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Beaker 01-14-09 11:05 PM


Originally Posted by DannoXYZ (Post 8176101)
Most certainly, depending upon your form. One of the things you must not do is grip the handlebars and pull. That will yank out your back for sure. Hanging onto the bars with a death-grip is just bracing your upper body to make up for poor pedaling form.

Instead, let go of the bars, wrap your fingers into a loose fist and rest the heels of the palms of your hands on top of the bars. Your fingernails should be tapping the top of the bars too. This way, all of your weight is resting on the bony part of your hand and won't be sore. If you find yourself bouncing around, relax and spin your legs more. Smooth form on the hills really help me go faster while keeping the HR down. Also helps keeps the legs from fatiguing on long climbs.

Lemond calls the motion "scraping mud off the bottom of your shoes". It helps people who are still pushing down on the pedal at the bottom of the crank-revolution modify their pedaling-motion to be pulling back at 90-degrees to the crank instead.

What happens when you push on the pedal at the bottom is that you're trying to stretch the crankarms and bend the pedal-axle. Not gonna happen, so instead, all that force pushes your upper body upwards and to the opposite side of the bike. Then people grip the bars and pull to counteract their upper-body moving upwards. You're basically negating the useless force from the legs with an opposing force from the back-muscles. Neither of which does anything to move you forwards on the bike, but it does work the back and and cause lower-back pain and soreness.


Originally Posted by Terex (Post 8177050)
Depends on how steep the hill is. Up to maybe 15%, yeah. 15-20%, pretty tough. 20%+ - NWIH.

But, great info, as per usual. :)

Good posts - I have no issue with a loose grip until getting to 15%. Once the grade starts getting stupid, then I'm wondering how to stop pulling my front wheel off the ground. This will make me go take another look.

ZXiMan 01-14-09 11:07 PM


Originally Posted by pdedes (Post 8172132)

Yes, Absolutely. Especially if you have a weak core.

ZXiMan 01-14-09 11:11 PM


Originally Posted by patentcad (Post 8176025)
Diagnosing back pain can be impossible and is often complex. But the easiest thing to address is the bike fit, so start there. It's also a very likely cause, as gsteinb correctly observes.

Yes very complex indeed. Lower back pain can also be the result of leg length differences that most professional "fitters" don't catch.... :thumb:

terrymorse 01-15-09 12:28 AM

Most people don't climb long enough to wear out their back muscles. But they do get a workout when climbing steep roads, as the lower back muscles are used when climbing.

If you haven't experienced this, go out and do a 2-hour climb seated. Your back will be tight.

I make a point of standing every few minutes on a climb, or whenever I feel my back start to tighten up. It helps immensely.

Sinn 01-15-09 03:16 PM


Originally Posted by tkehler (Post 8183645)
PS -- I've never been to a forum where there were so many smart-aleck types offering no advice/thoughts/answers at all.

You must be new around here.

El Diablo Rojo 01-15-09 03:21 PM

If you have a weak core then any strenuous cycling can lead to back pain. I only stand to get on top of a gear or sprint when climbing, otherwise I'm always in the saddle.

Road Fan 01-15-09 03:25 PM


Originally Posted by Metzinger (Post 8172322)
A lot depends on steepness. If your trying to sit and the speed and cadence go down, things could get torquey.

I've had this torqueyness. If I persist, I get lower back pain that soon changes into mild sciatica, or at least similar symptoms.

So, yes.

Road Fan 01-15-09 03:34 PM


Originally Posted by merlin55 (Post 8177637)
Out of the saddle climbing for long durations seems to work best for smaller very light riders, like pro riders with bald heads and big earings.

Andre Aggasi now rides a bike?

Road Fan 01-15-09 03:41 PM


Originally Posted by tkehler (Post 8183645)

PS -- I've never been to a forum where there were so many smart-aleck types offering no advice/thoughts/answers at all.

Yah, it's amazing any work gets done around here.

PoopinFresh 01-15-09 03:45 PM


Originally Posted by Terex (Post 8183590)
GOOD Pilates instructors provide amazingly effective instruction in the development of core strength. Although books and tapes are useful, nothing is as good as instruction by a competent professional.

But - just doing crunches, with torso twists and things like that can help. There have been many discussions, with references, on this forum. Use search.

I also don't see how strengthening your abs will help; the muscles of the lower back are the ones fighting against gravity, though the abs contribute to a much, much lesser extent in a support role.

Perhaps I'm missing something, as I'm a relatively new cyclist, but not new to exercise and muscle roles during exercise.

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