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Falling over...another embarrassing day

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Falling over...another embarrassing day

Old 06-13-18, 07:23 AM
  #26  
DomaneS5
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Falls with clipless are inevitable. My last wipe-out was last year. In my experience... 99% of the time, I have no issue with clipping out in time.. it's usually leaning too far to the left after clipping out of right pedal that causes the wreck. That... and daydreaming and not paying attention to what I'm doing.
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Old 06-13-18, 08:57 AM
  #27  
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I made it over a year w/o joining Club Tombay, but I had my 1st fall at a stop sign early spring, luckily just in front of other members of our Monday night group who've all been there. I'd been riding C&V bikes with platforms so much, I just forgot to unclip until it was too late. I only have clipless pedals on the newer, lighter AL bike for club rides, and I really don't think I get much benefit vs the hassle of changing shoes and getting in & out at stops. I'm on flat land also, so if I was standing on pedals more often I'd probably feel more benefit....and I'm happy being a B group guy - pushing hard and getting winded, but not all-out 100% of the time.

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Old 06-13-18, 11:21 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Oh well, just learn to land on your shoulder instead of sticking arms out to catch yourself.
Well, I wouldn't land on your shoulder too hard. You can break a collarbone like that and its a common cycling injury. I'd prefer to use my glove on the ground (if possible).

My last fall on the bike was maybe two years ago. I talked to a cop before the intersection. I forget what about (maybe an alternate route for a closed street?). Then I pull up to the intersection. The light changes to green. I start out with my left foot already in the pedal and my right foot on the ground. I push forward with the left leg and try to clip-in my right foot. It's not clipped in yet and I try to pedal with my butt out of the saddle. My right foot slips off and I go down in a spectacular fashion. My bar turned on the way down and I scraped my chest with the bar end. So moral of this story is to keep your gleuteus maximus IN THE SADDLE when starting out with clipless pedals. Then if you don't engage the pedal with the cleat its no big deal. Just coast and try again...
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Old 06-13-18, 01:03 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by ptempel View Post
Well, I wouldn't land on your shoulder too hard. You can break a collarbone like that and its a common cycling injury. I'd prefer to use my glove on the ground (if possible).
Far easier to break a wrist trying to catch yourself than a collarbone landing on the meaty part of your shoulder. I've played enough sports that just landing the soft spots and rolling is natural though. Of course, it is much harder to do in a high speed wreck, but from a low speed topple over I am aiming to land on my side.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/24/w...y-to-fall.html

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Old 06-13-18, 01:22 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Far easier to break a wrist trying to catch yourself than a collarbone landing on the meaty part of your shoulder. I've played enough sports that just landing the soft spots and rolling is natural though. Of course, it is much harder to do in a high speed wreck, but from a low speed topple over I am aiming to land on my side.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/24/w...y-to-fall.html
I managed to get a grade 2 AC separation just rolling over in bed. There is a permanent dent in my shoulder -and- cartilage damage from ligament scarring that will hurt for life -and- bills for an MRI and 3 months of physical therapy, because I rolled over in bed. The people here talking about their AC separations after falling off a bike are grade 4 and 5 and they are discussing surgery options. No thanks, I'm not going to try and land on my shoulder. I don't want the grade 4 and 5 that seems to result from falling off a bike.

Last edited by rachel120; 06-13-18 at 01:28 PM.
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Old 06-13-18, 01:26 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by rachel120 View Post
I managed to get a grade 2 AC separation just rolling over in bed. There is a permanent dent in my shoulder -and- cartilage damage from ligament scarring that will hurt for life -and- bills for an MRI and 3 months of physical therapy, because I rolled over in bed. The people here talking about their AC separations after falling off a bike are grade 4 and 5 and they are discussing surgery options. No thanks, I'm not going to try and land on my shoulder. The one shoulder is expensive enough as it is, and I don't need to make the other one match.
All of which can be said about a broken wrist, too.

If you care to provide sources that say it is better to catch yourself than tuck and remain limber, I'm all ears.
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Old 06-13-18, 01:39 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
All of which can be said about a broken wrist, too.

If you care to provide sources that say it is better to catch yourself than tuck and remain limber, I'm all ears.
I can't provide any source for any particular method. I just know that messing up a shoulder causes all sorts of problems, and it's probably not wise to deliberately make that the focal point for all your weight hitting. You mess up your shoulder, your entire life is put on hold for months and doesn't fully recover. Not it might not, it doesn't.
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Old 06-13-18, 04:56 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by rachel120 View Post
I can't provide any source for any particular method. I just know that messing up a shoulder causes all sorts of problems, and it's probably not wise to deliberately make that the focal point for all your weight hitting. You mess up your shoulder, your entire life is put on hold for months and doesn't fully recover. Not it might not, it doesn't.
You continue to fall as you wish, I'll take all the advice I've ever learned in sports and let a limber shoulder in a tucked position take my weight over my 215# coming down on a compariatively delicate wrist. A shoulder may have the potential of being a worse injury, a wrist is far more likely to see a serious injury in any given fall.
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Old 06-13-18, 07:29 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
You continue to fall as you wish, I'll take all the advice I've ever learned in sports and let a limber shoulder in a tucked position take my weight over my 215# coming down on a compariatively delicate wrist. A shoulder may have the potential of being a worse injury, a wrist is far more likely to see a serious injury in any given fall.
Very separated shoulder: The aftermath
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Old 06-13-18, 08:18 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
.....................landing on the meaty part of your shoulder. I've played enough sports that just landing the soft spots and rolling is natural though.............
"... meaty part of your shoulder......landing the soft spots......"

I went down yesterday at mile 118.8 of a planned 150 miler. Had to cut it short, so made it back home with 133. When making a slow U-turn I was not looking at the ground and rode into some dirt/sand while leaning. Front wheel washed out and I went down slowly onto my left hip--NO MEAT, left elbow--NO MEAT, left knuckles--NO MEAT and left shoulder--DEFINITELY NO MEAT. Seriously, I just relaxed and waited for the BOUNCE of the helmet. THE BIKE IS FINE!!!!
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Old 06-13-18, 09:58 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
Far easier to break a wrist trying to catch yourself than a collarbone landing on the meaty part of your shoulder. I've played enough sports that just landing the soft spots and rolling is natural though. Of course, it is much harder to do in a high speed wreck, but from a low speed topple over I am aiming to land on my side.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/24/w...y-to-fall.html
Nice theory. Rarely works without regular practice.

In the real world only trained athletes who practice regularly actually have a shot at falling in a way that minimizes injury. They train and repeat exercises until it's instinctive. That's mostly football players and martial artists because their sports involve lots of falling. Maybe gymnasts. It doesn't include boxers, my background in martial arts. Because boxers don't train to fall. What little training I had in judo and karate was so long ago and never reinforced with practice that I doubt there's an residual instinct to fall as trained. We were trained to use an outstretched arm along with rolling to break a fall. That's what I happen to do instinctively, but I doubt it's due to training. Just a natural reflex.

That instinct from training doesn't include the vast majority of cyclists. Look at all the many hundreds of videos with road cyclists falling. Most of them fall without any apparent plan because it happens too quickly. There's no time to think your way into a correct fall. There's no practical way to train to fall on the road that isn't also incredibly risky.

Mountain bikers have a better shot at falling correctly, especially downhill stunt cyclists. Ditto BMXers and freestyle cyclists. They suffer a lot of injuries over a career, including concussions that can lead to psychological problems.

As I've said before, when we fall and aren't injured we congratulate ourselves on our superhuman reflexes and finely honed instincts. When we're injured we chalk it up to bad luck. Then when we retell stories of our misadventures we selectively choose those that confirm our biases.
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Old 06-13-18, 10:37 PM
  #37  
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Well @canklecat and @rachel120 call me superhuman. I got taken out at hockey tonight, guess where I contacted? About three inches down my right arm below the shoulder. Never once stuck out my arm to catch myself, with my arms tucked in. Gonna be a bit tender for a day or two as it always is, but no concerning damage.

@OldTryGuy, so you relaxed your body and didn't reach your wrist out to break you fall, you just landed on your hip and side instead of an outstretched arm and were fine? I'm not really going to argue the minute differences between that and what I suggested, its more or less the exact same concept: don't stick your arm out.

But hey, as I mentioned before, fall as you wish, I merely suggested what every sport expert I have ever heard from has told me.

PS I scored the goal too, so taking the hit was totally worth it

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Old 06-13-18, 10:55 PM
  #38  
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You play hockey. It demands exceptional balance, particularly for a big guy. Your perspective is biased by your personal experience. You've confirmed my assertions rather than refuting them. But I'm glad you weren't hurt. Keep doing what you do, it's working for you.

The rest of us mere mortals will have to muddle along as best we can.
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Old 06-13-18, 11:00 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
You play hockey. It demands exceptional balance, particularly for a big guy. Your perspective is biased by your personal experience. You've confirmed my assertions rather than refuting them. But I'm glad you weren't hurt. Keep doing what you do, it's working for you.

The rest of us mere mortals will have to muddle along as best we can.
My point is not that is not instinctual to catch yourself, it is that I doubt there is any sports trainer who would argue that catching yourself with an outstretched hand is a better idea than relaxing and letting your side absorb the impact. And we're talking about an event that you can literally go "oh crap I'm falling I'm falling", not something that happenes so fast you stand up twenty feet from the accident site going "WTF???". I'm not going to argue that there aren't situations one can't do the proper thing in, but in this threads case I'd never advocate trying to catch yourself.
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Old 06-13-18, 11:55 PM
  #40  
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I fell once last year and had couple close calls. I have SH-56 and it released somehow on those close calls

For the fall, I got some shoulder problem that looks more a frozen shoulder from my PT.
Had bunch of therapy sessions but didn't solve much. At least no pain anymore but can't stretch it fully up - hopefully, should get back slowly.
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Old 06-14-18, 03:30 AM
  #41  
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I've never used road clipless, but use MTB clipless on my road and mtb, so I"m not sure if what I"m about to say works with road clipless.

I've found with the mtb clipless pedals I've been able to jump out of both pedals at the same time. It's saved me more than once especially on the trail. Try it in a grassy area (unless it really just doesn't apply with road pedals). Just roll to a balanced stop and then in one motion with confidence pop up a bit while unclipping your feet with adequate force to ensure both come out of the pedals, then land on your feet straddling your top tube

Again - this may not work with road clipless, but it's worked with Time ATAC mtb clipless pedals.

Oh, and I've fallen a couple times over the years as well, just like most of us have.
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Old 06-14-18, 04:30 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
My point is not that is not instinctual to catch yourself, it is that I doubt there is any sports trainer who would argue that catching yourself with an outstretched hand is a better idea than relaxing and letting your side absorb the impact. And we're talking about an event that you can literally go "oh crap I'm falling I'm falling", not something that happenes so fast you stand up twenty feet from the accident site going "WTF???". I'm not going to argue that there aren't situations one can't do the proper thing in, but in this threads case I'd never advocate trying to catch yourself.
Always going to exceptions to the rule.. Many years ago I had a very strange fall while Mountain biking; At the time I think I was using Power Grips ( a new product at the time) and since it was cold I was wearing boots and using the PG's on a pair of flat pedals. On a very rocky section of single track trail I was trying to thread my front wheel through a very narrow gap between two rocks. At the time I only had about three years experience as a mountain biker so my "rough terrain" skills were extremely lacking. so....as my front wheel tries to "thread the needle" so to speak, the front wheel gets hung up between the rocks and my momentum puts me into a very slow but balanced endo. So slow and balanced in fact that the bike and I came to a completely vertical stand still.

With my feet locked in the Power grips and completely upside down, I had no place to go except where gravity demanded I go, straight down!. When I looked down all I could see was my head lining up perfectly with the rocks below me. Instinctively I knew I couldn't let my head hit a rock with my total weight behind it. Being ever so slightly tilted to the right, only my right hand and arm were going to be the only thing I had to protect me from smashing my head on the rocks below. While I've always been very athletic most of my life at the time I was in my early 40's and not nearly as strong as I use to be. I knew something bad was going to happen. As gravity took hold I began to fall straight down with my head looking to be the primary point of first impact. Thankfully my one arm was able to reach the ground first. That said, for perhaps 1-2 seconds my one arm was holding all of my own weight plus the weight of the bike that was still attached to my feet. and all my gear....lets say about 210-220 lbs total. With all that weight on one shoulder and arm, I felt my shoulder and arm momentarily dislocate. When that happened I flexed my elbow to relieve the stress on my shoulder. When I did that my arm immediately popped back into it's socket and I continued to fall.

Thankfully by that time my body had began to fall to the right where I landed safely on my side. My shoulder was a little sore after that for a couple weeks but I survived. Sadly I didn't go to the doctors to have it looked at but I'm pretty sure there was probably some nerve and soft tissue damage to my shoulder. That shoulder was never quite as strong after that episode. Yep that day I really added insult to injury because the previous year I had a complete A/C separation of the other shoulder ( that story I won't tell because it would be too embarrassing ) but yes that too happened while mountain biking but in that case I was doing something stupid.
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Old 06-14-18, 05:29 AM
  #43  
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Hmmmmmmm------------------------------hasnt ever happened to me on my trike.
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Old 06-14-18, 07:20 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Nice theory. Rarely works without regular practice.

In the real world only trained athletes who practice regularly actually have a shot at falling in a way that minimizes injury. They train and repeat exercises until it's instinctive. That's mostly football players and martial artists because their sports involve lots of falling. Maybe gymnasts. It doesn't include boxers, my background in martial arts. Because boxers don't train to fall. What little training I had in judo and karate was so long ago and never reinforced with practice that I doubt there's an residual instinct to fall as trained. We were trained to use an outstretched arm along with rolling to break a fall. That's what I happen to do instinctively, but I doubt it's due to training. Just a natural reflex.

That instinct from training doesn't include the vast majority of cyclists. Look at all the many hundreds of videos with road cyclists falling. Most of them fall without any apparent plan because it happens too quickly. There's no time to think your way into a correct fall. There's no practical way to train to fall on the road that isn't also incredibly risky.

Mountain bikers have a better shot at falling correctly, especially downhill stunt cyclists. Ditto BMXers and freestyle cyclists. They suffer a lot of injuries over a career, including concussions that can lead to psychological problems.

As I've said before, when we fall and aren't injured we congratulate ourselves on our superhuman reflexes and finely honed instincts. When we're injured we chalk it up to bad luck. Then when we retell stories of our misadventures we selectively choose those that confirm our biases.
Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
My point is not that is not instinctual to catch yourself, it is that I doubt there is any sports trainer who would argue that catching yourself with an outstretched hand is a better idea than relaxing and letting your side absorb the impact. And we're talking about an event that you can literally go "oh crap I'm falling I'm falling", not something that happenes so fast you stand up twenty feet from the accident site going "WTF???". I'm not going to argue that there aren't situations one can't do the proper thing in, but in this threads case I'd never advocate trying to catch yourself.
I have time to think "Oh crap I'm falling" when I'm standing still. However there is zero perceived time from the moment of "Oh crap I'm falling" and "How many bruises do I have and is the bike okay?" Just like there is zero perceived time between watching my cat look at a bug flying around his head and then my arm pulled fully away from me and leash dug into my wrist and him 6 feet away recovering from hitting the end of the leash. Or taking a bad step while walking and next thing I know I'm holding onto something supporting my weight and my ankle hurts. If all that relatively slow stuff skips conscious thought, a fall off a bike at speed is definitely not going to allow for planned action.
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Old 06-14-18, 08:33 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Nice theory. Rarely works without regular practice.
That instinct from training doesn't include the vast majority of cyclists. Look at all the many hundreds of videos with road cyclists falling. Most of them fall without any apparent plan because it happens too quickly. There's no time to think your way into a correct fall. There's no practical way to train to fall on the road that isn't also incredibly risky.

As I've said before, when we fall and aren't injured we congratulate ourselves on our superhuman reflexes and finely honed instincts. When we're injured we chalk it up to bad luck. Then when we retell stories of our misadventures we selectively choose those that confirm our biases.
I think we're discussing two different kinds of falls.
The original intent of the thread was the 0-mph can't-get-my-foot-out-at-the-stoplight tumble or, 'Tombay' if you will. Also happens when you 'stall out' on a steep hill; happens often in MTB'ing, esp if you ride clipless. There's always a little bit of warning, so you can set up. I try to lean away from the fall, so the first thing that hits is the 'cheek' of my hip; Keeping your hands on the bar, elbows in, and roll from your butt to he back of your shoulder. It's not that hard to do, you just don't let go of the bike.

What you're talking about is going down at speed, where things happen a lot faster. It's happened a few times, both on velos and moto, and I usually have about enough time to think 'oh, crap' before I hit the deck. Just don't let go of the bars. If you're riding relaxed (or semi-flexed) then pretty much the same thing happens as in a Tombay, just harder and faster.
If you're tense and stiff, your body wont' absorb the fall as well. You're also more likely to let go of the bike, and more likely to have an incident put you in to trouble, than if you're staying loose on the bike.
'Keep Riding The Bike' was something we stressed with motos; If you've got a 500 lb moto that's on it's way down, you're not going to catch it with one arm.
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Old 06-14-18, 09:55 AM
  #46  
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Really? Once a year? I've fallen once in, what, 25+ years of riding clipless. I've come close a few times, but if you're falling that often you might want to change something.

It's a good thing I don't fall that often, I don't think my wife would appreciate being dumped on the pavement when we're riding our tandem.


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Old 06-14-18, 10:00 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
I think we're discussing two different kinds of falls.
The original intent of the thread was the 0-mph can't-get-my-foot-out-at-the-stoplight tumble or, 'Tombay' if you will. Also happens when you 'stall out' on a steep hill; happens often in MTB'ing, esp if you ride clipless. There's always a little bit of warning, so you can set up. I try to lean away from the fall, so the first thing that hits is the 'cheek' of my hip; Keeping your hands on the bar, elbows in, and roll from your butt to he back of your shoulder. It's not that hard to do, you just don't let go of the bike.
Yeah, there's a bit of warning, when the bike shifts funny under you. Then -bam- you're on the ground, no perception of time. You may have the memory of those couple seconds, you might not, but those couple seconds aren't happening in your brain as you're going over.

And it still doesn't discount that the shoulder is ridiculously easy to seriously injure and ridiculously hard to get right again from even a minor injury. The shoulder is the most complex joint in the body, which means there's a lot of stuff in there that can go wrong.
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Old 06-14-18, 11:39 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by rachel120 View Post
Yeah, there's a bit of warning, when the bike shifts funny under you. Then -bam- you're on the ground, no perception of time. You may have the memory of those couple seconds, you might not, but those couple seconds aren't happening in your brain as you're going over.

And it still doesn't discount that the shoulder is ridiculously easy to seriously injure and ridiculously hard to get right again from even a minor injury. The shoulder is the most complex joint in the body, which means there's a lot of stuff in there that can go wrong.
It's like you read my post backwards. At speed, by the time you recognize something's wrong, it's too late, and you're on the deck. Those do happen pretty fast.

We were talking (originally) about the 0-speed tip-overs, Like when you roll up to a stop, and then can't get your foot out of the pedal, while the bike slowly tips over, and you go down in a heap like Benny Hill on his tricycle.

In either case, keeping your joints semi-flexed, where your muscles are supporting your weight, rather than locked out and stiff, will reduce the chance of a significant injury.
That, and keeping your hands on the bars.
I have an AC3 in my left shoulder, so yes, I understand the nature of a shoulder separation.
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Old 06-14-18, 12:17 PM
  #49  
rachel120
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Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
It's like you read my post backwards. At speed, by the time you recognize something's wrong, it's too late, and you're on the deck. Those do happen pretty fast.

We were talking (originally) about the 0-speed tip-overs, Like when you roll up to a stop, and then can't get your foot out of the pedal, while the bike slowly tips over, and you go down in a heap like Benny Hill on his tricycle.
I just fell the other day. My bike was stopped, I was trying to get off. My toes were on the ground, my other foot was hooked on the tire as I was trying to get off a really tall object and safely on the ground. I felt my toes on the ground not feel right and my foot hooked on the tire not feel right. Next thing I know I'm on my back and trying to figure out if I hit my head or not because I know my neck bend backwards hard. Zero reaction time to figure out how to fall. Zero sense of time between "not feel right" and wondering if I could get up with at least some amount of dignity.
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Old 06-14-18, 01:36 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
I think we're discussing two different kinds of falls.
The original intent of the thread was the 0-mph can't-get-my-foot-out-at-the-stoplight tumble or, 'Tombay' if you will. Also happens when you 'stall out' on a steep hill; happens often in MTB'ing, esp if you ride clipless. There's always a little bit of warning, so you can set up. I try to lean away from the fall, so the first thing that hits is the 'cheek' of my hip; Keeping your hands on the bar, elbows in, and roll from your butt to he back of your shoulder. It's not that hard to do, you just don't let go of the bike....
.
Yeah, everyone who's ever used clipless like pedals probably has at least one "Tombay" incident. Personally I've only had that happen once that I can recall but my gut is telling me back in the early years when I bought my first SPD's it likely happened more than once. For me the major cause of the Tombay falls was not forgetting to unclip but trying to unclip from my cheap SPD's and not being able to disengage from the pedal. The reason for this in my case was the cheap Nashbar and Ritchie SPD's I was using on my bikes back in those days. When I finally switched over to decent Shimano SPD pedals it pretty much eliminated any problems with the pedals. After that likely the only other time there was ever a problem disengaging from a pedal came because the cleat on my shoe was packed with mud. I pretty much now abstain from overly muddy MTB rides.

When it comes to disengaging from your newly acquired cleated pedals, it makes a big difference if you also have good shoes in which to mount the cleat. Setup is important too. If the tension is set too strong you will have times when you have problems disengaging from the pedal. Too loose and your foot will disengage at times when you don't want it too. Once you get dialed in to your pedals you're good to go but that period of time when you are trying to figure out the best adjustments is the time when you are likely to have problems with engagement / disengagement from the pedals. In the long run though it's always worth it as long as the falls you take are the slow-motion types.
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