Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 20 of 20
  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    103
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    of necks and bifocals, women and bars (!) and roadbikes

    Hi,

    Mr. Tacfarinas is now on her second roadbike, and still not really comfortable. She likes her hybrid fine, but wants the efficiency of a road bike. Her first roadie was a new Fuji Roubaix, set up by the LBS with a stem raiser. We decided that part of the problem was the thin road tires and that she'd be happier with more of a touring bike: same efficient geometry but trading slower ride for a greater feeling of security. So we pulled a Bianchi off ebay, fitted a Nitto techtronic stem and 28mm tires. And she's happier. This bike had a relatively short top tube, and the stem has the smallest possible forward extension, but she still feels stretched out: her arms are totally straight even when she's on the hoods.

    We realize that she may get more flexible (she's a fit 6' early fifties, with a short torso). But I wondered if there was one bar in particular that might get her a little more comfortable. I know there's been much discussion of pros and cons, but I can't figure out what the various options do for fit, if anything.

    The other problem she has is that she has to pull her head way up in order to see out of bifocals (I'm not sure I quite get how this works, actually, but there it is). One LBS guy suggested contacts. Can anyone think of a solution short of that?

  2. #2
    Ol' Paint
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Garland, Texas
    My Bikes
    90s(?)Bianchi Advantage, '68 Raleigh Grand Prix, 80s(?) Raleigh Gran Sport mixte, '95 Schwinn Clear Creek, '88(?) Fuji, '69 Schwinn Flyer
    Posts
    387
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I ride with bifocals, but, especially when I am riding, I rarely need anything but the tops. Is she trying to read computers?
    "In my cathedral,
    colored glass holds no candle to
    sunlight through trees."
    -- Leon Briggs

  3. #3
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Villa Incognito
    My Bikes
    1983 Trek 720; 1983 Trek 620; 1989 Gi Cannondale Bad Boy Ultra; LeMond Victoire; Bike Friday Pocket Rocket Pro
    Posts
    2,649
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Can you raise the stem--or get an extender? I think that could make riding more comfy. And maybe the guy at the LBS is right about the contacts.
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  4. #4
    Cycler Suzie Green's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    1,499
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Is she riding with normal prescription glasses and finding that she is peering over the tops of the frames in her natural riding position? If that's the case, she should switch to a prescription lense in a regular pair of sport sunglasses. Many models have that as an option. Does she need the bottom part of her bifocals to read her computer? If not, then just having the distance prescription should be enough. They do make stick-on bifocals (Google them for a link) that work like magnifiers and can be used on the lower part of cycling glasses. This may only work if she just needs the magnification...it may not work for an astigmatism issue.

  5. #5
    Steel Rider
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    My Bikes
    Club Fuji
    Posts
    130
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    She has other, more serious, problems if Mr. Tacfarinas is a she...

  6. #6
    Cycler Suzie Green's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    1,499
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by rocoach View Post
    She has other, more serious, problems if Mr. Tacfarinas is a she...
    Why?

  7. #7
    Team Poseur Metric Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Beaumont, CA
    My Bikes
    2012 Motobecane Ti SRAM Red/2008 Trek Madone SRAM Force
    Posts
    1,314
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by rocoach View Post
    She has other, more serious, problems if Mr. Tacfarinas is a she...
    Perhaps they live in California.
    The thoughts and opinions expressed by this poster are his own and should not be misconstrued as gospel. They are and were not meant to inflame, enrage or otherwise tick anyone off, usually.
    2012 Ti Motobecane with SRAM Red 2013~2008 Trek Madone with SRAM Force~2010 Specialized Hardrock 29er~2006 Trek 4300~Garmin 800 CTR
    Mark

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    776
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    One possibility is an adjustable stem. They look a bit 'Fred' but might help in finding an angle and length that provides comfort.

    Good luck.

  9. #9
    Yen
    Yen is offline
    Surly Girly Yen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    SoCal
    Posts
    4,100
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    If she is not broad-shouldered, she might also try narrower bars which will bring her hands in a bit and therefore raise her up just a bit. That's what the fitter recommended for my husband's and my Roubaix.

    The fitter also taught me to lean forward from the pelvis, rather than bending from the waist.
    Specialized Roubaix Expert
    Surly Long Haul Trucker

  10. #10
    Prefers Cicero cooker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Toronto
    My Bikes
    1984 Trek 520: "the Bronze"; '80s Panasonic road bike (innominate); '97 Raleigh Century: "Rubeus" because it's red, and twice as heavy as a normal bike; blue 90's Peugeot Mackenzie :"Bix" (beaterbike), 2007 green Bike Friday New World Tourist.
    Posts
    8,084
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    As she rides more she may feel less stretched out.

    I ride with bifocals and I simply learned to adapt. I don't always expect to be looking through the best part of the lens, but I see cars and potholes and other hazards well enough. When I had a computer I learned to shift my head enough to be able to read it when necessary.

  11. #11
    Senior Member deraltekluge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    My Bikes
    Kona Cinder Cone, Sun EZ-3 AX
    Posts
    1,195
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    The bifocal problem doesn't make sense to me. Bifocals use the upper portion of the lenses for distance vision and the lower portion for near vision...just what you need on a bike to look where you're going and to see any computer readout on the handlebars. Unless the glasses fit so low on her nose that she's looking over the top of them??? If that's the problem, go back to where she bought them, and get them adjusted...it's probably free, even.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    St Peters, Missouri
    My Bikes
    Rans Enduro Sport, Hase Kettweisel Tandem, Merin Bear Valley beater bike
    Posts
    23,105
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Sometimes one measurement is worth a thousand guesses.

    Start with a bike that she's comfortable with.

    1. Measure from the seat to the floor and the handlebar to the floor. Note the difference.
    2. Measure the horizontal distance from the nose of the seat to the back of the handlebar.
    3. Measure from the top of the saddle in line with the seat tube to the centerline of the crank.
    4. Drop a plumb bob from the nose of the saddle and measure the horizontal distance to the centerline of the crank.

    Try to mimic those measurements on her new bike. Changing any one will affect others.

  13. #13
    Banned. The Weak Link's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Post-partisan Paradise
    My Bikes
    GF Wahoo '05, Trek T1000 '04, Lemond Buenos Aires '07
    Posts
    4,936
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I wear bifocals (Varilux, actually) except when I ride, and then I wear Monovision contacts. It works well, and one pair of contacts lasts forever. Few thing are more annoying than getting dribbles of sweat on prescription glasses.

  14. #14
    Senior Member freeranger's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Kentucky
    My Bikes
    06 Lemond Reno, 98 GT Timberline mtn.bike
    Posts
    1,013
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Donna has a Lemond Reno women's specific bike which works well for her. Donna is 5'3''-5'4", and on her bike, her arms do have a bend in them. The WSD Reno has narrower bars, shorter top tube than an equivalent men's size bike, and the brakes have a shorter pull. Many brands have bikes designed specifically for women, and there are subtle differences which may make one of them more comfortable for her. As for the glasses, don't know what to tell you there. I wear tri-focals, and no problems with seeing the road or computer.

  15. #15
    Been Around Awhile I-Like-To-Bike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Burlington Iowa
    My Bikes
    Vaterland and Ragazzi
    Posts
    18,949
    Mentioned
    5 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by ticwanos View Post
    Is she trying to read computers?
    If so, put a velcro cover or tape over the computer readout while riding and wear regular well fitted distance single prescription glasses. Get computer readouts, as required/desired, upon completion of ride. Problem solved.

  16. #16
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    In The Wind
    Posts
    24,328
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Trifocals

    She needs to ride more. Her body and eyes will adjust to the bike.
    I wear Trifocals, No big deal.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGukLuXzH1E

    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7jfcWEkSrI

  17. #17
    Senior Member BengeBoy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Seattle, Washington, USA
    My Bikes
    2009 Chris Boedeker custom, 1988 Tommasini Prestige, 2007 Bill Davidson custom, 1985 Univega Gran Turismo; 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper
    Posts
    6,923
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    One little tip I got from Sheldon Brown, and which helped me. If you wear glasses, you may want to wear a strap that holds your glasses tighter against your head. As you cycle they will tend to slip down a bit and it will make your neck sore and mess up your vision if you wear bifocals as I do. I now wear eyeglass holders, like Croakies, on longer rides and it helps.

  18. #18
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    www.ci.encinitas.ca.us
    My Bikes
    1959 Capo; 1980 Peugeot PKN-10; 1981 Bianchi; 1988 Schwinn KOM-10;
    Posts
    14,357
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Being extremely myopic (-7.5 diopter correction), I have easily avoided bifocals by dynamically adjusting the position of my glasses along my nose, from high / close to the eyes for distant vision to low for desk work to off entirely for close work. Bifocals sound like a particularly poor idea for jogging and stair descending, and not much better for cycling. Monovision is one option; another is to go with a compromise single-vision prescription, accepting a little fuzz at near and far fields.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
    Capo [dschaw'-poe]: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger, S/N 42624
    Peugeot: 1970 UO-8, S/N 0010468
    Bianchi: 1981 Campione d'Italia, S/N 1.M9914
    Schwinn: 1988 Project KOM-10, S/N F804069

  19. #19
    But on the road more MTBLover's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    My Bikes
    Bianchi Volpe '07
    Posts
    863
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by The Weak Link View Post
    I wear bifocals (Varilux, actually) except when I ride, and then I wear Monovision contacts. It works well, and one pair of contacts lasts forever. Few thing are more annoying than getting dribbles of sweat on prescription glasses.
    +10000000. I have found monovision contacts to be a real blessing not just for cycling but every activity, from computing to tennis. Mine as are toric as well (for astigmatism), which makes it impossible to get dailies, but I'm OK with monthlies. They are really very comfy, and less, FAR less eyestrain than glasses. I'd highly recommend looking into this option, unless there's a medical reason why it's not an option in the first place.

  20. #20
    Senior Member deraltekluge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    My Bikes
    Kona Cinder Cone, Sun EZ-3 AX
    Posts
    1,195
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    My eyes no longer adjust their focus at all (due to cataract surgery and implantation of plastic lenses in both eyes), so bifocals are a necessity with me. The bifocals cause no problems except when I'm using my computer. Then, I get a literal pain in the neck trying to see the monitor. The solution for that was single-vision glasses that focus at the distance to the monitor. Walking (even on stairs), driving, biking all present no difficulty with my bifocals.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •