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Old 11-27-02, 07:38 AM   #1
wlevey
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To Aero bar or not to Aero bar

I recently injured myself (gee who would have thought that rolling paint for five weekends in a row along with maintaining a training schedule would cause pain??) Now I have numbness in my pinky and ring fingers (Ulner Nerve compression - I HOPE not entrapment!!!) It is beginning to resolve and I may get a shot of cortisone to speed things along.

My question is this - Does anyone out there know if using an Aero Bar will reduce the risk of Medila or Ulner nerve injury? It seems to me that it should simply because you are resting on your forearm and not taking quite as much weight on your wrists.

I wanted to get some advice before fitting one onto my bike (which already has bar ends). I ride a Specialized Sirrus Comp, a straight bar "hybrid" set up with road tires, seat etc., but with a straight bar and "Mountain bike" gearing.

Any advice would be appreciated!!

Thanks Bill
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Old 11-27-02, 10:12 AM   #2
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Aero bars were originally invented by a guy who was doing Race Across America. He was not trying to be aerodynamic, he was trying to be more comfortable.

In your case, I think aerobars would be a help. Just don't use them in pace lines.
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Old 11-27-02, 11:59 AM   #3
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Yes, a lot of randonneurs use them for comfort and to get the weight off their hands. After the first 24 hours, typical rando pace drops down to the point that aero bars really are not all that benifical from an aero point of view. But, hand numbness and wrist pain is epidemic amount rando riders.

I don't use one myself for randonneuring, but many do for this reason. In fact, they can be so comfortable that some events (notably Paris-Brest-Paris) have banned aero bars due to people falling asleep while riding.

Dave
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Old 11-27-02, 12:14 PM   #4
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i just think its funny that there is a city in france called brest, pronounced "breast"...
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Old 11-27-02, 07:50 PM   #5
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I think aerobars would help. I've got them on both my commuter, a hybrid with straight bars, and my road bike.

Along with more comfort on longer rides, and a change in riding position, they do give a little more speed, especially if you've got a tailwind on a flat road. The faster you're going, the more benefit.

Depending on conditions I've noticed up to 6 km/hr increase when I went aero on the hybrid. There's not as much gain on the road bike.
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Old 11-27-02, 08:14 PM   #6
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the first time the aero bar came out was way back in the early nineties .correct me if I am wrong on this one, , back in th old country we call this contraption as "suicide bar" , because if you don't know how to ride one, you definitely going to have a huge "endo"
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Old 11-27-02, 11:30 PM   #7
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You're right, Racso, it pays to take it easy the first couple of times out.

Don't go down on the bars in traffic or on uneven or loose surfaces until you're used to them. Remember you don't have quick access to the brakes (or shifters) while in the aero's.
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Old 11-28-02, 01:05 AM   #8
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During my last crit, we had this stupid tri guy who was always going down on his aerobars while in the middle of the pack! I was just breathing too hard to give him a piece of my mind.
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Old 11-28-02, 07:24 PM   #9
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I have aero-bars on my Sirrus Pro. Pretty scarey to use at first but once you get used to them, you will pick up a couple MPH. It took me several rides to get mildly comfortable/confident using them but I like them now and they look pretty cool too (not that it matters).
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Old 11-28-02, 07:35 PM   #10
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Im planning to install an aero-bars what's the best one?
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Old 11-29-02, 09:50 AM   #11
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Instead of dork bars, what about drop bars and a tall stem?
This would provide superior bike control and therefore safety, as well as multiple hand positions--flat bars are anything but comfortable over long distances.
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Old 12-04-02, 12:19 AM   #12
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I have Profile Air Strykes on my road bike. They have the flip up pads and adjustable length etc, which is nice, since they are out of the way when you're not using them, but they rattle which can be annoying. They are also fairly expensive.

On my hybrid I have a no name type and while they're not very elaborate they were cheap and they work.
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Old 12-07-02, 01:59 AM   #13
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Cool, a cupla guys beside me are trying profile bars on their hybrids (luv my Specialized Sirrus, too!).
I put Air Strykes on my A1 Sport and quickly found out they take some getting used to. Break them in on a quiet, straight road.
Plus: faster by 1-2 mph, with no added effort. Really helpful when doing battle with a headwind.
Minus: a sense of being positioned way too far forward over the front wheel and definitely in the Endo-Waiting-to-Happen-Zone. Turns are just plain scary!
I took them off in September and will train with them again, when the triathlon season heats up next May.
FWIW: I believe the best thing to do for your hybrid is to lose the OEM rims and Armadillo tires; replacement with a lighter wheelset will get you the most bang for your buck.
In closing: if you're thinking of putting profile bars on a hybrid, you may have missed you true calling, which looks like road biking.
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Old 12-07-02, 07:47 AM   #14
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I have Profile Air Strykes on my Sirrus Pro also. I don't think I would need/put them on a road bike with drops but I don't see me buying a road bike with drops soon since the Sirrus foots the bill just fine. It's kind of a personal preferrence, just it's a little expensive to buy and then not like them.
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Old 12-07-02, 02:26 PM   #15
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aero bars work very well for some people, I suggest you borrow a set and try them on a long ride first. The worst thing about them is how much more pressure they put on your umm, well on places there shouldn't be pressure. I used them when I was racing, I could get some speed improvement for a couple miles at a time. My problem is that I get sort of a "third lung" when I am in top shape, where I can breath very deeply. When I go aero it scrunches me up so much that I can't get my third lung. It does help some people, especially taller people it seems. Give it a try, it is definately an advantage and will take pressure off your hands, just make sure it's not at the expense of your other important parts...

One more thing- do some research before you get a cortisone shot. I did get one, a couple times, and it made me feel 10 years younger. For a few weeks only though. Just ask some questions first, maybe some in here can help more with that one. I will not do it again.
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