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  1. #1
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    lower back pain... what kind of bike/posture is best?

    Hi,

    I have long standing lower back pain due to a disc herniation. Currently revisiting physio to improve core stability and aiming to avoid surgery. I want to start daily cycling to stay fit, and I want to make sure I get the right king of bike. My impression is that an upright posture would be best, but I can't find any professional advice about it. does anyone know of resources or services that could help me get this right?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by patp View Post
    Hi,

    I have long standing lower back pain due to a disc herniation. Currently revisiting physio to improve core stability and aiming to avoid surgery. I want to start daily cycling to stay fit, and I want to make sure I get the right king of bike. My impression is that an upright posture would be best, but I can't find any professional advice about it. does anyone know of resources or services that could help me get this right?
    sitting bolt upright on a 'comfort bike' will do very little to improve core strength
    additionally this posture will send all shock forces from the road straight up your spine
    leaning forward with arms taking up more of your weight is better

  3. #3
    Senior Member Looigi's Avatar
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    A lot depends on the individual; physiology, spinal issues, fitness and conditioning. It takes a fair amount of riding for your body to fully adapt to it. The thing is to progress gradually and incrementally so as not to injure yourself. That said, for me, lower is better. My bars are 10cm below the height of my saddle. My wife found lower was better too. We're both ~60 and in pretty good shape. When I see people sitting upright on bikes, it gives me the willies.

  4. #4
    Life is good RonH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by xenologer View Post
    sitting bolt upright on a 'comfort bike' will do very little to improve core strength
    additionally this posture will send all shock forces from the road straight up your spine
    leaning forward with arms taking up more of your weight is better
    +! on core strength.
    Add exercises to strengthen your core and your back problems may go away.
    My bikes --> 2001 Litespeed Tuscany---2013 Cannondale CAAD 10 2 (5) "Racing Edition"

    Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. ~ Charles Schultz

  5. #5
    Must... ride... more... Phil_gretz's Avatar
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    I had L4/L5 fusion in July of 2008. This type of question doesn't lend itself to internet discussions. Have you gone over your MRIs and X-rays with your exercise physiologist or your [potiental] surgeon and therapist together? You need exercises that are correctly matched to your particular weakness.

    My surgeon (at the time) didn't encourage me to ride my somewhat upright mountain bike as much. Now many years later, I don't have any restrictions. But I wouldn't begin running distances for fitness. Like the others, post-surgery, I've found that the stretched out road bike position is most comfortable.

    Work with people who know your medical/structural details, are active in your current therapies, and also know something about orthopedics and strenuous exercise. That's where your most informed decisions will be made...

    Phil

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