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Handlebar height(4 posts)

Handlebar heightken425
Nov 1, 2001 10:26 AM
I'm wondering how high I should have my handlebars set. I've read that they should be about an inch below the top of my saddle. However, in looking at pictures it appears (although its hard to tell for sure) that most riders have their bars somewhat lower than this. Is this purely individual preference or is there some type of formula for this?
re: Handlebar heightTJeanloz
Nov 1, 2001 11:21 AM
100% individual preference. Don't let anybody tell you otherwise. Technically speaking, the lower the bar, the more aerodynamic you'll be. Usually speaking, the lower the bar, the more uncomfortable you'll be. Put the bar where you feel comfortable with it.
highly variable...C-40
Nov 1, 2001 5:04 PM
Tourists and casual riders may only place the bars 3-5cm below the saddle, but racers typically place the bars 10-15cm below the saddle.

Lowering the bars will make you more aerodynamic, but it also requires more abdominal and back strength to maintain the low position.

I have no problem with the bars placed nearly 10cm (4 inches) below the saddle. I do a considerable amount of abdominal exercise to insure that I don't experience back pain.

The type of bars and position of the brake hoods also should be considered. Some bars slope down considerably from the top of the bar to the brake hood, lowering the brake hood several centimeters below the top of the bars. I prefer bars like the Deda 215 or Easton EC-90 that position the brake hood relatively high. This allows me to use a standard 80 degree stem without steering tube spacers, for a clean look (hate those spacers).
good advice ...tarwheel
Nov 2, 2001 7:51 AM
The only thing I would add is that having your handlebars too low can cause some real problems for some people -- namely neck pain and hand numbness. Ignore the style police who think you aren't cool unless your bars are 3" or more below the saddle. If you're comfortable with low bars and it doesn't cause any problems, go for it. But don't hesitate to move those bars up if you need to. Numbness or neck pain is a symptom that something is wrong, and you can have more serious problems if you ignore them.