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Aero Bars?(6 posts)

Aero Bars?Mike E.
Jul 6, 2001 10:11 PM
Obviously I'm a novice for not knowing what these are, but I've seen a few guys ride with them on. They can sit much lower and it looks more comfortable to me. Are these used for speed or distance? Road bikes or tri bikes? I have a new Trek 2200, would these bars work on my bike and what are the advantages/disadvantages? Thanks, Mike
re: Aero Bars?Jim Burton
Jul 6, 2001 10:35 PM
They are not allowed in USCF (United States Cycling Federation) santioned races. You are also frowned upon for using them in a group ride in any place but the front of a pace line (even there it is questionable). They are used for time trialing, whether in triathlons or time trial events in cycling races (not mass start races) to provide a reduction in wind resistance. The aero position may look comfortable, but done properly it is not as comfortable as the normal riding position. In other words, guys aren't resting on those things, they are using them only because it makes them go faster. It is also not a very stable riding position, hence the ban in USCF mass start races and criteriums. They would most likely work on your Trek if you have standard bars. The guys you are seeing riding in this postion are probably training for a time trial since these bars require much getting used to. If you are riding for fun or fitness, stay away from aero bars. If your intent is to race in a triathlon or time trial, getting a pair will help you in the long run.
re: Aero Bars?LC
Jul 6, 2001 11:17 PM
I am not a fan of these because of the danger of stearing and the delay in getting to your breaks. You also have to get a special seatpost which moves your seat forward, but this changes your position on the bike when your not leaning on the bars. Also, remember you have to carry them up hills.
re: Aero Bars?gobe
Jul 7, 2001 12:55 AM
judging from what I just read, I may be way out of line here. I actually like my aero bars for touring/long straights on smooth road, and it does provide me with a bit of a rest when on longer rides. They let you change position a bit and it actually seems to use slightly different leg muscles when I am in them.

I must agree with the earlier statements that they are way scary in group rides close together, in traffic, or if the road is a bit irregular.

I suggest trying to pick up a used pair and ride them for a week or two and see what you think. If you dig them, drop the cash and get exactly what you want - if not, you aren't out much dough and you can re-sell them.
re: Aero Bars?Tigercoach
Jul 7, 2001 11:43 AM
Personally, I've never used aero bars. I've considered them, but I doubt I'd ever use them. I've talked to lots of people with them, and some like them and some don't. The other guys that posted messages bring up lots of good points about them. They aren't legal for racing except time trials, and they can be a hazard to use in groups, traffic or when drafting since you don't have ready access to your brakes. Another hazard with using them is descending. You can reach high speeds on long descents, and if you don't have your hands on the brakes you won't be able to react to any unforeseen hazards. I sometimes see people descending mountains using aerobars, and it's scary to watch. I've seen people seriously injured on descents when they've lost control, and using aero bars could make it worse.
Of course, they do have their advantages. They can increase cruising speed by 1-2 mph for most riders, and some people have told me they do feel comfortable on long rides when you need to change your body or hand position. Really, it all depends on what you want. Being that you said you're a novice, I personally would suggest holding off buying aero bars until you're more experienced. Once you gain experience and are more comfortable handling a bike in all sorts of situations, then perhaps aero bars are something that you might want to use, or you may even decide you don't want them.
re: Aero Bars?bladecycling
Jul 8, 2001 3:31 PM
The only way to see if it's something you might like, is to get a used pair. You might be able to try a used pair from a bike shop for a weekend. I have been on aero bars for over 11 year's, and have never had a problem. But I would agree with other post's, first get yourself some mile's under you before trying them. Good luck and just ride,ride,ride.