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Old 07-02-12, 05:16 AM   #1
Frankfast
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How Does a Fall Affect You

I took a pretty violent fall last week and although I didn't break anything, I'm still treating my wounds. I did go out for my first ride yesterday since I went down but have to admit, I'm a bit intimidated. I don't think the accident was avoidable and happened very fast which made it more bothersome.
My luck seems to be running out. While returning home yesterday, I was attacked by a very large poodle and fell off trying to dismount quickly on a dirt road on my mountain bike. Lately riding hasn't been enjoyable.
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Old 07-02-12, 05:31 AM   #2
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Fell last week going too fast around a corner....bike slide out from under me. Scrapes only and no bike damage amazingly. Now every time I corner at anything close to speed it seems like it's going out from under me again. Can't seem to get over it.
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Old 07-02-12, 05:36 AM   #3
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I just try and put things behind me and ride again as quickly as possible the times I have crashed. Hope y'all weren't hurt in either wreck. Please take care and ride carefully.

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Old 07-02-12, 05:48 AM   #4
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Last year I was about 10 mi. into a 35 mi. solo ride when I came to a hard right corner that you go into blind. I've done this corner many times. It's a downhill right hander that I usually take at 16-20 mph. There was a car behind me so I didn't take my usual "motorcyclist line" going wide and then coming down on the apex and exiting wide. In other words I didn't straighten out the turn. My rear tire hit a pebble and jumped out to the left and since I was leaned over more than usual I lost the rear end and down I went. The car driver stopped immediately and offered me a ride home. I was bleeding from the hip and arm but my Masi was unscathed. So I thanked him for the offer and finished my ride. Since then I have been more cautious there but am slowly building my pace by concentrating on the proper line.
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Old 07-02-12, 05:55 AM   #5
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My luck seems to be running out.
It happens. Get some dog spray. Ride a little slower for a while, your confidence will come back.
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Old 07-02-12, 05:56 AM   #6
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I took a pretty violent fall last week and have to admit, I'm a bit intimidated.
I'm the king of that.

My best advice is to just keep fighting it but cautiously. Setbacks suck!
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Old 07-02-12, 06:11 AM   #7
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I've crashed bad enough to break ribs, separate shoulder, destroy bike helmet, etc. It just takes some time in the saddle to regain confidence.
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Old 07-02-12, 06:17 AM   #8
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I'm the king of that.

My best advice is to just keep fighting it but cautiously. Setbacks suck!
RG, you are the very person I thought of when I read the title. You would be the person I'd ask about the fears and setbacks in getting back on the bike. I have been just too hardheaded to think about what I just did to crash and I start pedaling on. Not a good person to ask, I guess.

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Old 07-02-12, 06:31 AM   #9
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I recently had one of those "out of the blue" falls as well - a corner I've taken hundreds of times, not particlularly fast, then all of a sudden the wheel slides out and you're bouncing down the road. It could have been caused by an expansion joint in the road, just before the corner. Pretty painful abrasions on my arm and hip that took quite a while to heal, and bruised ribs. Helmet hit the road so I'm glad I was wearing it. Though I finished the ride my recovery from that, travel and a cold kept mostly me off the bike for 3 weeks and now I'm back at my early Spring fitness level, so I'm riding extra to catch up again.
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Old 07-02-12, 06:32 AM   #10
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It's very rare for me to come off other than in competitive situations. As it happens, though, I cracked a couple of ribs at the end of last year by skidding on wet cobblestones and landing on a traffic bollard (don't know what you call them in the States) and as soon as I got back on the bike, four weeks later, I came off on some black ice and bruised my hip and thigh so badly I was hobbling around for a week or ten days.

My reaction was to berate myself for not knowing enough, at my age, to avoid getting out of the saddle to climb on wet cobbles, and to resolve never to use bike paths in cold weather. Unlike roads, they don't get salted. I can't say either incident dented my confidence.

The only time I can remember being intimidated after a crash was when a guy in front of me went down on some gravel at the bottom of a descent. I had nowhere to go, didn't roll well with the fall, and broke my arm. It was some time after that before I was quite as carefree on fast descents. But if you just keep going, more carefully if that's what you feel you need, confidence returns.

And console yourself with the statistics. Accidents happen everywhere, and cycling is very safe. In the UK there's only one cycling fatality for every thirty million miles cycled, and we are far from the safest country for cycling. I'll take those odds. I'm more at risk stepping into and out of the bathtub.
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Old 07-02-12, 07:10 AM   #11
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I took a pretty violent fall last week and although I didn't break anything, I'm still treating my wounds. I did go out for my first ride yesterday since I went down but have to admit, I'm a bit intimidated. I don't think the accident was avoidable and happened very fast which made it more bothersome.
My luck seems to be running out. While returning home yesterday, I was attacked by a very large poodle and fell off trying to dismount quickly on a dirt road on my mountain bike. Lately riding hasn't been enjoyable.
With dogs, I find the best solution, drop down a gear, run the RPM's up, then pop back into the higher gear, dogs are sprinters, they can run pretty fast, but they tend to run out of gas pretty quickly. If you want to encourage him to run out of gas quicker, dump your reserve bottle of ice water on his head, takes all the fun out of it, for the dog. If you have a problem with the same dog, over and over, then note where it is, call the local animal control officer (if there is one), they will take care of it.
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Old 07-02-12, 07:37 AM   #12
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I cuss and scream a lot. Then pick myself back up and get on the bike again.
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Old 07-02-12, 07:46 AM   #13
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Got used to falling racing dirt bikes. Don't think about it any more than the pain of it. But(knock on wood) I've never had a get-off on a road bike. Mountain bike, yes. Expect that.
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Old 07-02-12, 07:46 AM   #14
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Dont fall off your bike. Get rid of cable.
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Old 07-02-12, 07:50 AM   #15
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I've had a few falls which include an endover and disputing that two objects can't occupy the same physical space at the same time(car). None where terribly serious, scrapes and bruises(the car, or rather the road, damaged my left brifter and had to be replaced and the handlebars and front fork needed to be re-aligned). Other than the incident with the car, I got back on and finished the ride. I more cautious at intersections, but overall, my confidence and riding hasn't changed--probably more surroundings aware though. Just don't do stupid maneuvers, slow down around corners, and don't blow through stop signs. Obey the traffic laws.


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Old 07-02-12, 09:00 AM   #16
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Was just in a nasty crash two days ago: Seven-person pile-up after pacelining down a sweeping descent went catastrophically awry. Four wound up in the hospital. Not fun.

I managed to escape relatively unscathed -- lots of blood & bruises, but nothing that prevented me from riding the 30 miles home from the crash site.

What I've noticed these past two days is that, unlike the last time I crashed (which I think was ~4 years ago?) my whole body is getting sorer rather than less sore as time goes by. Hope the trend doesn't continue!
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Old 07-02-12, 09:14 AM   #17
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Wow! That is the kind of thing that really scares me. My fear is all about what you said...it takes me a lot longer to heal.
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Old 07-02-12, 09:17 AM   #18
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Last year, right about this time, I was riding along, glanced down to check my rear derailleur, and caught my bars on what was called in an earlier post, a bollard. I did an endo and fractured my arm. It was very painful and extremely inconvenient. Three weeks later, my first ride was on a hybrid through Central Park in NYC. I had a great time, was thrilled to be back on the bike, and forgot all about the fall.

However, now when I ride, I always check the road ahead before looking down at anything!
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Old 07-02-12, 09:29 AM   #19
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Back in the days of my being a residential electrician it was the actual jolt of electricity that bothered me all that much....it was the sparks that rattled me for the rest of the day.
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Old 07-02-12, 09:30 AM   #20
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A few weeks ago I had a groundhog pop out of the weeds along a bike trail and wipe out my front wheel. The bike went down and I flew over the handlebars. No broken bones but the doctor said no riding for a week until the sprained wrist and badly bruised knee had a chance to heal. I now find myself slowing down on the trails when I'm in an area with weeds near the side of the trail. This was my first major fall in years and I wasn't sure how it would affect me. Thankfully it hasn't seemed to bother me.

Hope you heal quickly and get back to riding.
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Old 07-02-12, 11:51 AM   #21
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Road and not much to complain about but Mountain biking I had a few falls that could have been nasty. That would have been over 6 years ago and in the main it was make certain nothing is broken- the blood is going to stop leaking and is the bike in a fit state to get me home. But the last couple of falls hurt and was the main reason for me giving these drop handlebar bikes a try.

Don't do much offroading now and that is mostly in the winter with soft ground or snow to fall on. And On the road- unless it is on a downhill- I doubt that my injuries would amount to much due to the slow speed I am travelling at. Road rash would hurt of course but many falls on the MTB and I did learn how to fall. Just hope the old adage of it being "Just like riding a bike" will come true when I have one.
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Old 07-02-12, 12:04 PM   #22
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I had a pretty bad fall a little over a month ago that left me with a severely contused right arm and shoulder. This happened from dumping the bike to avoid getting hit by a car in a MUP parking lot. I was off the bike for a month but starting riding it on a trainer before I was able to ride it on the road. The shoulder is doing fine, but I am still having some problems with the arm, just below the shoulder, when I lift anything heavy or put it in an awkward position. Also, I had a collision with my wife's bike in November that messed up my back and also had me off the bike for a month.

My advice is to get on the bike and ride and don't worry about falls. Falls will happen when you least expect them to. The more you worry about them, the more apt you are to fall. I'm riding the same now as I did before the fall. And, NO, I don't enjoy pain.
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Old 07-02-12, 12:13 PM   #23
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My advice is to get on the bike and ride and don't worry about falls. The more you worry about them, the more apt you are to fall.
I'm sure it's true that the more anxious you are about falling the more tense you'll be and more likely to fall. On the other hand, you can control your actions but you can't control your feelings. You just have to work through them.
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Old 07-02-12, 12:18 PM   #24
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I now have two completely torn rotator cuffs and after therapy and an injection in both shoulders I've been told the next fall, or simply the next strain/pull could mean an operation. Some folks go months and even a year before fully healing from that operation so I am very, very careful (with the exception of fast downhills) riding. I know a fall is just a matter of time but I'm trying to avoid it with more careful riding than ever before.
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Old 07-02-12, 03:33 PM   #25
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I now have two completely torn rotator cuffs and after therapy and an injection in both shoulders I've been told the next fall, or simply the next strain/pull could mean an operation. Some folks go months and even a year before fully healing from that operation so I am very, very careful (with the exception of fast downhills) riding. I know a fall is just a matter of time but I'm trying to avoid it with more careful riding than ever before.
I completely tore my left rotator cuff last Memorial Day weekend when my Buell Motorcycle lost its front wheel on a dirt road leading to my house. I had the surgery in January and am still going to therapy. Right now, I don't think the shoulder will ever be the same. So when I fell off the bike a week ago, I was lucky that I landed on the opposite side. I hit a pothole that I didn't see while maneuvering around a car that pulled right in front of me and stopped. Puerto Rico (where I work) is full of potholes. The roads are really a mess because they don't have the money to repair the infrastructure. Sometimes the patch is worse than the potholes.
Anyway, thanks for sharing and the encouragement. I was getting to the point where I could maintain an 18mph pace on a level route. Now I have to start over. My bruises are starting to heal. My psyche will take a bit longer.
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