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Old 03-29-05, 08:27 AM   #1
DC_Emily
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Muscle soreness around knees

I have two bikes that I rotate between. Last week, I switched again, which I haven't done in a few months. I've been having alot of muscle soreness directly above my knees for the past few days. I think it's because of the difference in the cranksets. I've gone from a 175mm crankarm to a 170mm. Is this the reason for the soreness? There isn't any other major difference between the bikes.
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Old 03-29-05, 08:32 AM   #2
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Your saddle is most likly to low.
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Old 03-29-05, 09:14 AM   #3
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When I switched from a 172.5 to a 170 crankset I had a lot of knee problems as well. I only made it two rides on the 170 before I switched back to a 172.5.

I can definately see where you would have problems going from a 175 to a 170.
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Old 03-29-05, 09:19 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LowCel
When I switched from a 172.5 to a 170 crankset I had a lot of knee problems as well. I only made it two rides on the 170 before I switched back to a 172.5.

I can definately see where you would have problems going from a 175 to a 170.
I had the same experience as LowCel.

A guy in another thread said it just takes some time to get used to the difference in crank arm lengths. Not sure about that.
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Old 03-29-05, 12:56 PM   #5
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I am 1,83 meters and have 89 cm leg lenght.Which type of crank should ı choose.175 mm or 170 mm ?
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Old 03-29-05, 06:48 PM   #6
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Pain above the knees is usually indicative of your saddle being set too low. Why not try to raise it first and see if that helps?

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Old 03-30-05, 08:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by koffee brown
Pain above the knees is usually indicative of your saddle being set too low. Why not try to raise it first and see if that helps?

Koffee
I actually feel like the seat is higher on this bike. Could the soreness be from the saddle being to high? A friend thought that it might also be an issue of my quads being stronger than my calves, causing the muscles to pull. First, is that possible and second, could that be my problem?
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Old 03-30-05, 09:16 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinan
I am 1,83 meters and have 89 cm leg lenght.Which type of crank should ı choose.175 mm or 170 mm ?
I'm almost identical (182 & 89.5), and I've just gone to 180s, which is what the proponents of "proportional crank length theory" recommend. So far I love them, but it might depend on what type of riding you're doing.

So, I'd obviously go for the 175s if I were you.

The problem with anything longer than 175 is cost and availablity. As far as I know, 180s are only available in Dura-Ace and Campagnolo Record....$$$$$$
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Old 03-30-05, 09:23 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DC_Emily
. Is this the reason for the soreness? There isn't any other major difference between the bikes.
It's possible, but it could be other position differences, or just a coincidence.

A difference of 5mm in crank length definitely has your knees doing different things. A shorter crank will cause less knee flexion at the top of the stroke (say, between 11 o'clock & 1 o'clock of the pedal stroke), but slightly more flexion between 2 o'clock and 5 o'clock (very difficult to measure precisely, so please, nobody shoot me down ), which is where I would say most people apply most of the force to the pedals.

Generally, the advice is to choose one crank length and stick to it.
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Old 03-30-05, 06:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DC_Emily
I actually feel like the seat is higher on this bike. Could the soreness be from the saddle being to high? A friend thought that it might also be an issue of my quads being stronger than my calves, causing the muscles to pull. First, is that possible and second, could that be my problem?

No.

If the saddle was too high, the pain would be in the back of the legs.

What probably would help is if you called around to your local bike shops and found a shop that has knowledge of bike fit so they can help determine what the real problem is.

Well, if you're feeling knee pain, it may also be due to just weak muscles, but I would say it's something where you would need to do more exercises related to the knee- you would need to do leg extension, leg flexion, and inner/outer thigh machine for the adduction/abduction exercises. Strengthen the muscles around the knee to strengthen the knee joint and stop the pain.

How much are you exercising anyway? Could this be an overuse injury if you're riding alot or suddenly increased your mileage?

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Old 03-31-05, 02:07 PM   #11
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How much are you exercising anyway? Could this be an overuse injury if you're riding alot or suddenly increased your mileage?

I usually ride about an hour to an hour and a half a day, so 15-20 miles? I don't think it's an issue of overuse.
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Old 03-31-05, 02:09 PM   #12
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Do you take days off, or are you riding consistently every day?

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Old 03-31-05, 02:16 PM   #13
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I had that problem, used some Balco arthritis cream. It didn't feel any better, but I hit 75 homeruns in my softball league last year.

(looking for emoticon for 'glib')
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Old 03-31-05, 03:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DC_Emily
I have two bikes that I rotate between. Last week, I switched again, which I haven't done in a few months. I've been having alot of muscle soreness directly above my knees for the past few days. I think it's because of the difference in the cranksets. I've gone from a 175mm crankarm to a 170mm. Is this the reason for the soreness? There isn't any other major difference between the bikes.
I would say you are exactly right.

It certainly COULD be that. It happens to me exactly as you say. It happens in the spring when I have not been riding as much. Take it easy on the bike with the long cranks for a while. Stretch out your muscles and ride the 170's for a while before you do much on the 175's. You need to stretch out slowly and a little at a time. Try short rides with the long cranks for a while and ease into them slowly. I have this problem every spring, but I now know to ease into it slowly.

Your knees bend more. With the 175's.

What else is different about the two bikes? Is one a higher geared road bike?
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Old 03-31-05, 04:39 PM   #15
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Different size cranks require a different seat height. Longer cranks require your leg to reach further and lift your knee more.
You should measure the distance from the top of the pedal, when it's at the bottom of it's stroke (in line with the seatpost) to the top of the seat, on the bike which does not give you problems, and set the other bike up with the same dimension.
This assumes that all the other measruements on both bikes are the same i.e.; seat position behind the bottom bracket, length of top tube, length of stem, height of handlebars, amount of bar drop etc. A good measurement to take is the one from the centre of the h/bars to the tip of the saddle. All the bikes you ride should have the same dimensions or you'll have problems. 5mm can make a huge difference to comfort.
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Old 03-31-05, 05:04 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivan Hanz
I had that problem, used some Balco arthritis cream. It didn't feel any better, but I hit 75 homeruns in my softball league last year.
We're not here to talk about the past, Ivan. I see you're from Pittsburgh or thereabouts; how does this image affect you?

Oh, and on topic, I'd raise the seat from the sound of the problem.
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