new to road biking - questions

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by Bob, Mar 20, 2004.

  1. Bob

    Bob Guest

    I just got started in road biking after a while riding a
    mountain bike and I have some questions.

    First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my hands
    naturally ride on the hoods. But after a while - 15-20 mins
    or so -they start to hurt, especially the area between the
    thumb and the first finger. I'm assuming this is just
    because riding like this is new to me. I don't notice that
    I'm putting a lot of forward pressure on the hoods - I seem
    to be comfortable, but maybe I'm just not used to having
    something between my thumb and first finger. Do you think
    this will go away after I get some time on the bike or what?
    Maybe I need to build up my hands or something...

    Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of nervous
    about riding such skinny tires. I am worried that they will
    slip out from under me or something. I've ridden over the
    sand and stuff in the road left over from winter and am
    still alive, but it gets me nervous riding over that stuff.
    Last summer I wiped out on my mountain bike taking a turn
    too fast on a wet road and separated my shoulder, so I guess
    I'm still getting over that. I guess as I get used to my my
    bike that nervousness should go away? Any comments?
     
    Tags:


  2. Hunrobe

    Hunrobe Guest

    >"Bob" ismk5ovb02@sneakemail.com

    wrote:

    >I just got started in road biking after a while riding a
    >mountain bike and I have some questions.
    >
    >First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my hands
    >naturally ride on the hoods. But after a while - 15-20 mins
    >or so -they start to hurt, especially the area between the
    >thumb and the first finger. I'm assuming this is just
    >because riding like this is new to me. I don't notice that
    >I'm putting a lot of forward pressure on the hoods - I seem
    >to be comfortable, but maybe I'm just not used to having
    >something between my thumb and first finger. Do you think
    >this will go away after I get some time on the bike or
    >what? Maybe I need to build up my hands or something...
    >
    >Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of nervous
    >about riding such skinny tires. I am worried that they will
    >slip out from under me or something. I've ridden over the
    >sand and stuff in the road left over from winter and am
    >still alive, but it gets me nervous riding over that stuff.
    >Last summer I wiped out on my mountain bike taking a turn
    >too fast on a wet road and separated my shoulder, so I
    >guess I'm still getting over that. I guess as I get used to
    >my my bike that nervousness should go away? Any comments?

    Your hands start to hurt or they begin to get numb? Numbness
    is usually a byproduct of poor fit- in the case of hand
    numbness it's usually too long of a reach putting too much
    pressure on your hands- but you say the fit is comfortable
    and that your hands *hurt*, not go numb. How hard are you
    gripping the hoods? A 15 - 20 minute long death grip will
    cause some discomfort. Ideally you should just be resting
    your hands lightly on the hoods. Another possibility,
    assuming you wear them, is poor glove fit. Without further
    information it's impossible to address the question in any
    but very general terms.

    You'll gain confidence as you ride more miles but in the
    meantime, 23mm or even 20mm tires are actually *less* likely
    to "let go" on pavement than 1.75" knobby MTB tires. Loose
    sand, etc can cause you to lose traction but in terms of g-
    forces a properly inflated smooth tread 23mm road tire will
    outcorner a knobby of the same compound every time. I hope
    that helps ease your mind.

    Regards, Bob Hunt
     
  3. Dan Daniel

    Dan Daniel Guest

    On Sat, 20 Mar 2004 16:49:00 GMT, "Bob" <ismk5ovb02@sneakemail.com>
    wrote:

    >I just got started in road biking after a while riding a
    >mountain bike and I have some questions.
    >
    >First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my hands
    >naturally ride on the hoods. But after a while - 15-20 mins
    >or so -they start to hurt, especially the area between the
    >thumb and the first finger. I'm assuming this is just
    >because riding like this is new to me. I don't notice that
    >I'm putting a lot of forward pressure on the hoods - I seem
    >to be comfortable, but maybe I'm just not used to having
    >something between my thumb and first finger. Do you think
    >this will go away after I get some time on the bike or
    >what? Maybe I need to build up my hands or something...
    >

    Gloves.

    Move your hands around. That's the major point of drop
    handlebars. If there was only one 'right' place to hold your
    hands, racers wouldn't carry the extra tubing- it would be
    long gone.

    Depending on what is happening on the road, I spend a fair
    amount of time just back from the hoods. It's a quick move
    to get to the brake levers, but I don't have the hoods
    jammed between my thumb and finger all the time.

    And relax!! Really- keep your hands and shoulders loose.
    Especially over bumpy roads- lift your weight off of your
    hands just a touch and let them float over the bars when
    going over bumps. Don't do a death grip and have every bump
    of the road transmitted straight into your hands. This isn't
    mountain biking where a tight grip can be necessary to deal
    with rocks, rapidly changing soils, etc.

    >Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of nervous
    >about riding such skinny tires. I am worried that they will
    >slip out from under me or something. I've ridden over the
    >sand and stuff in the road left over from winter and am
    >still alive, but it gets me nervous riding over that stuff.
    >Last summer I wiped out on my mountain bike taking a turn
    >too fast on a wet road and separated my shoulder, so I
    >guess I'm still getting over that. I guess as I get used to
    >my my bike that nervousness should go away? Any comments?
    >

    You can get wider tires, if your frame will take them. 25-
    28mm is much better than 23mm for most road riding.

    Sand on the roads is best taken straight and level. And
    again- relaxed.

    With the wet turn, did the tires have knobs? These are not
    good for road riding- you are losing and gaining road
    contact in an erratic fashion, and you aren't going to get
    full contact with the road.

    If you are nervous, slow down for now. And slow down
    *before* turns or hazards. Braking in the middle of sand or
    turns is a tricky thing. After more time on the road you'll
    get a feel for the tires and bike. Mountain biking and road
    biking require some different techniques. In general, road
    biking is much more relaxed and 'fluid' and doesn't use your
    whole body working in different directions at the same time.
     
  4. On Sat, 20 Mar 2004 16:49:00 +0000, Bob wrote:

    > I just got started in road biking after a while riding a
    > mountain bike and I have some questions.
    >
    > First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my hands
    > naturally ride on the hoods. But after a while - 15-20
    > mins or so -they start to hurt, especially the area
    > between the thumb and the first finger. I'm assuming this
    > is just because riding like this is new to me. I don't
    > notice that I'm putting a lot of forward pressure on the
    > hoods - I seem to be comfortable, but maybe I'm just not
    > used to having something between my thumb and first
    > finger. Do you think this will go away after I get some
    > time on the bike or what? Maybe I need to build up my
    > hands or something...

    I develop pretty stiff callouses between those fingers
    during the warmer months. Oddly, during the winter it goes
    away, probably due to the heavier gloves.

    > Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of
    > nervous about riding such skinny tires. I am worried that
    > they will slip out from under me or something. I've ridden
    > over the sand and stuff in the road left over from winter
    > and am still alive, but it gets me nervous riding over
    > that stuff. Last summer I wiped out on my mountain bike
    > taking a turn too fast on a wet road and separated my
    > shoulder, so I guess I'm still getting over that.

    It does take time to get over the nerves you get from a
    crash. The tires themselves aren't going to increase your
    risk -- as long as you are riding on roads. Sand and gravel,
    along with other hazards, can get any tire. You learn what
    is a problem and what isn't, as time goes on. Hopefully most
    of that you learn the easy, rather than hard, way.

    --

    David L. Johnson

    __o | Accept risk. Accept responsibility. Put a lawyer
    out of _`\(,_ | business. (_)/ (_) |
     
  5. > Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of
    > nervous about riding such skinny tires.

    It's quite possible your nervousness is at the root of your
    comfort issues. When you're tense and not relaxed, you're
    much less comfortable when riding. When I fit people, the #1
    thing I'm looking for is the cyclist looking relaxed. So a
    combination of inappropriate fit plus your apprehension
    about the "skinny" tires could be causing your trouble.

    It's possible that something as simple as changing the tilt
    of the handlebars could make a *huge* difference in the
    discomfort you're feeling in your hands. It's also possible
    that your seat might be tilted down at the nose, which
    shoves you towards the handlebar (which means you're
    spending your entire time on the bike pushing back with
    your hands).

    --Mike-- Chain Reaction Bicycles www.ChainReaction.com

    "Bob" <ismk5ovb02@sneakemail.com> wrote in message
    news:0C_6c.49060$E8.10974086@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net...
    > I just got started in road biking after a while riding a
    > mountain bike and
    I
    > have some questions.
    >
    > First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my hands
    > naturally ride
    on
    > the hoods. But after a while - 15-20 mins or so -they
    > start to hurt, especially the area between the thumb and
    > the first finger. I'm assuming this is just because riding
    > like this is new to me. I don't notice that
    I'm
    > putting a lot of forward pressure on the hoods - I seem to
    > be comfortable, but maybe I'm just not used to having
    > something between my thumb and first finger. Do you think
    > this will go away after I get some time on the bike
    or
    > what? Maybe I need to build up my hands or something...
    >
    > Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of
    > nervous about riding such skinny tires. I am worried that
    > they will slip out from under me or something. I've ridden
    > over the sand and stuff in the road left over from winter
    > and am still alive, but it gets me nervous riding over
    > that stuff. Last summer I wiped out on my mountain bike
    > taking a turn too fast on a
    wet
    > road and separated my shoulder, so I guess I'm still
    > getting over that. I guess as I get used to my my bike
    > that nervousness should go away? Any comments?
     
  6. R15757

    R15757 Guest

    << First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my
    hands naturally ride on the hoods. But after a while - 15-20
    mins or so -they start to hurt, especially the area between
    the thumb and the first finger. I'm assuming this is just
    because riding like this is new to me. I don't notice that
    I'm putting a lot of forward pressure on the hoods - I seem
    to be comfortable, but maybe I'm just not used to having
    something between my thumb and first finger. Do you think
    this will go away after I get some time on the bike or what?
    Maybe I need to build up my hands or something... >>

    Since you say your position feels comfortable and you don't
    think you're putting too much pressure forward, your problem
    sounds like too-tight gloves.

    << Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of
    nervous about riding such skinny tires. I am worried that
    they will slip out from under me or something. I've ridden
    over the sand and stuff in the road left over from winter
    and am still alive, but it gets me nervous riding over that
    stuff. Last summer I wiped out on my mountain bike taking a
    turn too fast on a wet road and separated my shoulder, so I
    guess I'm still getting over that. I guess as I get used to
    my my bike that nervousness should go away? Any comments?
    >>

    Your injury is a common cycling injury from a common type of
    accident. The good news is that now you are not likely to
    suffer that same fate very often, because you will be
    watching for it. Maybe when you wiped out the first time you
    didn't even notice the sand on the road. Now you will be
    scanning the surface for debris when you corner. Experience,
    they call it. In addition to sand and gravel watch for wet
    leaves, wet smooth Portland cement, wet metal, longitudinal
    control joints, wet lane lines and crosswalk markers.

    Robert
     
  7. Pbwalther

    Pbwalther Guest

    >First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my hands
    >naturally ride on the hoods. But after a while - 15-20 mins
    >or so -they start to hurt, especially the area between the
    >thumb and the first finger.

    Well, this really shouldn't happen. Wearing padded gloves
    helps and having some padded tape on the handle bars helps.
    Also moving the hands around and changing positions helps.
    You can still ride about 80% of the time in your favorite
    position. You just need to move the hands to another
    position let them get a break every now and then.

    >Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of nervous
    >about riding such skinny tires

    >I am worried that they will slip out from under me or
    >something. I've ridden over the sand and stuff in the road
    >left over from winter and am still alive, but it gets me
    >nervous riding over that stuff.

    Well, me too. But if you are riding straight through the
    stuff, you should be fine unless it is pretty deep. Now
    making a high speed turn on sand is pretty dicey. But that
    is a different thing. If you don't like really skinny tires,
    well go with the next size up. Around here almost everyone
    rides 20 mm even really big guys. I ride 25 mm (I am pretty
    large and do a lot of miles). And I don't want to worry
    about a stinkin' tire.
     
  8. Frank Knox

    Frank Knox Guest

    "Bob" <ismk5ovb02@sneakemail.com> wrote in message
    news:0C_6c.49060$E8.10974086@news4.srv.hcvlny.cv.net...
    > I just got started in road biking after a while riding a
    > mountain bike and
    I
    > have some questions.
    >
    > First - my bike seems quite comfortable to me and my hands
    > naturally ride
    on
    > the hoods. But after a while - 15-20 mins or so -they
    > start to hurt, especially the area between the thumb and
    > the first finger. I'm assuming this is just because riding
    > like this is new to me. I don't notice that
    I'm
    > putting a lot of forward pressure on the hoods - I seem to
    > be comfortable, but maybe I'm just not used to having
    > something between my thumb and first finger. Do you think
    > this will go away after I get some time on the bike
    or
    > what? Maybe I need to build up my hands or something...
    >
    > Second - after riding a mountain bike, I am kind of
    > nervous about riding such skinny tires. I am worried that
    > they will slip out from under me or something. I've ridden
    > over the sand and stuff in the road left over from winter
    > and am still alive, but it gets me nervous riding over
    > that stuff. Last summer I wiped out on my mountain bike
    > taking a turn too fast on a
    wet
    > road and separated my shoulder, so I guess I'm still
    > getting over that. I guess as I get used to my my bike
    > that nervousness should go away? Any comments?
    >
    I don't mean to give a flip answer, so don't take it that
    way. Why don't you raise your stem and get wider tires?
     
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