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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 03-13-09, 06:34 PM   #1
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fixed gear and sciatica

Some of you might know that I hate riding fixed gear bikes of any kind. Solely because as a kid I was pretty much forced to ride them for 10 years. It was all I had at the time. I damned them to hell!

I got back into cycling, and I rode my road bike alot in the last 4 years. ALOT! I have had sciatica for about 12 years now. After a long time on the saddle the bike started causing me pain, aggravating my sciatica. Then it just got worse and worse. It wasnt that specific bike because I would get it on the single speed bike, and my beachcruiser too. All three of wich had different seat heights, handlebar reach, handling, and riding positions

I got to the point where even a short 1 mile ride would cause me some serious pain. I would ride regardless. When my nerve was swollen, I would notice the pain was worse when I would "LIFT" the pedal up on the upstroke. I though about this and figured that on a fixed gear bike there is no need to "lift" the pedal. The thing just turns on its own.

So, I made a fixed gear from scrap I had lying around. NO PAIN. At all. Zero. Infact I think having to resist the pedals to slow/stop has greatly aliviated my symptoms. I feel nothing anymore. I have not had symptoms in over two months. I can ride the freewheeled bikes now withou pain. I just do most of my rides on the fixed gear now. 2 out of 3 rides are done on the fixed gear.

I think a freewheel causes muscular inbalances. Thats too bad because it was great riding a freewheel all the time. I think I am doomed to ride a fixed gear. LOl That was a nice joke life played on me. oh well...
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Old 03-13-09, 06:42 PM   #2
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Well, it's cool to hear that it helped relieve the pain. See, fixed gears really aren't all bad!
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Old 03-13-09, 06:47 PM   #3
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Sounds like an imbalance in strength. It's quite common. If you strengthen the hamstrings and butt, and stretch, you can keep your freewheel by managing your
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Old 03-14-09, 02:01 AM   #4
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Yeah my dad is starting to ride fixed due to the fact he can't bear weight on his right foot. After **** knows how many marathons, including placing in the top 15 of his age class in the Boston Marathon his toes are demolished and his knees aren't that great either.
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Old 03-14-09, 07:21 AM   #5
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oh snap
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Old 03-14-09, 09:15 AM   #6
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lol, look what this thread did:

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Old 03-15-09, 08:58 AM   #7
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I've had sciatica since 1991-ish... I have been skateboarding for over 20 years and finally, it was just unbearable. I cant do any high impact activitiy like running, tennis, anything that jars my legs or hips. I decided to start riding bikes with some of my friends and just went straight into riding fixed. I've never had any pain from riding and its even helped with the pain while off my bike. I think it has something to do with the riding position with being crouched over and allowing my upper body to rest on the saddle, not on my legs which transmits pressure on my hips and gives me terrible sciatic pain. I have 3 herniated and degenerative disks, severe spinal stenosis and severe sciatic nerve pain several times a year, to the point I can roll over in bed. Riding fixed has absolutely helped.
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