Back Pain - Tips for selecting a new bike (Specialized versus Trek)

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by James Gold, Jun 13, 2003.

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  1. James Gold

    James Gold Guest

    I've had a mountain bike for about 8 years and am looking for a replacement. When I initially bought
    it I didn't take much notice of sizing it or riding it, just checked my crotch didn't hit the cross
    bar when I stood between the handle bars and seat and set the seat height so I was on tip-toe when
    sat on the seat.

    Whilst riding the bike I've always suffered mild pain between the shoulder blades and around the
    neck. I've always put this down to my riding position being too stretched. I've put up with the
    discomfort for now, but as I'm getting older I want to concentrate more on cycling as a means of
    keeping fit. In the past I've been happy with a bike ride once a week for an hour and a half with a
    few games of footy midweek and a game of squash. As I'm getting older I see cycling as less damaging
    to the joints, etc. and want to spend more like 5 to 8 hours a week on the bike.

    Problem is if I ride 3/4 times a week I can see mild discomfort getting to the point where I don't
    want to ride.

    As I mentioned earlier my current bike is looking slightly jaded so I'm looking to buy a new one.
    I've just been and tried about 5 to see how they are for comfort. At the shop I've just been too
    they let you ride them around the yard/car park which isn't perfect as ideally I'd like to take them
    for a good couple of hours, but it's a lot better than when I bought the last one.

    The two bikes I've down selected to are: Specialized RockHopper @£499 Trek 4900 @£499

    Has anyone any tips for how I make sure I can test the bike for fit, so that I have a better chance
    than last time of selecting a bike with no discomfort?

    Anyone got any comments on the two bikes in question? I may be persuaded to go for the disk upgrade
    on the RockHopper at an extra £130 any comments on that?

    thanks in advance for any assistance you can provide

    James
     
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  2. Tom Sherman

    Tom Sherman Guest

    James Gold wrote:
    > ... Whilst riding the bike I've always suffered mild pain between the shoulder blades and around
    > the neck. I've always put this down to my riding position being too stretched. I've put up with
    > the discomfort for now, but as I'm getting older I want to concentrate more on cycling as a means
    > of keeping fit. In the past I've been happy with a bike ride once a week for an hour and a half
    > with a few games of footy midweek and a game of squash. As I'm getting older I see cycling as less
    > damaging to the joints, etc. and want to spend more like 5 to 8 hours a week on the bike.
    >
    > Problem is if I ride 3/4 times a week I can see mild discomfort getting to the point where I don't
    > want to ride....

    If a different upright can not cure the problem, there is always the "Dark Side"
    (r*c*mb*nt bicycle).

    Tom Sherman - Quad Cities USA (Illinois side)
     
  3. James Gold wrote:
    > just checked my crotch didn't hit the cross bar when I stood between the handle bars and seat and
    > set the seat height so I was on tip-toe when sat on the seat.
    >

    check this site out and you might have an idea of what size bike you should try.
    http://www.wrenchscience.com/WS1/default.asp

    Choose what kind of bike you want and then measure youself according to instructions. It will give
    you a fair idea of where you will end up.

    --
    Perre

    You have to be smarter than a robot to reply.
     
  4. Michael Doan

    Michael Doan Guest

    I had back/shoulder trouble riding until I got a hybrid comfort bike (Trek 7300). They aren't a bit
    cool, and they're probably slower than the others, but on a six-mile commute I found it just right.
    Bike mechanics are horrified at how low I adjust the seat, but sitting nearly upright, I haven't had
    any pain for about five years. When you're 61, you don't worry so much about being cool.
     
  5. Peter Cole

    Peter Cole Guest

    "James Gold" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > Whilst riding the bike I've always suffered mild pain between the shoulder blades and around
    > the neck.

    > In the past I've been happy with a bike ride once a week for an hour and a half

    > want to spend more like 5 to 8 hours a week on the bike.
    >
    > Problem is if I ride 3/4 times a week I can see mild discomfort getting to the point where I don't
    > want to ride.

    Perhaps, but perhaps not. Your neck/shoulder discomfort may be from fit, but may also be from lack
    of fitness (in those specific muscles). More time may strengthen the muscles in question.

    "Cockpit" (toptube & stem & bar reach) length, handlebar height (difference from seat height) and
    perhaps handlebar width, would be the fit issues to focus on. Toptube length is the critical
    selection issue for you, but that is really true for everyone.

    Stretching, neck/shoulder strength training, and relaxation exercises are good in general, and may
    be helpful to your specific problem.
     
  6. Adelantado

    Adelantado Guest

    You always want to ride leaning forward with a curved back, not upright as siting in a chair. The
    curved back enables the vibrations to disipate instead of impacting and finaly damaging the
    spinal cushions.

    The pain in the shoulder and around the neck are muscle pains which will go away after they are
    strengthened. Strenghtening happens with enought riding.

    Go for it.

    "Peter Cole" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > "James Gold" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:[email protected]...
    > >
    > > Whilst riding the bike I've always suffered mild pain between the shoulder blades and around
    > > the neck.
    >
    > > In the past I've been happy with a bike ride once a week for an hour and a half
    >
    > > want to spend more like 5 to 8 hours a week on the bike.
    > >
    > > Problem is if I ride 3/4 times a week I can see mild discomfort getting to the point where I
    > > don't want to ride.
    >
    > Perhaps, but perhaps not. Your neck/shoulder discomfort may be from fit, but may also be from lack
    > of fitness (in those specific muscles). More time may strengthen the muscles in question.
    >
    > "Cockpit" (toptube & stem & bar reach) length, handlebar height (difference from seat height) and
    > perhaps handlebar width, would be the fit issues to focus on. Toptube length is the critical
    > selection issue for you, but that is really true for everyone.
    >
    > Stretching, neck/shoulder strength training, and relaxation exercises are good in general, and may
    > be helpful to your specific problem.
     
  7. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On 18 Jun 2003 17:40:56 -0700, [email protected] (Adelantado) wrote:

    >You always want to ride leaning forward with a curved back, not upright as siting in a chair.

    Or leaning back on a wide comfy seat :)

    Guy
    ===
    ** WARNING ** This posting may contain traces of irony. http://www.chapmancentral.com Advance
    notice: ADSL service in process of transfer to a new ISP. Obviously there will be a week of downtime
    between the engineer removing the BT service and the same engineer connecting the same equipment on
    the same line in the same exchange and billing it to the new ISP.
     
  8. James Gold wrote:Whilst riding the bike I've always suffered mild pain between the shoulder

    > blades and around the neck. I've always put this down to my riding position being too stretched.

    But why would it be impossible to move the seat forward slightly?

    Elisa Roselli Ile de France
     
  9. In article <[email protected]>, Elisa Francesca Roselli
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > James Gold wrote:Whilst riding the bike I've always suffered mild pain between the shoulder
    >
    > > blades and around the neck. I've always put this down to my riding position being too stretched.
    >
    > But why would it be impossible to move the seat forward slightly?
    >
    > Elisa Roselli Ile de France

    Asking reasonable questions will get you nowhere, Elisa. If you learn one thing this week, learn
    this: there is no bike fit problem, however trivial, which cannot be fixed by purchasing a new bike.

    --
    Ryan Cousineau, [email protected] http://www.sfu.ca/~rcousine President, Fabrizio Mazzoleni Fan Club
     
  10. Elisa Francesca Roselli <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > James Gold wrote:Whilst riding the bike I've always suffered mild pain between the shoulder
    >
    > > blades and around the neck. I've always put this down to my riding position being too stretched.
    >
    > But why would it be impossible to move the seat forward slightly?
    >
    > Elisa Roselli Ile de France

    There's an article on different pains, their causes, and possible solutions at
    www.sheldonbrown.com. Posture matters.

    It's not always possible to move the seat fore-and-aft enough without spoiling the rider's
    position relative to the pedals. Which can create other problems (knee, hip, etc.)

    If the top tube is close to what's needed, one can change the stem to move the handlebars
    fore-a-aft and/or up-and-down.

    But with mild pain, he's OBVIOUSLY doing something wrong. REAL cyclists get SEVERE pain between
    the shoulder blades :) (just kidding)
     
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