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


Go Back   > >

Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 10-11-06, 09:43 AM   #1
Wally K
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My first 40 mile ride, now knee pain

Hi! I'm new to cylcling for about one year now. I just did my first 40 mile ride on my Specialized Sequoia. My left knee is now bothering me, and I did not have problems before. I'm, 64 years old and weight in at 255. Do you think it's just my age, or bike fit. I tried clipless pedals, but after a fall, I felt not safe in wearing them as I do a lot of riding on the road with cars. This was last year. I read that clipless may keep my feet in the right postion and avoid knee pain. Should I go back to them ? My next goal is a 70 mile ride.
Wally K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 09:51 AM   #2
duhhuh
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 138
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Dunno, but I really like the clipless. According to the fit charts etc. my saddle height should be around 68-69cm from center of bottom bracket to top of saddle (short inseam for my height), but I have knee pain if the saddle is lower than 74. Just my experience.
duhhuh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 10:05 AM   #3
howsteepisit
Senior Member
 
howsteepisit's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Eugene, OR
Bikes: Mecian
Posts: 4,001
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 256 Post(s)
I really like the clipless also. I think the biggest benefit to them is keeping your foot properly placed on the pedal while using higher cadences. The cause of most peoples knee pain while cycling is using too high of gear and too low of cadence. You should strive to spin along with little noticeable pressure on the pedals. Also, how much and what distances have you been riding?
howsteepisit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 05:22 PM   #4
crazyb
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Hills of Iowa
Bikes: all diamond frames
Posts: 1,249
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wally K
Hi! I'm new to cylcling for about one year now. I just did my first 40 mile ride on my Specialized Sequoia. My left knee is now bothering me, and I did not have problems before. I'm, 64 years old and weight in at 255. Do you think it's just my age, or bike fit. I tried clipless pedals, but after a fall, I felt not safe in wearing them as I do a lot of riding on the road with cars. This was last year. I read that clipless may keep my feet in the right postion and avoid knee pain. Should I go back to them ? My next goal is a 70 mile ride.
What is your cadence? I find if I am in too high a gear on long rides I have more problems with my knees. If you are running a low cadence, try spinning at least part of your ride. It may help out with your knees.
crazyb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 05:28 PM   #5
will dehne
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: rockford, il
Bikes: Trek 7700, C'dale R2000
Posts: 2,646
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
There are many reasons for knee pain. Being 64 is not one of these reasons. You may want to use the search function of this forum for lots of threads. I seem to remember the following leading comments:
1) Saddle height. I think higher is better than too low. My knees are almost straight in foot down position.
2) Cadence. You should be above 80 RPM. Big guys (I am big) tend to mash the gears. No good.
3) Proper shoes. I prefer clip-less. My wife insists on clips and has frequent knee issues which go away with adjustments.
4) Arthritis. (I got that too) Low load spinning solved my problem but it took a lot of spinning.
5) Balanced exercise. Biking is good but a walk in the park may be better. (Use good cushioned shoes)
will dehne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 05:43 PM   #6
jppe
Let's do a Century
 
jppe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: North Carolina
Bikes: Pinarello Prince/Campy SR; Cervelo R3/Sram Red; Trek 5900/Duraace, Cervelo P2C/Duraace
Posts: 6,658
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 67 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by will dehne
There are many reasons for knee pain. Being 64 is not one of these reasons. You may want to use the search function of this forum for lots of threads. I seem to remember the following leading comments:
1) Saddle height. I think higher is better than too low. My knees are almost straight in foot down position.
2) Cadence. You should be above 80 RPM. Big guys (I am big) tend to mash the gears. No good.
3) Proper shoes. I prefer clip-less. My wife insists on clips and has frequent knee issues which go away with adjustments.
4) Arthritis. (I got that too) Low load spinning solved my problem but it took a lot of spinning.
5) Balanced exercise. Biking is good but a walk in the park may be better. (Use good cushioned shoes)

I agree with Will's feedback. Another thing that can cause knee pain is the saddle being out of adjustment- either being too far forward or too forward back or too low (or a combination of these). If the knee pain is in the front of the knee, try moving the saddle back a little and see if that helps. If the knee pain is in the back of the knee, slide the seat forward a touch.

I had pain in one knee but not the other but my seat height was fine. I simply adjusted the cleat a little bit forward on that foot and that has eliminated my pain. I've found pushing a hard gear and letting the cadence drop (Will's #2 above) has caused me some knee pain as well. It also works pretty hard on the hip flexors.........
__________________
Ride your Ride!!
jppe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 06:07 PM   #7
bikingshearer 
Crawlin' up, flyin' down
 
bikingshearer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Democratic Peoples' Republic of Berkeley
Bikes: 1967 Paramount, 1982-ish Ron Cooper,1986 De Rosa Professional, 1978 Eisentraut "A," 1961 BianchiCompetizione, 1994 Trek 520, 199? Burley Bossa Nova, early-1970s Cinelli Speciale Corsa
Posts: 3,350
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 15 Post(s)
The two biggest causes of knee pain in cycling are (1) a seat that's too low and (2) consistently pushing too big a gear. They aren't the only possible causes, but they are the place to start.

As for (1), I learned the "pain in the front/rear of the knee" adage slightly differently - pain in the front of the knee (like right under the kneecap), raise the saddle; pain in the back of the knee, lower the saddle. Of course, I learned that waaaay before clipless pedals came around, back when adjusting cleats wasn't an option because they were nailed into place. In any event, for road riding, make sure your legs are close to fully extended at the lowest part of your pedal stroke.

As for (2), train yourself to keep your pedaling cadence up, like 80+ rpms on the flat. (Splurging on a bike computer that has a cadence feature can help you get used to doing this,but it is certainly not essential.) If you are like me, your cadence will naturally go higher on downhills, even gentle ones, and will naturally go lower on all but fairly gentle climbs. That seems to be pretty normal.

If you consciously train yourself to think in terms of keeping your revs high and your gears low, and you get your seat height right, odds are you will take care of your knee pain issues. If not, then start playing with the cleat adjustments, saddle fore-and-aft adjustments, checking to see if you have uneven length legs (yes, that can cause knee pain), and some of the more esoteric ways of addressing the issue.

Good luck, and here's hoping you bag that 70-miler, sans knee pain.
__________________
"I'm in shape -- round is a shape." Andy Rooney
bikingshearer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 07:02 PM   #8
deraltekluge
Senior Member
 
deraltekluge's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Bikes: Kona Cinder Cone, Sun EZ-3 AX
Posts: 1,195
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wally K
Hi! I'm new to cylcling for about one year now. I just did my first 40 mile ride on my Specialized Sequoia. My left knee is now bothering me, and I did not have problems before. I'm, 64 years old and weight in at 255. Do you think it's just my age, or bike fit. I tried clipless pedals, but after a fall, I felt not safe in wearing them as I do a lot of riding on the road with cars. This was last year. I read that clipless may keep my feet in the right postion and avoid knee pain. Should I go back to them ? My next goal is a 70 mile ride.
Remember the old joke:

Patient: Doctor, it hurts when I do this...

Doctor: Then don't do that!

Considering your age and weight, your knee may be wearing out. If it keeps hurting, see a doctor, get scans, and find out if something is messed up inside.
deraltekluge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 07:22 PM   #9
Grampy™
Geezer Member
 
Grampy™'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Cedar Rapids, IA
Bikes: Airborne, LeMond, Bianchi CX, Volae Century, Redline 925 (fixed) and a Burley Tandem.
Posts: 1,384
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The posts about cadence are probably your most likely..... you should also check your cleats on the clipless..... look at how your toes point when you walk.... they should point the same when you pedal.
__________________
Carpe who?
Grampy™ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 08:06 PM   #10
NOS88
Senior Member
 
NOS88's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Montgomery County, Pennsylvania
Bikes:
Posts: 6,490
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Unless I missed it, you didn't indicate where the knee pain is. Is it in the front of the knee? This is often a sign of pushing too big a gear and not spinning. Is it on the top of the knee? This is likely caused by a seat that is too low and/or pushing a big gear. Is it on the outside of the knee? This can be the result of your feet not having enough lateral free movement or your foot positioned the wrong way. If you can determine where the discomfort/pain is you can narrow your initial attempts at resolving it. With that said, I'd encourage you to rest it before pushing it too hard again.
__________________
A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking. - S. Wright
Favorite rides in the stable: Indy Fab CJ Ti - Colnago MXL - S-Works Roubaix - Habanero Team Issue - Jamis Eclipse carbon/831
NOS88 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-06, 08:52 PM   #11
Wally K
Junior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 8
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It looks like the general concensus is to spin more. I was using the big 52t gear at about 60 cadence 15MPH. Thanks for eveyones input. I'll drop down and try spinning more with less pressure. I was also using sneakers and not my SPD clips. Haven't been using them to much after my first fall.
Wally K is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-06, 11:46 AM   #12
stapfam
Time for a change.
 
stapfam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: 6 miles inland from the coast of Sussex, in the South East of England
Bikes: Dale MT2000. Bianchi FS920 Kona Explosif. Giant TCR C. Boreas Ignis. Pinarello Fp Uno.
Posts: 19,915
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
So far plenty of answers that give good advice- but I will give one more. The knees rely on the quad muscles to keep working properly. Get the quads built up and it will not only help the knees- the whole leg improves.

Can commiserate with you as I had to give up running 25 years ago with knee problems. Like you it only came after a certain milage- and I took up cycling to keep the legs moving. Initially had knee problems but worked on the quads and no more problems.
__________________
How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


Spike Milligan
stapfam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-06, 02:49 PM   #13
RockyTopBiker
Bikin' and Hikin'
 
RockyTopBiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Greeneville Tennessee
Bikes: Lemond Reno, Diamondback Topanga Mountain Bike
Posts: 248
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You know you are dead.

When you wake up in the morning and nothing hurts.......then you know you're dead.

I'm hitting 65 myself in December and plan to ride my age. My knees will not be the only thing hurting.
RockyTopBiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-13-06, 03:05 PM   #14
will dehne
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: rockford, il
Bikes: Trek 7700, C'dale R2000
Posts: 2,646
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by deraltekluge
Remember the old joke:

Patient: Doctor, it hurts when I do this...

Doctor: Then don't do that!

Considering your age and weight, your knee may be wearing out. If it keeps hurting, see a doctor, get scans, and find out if something is messed up inside.
I hope you do not mind another opinion on this issue. IMHO it is too important to let it slide.
I DID go to a MD and had x-ray as well as MRI following an accident to my knee. The MD said exactly this: Sorry but you have Arthritis in both knees and there is nothing we can do except
give you this Vioxx.
I said to hell with this and started to do no load spinning. About a year later I was able to get off all pills and started serious biking including XC. The Arthritis is there, I can feel it whenever I do something stupid like mashing too high a gear or go jogging.
If I use my head properly I have no problems and my biking performance is slowly improving.
The PO should see an MD. However, inactivity is a sure road to being invalid soon.
will dehne is offline   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 12:24 AM.