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Combatting numbness during extended riding(9 posts)

Combatting numbness during extended ridingCrankE
Jul 28, 2003 12:39 PM
Just yesterday I completed my first century. As with many of us, I enjoyed myself immensely. The pain, the suffering, the realization that you are in fact rather ill compared to normal folk to inflict pain intentionally and then say you enjoyed it with a straight and serous face. But I digress...

The one thing I did not enjoy was the numbness. I know that selecting a different saddle can relieve most of that from the midsection. Can you ever make it disappear completely, or is it just 'part of cycling'?

More than that, I'm most concerned with hand numbness.

I never noticed it during the ride - but until about noon today, nearly 24 hours after the ride, both pinky fingers were still mildly numb. I run my levers relatively high on the bar and am wondering if my hand placement has something to do with it. Thoughts?

Or - should I just get a better pair of gloves and move my hands more often?

move around moreDougSloan
Jul 28, 2003 12:43 PM
Partly, your body adapts. Mostly, however, combatting numbness anywhere is a matter of moving around. Even lifting your hands briefly, one at a time, now and then helps. Aerobars help, too.

First thing I'd try, tilt saddle back slightly.Scot_Gore
Jul 28, 2003 2:33 PM
If your saddle is leaning forward a little, it may be pushing too much of your weight down onto the bars.

my 2 cents

re: Combatting numbness during extended riding03Vortex
Jul 28, 2003 12:48 PM
The hand numbness could be just a function of having to switch hand position more often OR worst case scenario is that your bike doesn't fit right (stem) whereby you may be putting too much pressure on your hands leaning too far forward. Don't forget, a century is a long way and many congrats for that!! While I assume your fit is okay, hand numbness happens to the best of them and relieving it is a function of time in the saddle and switching hand positions often enough.
re: Combatting numbness during extended ridingCrankE
Jul 28, 2003 1:01 PM
I don't think it's fit. After 100 miles - and admittedly I've got VERY little saddle time this year, nothing else hurt. Nothing, nada, zip, zilch.

My back was fine, my shoulders, triceps, neck - nothing ever came right out and hurt. Fatigued obviously - but not an ounce of outright pain. I'm amazed, 'cause the bike is bone stock.

Anyone here think this here Klein I've got is a keeper? :)
re: Combatting numbness during extended riding03Vortex
Jul 28, 2003 1:17 PM
Then a relatively major problem is alleviated. I would be more conscious of switching hand positions more often and try that. I find that by getting up out of the saddle some when climbing on longer rides helps in shifting body position around thereby relieving the pressure of remaining in a constant position.
re: the realization that you are in fact rather illStraightblock
Jul 28, 2003 2:48 PM
Remember, you got up early on your day off and paid good money to inflict that pain & suffering on yourself, too.

I'm 48 hours post-century and my left pinky is still a bit numb. The others all have good advice about changing hand positions, bar & seat adjustments, etc. Be sure to stretch during the ride, particularly at rest stops. You can also stretch on the bike, but use caution and don't do it if other riders are near you. When I ride the tandem, my wife has a habit of sitting up & letting go of the bars at stoplights to relieve the pressure, and I'm always afraid I'm going to dump her off the back during a fast start someday. Congrats on your ride. Now go do another!
Tight GlovesHalfWheelin
Jul 28, 2003 9:45 PM
Circulation, man. Agree with the rest of the posts. Also, try riding without gloves fastened/velcroed closed.
For me it's keping my wrists straight.dzrider
Jul 29, 2003 6:04 AM
The more I bend them back the more numbness I get. It was a much bigger problem when I had bikes with straight handlebars.