Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10-13-13, 10:17 PM   #1
sthslvrcnfsn
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Denver, Colorado
Bikes: 2010 Surly Trucker, 77 Nishiki Olympic, 69 Schwinn Varsity, 2010 "Motobecane" SS, 1983 Motobecane Jubilee Sport
Posts: 30
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I noticed that my riding position LEANS!

I'm posting this in the Commuter section because I use my bicycles to commute. Not sure if there is a better place to post this.

I spend a decent amount of time in the saddle, and the alone time translates to lots of brain activity. For example: "How fast am I spinning?", "how are my tires rolling on turns?", "How does the fore and aft weight feel?", etc. Then one day about two months ago I noticed that I can see the down tube on the left side of the top tube (looking down from the riding position of course). During the past few months, I'll occasionally look down and it's always the same - downtube is visible to the left of the top tube. That means my head is on the left side of the centerline of the bike.

So I got to thinking - like I mentioned, I think a good deal while riding - and I'm getting a little concerned. Is my whole torso leaning to the left? Does my head just naturally hang to the left? I experience a buzzing/numbing in my right arm on longer rides - is that because I'm leaning to the left and my right arm is therefore more extended than my left? I've sold my past three bikes to overcome my right arm issue - working progressively towards a shorter top tube and a more comfortable upright position. Not only changing bikes, but going to upright handlebars as well (currently running Soma Oxfords, inverted - a rip off of the Nitto Albatross as far as I can tell). I've been doing everything I can to get my hands closer to my body and less extended.

I've never been able to ride a bike with no hands, which might be informative with regards to my left-leaning issue. This goes way back to the BMX days in my youth, through my adult road bike times, and now I'm on a Surly Trucker with 26" wheels. None of that matters - I have never been able to guide a bike in a straight line with no hands. It's not a bike alignment issue, as I've learned how to work on bikes from a young age, and I've owned 10+ bikes in the last 10 years alone.

Is this bad?
sthslvrcnfsn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-13, 10:46 PM   #2
KBentley57
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Birmingham
Bikes: 2010 Felt DA, 2012/6 Felt F5
Posts: 642
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
the only advice I can give is don't start looking on WebMD, you'll end up diagnosing yourself with death.
KBentley57 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-13, 10:49 PM   #3
Bill Kapaun
Senior Member
 
Bill Kapaun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Mid Willamette Valley, Orygun
Bikes: 86 RockHopper,2008 Specialized Globe. Both upgraded to 9 speeds.
Posts: 9,202
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
I'm was sighted in one eye and far sighted in the other.
How do you think things looked to me?
Bill Kapaun is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-13, 11:38 PM   #4
no1mad
Thunder Whisperer
 
no1mad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NE OK
Bikes: '06 Kona Smoke
Posts: 8,662
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 50 Post(s)
Well, let's see...

1. Have you ever been professionally fitted? You may be slightly out of proportion and not realize it.
2. Ever been to a chiropractor? You might want to consider it, as your spine may be severely out of alignment.
3. Is the saddle in alignment with the top tube? I know, silly question, but if it is off by a couple of degrees, that could affect your posture.

The no-hands thing... my understanding is that the rake and trail have more to do with this than rider ability.
__________________
Community guidelines
no1mad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-13, 12:26 AM   #5
Greg M
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: long island, NY
Bikes: 13 salsa vaya, 90 klein pinnacle 01 lemond poprad, 98 klein quantum race, 91 trek 1100
Posts: 99
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think it is just an optical allusion, has to do with eye dominance. Try this: hold your hand at arms length and close one eye at a time. Does your hand seem to move left to right? your brain doesn't actually see in stereo. One eye is dominant generally.
Greg M is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-13, 08:25 AM   #6
Leisesturm
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 2,235
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 56 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by sthslvrcnfsn View Post
Is my whole torso leaning to the left? Does my head just naturally hang to the left? I experience a buzzing/numbing in my right arm on longer rides - is that because I'm leaning to the left and my right arm is therefore more extended than my left? I've sold my past three bikes to overcome my right arm issue - working progressively towards a shorter top tube and a more comfortable upright position. Not only changing bikes, but going to upright handlebars as well (currently running Soma Oxfords, inverted - a rip off of the Nitto Albatross as far as I can tell). I've been doing everything I can to get my hands closer to my body and less extended.

I've never been able to ride a bike with no hands, which might be informative with regards to my left-leaning issue. This goes way back to the BMX days in my youth, through my adult road bike times, and now I'm on a Surly Trucker with 26" wheels. None of that matters - I have never been able to guide a bike in a straight line with no hands. It's not a bike alignment issue, as I've learned how to work on bikes from a young age, and I've owned 10+ bikes in the last 10 years alone.

Is this bad?
If you lean (slightly) to one side, and you might, the side you lean towards should be the side that hurts. There is little to support a supposition that your right arm might hurt because it is more extended. It should hurt less if anything. Extension is usually a good thing. Hyper-extension is another matter entirely. However, there is this, After years of riding ever more upright bikes through the 90's and 20 oughts, I chanced upon a drop bar road-racer going cheap at an LBS. There has been a marked reduction in hand pain and arm numbness from a riding position that is radically lower than any of my commute bikes have been. The way your wrists rotate outward so your hands can straddle brake hoods is a good thing for many people. More to the point, the way ones wrists rotate inward to hold the grips of upright bars seems to cause a number of issues for many people, yours truly included. I haven't found that any amount of raising the bars completely solves this.

I do have one bike set up much like yours: North Road bars, etc. I do not have arm or hand pain on this bike, but the riding position is not a performance oriented one by any stretch of the imagination. I am not a commuting martyr. I do not seek to handicap my performance on a bicycle to meet objectives of sweat reduction or anything unrelated to completing the mission with a modicum of dispatch. So, in a few hours my main commuter is going to be the latest vehicle in the fleet to get drop-bars. Compact bend, nothing extreme, but just because they are drop bars, with no other changes made to the stem length or angle, my riding position will be 3.5" lower on the flat top of the bars and 6" lower in the drops. Getting down out of the wind so I can maintain a decent road-speed is more important to me than anything else. I consider it a bonus that my hands seem to like drop bars more than they do any kind of flat-bar I've tried besides North Road Bars.

H
Leisesturm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-13, 09:01 AM   #7
GuitarBob
Kit doesn't match
 
GuitarBob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Tucson, AZ
Bikes: 5
Posts: 653
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 13 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg M View Post
I think it is just an optical allusion, has to do with eye dominance. Try this: hold your hand at arms length and close one eye at a time. Does your hand seem to move left to right? your brain doesn't actually see in stereo. One eye is dominant generally.
+1
GuitarBob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-14-13, 09:57 PM   #8
cooker
Prefers Cicero
 
cooker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Toronto
Bikes: 1984 Trek 520; 1990s Peugeot (Canadian-made) rigid mountain bike; 2007 Bike Friday NWT; misc others
Posts: 10,234
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 136 Post(s)
No body is exactly symmetrical so the slight tilt might be due to you naturally compensating for some harmless irregularity in your physique. The pavement usually slants down to the right for drainage, so that might be a factor too.
cooker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-13, 03:40 AM   #9
ben4345
Kitten Legion Master
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Portland, Oregon
Bikes: Fuji silhouette, Dawes SST-aL
Posts: 898
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Oh gawd, my cat says you're gonna DIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
ben4345 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-13, 07:07 AM   #10
Surrealdeal
a.k.a., Point Five Dude
 
Surrealdeal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Twin Cites, MN USA
Bikes: 1987 Trek Elance 400 T
Posts: 794
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Though I'm not a proponent of them myself perhaps a recumbent would solve your problem.
Surrealdeal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-13, 07:55 AM   #11
DX-MAN
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Bikes:
Posts: 4,789
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
99.7% probability that it's NOTHING, except something to get over. Ride and enjoy it.

(If it IS the .3%, then ignore what I just said.)
DX-MAN is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-13, 11:37 AM   #12
leggett
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: East Moline, Illinois
Bikes: 1987 Bridgestone MB3; 2008 Trek 7.5
Posts: 10
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I've had years of low back problems and when it is acting up I notice that instead of being centered over the top tube I'm off to the right. So bad at one point that my left eye was looking down the right side of the top tube.
leggett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-13, 11:55 AM   #13
PatrickGSR94
Senior Member
 
PatrickGSR94's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Memphis TN area
Bikes: 2011 Felt Z85 (road/commuter), 2006 Marin Pine Mountain (utility), 1995 KHS Alite 1000 (gravel grinder)
Posts: 6,121
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 39 Post(s)
Do you have a trainer? Set it up in front of a mirror, or with a camera perhaps looking at you from the back, and see how it goes. See if you are still looking at the seat tube left of the top tube when the bike is stationary on a trainer.
PatrickGSR94 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-15-13, 01:36 PM   #14
cooker
Prefers Cicero
 
cooker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Toronto
Bikes: 1984 Trek 520; 1990s Peugeot (Canadian-made) rigid mountain bike; 2007 Bike Friday NWT; misc others
Posts: 10,234
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 136 Post(s)
I checked out my own situation riding in today. I found I tend to ride with my head tilted to the left (probably due to the morning sun always being on my left) so I see the downtube to the left of my top tube. But it also depends on my foot position. If I pause in pedaling to look down, and coast with my left foot down, I see more of the downtube on the left. If I deliberately coast with the right foot down, I see a bit of the downtube to the right of the top tube.
cooker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-13, 09:01 AM   #15
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: West Village, New York City
Bikes: too many
Posts: 26,875
Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 94 Post(s)
You might have scoliosis.
__________________
Tom Reingold, noglider@pobox.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-13, 09:19 AM   #16
CommuteCommando
Senior Member
 
CommuteCommando's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Southern CaliFORNIA.
Bikes: KHS Alite 500, Trek 7.2 FX , Masi Partenza, Masi Fixed Special, Masi Cran Criterium
Posts: 3,010
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You might consider moving this to the bike fit section.
CommuteCommando is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-17-13, 09:24 AM   #17
alan s 
Senior Member
 
alan s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Bikes:
Posts: 4,562
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 52 Post(s)
I think it has something to do with the gravitational pull of the moon.
alan s is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:46 PM.