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Climbing out of the saddle - a question ???(7 posts)

Climbing out of the saddle - a question ???Fez
Oct 23, 2002 3:29 PM
Do your arms alternately pull on the hoods or drops when you come out of the saddle?

When I stay seated, my hands have a very gentle grip on the bars. When I come out of the saddle, even though I am not pedaling very hard, I find my grip on the hoods/drops is stronger and I tend to alternately pull and rock on the bars? Is this normal, or should I aim for a very light grip to conserve energy?
Your experience is normal. (nm)Kerry
Oct 23, 2002 4:11 PM
Yes, normal, but you can learn to be smoother ...Humma Hah
Oct 23, 2002 6:07 PM
Coming off the seat for a standing climb, for most people, unleashes explosive power. It usually comes with considerable rocking of the bike and tugging on the bars. I've broken a number of handlebars in my time with such forces, by pulling up on them on a singlespeed bike in hard climbs or acceleration.

Riding singlespeed on longer hills, where a seated position simply won't develop the needed torque, I've learned to reign in the power and deliver it smoothly for long periods of time. This probably is not as useful a skill for someone on a geared bike, who has the option of sitting and spinning, but it is possible. I learned to regulate power by watching my speed closely on the cyclocomputer on a steady grade.
Seriously? 'A number' of handlebars?scottfree
Oct 24, 2002 4:36 AM
I've never heard of such a thing (except rare & scary stories of one-time deals). How do you account for that? Is it something about HH's bar setup?
About four sets ...Humma Hah
Oct 24, 2002 6:19 AM
... each one failed on the right side, bending up. The failures started at a kink near the stem. Classic buckling in bending mode. Knowing my weight and the strength of my right leg, I probably routinely applied close to 200 pounds upward on that side. Stock cruiser bars could NOT withstand the load.

The last two bars lasted 2 and 1 month respectively. I got hold of a set of almost-straight European commuter bike bars, cut them down to 20" width, filled them with polyester resin (to prevent the kinks), and they've survived over a quarter-century. These bars may have been the first straight MTB bars, and they're almost certainly the first SOLID MTB bars. I consider them semi-historical.
Oh, right.scottfree
Oct 24, 2002 6:39 AM
I remember reading about your resin-filled bars. Part of the legend and lore of Humma Hah.
Pulling on the bars -- yes, but...brider
Oct 24, 2002 7:20 AM
Try a looser grip. Put your hand around the hoods, then open your grip slightly. Stand up, and let your hands move as you rock the bike. This will keep you from putting your weight ON the bars and keep it where it should be -- over the pedals. The pushing and pulling will not be directly up and down, rather it will be at about a 45-degree angle (down and outward, up and inward).