road bike = sore hands

ebineezer

Well-Known Member
Yesterday I went for my first actual road ride on my vintage (89' Panasonic) road bike. Typically I only use this bike on the trainer, but I just had to hit the streets since the weather was so nice. But anyway...back to my problem, throughout my ride my hands were real sore:cry:. I tried changing my riding position, but I couldn't shake it. I was wondering what could be causing this? Is my seat too high:hmmm:? I use Ergon's on my mountain bike and never experience discomfort.

Any help would be appreciated!

thanks

-Brian
 

Wobbegong

Well-Known Member
Yesterday I went for my first actual road ride on my vintage (89' Panasonic) road bike. Typically I only use this bike on the trainer, but I just had to hit the streets since the weather was so nice. But anyway...back to my problem, throughout my ride my hands were real sore:cry:. I tried changing my riding position, but I couldn't shake it. I was wondering what could be causing this? Is my seat too high:hmmm:? I use Ergon's on my mountain bike and never experience discomfort.

Any help would be appreciated!

thanks

-Brian

Are you in a position on the bike that puts lots of weight on your hands?

Are you gripping the bars to tightly?
 

BiknBen

Well-Known Member
Very common complaint. Some people just have to get used to it. Sometimes it's a fit issue. Are you wearing gloves? Cycling gloves provide some padding to dampen the vibrations from the bars.

Are you able to keep a slight bend in your elbows while riding? The elbows should not be in a locked position. This will allow them to absorb some road vibration as well.

Where is the pain that you feel? In the palms of hands? Wrists?

You could put an extra layer of tape on the bars to offer some additional padding.
 

J-7

Active Member
I've got an old road bike that I can't stand to ride. It has a negative rise stem (the old "7" shaped quill stem). It seems the geometry just isn't set up for comfort. These old bikes are probably the reason for all the comfort road bikes on just about every manufacturers line.
 

ebineezer

Well-Known Member
the pain I am feeling is in the palm of the hand...it could just be that I am not used to the bars... Ben you might be on the right track with putting an extra thing of bar tape on for more padding. I also saw that they sell bar tape with gel? i dunno maybe that would work
 

THATmanMANNY

Well-Known Member
It probably a lot to do with how much weight you're putting on your hands due to how you're set up. I used to ride a supersport bike and I can only withstand about 30min crouched over like that with a lot of weight on my hands till I need to move my hands to get back some feeling.
 

Space Heater

Shop Owner / Employee
Shop Keep
the pain I am feeling is in the palm of the hand...it could just be that I am not used to the bars... Ben you might be on the right track with putting an extra thing of bar tape on for more padding. I also saw that they sell bar tape with gel? i dunno maybe that would work

If it is in the palm it is most likely pressure on your ulnar nerve. Do your pinkey and ring finger go numb or tingle? Gloves, new gel tape or better yet a proper fit will make it much more comfortable.
 

743power

Shop: Bicycle Pro
Shop Keep
If it is in the palm it is most likely pressure on your ulnar nerve. Do your pinkey and ring finger go numb or tingle? Gloves, new gel tape or better yet a proper fit will make it much more comfortable.

sounds right. Also, does the bike have the original hard nylon bar tape? Switching it out for some fresh cork tape or gel tape if you like it will make a HUGE difference.

What size is the frame and how tall are you?
 
I'd say start with the easiest: You no doubt have a quill stem; raise it (to bring the bars at least level with or even higher than the seat). Also consider rotating the angle of the bars so the hoods are easily within reach and comfortable. Finally I'd consider adding padding, like foam or gel to the bar. And use a good pair of gel-padded gloves.

Of course you could bring it in to your LBS for a professional fitting...

Peace,
BB
 

Ian F

Well-Known Member
It could be a matter of just not being used to it, but having a LBS do a "fit-kit" for you on the bike is worth every penny. Fit is EVERYTHING on a road bike, no matter how much it costs or how old it is. A $500 bike that fits is worth more to you than a $5000 bike that doesn't.

IMO, replacing the stem is throwing money at the problem hoping to get lucky... might help... might not...
 

ItsWin

Member
Being too stretched out or not stretched out enough can definitely cause sore hands after a while, but assuming your frame size, stem length, and bar width combo is correct, check your saddle position also.

If your seat's too high - high enough to make your hips rock even just a little, it can cause you to subtly and unconsciously compensate by putting more weight on your hands.

If you're too far forward or back of your ideal "cranking position" (KOPS or otherwise), that can sometimes have an effect. Like most people, I don't believe in KOPS as a hard-and-fast rule, but it's a good starting guideline. I find my own optimal position is at about KOPS or just slightly rearward of KOPS. You have to utilize the position that works best for you.

Angle is a huge factor. Sometimes tilting your saddle up or down even a half degree can make all the difference in the world. Assuming you're OK on everything previously mentioned, try tilting your saddle up very slightly and see if that helps. Tilting the saddle may require a corresponding slight lowering of the seatpost to maintain proper height.

Hope this is helpful,


Win
 

Cyclopath

Shop Owner / Employee
Shop Keep
Ride no handed. Its one of the very few things that make road riding fun.:D

Hah!!
There's lots of things that make road riding fun.
I'm starting a new thread and you'll see the many things that can make it great and I will even take your answer as the first:D.
 

Ian F

Well-Known Member
A $500 bike that fits is worth more to you than a $5000 bike that doesn't.

If you have any $5000 bikes that don't fit, send them my way. I'll gladly give you $500 for them.:rolleyes:

har har... but as a guy working at a bike shop, you should know better.... I was more referring to the guy who ditches his $500 bike that fits for some ebay find that doesn't... I'm trying to help the guy and you (a supposed professional) are being a smart-ass... :rolleyes:

What I really mean is you can spend a LOT of money buying stems and waste a lot of time adjusting things (and potentially hurting yourself) when you can spend a few $ at the LBS, get a set of solid, base-line measurements, and have a better clue about making additional changes.

While fit on a mtn bike is important, you can get away with a much larger tolerance in the fit since you're moving around so much on the bike during a ride. But on a road bike, you move around much less and those tolerances can become millimeters. Especially if you are prone to knee and or back pains.
 
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