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Newly resumed biking after 30 yr. hands get numb from riding. what am I doing wrong?

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Newly resumed biking after 30 yr. hands get numb from riding. what am I doing wrong?

Old 06-13-14, 11:49 AM
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Boppsie
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Newly resumed biking after 30 yr. hands get numb from riding. what am I doing wrong?

Back , very much a newbie,but re-learning how to ride. Riding a Specialist,Woman's VITA model ,model year 2013.
One of my issues is noting my hands get numb after approximately 30 minutes of riding. I am not griping the handlbar tightly although I do have my hands on the handlebar with my middle fingers also reaching/touching my brake lever in case I have to stop quickly. I wear padded biking gloves.

any thoughts?
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Old 06-13-14, 12:06 PM
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Have you been properly fitted to your bike? You may need a shorter/more upright stem. What about bar-ends? Those provide alternate hand positions which will help alleviate pain. You might need different padded gloves, where the padding is more in line with your typical hand positions....
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Old 06-13-14, 12:09 PM
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A proper fitting should help. A stem too low could be causing pinched nerves in your neck. Also, your seat may be slanted too far down in front causing too much weight on hands and wrists.
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Old 06-13-14, 12:14 PM
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I get sore, but not numb hands from longer rides. Are you wearing gloves? Do you change your hand positions? I don't ride all the time with my hands on hoods, sometimes my hands are on the top of the bar, sometimes on hoods, sometimes in the drop position.
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Old 06-13-14, 12:18 PM
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+1 on fit. Fit is everything. Just make sure the person fitting you has the credentials to do so. Post a inquiry regarding who the best fitters are in your area. It is worth every penny you will pay to get a correct fit.
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Old 06-13-14, 12:49 PM
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you dont have to hold on with both hands, all the time ..

at first sign of tingly discomfort let the arm hang by your side and shake it a bit, to get the circulation back ,

then do the same with the other arm.
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Old 06-13-14, 01:03 PM
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You could always go for a recumbent or a trike. Numb hands are one of the many things that bents fix.
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Old 06-13-14, 01:21 PM
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Walter S
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Are you making the mistake of riding with your wrists bent? Keep em pretty straight.
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Old 06-13-14, 01:41 PM
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Hi. The Vita has a flat bar. I had tingly and numb hands until I got ergonomic grips.
Mine are from RavX, but folks like Ergon grips also, although they
are pricier.

Good luck. Peter
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Old 06-13-14, 02:43 PM
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1. Get a proper bike fitting if you haven't done so already and make sure you tell the fitter about the issue (likely related to handlebar/stem/seat positioning).

2. Spend some time on learning proper form and posture on the bike.

3. Move your hands around frequently making sure that you are minimizing the pressure on the main median nerve in your hand (I believe it runs between the the two pads on the palm of your hand.). If the numbness is in the ring and pinkie finger, then it is too much pressure on the ulnar nerve.

4. Work on building up your core to help support your body instead of with your hands.


But, it all has to start with a proper fitting. It could be as simple as a small change to your seat (fore/aft and angle). For example, last week, I thought I had a bit much pressure on my hands. I tipped my seat up (nose up) by less than a degree and it was much, much better. Once your fit is pretty close, it's going to be really small things that make a big difference - at least it is for me.

J.

Last edited by JohnJ80; 06-13-14 at 02:48 PM.
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Old 06-13-14, 03:39 PM
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Lousy gloves won't help. I go through plenty of brands and give most away just finding old fashioned crochet gloves, for a reasonable price, that I like anymore. I miss Cannondales crochet touring gloves and stitched up my last pair with dental floss for awhile before finally giving them up.

Once I find some I like I stock up.
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Old 06-13-14, 10:16 PM
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30 years older? Injuries or physical change? Nerve or blood vessel impingement? Some potentials that should be considered.
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Old 06-13-14, 10:20 PM
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Originally Posted by HawkOwl View Post
30 years older? Injuries or physical change? Nerve or blood vessel impingement? Some potentials that should be considered.
Absolutely, it isn't always about the fitting
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Old 06-13-14, 10:36 PM
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Here is my experience when I first started rinding last summer. My left hand would get numb about an hour into riding. I took the hand off the grip and shook it a bit, stopped for a quick rest, etc. After a while it stopped happening. My own reasoning is that I probably got my arms tensed up too much, interrupting the blood flow. That explained why it only occurred to my left hand - I'm lefty, so I most probably used my dominant hand to hold onto the handlebar. I gradually learnt to hold the handlebar in a more relaxed manner, hence no more numbness.
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Old 06-14-14, 04:59 AM
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Look at adjusting the saddle height, fore/aft position, and angle before anything else. You may end up changing out the stem, but only after the saddle position has been tried.
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Old 06-14-14, 05:39 AM
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It could also be connected to a sign of aging. At rest, the veins seem to be popping out more than when the arm is raised above the head. At that position the veins in the back of the hand will decrease in size.

As a rider ages, it might be better to add more spacers to get the pressure off the arms and hands.
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Old 06-14-14, 06:27 AM
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Fit most likely. I have three bikes I ride regularly and one not as often because riding it makes my hands numb. It's a folder and I'm guessing it doesn't fit me well, yet, it feels very comfortable. Comfort ≠ proper fit
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Old 06-14-14, 06:30 AM
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I started riding a few years ago after a 30+ year break. I already had some wrist issues from older problems. I started on a flat bar hybrid and it killed my hands and wrists. 10 miles was about my limit. I switched to road bars and the difference was like magic. There are so many more places to put the hands that relieve stress. Don't know if I could have stayed with it without that switch. As soon as I made the switch, I began to really love riding again.
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Old 06-14-14, 09:06 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
you dont have to hold on with both hands, all the time ..

at first sign of tingly discomfort let the arm hang by your side and shake it a bit, to get the circulation back ,

then do the same with the other arm.
+1
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Old 06-14-14, 09:54 AM
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Get bar-ends so you can change hand position often. The 'handshake' position is most natural. That's it.
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Old 06-14-14, 11:54 AM
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This might be a case of "bicyclists palsy" which is a variation on carpal tunnel syndrome. It is the result of wear and tear on the tendons that run across the palm of your hand. When you hold the handlebar, this is the part of your hand that gets compressed. I had it as a result of riding bicycles a lot for many decades and from motorcycling which has the same effect on your hands as you hold on to the grips. I tried everything that has already been mentioned here - padded gloves, a more upright handlebar, stem riser to bring the bars closer and more upright. I even switched to a different type of bike - road bike to mountain bikes. None of that really helped much and I finally switched to riding recumbent bikes and trikes equipped with underseat steering. I no longer have any problem with numb hands and can ride for hours with no discomfort. It is not a cheap solution. It will lighten your wallet a lot for a decent one.
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Old 06-14-14, 06:51 PM
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The numb hands post:
http://www.bikeforums.net/road-cycli...l#post12953035

You have flat bars, but the principles are the same. My favorite short finger gloves are Bontrager Gel.
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Old 06-16-14, 12:14 AM
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Originally Posted by VaultGuru View Post
+1 on fit. Fit is everything. Just make sure the person fitting you has the credentials to do so. Post a inquiry regarding who the best fitters are in your area. It is worth every penny you will pay to get a correct fit.
Thanks, I have a sense that my seat is too low. When I purchased the bike I was still having problems with getting started. The store manager,at my request, lowered the seat a bit so that I could, with feet still on the ground use the seat to support me when starting up.
Today while riding I noticed that if I stand up on the pedals- which I can now do-, my hands did not push so hard against the handlebar and it seemed more comfortable
Does that make sense?
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Old 06-16-14, 12:15 AM
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Originally Posted by JamesRL View Post
I get sore, but not numb hands from longer rides. Are you wearing gloves? Do you change your hand positions? I don't ride all the time with my hands on hoods, sometimes my hands are on the top of the bar, sometimes on hoods, sometimes in the drop position.
Yup wearing gloves
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Old 06-16-14, 12:17 AM
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I can't yet ride without both hands on the handlebars. Even years ago when I rode, I had to have both hands on the bike lest I fall
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