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Aero Bars(16 posts)

Aero Barsb_spiwak
Dec 20, 2001 7:16 AM
I've been thinking of getting these for training and long distance riding. Do they really work?? what are they good for? are they worth the extra weight and cash?? also, which ones to get? Thanks...
re: Aero Barsjswhern
Dec 20, 2001 7:36 AM
There are so many to pick from and they are all fine products. Consider cost(what you want to spend) and use. Also, be careful of your back. Work on your back extensors big time. A forgotton muscle group. By having healthy extensors they will keep the flexsors in check. I personally ride a pair of profile airstryke(not correct spelling) and have used them in tri's and TT for a long time. I like that the armrests pop out of the way for hill encounters. They definitly provide an aerodynamic position but the correct size bike is the way to start, and the extra weight is not a problem for the aero benefit. Good luck and work those extensors !!
They help alot!surf
Dec 20, 2001 8:03 AM
Dont worry about the weight unless your going up hills all day. Use them on the flats and into the wind, they will help more for average speed than any other upgrade for the same price. The first few rides they will stretch your glutes and hamstrings so work on the flexibility. Also you will feel unstable so be careful at first and dont use them near traffic at first or in packs. On open trail roads with no traffic they will help alot and give your arms a rest.
re: Aero BarsTig
Dec 20, 2001 8:27 AM
Try the Search Board function to find older threads on aero bars on this board. There were some recent discussions on them.

I haven't used them in a long time, but know for a fact that my speed improved by about 2 MPH in my club's flat 10 mile time trial while at the same heart rate. Never use them in groups, up or down hills, or through turns. Get used to them, adjust the fit, relax on them, and keep your back flat.
I don't get it....Len J
Dec 20, 2001 8:34 AM
Why would anyone who is not racing use aero-bars?

The only reasons (Other than time trialing or ultacycling races)I can think of would be to increase your average speed. So what! Sounds to me like the only thing on the line is bragging rights. Big deal.

I ride with guys that must have thier Aero bars, so that when the get on the front of the paceline they can use them. Yes, I have to work harder (without aero-bars) to maintain the same pace as they can (with aero-bars), but this only makes me stronger.

Average speed means nothing (except against your own personal best riding the same route using the same equipment, with the same weather), how hard you are working for the speed you get means everything.

To get them for training seems counter productive to me.

What am I missing?

Flame away all you aero-bar users.


P.S. Yes, I know they give you about a 1/2 mile/hr advantage in speed for the same effort.
Why?..."I feel the need - the need for speed!" :) NMEd3
Dec 20, 2001 8:54 AM
I don't get it....SingleThreaded
Dec 20, 2001 10:16 AM
Why? Head winds. I rarely ride in a group, but like to cover as much distance as my allotted time allows. If I have 3 hours in the morning, I plan a 60 mile ride; if 2 hours available, I plan a fourty mile. Somewhere along the line your going to be heading into the wind, and on those days with winds upwards of 20 and 30 mph one going to see the bike speed speed plummet to 12-14 mph. It's not a matter of ego if you want to make it home, sometimes it's a matter of function and necessity.

Your 1/2 mile/hr advantage estimate is conservative. Perhaps with no wind or a tail wind that's all you'll realize, into wind you'll get much more with less effort. Consider borrowing some clip-ons before knocking it completely. I consider the bars important enough that I have clip-ons for my MTB.
They're great for longer ridescyclinseth
Dec 20, 2001 11:27 AM
I wouldn't think of showing up at a group ride with them. But for longer solo rides (70+ miles) the comfort from added arm possitions is really noticable. I certainly feel faster on the flats and descents with them.
re: I don't get it....cyclopathic
Dec 20, 2001 9:11 PM
you can't race with them it is illegal, too dangerous

they're worth ~2mph, not 1/2

why to train with them? so you're more efficient riding them

aerobars huge diff on long rides. I don't think there're any BMB finishers under 65hr /RAAM qualifier/ who had done it without aerobars

no flames here if you ride for fitness, what's the point in light skinny tire bike? Huffy would do just fine ;)
re: Aero BarsTriBuddha
Dec 20, 2001 11:37 AM
AS per my handle I am a tri head lurking on a roadie board. And any self respecting non ITU tri head will tell you yeah aerobars are basic requirement as you do go faster. But when I am not in serious training or competition I take my clip ons off, lower my stem and try to get away with at least looking like a roadie:) It takes time to get use to them, and you migth have to make some alteration to your current set up, depending on flexibility and how you are set up right now. You will not get benefit from them if you cannot get comfortable in them, simply you will not spent time in them which defeats the purpose. BTW great if riding solo and they really help in head winds. I used both Profile and Syntace, and prefer the latter.
re: Aero BarsWoof the dog
Dec 20, 2001 9:14 PM
i am just telling you: you'll be in and out, in and out of favoring aerobars. You'll ride 'em, then put 'em away, ride 'em forget 'em...etc etc etc. then eventually they will find their way on your tt bike if you got one....and in the end you'll realize it was a waste of money. There are reasons why most bikes don't have them, and those reasons are asthetics, weight, and moreover functionality. True, you can go fast, but for me its not worth it draggin' those things around on the bike up and down up and down. I don't use'em as often and get the same effects by putting my elbows down onto my bars. Nevermind the dangers of hitting deer out in the middle of nowhere 'cause you can't stop in time. In any case, buy them, but if you'll feel that in the end they are just gonna take up space in the garage, please sell them to the next victim. Experience, its all about the experience...


Woof the dog.
re: yes they workcyclopathic
Dec 20, 2001 9:14 PM
and they're good for riding solo esp against the wind

try to get the kind you can adjust reach/tilt, I love my Profile Aerostryke 2000
re: Aero Barshrv
Dec 21, 2001 9:22 AM
Very timely. I'm also struggling with whether to get them or not. I'll be doing my first time trial in a couple of months and all my racing friends say I must have them for this. If my goal is to go hard and just finish, and not compare my times to others, than why use/need them? I have not ridden over 50 miles yet, and it is very windy here in the summer, so I might also be posting 'Aerobars: what kind?' after my first century next season!

Good luck,
re: Aero Barsken425
Dec 21, 2001 9:40 AM
One thing to remember re: aerobars is that they are designed for use on a bike with a steeper seat tube angle than most roadbikes have (typically 76-78 degrees). This doesn't mean that you can't use aerobars on a shallower bike, but you should be aware that this will cause your hip/torso angle to be smaller than it typically is in a road position. You may find this uncomfortable. Many people then move their saddle forward to open the hip/torso angle up again.

A good compromise may be a set of Jammer GT bars from Profile Design. These new bars are shorter than most, and thus, may not close the hip/torso angle as much.

Much of this is dependent on personal preference. You will most likely have to experiment to find what works for you. After all, Ken Glah, a professional triathlete, uses regular aero-bars in a very shallow (73 degree) position and seems to have no comfort issues.

I have used Profile Design Century and Airstryke aerobars. The Century is a good bargain, very sturdy, but not adjustable. The Airstryke can be adjusted lenth-wise and, as mentioned above, the armrests are springloaded so that you can still use your bar tops.
re: jammerJs Haiku Shop
Dec 21, 2001 11:07 AM
I have a set of jammer-style bars from nashbar that do not have any type of arm/wrist rest/pad. these are good for a different hand position on longer rides, but i would not use them in a TT or otherwise to take pressure off my arms/upper body. i've also tried (and subsequently sold) the profile jammer bars that come w/out pads, but didn't care for them (even tried them on my mtb!).
re: Aero BarsJs Haiku Shop
Dec 21, 2001 11:04 AM
agreed with the above that you'll need to adjust your bike/your riding position to accommodate for the bars. just a small change in how you're seated can cause problems.

this summer i rode 80% without, then mounted a set of the airstryke (sp?) bars and used them for a century and two double metric rides. however, i didn't adjust the seat position on the bike, figuring i would only use the bars for a change in hand position. big mistake! seems the pressure on the saddle and your 'nasty bits' that come in contact with the saddle, as well as your leg/knee angles, change a bit. i ended up staying on the bars quite a bit during september rides, my peak mileage month for the year, and came out of it with a tender arse.

so, now i'm going to remove the bars for the winter/training/early season, and i guess play around with saddle position and height, etc., when putting them back on for looong rides later in the year (2002).