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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 09-23-06, 07:31 PM   #1
freeskihp
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lower back pain after 20mi

I come to you with a problem. after about 15-20 mi I start to get a pain in my lower back and it doesn't go away until I get off the bike. I have made sure my seat was level and it seems to be positioned right, seat hight seems right. Would it help to flip the stem?

I already posted in the LD forum but I figured you guys might know a thing or two
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Old 09-23-06, 08:17 PM   #2
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raise the stem. make your bars higher. what is the drop from you saddle level to the bars right now?
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Old 09-23-06, 08:17 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by freeskihp
I come to you with a problem. after about 15-20 mi I start to get a pain in my lower back and it doesn't go away until I get off the bike. I have made sure my seat was level and it seems to be positioned right, seat hight seems right. Would it help to flip the stem?

I already posted in the LD forum but I figured you guys might know a thing or two
Could be a whole lot of different things. I'm no big fan of doctors but don't mess around with lower back pain it rarely gets better, go to a good doctor(get a recomendation or something) and get it checked out. Bike postition is very important go to www.sheldonbrown.com and check bike position, flipping a stem won't fix it.
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Old 09-23-06, 08:21 PM   #4
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I flipped the stem and it seems much more comfy(besides being really ugly) but I haven't taken it for a long ride yet

edit: just read the sheldon page and there doesn't seem to be a quick fix, next problem I have a century on the 7th

Last edited by freeskihp; 09-23-06 at 08:33 PM.
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Old 09-23-06, 09:10 PM   #5
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What was the angle of your stem?
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Old 09-23-06, 09:27 PM   #6
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whatever the stock bianchi pista stem is, i looked for the exact measurement but I couldn't find it. there is a pic where it is unflipped in my sig.
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Old 09-23-06, 09:32 PM   #7
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Are you doing some climbing?

Are you climbing on days when this happens? I've overcooked my lower back when I hit one hill too many. If you're mashing a big gear up those hills seated and begin using your upper body (I'll start swaying for and aft) it can sneak up on your back - especially if you haven't been riding hills lately.

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Old 09-23-06, 09:38 PM   #8
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next problem I have a century on the 7th
better fix that and log som serious miles before the seagull
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Old 09-23-06, 09:42 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Bottomfeeder
Are you climbing on days when this happens? I've overcooked my lower back when I hit one hill too many. If you're mashing a big gear up those hills seated and begin using your upper body (I'll start swaying for and aft) it can sneak up on your back - especially if you haven't been riding hills lately.

DanO
its not so much climbing but just in general, so flipping the stem, bad or good idea?
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Old 09-23-06, 10:17 PM   #10
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Getting the handlebars higher than level to your seat is likely to make your back feel better and if you can keep ego out of the way, you are likely to be happier with your ride. There is a reason why a lot of people on here sport risers or bullhorns, but not drops on their commuter bikes. Everyone is different though, so what might work for me, won't necessarily work for you.
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Old 09-23-06, 10:49 PM   #11
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lower back pain after that many miles makes me think the muscles in that area are making up for weaker abdominals.

i would try crunches and other abdominal muscle exercises - 1 set ea of about 12-15 reps - for ea area of the abdomen and one for the lower back. no breaks between sets. this can be done in about 8-10 minutes, say, 3 X per week. well worth it.

contrary to popular belief, you don't have to do 1000 crunches every day to see results. 10 minutes, 3 days per week. build the core, man. like drinking water, it helps in more ways than you thought possible...
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Old 09-24-06, 04:36 AM   #12
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Your lucky it goes away when you get off.
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Old 09-24-06, 06:30 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by freeskihp
so flipping the stem, bad or good idea?
Flipping the bars is a good idea for pretty much any pain. It looks like you saddle is all the way back and those bars don't allow many good hand positions except far forward. If the pain continues you may want to get a shorter stem or some road drops. If the saddle is not intentionally set that far back you could move it up too BUT adjusting the saddle is the wrong way to fix reach issues if it's corectly adjusted now. Also aero bars with risers are very comfy especially if you are going to be doing the century brakeless and therefore not drafting.

While it will suck, if you cannot ride 40+ miles without pain DO NOT attempt a century. You may finish it but you will likely end up injuring yourself and being out of commission for a while. There will be more centuries to do next year unless you have a large bet on this one or don't ride during the winter it's not worth it.
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Old 09-24-06, 09:08 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by dutret
Flipping the bars is a good idea for pretty much any pain. It looks like you saddle is all the way back and those bars don't allow many good hand positions except far forward. If the pain continues you may want to get a shorter stem or some road drops. If the saddle is not intentionally set that far back you could move it up too BUT adjusting the saddle is the wrong way to fix reach issues if it's corectly adjusted now. Also aero bars with risers are very comfy especially if you are going to be doing the century brakeless and therefore not drafting.
I adjusted the seat after that picture was taken, it is now a little bit farther forward and level instead of tilted back. I will take a long-ish ride with the flipped stem and adjusted seat somtime soon, and the common consensus is that I need to strengthen up my abs which I don't know how much it can be changed in 2 weeks but I'll give it a shot, thanks for the replies
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