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Moved saddle forward and up, lost power. Dang.

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Moved saddle forward and up, lost power. Dang.

Old 07-27-22, 08:56 AM
  #1  
runnergoneridin
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Moved saddle forward and up, lost power. Dang.

I've been experiencing hand numbness for a while, but my output has been somewhat good and I feel comfortable when working hard.


So to experiment on the hand numbness, I moved the seat forward an inch (to exaggerate effect) and .5 inches higher. The result was that a lot of my numbness issues went away. However, I could tell that I wasn't able to put out the power and speed I had before. Acceleration was lacking and it felt like each stroke had seemingly less return. I do know I was less aero since getting lower was much more difficult being squished up closer to the bars.


Perhaps I should move the seat back where it was, but tilt it up some? Also, is there a fine line between BB to hip location (setback distance?) and power output? It kind of makes sense because I know I can leg press more weight than I can squat.

Last edited by runnergoneridin; 07-27-22 at 09:03 AM.
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Old 07-27-22, 11:23 AM
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phughes
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Quit screwing around guessing. Do it right. If your move your seat forward, you will put more weight on your hands. If by moving your seat forward, your numbness went away, you may have been stretched out too far, and need a shorter stem. Don't change reach with saddle setback.

Read this: https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com...or-road-bikes/

And this: https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com...ard-can-it-be/

And this: https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com...d-can-it-be-2/
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Old 07-27-22, 11:26 AM
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Polaris OBark
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Although I agree with the above, the Steve Hogg links always make me uneasy.

https://www.bicycling.com/news/a20036285/steve-hogg/
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Old 07-27-22, 08:36 PM
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phughes
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
Although I agree with the above, the Steve Hogg links always make me uneasy.

https://www.bicycling.com/news/a20036285/steve-hogg/
Oh lord, you don't have to agree with everything Hogg does, in order to get the seat setback and height correct. His methods there are fine. I don't necessarily agree with everything he does, but with respect to seat height and setback, yeah.
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Old 07-27-22, 10:37 PM
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Polaris OBark
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Yeah, from what I can see, he is a really good empirical bike fitter who concocts totally insane explanations for his approach. As long as it works, I guess it doesn't really matter.
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Old 07-27-22, 11:51 PM
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Your assessment sounds very subjective. There are objective criteria for bike fit that generally play out, like setting the seat-top to pedal-platform distance (along line of seat tube) about 109% of pubic bone height, or seat-top to center of bottom-bracket at PBH minus 10cm. When you begin to evaluate changes from the settings set by these rules-of-thumb, you want to be careful to evaluate the results fairly -- for example, not changing more than one variable at a time.

The variable that's not easy to keep consistent in this situation is the degree of your pelvic rotation. This will have a big impact on the amount of pressure on the hands and on the degree to which your hamstrings and glutes are activated. With your hips forward and your back bent, you'll mostly be using the quads and have limited power. Rotate your pelvis top-forward, bottom-back, straighten your back from the convex curve to more of a concave lower back, and you may find the hamstrings can work now. If you move the seat, it's also likely that your seat position will change. Without a more careful way to evaluate the results, it's hard to tell what's actually causing any perceived change.

An example of a careful way to evaluate a single change would be to run several iterations before and after using a fluid-trainer and a power-meter. I'm not saying you need this kind of regimen to try changes to see if you can resolve hand numbness. What I'm saying is that when you change multiple variables at the same time, it's going to be difficult to evaluate what causes are resulting in which effects.

If changing the seat's position is causing a loss of power, and your position on the seat can't be adapted to resolve this, you could try changing the cockpit instead. Then you'll be changing the steering instead of the power department, and it will cost you some parts instead of just a little time making adjustments. This is where the rules of thumb come in handy to figure out which direction to go in. Where does the bike's stack and reach numbers sit now with respect to your body's measurements?
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Old 07-28-22, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by phughes View Post
Quit screwing around guessing. Do it right. If your move your seat forward, you will put more weight on your hands. If by moving your seat forward, your numbness went away, you may have been stretched out too far, and need a shorter stem. Don't change reach with saddle setback.

Read this: https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com...or-road-bikes/

And this: https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com...ard-can-it-be/

And this: https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com...d-can-it-be-2/
Overstretched and too high saddle is a common fitting problem today when riders see their favorite racers in TdF sport very long stems and seemingly very high saddle adjustment. Ironically, even manufacturers are also getting into the hype just to make their bikes look more aggressive at the expense of rider comfort.

Pros ride "forward" position in a significantly undersized frame so they really do need longer stems and higher saddle. To be comfortable in that position, you need to have very light upperbody mass (Pro body build). If you didn't, you'll have hand numbness or other problems with the arms and shoulders.

Last edited by koala logs; 07-28-22 at 07:30 PM.
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Old 07-28-22, 08:05 PM
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It will be okay now, I am here. You can never move your seat too far forward, you just have to get used to it and maybe match the move with a longer stem. Your mistake was maybe making more than one change at a time, never a good idea no matter what facet of life you are experimenting with, except when you dump your wife for a younger woman of course.

So make one change, jam that seat as far forward as it will go and just ride it that way for a few weeks, then you will be sure of the effects. If you don't like them then mess with the stem length. When you are on the drops, instead of having your grip on the horizontal part of the drops, try holding the vertical part of it like a gun, this will have your hand further forward and stress them in a different way, and they will be more straight, it could solve your problem.

Having the seat a little high is much worse than having it a little low as far as power is concerned, this is proven by research, and it may be why you lost power with your second change of raising the seat. Anyone can look up the research on seat height vs. power.

Also lower your bars as much as your bikes frame will allow, you can never have bars too low on a properly sized frame, contrary to popular belief it takes strain off your arms the lower the bars are.

Good luck...........
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Old 07-28-22, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by beng1 View Post
It will be okay now, I am here. You can never move your seat too far forward, you just have to get used to it and maybe match the move with a longer stem. Your mistake was maybe making more than one change at a time, never a good idea no matter what facet of life you are experimenting with, except when you dump your wife for a younger woman of course.

So make one change, jam that seat as far forward as it will go and just ride it that way for a few weeks, then you will be sure of the effects. If you don't like them then mess with the stem length. When you are on the drops, instead of having your grip on the horizontal part of the drops, try holding the vertical part of it like a gun, this will have your hand further forward and stress them in a different way, and they will be more straight, it could solve your problem.

Having the seat a little high is much worse than having it a little low as far as power is concerned, this is proven by research, and it may be why you lost power with your second change of raising the seat. Anyone can look up the research on seat height vs. power.

Also lower your bars as much as your bikes frame will allow, you can never have bars too low on a properly sized frame, contrary to popular belief it takes strain off your arms the lower the bars are.

Good luck...........
They'll need it with that advice.
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Old 07-28-22, 11:11 PM
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And a half bottle of dumpster vodka to numb the pain.
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Old 07-29-22, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by koala logs View Post
And a half bottle of dumpster vodka to numb the pain.
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Old 07-29-22, 09:40 PM
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this may or may not apply, I wouldn't know... but I always like to try the simple stuff first...
change the way you grip the bars? numb hands often come from centering the bars on the center of your palms - ulnar channel and letting the wrists collapse cuts down on circulation.
straighter wrists and having the meaty parts of the palm and thumb bear the burden (when you can't put the bar under the knuckles...)
... just a suggestion...
Ride On
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Old 07-30-22, 10:21 AM
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I'll take a jab at the numb hands thing too.

Try to leave your hands relaxed when you aren't having to brake or steer. Just rest the part of the pad right below your thumb on the hood and everything else relaxed and not really touching anything. Maybe even flatten your hand with the thumb pad resting on the hoods stretching your fingers out every so often during the ride.
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Old 08-03-22, 11:07 AM
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Well, in times like these, it's good we can fall back on the famous Numb Hands post: Numb Hands
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Old 08-04-22, 06:44 AM
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Originally Posted by phughes View Post
They'll need it with that advice.
Perhaps itís bike fitter satire?

Otto
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Old 08-04-22, 07:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
Although I agree with the above, the Steve Hogg links always make me uneasy.

https://www.bicycling.com/news/a20036285/steve-hogg/
Bicycling Magazine has been worthless for .......easily 25 years now.....unless you are a Fred.
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Old 08-04-22, 11:57 AM
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Polaris OBark
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
Bicycling Magazine has been worthless for .......easily 25 years now.....unless you are a Fred.
So therefore anyone who says anything that is B.S. gets a free pass if Bicycling quotes them?

Nice logic.
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Old 08-04-22, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
So therefore anyone who says anything that is B.S. gets a free pass if Bicycling quotes them?

Nice logic.
Bicycling Clown writes......

Soon after coming home I e-mail Hogg explaining that his fit has, so far, had surprisingly profound effects. I tell him that what initially felt like a clown-bike position, with a dramatically lowered seat and feet more centered over the pedals, now feels powerful. My pedal stroke is smoother, almost buttery. I've discovered added comfort in every handlebar position.
How about you read the article?
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Old 08-06-22, 02:48 PM
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Except for the last sentence and posting #6, this not so useful a thread, sad to say.
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Old 08-10-22, 12:38 PM
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Trying to get back to the original idea of replying to the OP . . . first try using my fitting primer, here: How can I fitting my bike

Also read: Riding Position Discovery
which was also addressed in post 6.
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