Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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)

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 03-08-08, 06:07 AM   #1
jetbike
Playing with the traffic
Thread Starter
 
jetbike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Sydo, 'Straya
Bikes: 2009 Colnago Primavera, Campy Chorus 11 speed, 1986 Colnago Master, C-Record, 2008 Surly LHT, 1930's Malvern Star 3-speed.
Posts: 428
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Knees...Arg!

Got a bit of knee pain. Saw my doctor, he reckons it's okay and has recommended some exercises to stabilize my patella.

Apart from Glucosamine any folk out there have any tips on how to increase their riding life?
jetbike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 06:11 AM   #2
jetbike
Playing with the traffic
Thread Starter
 
jetbike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Sydo, 'Straya
Bikes: 2009 Colnago Primavera, Campy Chorus 11 speed, 1986 Colnago Master, C-Record, 2008 Surly LHT, 1930's Malvern Star 3-speed.
Posts: 428
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Ps, I'm running 66", brakeless and am old (34).
jetbike is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 06:15 AM   #3
diff_lock2
Senior_Member2
 
diff_lock2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Finlando NOT: Orlando, Fl
Bikes: Beater + Nishiki Bigfoot X-29
Posts: 1,694
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
66 is pretty low, I doubt the bike is at fault.
diff_lock2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 06:38 AM   #4
LóFarkas
LF for the accentdeprived
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Bikes:
Posts: 3,549
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Not that I know much about this ****, but saddle height and cleat position (if you ride clipless) do have a lot to do with knee pain.
Too low saddle often causes pain in knee/around kneecap.
You're geared low which is good.

My knee is hurting a bit, too, but my diagnosis is simple: I have a ****ty knee. Sometimes it hurts when I walk, too...
LóFarkas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 06:50 AM   #5
wroomwroomoops
Sir Fallalot
 
wroomwroomoops's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Bikes:
Posts: 5,275
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by LóFarkas View Post
Not that I know much about this ****, but saddle height and cleat position (if you ride clipless) do have a lot to do with knee pain.
Too low saddle often causes pain in knee/around kneecap.
You're geared low which is good.

My knee is hurting a bit, too, but my diagnosis is simple: I have a ****ty knee. Sometimes it hurts when I walk, too...
+1 on all of the above.

Cleat position is def a huge factor! Especially if your legs/feet are built weird like mine.

And also +1 on the ****ty knees. It's just a weakness I have to live with. But they bother me more when I walk than when I ride.
wroomwroomoops is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 07:08 AM   #6
sp00ki
partly metal, partly real
 
sp00ki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Philadelphia.
Bikes: Hummer H2
Posts: 3,597
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
visit a gym, strengthen your legs.
sp00ki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 07:38 AM   #7
mander
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Van BC
Bikes:
Posts: 3,744
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Two rough rules of thumb I use when getting a bike fitted:

Pain behind your kneecap= seat too low

Pain in the back of your knee= seat too high.

Paying a pro to set up your bike can really help. Minor adjustments can make a huge difference. I think a lot of fixed riders are unnecessarily resigned to their knee pain. Fiddling with fit solves a lot of problems, you just have to keep trying things out. I figure if 55 year old randonneurs can do PBP and not have the lower half of their legs fall off, there's no reason why a young person whos just commuting and dicking around shouldn't be able to be completely comfortable on their bike, fixed gear or not.
mander is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 07:47 AM   #8
DKfix
Senior Member
 
DKfix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: N.Y. State (for now)
Bikes: 1 Fix,2 SSs-more to come
Posts: 102
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I know this has nothing to do with this tread....

Quote:
Originally Posted by jetbike View Post
Ps, I'm running 66", brakeless and am old (34).
It kills me when people in their 30s say that they're OLD! It's both funny and sad.
DKfix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 07:55 AM   #9
climbhoser
Senior Member
 
climbhoser's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Parker, CO
Bikes: SS Surly Crosscheck; '91 Cannondale 3.0
Posts: 1,654
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mander View Post
Two rough rules of thumb I use when getting a bike fitted:

Pain behind your kneecap= seat too low

Pain in the back of your knee= seat too high.

Paying a pro to set up your bike can really help. Minor adjustments can make a huge difference. I think a lot of fixed riders are unnecessarily resigned to their knee pain. Fiddling with fit solves a lot of problems, you just have to keep trying things out. I figure if 55 year old randonneurs can do PBP and not have the lower half of their legs fall off, there's no reason why a young person whos just commuting and dicking around shouldn't be able to be completely comfortable on their bike, fixed gear or not.
What about pain to the side of the kneecap?

Sorry to piggyback, but this is timely. I've had knee pain since right before xmas (was riding gears then, too). Never had it in my life until I really started stepping up my cycling. I thought it was cleat position, but I don't even know which way to move it (not to mention the cleats are pretty much rusted in place!).
climbhoser is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 07:59 AM   #10
wroomwroomoops
Sir Fallalot
 
wroomwroomoops's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Bikes:
Posts: 5,275
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by climbhoser View Post
What about pain to the side of the kneecap?

Sorry to piggyback, but this is timely. I've had knee pain since right before xmas (was riding gears then, too). Never had it in my life until I really started stepping up my cycling. I thought it was cleat position, but I don't even know which way to move it (not to mention the cleats are pretty much rusted in place!).
Try DH/BMX platforms that will allow you a large range of feet positions, and try to find the most pleasant position. And then throw away the rusted cleats...
wroomwroomoops is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 08:00 AM   #11
mander
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Van BC
Bikes:
Posts: 3,744
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Sorry hoser, you're reached the extent of my own knowlledge. If it's anywhere around the patella though, try raising the seat. Don't raise it much either, unless your height is way way off, 1/2" is acres, 1/4" is plenty and 1/8" is more like it when you're zeroing in on the correct height.
mander is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 08:28 AM   #12
sfcrossrider
Senior Member
 
sfcrossrider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: San Francisco
Bikes: Steelman eurocross, Surly CrossCheck, IRO Rob Roy...
Posts: 2,760
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Have an expert fit you on your bike. I'm 34 and have been racing track (on and off) since I was 12. I also have OSD in my right knee. My knees never hurt and I log between 200-300 miles per week.

BTW, the fastest racers at the track are in their 30s.
sfcrossrider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 08:38 AM   #13
limeylew
Senior Member
 
limeylew's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Benbrook Texas
Bikes: A 3-speed fixed, a single speed (freewheel), etc.
Posts: 276
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetbike View Post
Got a bit of knee pain. Saw my doctor, he reckons it's okay and has recommended some exercises to stabilize my patella.

Apart from Glucosamine any folk out there have any tips on how to increase their riding life?
I mostly ride fixed or single speed bikes (been car-free 4 years) and I'm exactly twice your age. :-)

Taking a couple of Ibuprofen (only occasionally) BEFORE I ride seems to work well for me. Also, by taking them before the ride, I feel that I use less than I would if I waited till I was in pain.

Hope this helps you.
limeylew is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 08:47 AM   #14
dmg
Beautiful Member
 
dmg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Pittsburgh PA
Bikes:
Posts: 653
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Check your knee position over the pedal also. Good positions: knee over pedal (at a 90 degree rotation) to calf perfectly vertical at 90º. not good - knee at a > 90º angle, which is going to stress your knees on the downstroke. Move your saddle until you're at least at the vertical calf position.

As far as height, most people underestimate the height they should be at. Get it as high as you can without rocking your hips, and then if that's still a little squirrley for you, take it down a tiny bit.
dmg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 09:06 AM   #15
dudezor
abides and rides
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 471
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by DKfix View Post
It kills me when people in their 30s say that they're OLD! It's both funny and sad.
This is the internet though. Even early to late 20's can seem 'old' on an internet forum ;-)



I've been getting a bit of pain in my left knee for a while now from riding fixed. I skid ambidextrously, but I heavily favour my left foot as my leading foot, and I'm assuming that the pain is mainly being caused by the force of pulling my left foot upwards when slowing/stopping/skidding.

For quite some time I've been thinking that I should practice to trackstand better with my right foot forward, and get more comfortable with slowing/skidding with my right foot forward since it seems logical that it would even the stress out across both knees. I'm sure it could make me a better rider too.

I'm quite sure that my saddle height/position is fine, and my cleats seem to be pretty spot on, but I might try shift the cleats a bit and see if it helps (it's obviously a bit difficult to fine tune that once they're dug into your shoes though).

Anyone got any good exercises to suggest that might help fixed gear related knee pain?

One more thing to the OP, using a brake will, of course, take A LOT of stress away from your knees. Especially if you're riding down any decent descents on a regular basis. Another thing that just occurred to me is body weight. I'm not a huge fatty or anything, but I could do well to lose a few pounds. The more weight that your knees are working against when slowing down would probably cause more stress when applying backwards pressure to the pedals.

Last edited by dudezor; 03-08-08 at 10:42 AM.
dudezor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 09:21 AM   #16
MrCjolsen
Senior Member
 
MrCjolsen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Davis CA
Bikes: Surly Cross-Check, '85 Giant road bike (unrecogizable fixed-gear conversion
Posts: 3,957
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
I'm 46, and have one knee which an orthopedist has diagnosed as "arthritic."

I commute 28 miles a day. Lately, I've been riding mostly fixed.

I like about 70". I use SPD clipless.

My number one suggestion would be to put a brake on your bike. If I get any knee pain at all, it's usually after I've been stopping without my brakes. Also, trackstand sparingly.

The funny thing was that I rode my 27 speed Surly Crosscheck two days this week. It could be a coincidence, but I actually got a little bit of knee pain for the first time in a while. I went back to fixed gear on Friday, and that minor pain has gone away.
MrCjolsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 09:53 AM   #17
maddyfish
Senior Member
 
maddyfish's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Ky. and FL.
Bikes: KHS steel SS
Posts: 3,944
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If you ride clipless, think about moving to pedals with more float. I am currently using eggbeaters and crank bros candy pedals. Make sure your seat height is right, and spin lower gears in general.
maddyfish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 10:02 AM   #18
thenewblk
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 201
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
get your fit right, and gear up. post skateboarding years i thought my knees were pretty much done. i rode single speed for about a year because i was worried about them getting worse. i think my knees have improved since i started riding fixed. i'm assuming it's from increased strength. they rarely bother me at all these days, whereas before i would always notice them at least a little. i only skid when it's raining, or necessary, or i need to show off. i skip more than anything. i backpedal of course but never to the point of straining, i'll just throw a little skip. yeah make sure everything fits right, and maybe check your technique as bad form can't be healthy. i'm at 86 (and some change) gear inches and older than you (at least chronologically). ride every day and night nyc. cheers.
thenewblk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 10:42 AM   #19
Build your own
%#&*#%>?%
 
Build your own's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Mass
Bikes: Pake,Shogun,Nishiki,Motobecane
Posts: 845
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetbike View Post
Got a bit of knee pain. Saw my doctor, he reckons it's okay and has recommended some exercises to stabilize my patella.

Apart from Glucosamine any folk out there have any tips on how to increase their riding life?
I have bad knees as well and i use a neoprenbrace with patellastabilizer on bad days.It works pretty good.

I don't want to start a whole thing about brakes(i often ride breakless too) but skids,skips and even heavy resisting don't help since they put a lot of pressure on the knees.
Build your own is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 10:47 AM   #20
dudezor
abides and rides
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 471
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrCjolsen View Post
Also, trackstand sparingly.
If you're in a stable, relaxed trackstand I can't see it putting any undue stress on your knees. 'Maybe' a little if you're a bit fidgety on a downward slope. Unless of course you were advising to not constantly trackstand so as not to look like a poseur ;-)

Last edited by dudezor; 03-08-08 at 10:57 AM.
dudezor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 11:41 AM   #21
balonya
Senior Member
 
balonya's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: funky town
Bikes:
Posts: 112
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetbike View Post
Ps, I'm running 66", brakeless and am old (34).
34 is not old. if your are old it is a state of mind
balonya is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 12:09 PM   #22
wroomwroomoops
Sir Fallalot
 
wroomwroomoops's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Helsinki, Finland
Bikes:
Posts: 5,275
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by balonya View Post
34 is not old. if your are old it is a state of mind
Why do you care? If he feels old at 34, the more chicks for me (39), while people like him sit in a corner feeling old.

^^This is meant in a facetious manner. Please nobody get offended.
wroomwroomoops is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-08, 01:24 PM   #23
LóFarkas
LF for the accentdeprived
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Bikes:
Posts: 3,549
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
+1 on the visit a gym, build up muscle suggestion. If your pain has anything to do with tendons then the muscles can take over part of the load. It may not, I have no idea... it wd seem unlikely if cycling is what caused it. Anyone know?
LóFarkas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-08, 12:18 AM   #24
akaio
Senior Member
 
akaio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: NYC!
Bikes: Jamis Sputnik (2007) & Bridgestone RB-2 (1994).
Posts: 382
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
1) Fit. Saddle height and cleat float too much or little. Fore/aft movement of the saddle could be looked at too.
2) Bike. Brakes save knees and spinning is easier on them too.
3) Shoes. Soft soles can be bad, so can a bad cleat position on cycling shoes.
4) Let your knees heal. Take some time off the bike if youve been on it more.
akaio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-08, 06:18 AM   #25
j0e_bik3
"this is not suck"
 
j0e_bik3's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 387
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jetbike View Post
Got a bit of knee pain. Saw my doctor, he reckons it's okay and has recommended some exercises to stabilize my patella.

Apart from Glucosamine any folk out there have any tips on how to increase their riding life?
STRETCHING exercises are the ONE thing that almost NO ONE DOES,.....but can have the most impact on how long you can keep doing strenuous exercise.

long, flexible, supple muscles, tendons, AND ligaments are MUCH less prone to injury (proven sports fact)

when I was much younger I was into karate, and then gymnastics, and I remember stretching for HOURS before a workout.

HOW you stretch is also important: NEVER "bounce" when you stretch, instead stretch till it's just uncomfortable, hold for 5 seconds, then pull til it starts to get REALLY uncomfortable, hold for 3 seconds, then BACK TO UNCOMFORTABLE, hold for 5 seconds, then release, and shake it out. repeat no less than 3 times for EACH muscle group,....as you get more flexible, you'll naturally hold longer, and pull harder, with less discomfort.

I stretch for 15 minutes before a ride, and probably for an hour afterwards sitting in front of the TV watching whatever.

I'm 49, 66" (38/15) and rode brakeless for a YEAR, till a friend gave me a shimano tiagra short road caliper, which I think looks so cool, I just HAD to install it, even though I've only used it about 4 times in as many months, I ride everyday, and can't remember the last time I had an exertion injury, as opposed to just falling off the damn thing! and I ride AGGRESSIVE most of the time (I can't help it,..I'm mental or something )

diet can have a huge impact as well,..........as I was told by a professional sports trainer:
"the human body is a remarkable machine, it works with almost no maintenence, and even can repair itself, BUT it can ONLY do that with what you put in your mouth"

made me think twice, and eat better ever since.

so stretch, because you know you should, and probably don't, or maybe you do, but I bet not for long enough. (kinda like NO one brushes their teeth for long enough, same deal)
j0e_bik3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:48 AM.