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  1. #26
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theodore View Post
    Instead of standing on the bike when climbing hills,can sitting cause undue stress on the lower back
    leading to lower hip or lower back pain?
    Most certainly, depending upon your form. One of the things you must not do is grip the handlebars and pull. That will yank out your back for sure. Hanging onto the bars with a death-grip is just bracing your upper body to make up for poor pedaling form.

    Instead, let go of the bars, wrap your fingers into a loose fist and rest the heels of the palms of your hands on top of the bars. Your fingernails should be tapping the top of the bars too. This way, all of your weight is resting on the bony part of your hand and won't be sore. If you find yourself bouncing around, relax and spin your legs more. Smooth form on the hills really help me go faster while keeping the HR down. Also helps keeps the legs from fatiguing on long climbs.

    Lemond calls the motion "scraping mud off the bottom of your shoes". It helps people who are still pushing down on the pedal at the bottom of the crank-revolution modify their pedaling-motion to be pulling back at 90-degrees to the crank instead.

    What happens when you push on the pedal at the bottom is that you're trying to stretch the crankarms and bend the pedal-axle. Not gonna happen, so instead, all that force pushes your upper body upwards and to the opposite side of the bike. Then people grip the bars and pull to counteract their upper-body moving upwards. You're basically negating the useless force from the legs with an opposing force from the back-muscles. Neither of which does anything to move you forwards on the bike, but it does work the back and and cause lower-back pain and soreness.
    Last edited by DannoXYZ; 01-13-09 at 04:58 PM.

  2. #27
    Peloton Dog patentcad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aMull View Post
    Agreed.
    I beg to differ.

  3. #28
    Pretend Racer dcvelo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by patentcad View Post
    I beg to differ.
    I'm convinced.

  4. #29
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    Weak core = sore back

  5. #30
    Peloton Dog patentcad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dcvelo View Post
    I'm convinced.
    You're waffling.

  6. #31
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    "Sitting" sounds a lot like what I usually feel like doing when climbing. I hate climbing.

  7. #32
    Senior Member aMull's Avatar
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    Seriously though, i've done a lot of sitted climbs on my geared bike without a problem, but you need to be spinning. However i prefer standing up and making a badass climb.

  8. #33
    Senior Member Terex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
    Most certainly, depending upon your form. One of the things you must not do is ...etc.
    Depends on how steep the hill is. Up to maybe 15%, yeah. 15-20%, pretty tough. 20%+ - NWIH.

    But, great info, as per usual.
    "It could be anything. Scrap booking, high-stakes poker, or the Santa Fe lifestyle. Just pick a dead-end and chill out 'till you die."

  9. #34
    Recovering mentalist Randochap's Avatar
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    I mostly sit and spin. When I'm at my peak, I can power faster than standing.
    VeloWeb | VeloWebLog

    "The bicycle is the noblest invention of mankind." ~William Saroyan

  10. #35
    slow up hills kudude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aMull View Post
    Seriously though, i've done a lot of sitted climbs on my geared bike without a problem, but you need to be spinning. However i prefer standing up and making a badass climb.
    How long are your climbs? When I can see the top, sure jam it up there, but for those of us in hilly areas a 'climb' can last anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour (diablo anyone?)

    The editing here makes it look like all he does in dance on the pedals
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GHJErrp4eOw
    Quote Originally Posted by mr_tom View Post
    Cycling isn't a sport. It's more like a really, really expensive eating disorder.

  11. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theodore View Post
    Instead of standing on the bike when climbing hills,can sitting cause undue stress on the lower back
    leading to lower hip or lower back pain?

    ted
    You just need a stronger core. And, perhaps, you could benefit from a few concrete pills.

  12. #37
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    Out of the saddle climbing for long durations seems to work best for smaller very light riders, like pro riders with bald heads and big earings.

    Most average sized riders can climb faster (on long sustained climbs) seated, assuming that they have the correct gearing.

    Or at the same speed, out of the saddle climbing results in a higher heart rate, since you are also using upper body muscles that are sucking up oxygen in addition to your leg muscles.

  13. #38
    Recovering mentalist Randochap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlin55 View Post
    Out of the saddle climbing for long durations seems to work best for smaller very light riders, like pro riders with bald heads and big earings.

    Most average sized riders can climb faster (on long sustained climbs) seated, assuming that they have the correct gearing.

    Or at the same speed, out of the saddle climbing results in a higher heart rate, since you are also using upper body muscles that are sucking up oxygen in addition to your leg muscles.
    I'm small, light, bald, ha[d] an earing, but as I said above, climb best in the saddle, despite my avatar.
    VeloWeb | VeloWebLog

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  14. #39
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    Interesting. I had been deliberately sitting and pushing my single speed up hills instead of standing as i used to do, and then my old back injury came back. I thought my back problem might have something to do with cycling, but I didn't connect it with sitting on hills. Not sure, but could be.

    The yes/no/definitely yes/definitely no/who knows thing is about as much as doctors know about lower back problems, too.

  15. #40
    Direct Hit Not Required BlastRadius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by werewolf View Post
    Interesting. I had been deliberately sitting and pushing my single speed up hills instead of standing as i used to do, and then my old back injury came back. I thought my back problem might have something to do with cycling, but I didn't connect it with sitting on hills. Not sure, but could be.

    The yes/no/definitely yes/definitely no/who knows thing is about as much as doctors know about lower back problems, too.
    If your back hurts from sitting while climbing, your saddle is likely too far forward.
    You end up engaging more lower back muscles if your seating position is too upright.

  16. #41
    Senior Member aMull's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kudude View Post
    How long are your climbs? When I can see the top, sure jam it up there, but for those of us in hilly areas a 'climb' can last anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour (diablo anyone?)

    The editing here makes it look like all he does in dance on the pedals
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GHJErrp4eOw
    Not long And since i ride exclusively fixed at the moment i sorta have no choice Funnily enough though, i enjoy climbing more than with the gears. And that video was badass.
    Last edited by aMull; 01-14-09 at 11:59 AM.

  17. #42
    . bbattle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by patentcad View Post
    You're waffling.
    Agreed. Breakfast will be ready in 5 minutes.

  18. #43
    Pretend Racer dcvelo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbattle View Post
    Agreed. Breakfast will be ready in 5 minutes.
    But I'd really prefer pancakes.

  19. #44
    Still can't climb
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlastRadius View Post
    If your back hurts from sitting while climbing, your saddle is likely too far forward.
    You end up engaging more lower back muscles if your seating position is too upright.
    That's a bit curious. My bike is a little bit too long for me so i can't be too far forward but i get lower back ache when i climb sitting.

  20. #45
    Senior Member ericm979's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by coasting View Post
    That's a bit curious. My bike is a little bit too long for me so i can't be too far forward but i get lower back ache when i climb sitting.
    The problem is that the saddle is too far forward in relation to the pedals. Has nothing to do with reach to the bars. If your bike is too long for you and you moved the saddle forward in an attempt to compensate, that will make it worse. And put too much weight on your hands.

  21. #46
    Share The Road bent eagle's Avatar
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    Question for the "weak core" crowd:

    Are you referring to the ab muscles? It seems to me that they do nothing to hold up the trunk when bending forward.

    Any exercise suggestions? (I have the same problem as the OP.)
    Steve W

  22. #47
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    yeah man, ab's are pretty much for show.

    having a strong core is developing the muscles that support the spine, inner core strength.

    basicly to have a strong core you should be able to ride in the drops in comfort and remove both hands and stay in the position. not for ever, but be comfortable doing so.

  23. #48
    Senior Member tkehler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by schnabler1 View Post
    Weak core = sore back
    Absurd, because some people can get a sore back with a superbly fit core. Read the longer post.

  24. #49
    Senior Member Terex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bent eagle View Post
    Question for the "weak core" crowd:

    Are you referring to the ab muscles? It seems to me that they do nothing to hold up the trunk when bending forward.

    Any exercise suggestions? (I have the same problem as the OP.)
    GOOD Pilates instructors provide amazingly effective instruction in the development of core strength. Although books and tapes are useful, nothing is as good as instruction by a competent professional.

    But - just doing crunches, with torso twists and things like that can help. There have been many discussions, with references, on this forum. Use search.
    "It could be anything. Scrap booking, high-stakes poker, or the Santa Fe lifestyle. Just pick a dead-end and chill out 'till you die."

  25. #50
    Senior Member tkehler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ View Post
    Most certainly, depending upon your form. One of the things you must not do is grip the handlebars and pull. That will yank out your back for sure. Hanging onto the bars with a death-grip is just bracing your upper body to make up for poor pedaling form.

    Instead, let go of the bars, wrap your fingers into a loose fist and rest the heels of the palms of your hands on top of the bars. Your fingernails should be tapping the top of the bars too. This way, all of your weight is resting on the bony part of your hand and won't be sore. If you find yourself bouncing around, relax and spin your legs more. Smooth form on the hills really help me go faster while keeping the HR down. Also helps keeps the legs from fatiguing on long climbs.

    Lemond calls the motion "scraping mud off the bottom of your shoes". It helps people who are still pushing down on the pedal at the bottom of the crank-revolution modify their pedaling-motion to be pulling back at 90-degrees to the crank instead.

    What happens when you push on the pedal at the bottom is that you're trying to stretch the crankarms and bend the pedal-axle. Not gonna happen, so instead, all that force pushes your upper body upwards and to the opposite side of the bike. Then people grip the bars and pull to counteract their upper-body moving upwards. You're basically negating the useless force from the legs with an opposing force from the back-muscles. Neither of which does anything to move you forwards on the bike, but it does work the back and and cause lower-back pain and soreness.
    Yes, great post.

    I suspect there are a lot of riders, even good riders, who succumb to this death grip.

    As for the discussion of back pain and fore/aft saddle positioning, I agree. I felt subjectively that my bike was slightly too large (slightly). So I took my laidback seatpost off and replaced it with a straight Moots (moving my saddle forward, obviously). Then I felt bit of pain on climbs (I climb 2-3x a week).


    PS -- I've never been to a forum where there were so many smart-aleck types offering no advice/thoughts/answers at all.

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