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

Go Back   > >

Mountain Biking Mountain biking is one of the fastest growing sports in the world. Check out this forum to discuss the latest tips, tricks, gear and equipment in the world of mountain biking.

User Tag List

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 08-01-02, 10:05 PM   #1
Fat Tires
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 4
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Numb Hands...need some advice...

I just recently started riding a lot lately after a two year break and have noticed that my hands get numb very quickly these days...I've tried new grips, bar ends, and adjusting my saddle back and forth to distribute my (considerable) weight differently. Nothing seems to help...could it be my bar (stem) heighth or length?

FWIW I'm 6'1" 205lbs and ride a "Large" (19.5") 2000 Fisher Mt. Tam with RS SID's pretty much stock except for the Serfa grips. I know that the Genesis hardtails had admitedly short stems for quicker steering, so I'm wondering if a longer stem might help...maybe being "crunched up" may be putting too much pressure on my hands...

any thoughts appreciated.

Fat Tires is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-01-02, 11:40 PM   #2
Senior Member
mechBgon's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 6,957
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If your seat is tilted nose-down, that can tend to slide you forward onto the nose of the seat, forcing you to push back with your hands... could that be a factor?

The Fisher Genesis geometry built more of the stem length into the top tube, so the reach should not really be shorter than normal even with the short stem. I have a Genesis-type '98 Gary Fisher Paragon, same size as yours in fact. Because I have very long arms for my height, I use a 150mm stem plus the long Genesis top tube to get the arm reach I need. Steering's not ideal, but I manage somehow
mechBgon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-02, 02:58 AM   #3
JaredMcDonley's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Gainesville, Florida - UF
Posts: 376
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
You never said any thign about your gloves. You may just need a good pair of gloves. That was my problem!

JaredMcDonley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-02, 04:48 AM   #4
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Southwestern Ohio
Bikes: 95' Kona Kula, built up 11' Surly LHT frame...
Posts: 24
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Numb hands is usually a sign of an ill fit or bike setup. The problem, your weight is too far forward. Other replies give good possible fixes. Other possibilities could be the length of the top tube or stem. There have been many articles written on bike fit that will give you most all the possibilities. My brother was colmpaining of the same think and after watching him ride I had him raise the seat. It worked for him.
hartmame is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-02, 07:38 AM   #5
Junior Member
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Stony Brook, NY
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I also experience numbness after about 1/2 hour of riding. I think the issue is if you just have the standard straight bars. Depending upon how your frame works out and how you like to ride, your wrist maybe bent at an uncomfortable angle for a long time. My friend has suggested getting an aero bar so that the I can change riding positions as one gets to be fatiguing.

Hope this helps.

Etychus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-02, 08:24 AM   #6
BFSSFG old timer
riderx's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Fredrock
Posts: 1,912
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
First and cheapest, get a pair of Oury grips. Very plush on the hands. Next, as other people have said, bike fit may be the issue here. I'd suggest trying a riser bar that will put you in a more upright position and has a sweep that is more natural for your hands. Next might be a shorter stem so you aren't so stretched out. See if a friend has one you can try before investing in one.

Also, vary your riding position. When climbing, don't sit the whole time and don't stand the whole time, alternate between the two.

Check out this article on position, good read even though it's geared more towards road riding.

Last edited by riderx; 08-02-02 at 01:37 PM.
riderx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-02-02, 10:44 AM   #7
Posts: n/a
Mentioned: Post(s)
Tagged: Thread(s)
Quoted: Post(s)
I installed a stem riser so the handle bars are higher and I sit somewhat straighter.

Thick foam pipe insulation on the handlebars helps a bunch to cushion my hands and prevent numbhands.
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-02, 01:46 PM   #8
Senior Member
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Alexandria, VA
Bikes: IRO Model 19, Surly Crosscheck, 1989 Arnie Nashbar
Posts: 1,091
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I had the same problem. I'm 6'2", 250 and thought it was simply a matter of carrying too much weight. I realized that small changes in the geometry help immensly. I'd recommend; gloves (I've got the Specialized with gel on the palms), OURY grips, shortening/raising your stem (I reduced mine by 10 mm), as well as rocking your seat back so it's roughly perpendicular to the post/seat tube (not paralell to the ground for example-putting all the weight on your shoulders/wrists). You'll find this takes quite a bit of that hand-numbing pressure off of your hands, placing it more on the saddle, and for me, alleviating the excruciating neck pain it got on longer rides. I find that it helps with control too.
mjw16 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-02, 08:31 PM   #9
Footballus vita est
iamlucky13's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Portland, OR
Bikes: Trek 4500, Kona Dawg
Posts: 2,118
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Probably wouldn't hurt to try a friends bike if someone with the right size will let you borrow it. If you experience the same thing on his, it's probably not your bike's geometry.
Regarding the suggestion for plush grips. I admit I am new to biking, but I know from working with tools, a lot of cushioning can make my hands go numb faster, because I can't adjust my grip properly as I work. The cushioning tends to distribute force too evenly rather than to the strong points in my hands. Look at your saddle for example. Most Mtb saddles are pretty firm to allow the rider to distribute their weight in a way that works for them.
Which, of course, is not to say that better grips wouldn't do it, and they are pretty cheap.
"The internet is a place where absolutely nothing happens. You need to take advantage of that." ~ Strong Bad
iamlucky13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-07-02, 10:41 PM   #10
Center of the Universe
ngateguy's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Everett, WA
Bikes: Bianchi San Remo, Norvara Intrepid MTB , Softride Solo 700
Posts: 4,374
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Bike fit may be the key here. But it didn't help me, I found this funky looking seat called ergo-the seat which has no horn on it when I switched to it the circulation problems cleared up (everywhere I might add) and no more sore but. I have done 3 metric centuries and 2 centuries with it and I could walk when I was done
Matthew 6
ngateguy is offline   Reply With Quote

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 07:19 PM.

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.
  • Ask a Question
    get answers from real people!
Click to start entering your question.