration.
    "If you never suffered from over training then you've never trained hard enough"

    Some days your the windshield and some days you are the cyclist. either way it doesn't look like its going to be a good day for you.

    Clydesdale/Athena Locater Map

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  4. #4
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ursa Minor View Post
    Ouch sorry to hear about your back. Mines been hurting this last week and keeping me off the bike.
    Not sure what hurt it. Anyway good luck with yours (and mine!).

    Charlie
    Thanks Charlie! Fortunately mine is feeling a lot better today (heat helped), and hopefully yours will soon too. Planning to hop back on the bike this afternoon and see how it feels
    One mile at a time

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by WobblyLegs View Post
    I've not experienced this on any rides before done on the flat.
    Have you guys experienced lower back pain before after riding, and do core strengthening exercises help?
    I have observed that climbing puts more strain on my lower back than flat rides. I tend to lean forward a bit while climbing, which probably doesn't help. I'm sure that core strengthening exercises can help, but I find them intensely boring. For me, climbing and sprinting out of the saddle seem to improve core strength and are much more fun than planks or any other core exercise I've tried...

  6. #6
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fastflyingasian View Post
    the answer is generally multi part. assuming your "fit" is spot on then its usually your posture while riding. its easy to slouch when your on the bike for long hours. if you don't catch it then its not going to feel good. i end up doing a lot of on bike yoga if i do that. naturally if your core is unable to cope then you will not be able to hold yourself in the proper position for the duration.
    Thanks! The bike fit is good. I think it did come down to poor posture related to fatigue. I'd been concentrating mostly on leg strength while training, but mistakenly ignored core strength. Lesson learned the hard way!
    One mile at a time

  7. #7
    Senior Member lsberrios1's Avatar
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    I suffer from back problems. I think it was due to my several motorcycle accidents and I believe the posture on the bike doenst help much.. However I sometimes feel that core pain can vary depending, not only on the length of the ride, but the intensity. There are days that an 80 mile leisurely ride doesnt do much, but a strenous 25 mile ride can give me serious lower back pain.
    Cat 6 going on PRO....

  8. #8
    Texas Tornado copswithguns's Avatar
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    A weak core is my theory as well. I bought Tom Danielson's Core Advantage. If you don't know. T.D. is a pro cyclist and he co-wrote the book with his trainer. It's a core strength book written by cyclists for cyclists and has a lot of good workouts that will improve your core strength, which will improve your cycling. It's like $10 and worth it.
    "Speed never killed anyone. Suddenly becoming stationary...Now that's what gets you." -Jeremy Clarkson

  9. #9
    Senior Member JackoDandy's Avatar
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    OK, at the risk of sounding like a 'kook' here goes:

    For months Ive been suffering sharp back pain that has even degraded my sleeping habits. Every movement was met with a dull to sharp back spasm. I was on the clyde forums a few weeks ago and came across a member's posting of a 'fix' for back pain (thanks, but I forget who you were). The member pointed to these to ease back pain:

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Miracle-Ba.../dp/0761128689

    Im the #1 skeptic to 'quick fix' ideas but seeing as the 'balls' were only $13, I took a chance as I was about to visit my doctor and expected a huge medical bill to fix my back. Well, blow me over but the things actually work! Ive had a week now of pain-free sleep and if my back hurts during the day, I lie on these things for 10 mins and it takes away 90% of the pain.

    I have no affiliation with the balls and no idea if you need medical help or not. I'm just saying these things are working for me.

    I rode my bike pain-free this week for the first time in weeks.

  10. #10
    Draft Producer Fastflyingasian's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WobblyLegs View Post
    Thanks! The bike fit is good. I think it did come down to poor posture related to fatigue. I'd been concentrating mostly on leg strength while training, but mistakenly ignored core strength. Lesson learned the hard way!
    unless your abs or obliques are beat up at the end of the ride then it may be more of a mental error if its posture related pain. the body is only as lazy as the operator upstairs
    "If you never suffered from over training then you've never trained hard enough"

    Some days your the windshield and some days you are the cyclist. either way it doesn't look like its going to be a good day for you.

    Clydesdale/Athena Locater Map

    Wiki definition of a Fred http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fred_(bicycling)

  11. #11
    etw
    etw is offline
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    I recently was told about some good stretching exercises for the back. I have recently purchased this book, and am waiting for it to arrive.

    http://www.amazon.com/Whartons-Back-...ton+stretching

  12. #12
    I Ride, Therefore I Am BigUgly's Avatar
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    I find after long rides my hamstrings tighen up and cause some lower back pain. I find stretching them out, along with ab muscles relieves the tightness in my back.
    Don't worry, relax, ride and have fun.

  13. #13
    Senior Member billh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WobblyLegs View Post
    Hi everyone,
    Have you guys experienced lower back pain before after riding,
    yes . .

    Quote Originally Posted by WobblyLegs View Post
    and do core strengthening exercises help?
    Thanks in advance!
    and yes.

    lower back is a major cycling muscle, if not THE major cycling muscle group. the core exercises are boring at first but difficult if you have not done them, examples: traditional situps, crunches on the abs . . . but need to balance with supermans, and alternating supermans for the lower back . . . then the abductors and adductors exercises for the sides, can do with the plyo cords and shoe stirrups standing up and stepping sideways, monster steps . . . lie on side and raise leg. many, many, many variations on the core. I just get a mat and choose them randomly, making sure to hit all four sides (front abs, back muscle group, left side, right side). Do it, you won't regret it!

    ps--forgot front planks and side planks, hold for 30 seconds each. work up to 60 sec. bread and butter core.
    Last edited by billh; 10-08-13 at 12:28 PM.
    "The mark of the immature man is that he wants to die nobly for a cause, while the mark of the mature man is that he wants to live humbly for one" JD Salinger, Catcher in the Rye, 1963

  14. #14
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by copswithguns View Post
    A weak core is my theory as well. I bought Tom Danielson's Core Advantage. If you don't know. T.D. is a pro cyclist and he co-wrote the book with his trainer. It's a core strength book written by cyclists for cyclists and has a lot of good workouts that will improve your core strength, which will improve your cycling. It's like $10 and worth it.
    I will check that book out- thanks!
    One mile at a time

  15. #15
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JackoDandy View Post
    OK, at the risk of sounding like a 'kook' here goes:

    For months Ive been suffering sharp back pain that has even degraded my sleeping habits. Every movement was met with a dull to sharp back spasm. I was on the clyde forums a few weeks ago and came across a member's posting of a 'fix' for back pain (thanks, but I forget who you were). The member pointed to these to ease back pain:

    http://www.amazon.com/The-Miracle-Ba.../dp/0761128689

    Im the #1 skeptic to 'quick fix' ideas but seeing as the 'balls' were only $13, I took a chance as I was about to visit my doctor and expected a huge medical bill to fix my back. Well, blow me over but the things actually work! Ive had a week now of pain-free sleep and if my back hurts during the day, I lie on these things for 10 mins and it takes away 90% of the pain.

    I have no affiliation with the balls and no idea if you need medical help or not. I'm just saying these things are working for me.

    I rode my bike pain-free this week for the first time in weeks.
    Terrific that you are pain free now- that is awesome! I've used foam rollers and "the stick" for my legs before, which works wonders for helping with knee pain
    One mile at a time

  16. #16
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by etw View Post
    I recently was told about some good stretching exercises for the back. I have recently purchased this book, and am waiting for it to arrive.

    http://www.amazon.com/Whartons-Back-...ton+stretching
    Thanks for the link- looks like a good one!
    One mile at a time

  17. #17
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billh View Post
    yes . .



    and yes.

    lower back is a major cycling muscle, if not THE major cycling muscle group. the core exercises are boring at first but difficult if you have not done them, examples: traditional situps, crunches on the abs . . . but need to balance with supermans, and alternating supermans for the lower back . . . then the abductors and adductors exercises for the sides, can do with the plyo cords and shoe stirrups standing up and stepping sideways, monster steps . . . lie on side and raise leg. many, many, many variations on the core. I just get a mat and choose them randomly, making sure to hit all four sides (front abs, back muscle group, left side, right side). Do it, you won't regret it!

    ps--forgot front planks and side planks, hold for 30 seconds each. work up to 60 sec. bread and butter core.
    These are so helpful, and I am starting TODAY. Big thanks! Knowing absolutely next to nothing, I relied on leg strength and stubbornness to get me through the ride, while completely and foolishly ignoring core strength.
    One mile at a time

  18. #18
    Junior Member WobblyLegs's Avatar
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    Thank you all for your replies and the very good information! You have helped a newbie out tremendously and I am very grateful!
    One mile at a time

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