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Recumbent What IS that thing?! Recumbents may be odd looking, but they have many advantages over a "wedgie" bicycle. Discuss the in's and out's recumbent lifestyle in the recumbent forum.

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Old 04-20-08, 05:52 PM   #1
crock48
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knee pain

So, yesterday I finally received the bike of my dreams and rode about 50 miles then today, I rode another 40 odd miles. With that I started noticing a bit of pain in my left knee. The pain was coming not from my inner knee as it was more from the muscle around it. The spot was mid knee, the inside, just where the knee muscle wraps around. It did not hurt the whole time, but mostly when I pushed hard.

That said, this is my first bent and I spent much of the day fine tuning the pedal lenght (SWB) and the angle of the seat.

Is it just new muscles that have not been previously used before or have I not set the bike up correctly. FWIW, I have been lucky enough to tour through much of the world and hope to do much more, am very active and run but have not run into anything similar yet. When riding my DF I have never experienced any knee pain, no matter how much weight I have packed on

Thanks for all your input

Journey On
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Old 04-20-08, 09:02 PM   #2
mchell
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If this is your first experience riding a bent, then I think you are riding too long distances too soon. Recumbents use a different group of muscles and it does take time to develop and strengthen these. Do you spin or are you mashing in a big gear? Are you using clipless pedals and are you "pulling up" in the rotation? IMO a cadence of 90-100 rpms is perfect for hours on end without undue stress on the knee. Just remember to gear down when climbing to maintain that cadence. Listen to your body. If you have knee pain, something's not right but there is a solution. A cleated pedeal should have some "float" to lessen the chance of stress at the knee. Go easy, be patient, and experiment by making adjustments to seat angle, X seam, cleat position, etc.
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Old 04-21-08, 04:36 AM   #3
Doug5150
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crock48 View Post
So, yesterday I finally received the bike of my dreams and rode about 50 miles then today, I rode another 40 odd miles. With that I started noticing a bit of pain in my left knee. ... It did not hurt the whole time, but mostly when I pushed hard.

That said, this is my first bent and I spent much of the day fine tuning the pedal length (SWB) and the angle of the seat.

Is it just new muscles that have not been previously used before or have I not set the bike up correctly. ... When riding my DF I have never experienced any knee pain, no matter how much weight I have packed on...
Two points:

...seat/pedal distance seems to be rather sensitive on a recumbent; as little as 1/4 or less of seat adjustment can be detectable over an afternoon's ride.

...If the pain is just during part of the pedal stroke, you can get Rotor Q-rings and mount them to shift the stress off the top-end of the pedal stroke and into the bottom-end more.
~
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Old 04-21-08, 06:51 AM   #4
jeff-o
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The advice you've received so far is good.

1. Don't mash the pedals. On a DF you can only really apply the weight of your body to your knee, but on a recumbent you can force the entire pushing force of your leg, which is usually much higher! Instead of mashing, spin using a nice, high cadence.

2. Use clipless pedals. These allow you to push and pull, which makes spinning much easier. Q-rings will also help you achieve a smoother spin (I use them myself with great success).

3. Adjust the boom length *perfectly*. Too long may result in cramping, discomfort or pulled muscles. Too short may result in discomfort or knee pain.

4. Make sure the boom is aligned. If it leans too far to one side or the other, you may hurt your ankle or knee on that side.

5. Take it easy! Going too far to too fast when you're brand new to the recumbent position will put stress on muscles that you didn't need for regular cycling or running.
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