back pains

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by webbhost, Nov 10, 2006.

  1. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    Hi,

    Im a newbie to long distance cycling (did my 2nd 34 miler about 4 days back) - but when i got back from this journey i found that

    1 - a few small electric shocks in my legs / feet (i.e. trapped nerve?)
    2 - i've suffered from mild back pains last few days

    Now im guessing the source of this pain is my posture on the bike, but question to you is - what am i most likely to be doing wrong on my bike with my position?
     
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  2. nathanb74

    nathanb74 New Member

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    Could be that your muscles are getting used to the increased distance or that your position is not correct. Did you stretch before & after your ride???? Have you been fitted on your bike???? If not, these are quite important aspects to address. You can even use a fit calculator off the internet which will give you a starting point to work with. Massage from a qualified sports masseuse will also help with flexibility. Then followed up with regular stretching to maintain suppleness.
    Hope this helps.
     
  3. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    Probably just getting used to it then. The biggest ride i done befoer these is 6 miles (but only 3 times) and 3 miles before that.

    Probably just not used to leaning fowards on a bike for 2 + hours.
     
  4. endurance222

    endurance222 New Member

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    To be honest, fit is the most important part, it is what will make or break the pain you go through. You will still suffer (granted) but it will cure a lot of your position problems, and hence most of your aches and pains

     
  5. impakt

    impakt New Member

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    What are your measurements? Inseam length? Length from the middle of your bottom bracket to the lowest point of your saddle?
     
  6. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    i think my saddle might be a bit low (althrough not sure - i mean i do have to lean to the side a bit to get my feet on the floor but i dont think im reaching 30 degrees legs angle at bottom foot. Ill experiment with my saddle a little, try take it up a tad and trial and error it. I watched a vid of some pro and i noticed his saddle seemed really high (almost as if he was standing up pedalling but he wasnt cause he did stand up at some points - could tell the difference)

    One thing that occured to me today is it could also have been the 5 bottles of water and the repair kit i was keeping in the backpack on my back.
     
  7. fix

    fix New Member

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    Go get fitted.

    Take it from someone who didn't and suffered as a result. I herniated a disk in my lower lumbar region due to a poor fit. It resulted in damage to my sciatic nerve that put me on my back for three weeks. It first manifested itself with minor back pain, but resulted in leg pain and numbness throughout the leg that made walking unbearable. I ignored the intial symptoms by attributing them to getting conditioned for the long rides. I wish I had known how serious this really was. I needed 5 months of physical therapy to recover. Trust me, you don't want that.

    In my case, I was hunched over and reaching too far forward. Both could have been avoided by a proper fit.
     
  8. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    hmm somewhat like the small pain i get down the inside of my left leg maybe?

    That post got my attention, and it does feel like i have to learn quite far fowards.

    Where could i go to get fitted on my bike? I was thinking maybe halfords might be able to fit me to my bike, but then again i dont know if i trust them... Parts - yes. Bike service - i wasn't so impressed (althrough it was a free service so i guess i cant complain).

    Maybe i should go back to the person i bought the bike off and ask if he can fit people to their bike?
     
  9. Sparhawk

    Sparhawk New Member

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    Well said fix... my wife had something similiar happen. I just got her biking and a week or so after she started, back and leg pains began. Her physical therapy lasted about 2 months or so. And since my wife was never overly athletically active, I attributed her aches and pains to her body getting use to biking.

    Wrong (and I should have known better)... I've noticed w/ my own body that if I get sore from an activity I haven't done in a while, the soreness may last a day or so. But if the pain persists, I'd recommend that you listen to your body and have a doctor take a look even before you drop some money to buy a new bike that is fitted for you.
     
  10. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    funny you say that, i keep getting back pains when i get back from work, dont know if its cause im hunching fowards at my PC, but the 1 time it goes away is when im lying on my belly on the sofa. when you say "buy" a bike to fit, what do you mean by that?

    I can keep my dawes Gyro bike if i want to be fitted to a bike right?
     
  11. Sparhawk

    Sparhawk New Member

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    Oops! Made a wild leap of logic from your original post that you were looking to get another bike. Usually when you purchase a bike, particularly at your LBS, they will measure you to be sure the frame size fits you as bikes do come w/ different frame sizes. It's almost like getting fitted for a pair of pants...
     
  12. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    goddamn thats annoying, i dont have another £400 to burn lol...

    Saying that, when i was riding home yesterday, althrough i still got some back pains once i got home (only mildish pains) it didn't feel like i was leaning too far fowards on my bike. Also from looking at the diagram in my endurance cycling book, it doesnt feel like im leaning "far enough"

    Could anything besides the position of my back be causing it? (seat to low for example?)
     
  13. nathanb74

    nathanb74 New Member

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    Webbhost
    You've got several options. You can try JULIES CYCLES at 210-216 CLARENDON PARK ROAD. They are a bikefitting.com dealer and will be able to help. Here is the bikefitting website:

    http://www.bikefitting.com/English/Frame.aspx

    Your could also try Mike Vaughan cycles in Kenilworth. Probably a way to go but a young fellow who works there is on another forum I'm a member of and it quite knowledgeable.

    http://www.mikevaughan.co.uk/

    Hope this helps.
     
  14. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    just out of interest - should i be wearing my heart rate monitor on my chest too hard - could that cause similar symptoms?

    Ive not been biking today, but i "have" worn my HRM. and i have backpains since about 2 hours having it on
     
  15. fix

    fix New Member

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    The lying-on-the-belly relief seems to support the possibility that you are in the early stages of my same experience. One of my physical therapy stretches for recovery after my injury is similar.

    Imagine the disk between your vertebrae is like a jelly filled donut (does this analogy translate outside of the US?). It is composed of a gelatinous core encapsulated by a stiffer, flexible membrane. This membrane can be damaged and stretched due to excessive compressive pressure on the disk. The damage can initially be manifested as a bulging out one side that distorts the shape of the disk.

    In my case the distortion of my disk was caused by repeatedly compressing the one side and causing it to bulge to the other side. Due to the forward bending of the back in the riding position, the spine arches, causing compression on one side of the disk by the vertebrae. The disk bulges and distorts causing it to press onto the sciatic nerve. The pressure creates the sensation of pains in the leg because your brain is receiving nerve signals from the same nerves that carry signals from your leg.

    If your disk in your back is bulging and putting pressure on your sciatic nerve, arching your back (backwards) forces the disk to compress on the side which is pressing on the nerve. This compression causes the disk to recede from the nerve and expand away from the nerve fibers. You are pushing the jelly in the jelly-filled donut back to the center of the donut.

    This website link is a great resource showing how this stretch is done. http://www.spine-health.com/topics/conserv/sciaex/sciaex02.html You can also search through the other links on the site for a better understanding of disk herniation and sciatic nerve pain.

    Getting a proper fit by a cycling shop that is knowledgable could address your problem. Seeing your doctor could assist in diagnosing the problem while it is small.

    My adjustments included getting a shorter stem, moving my seat forward, raising my handlebars and always monitoring my posture to avoid slouching. It should be noted, that the focus to good posture has also been the focus of all my other life activities: sitting at my desk, sitting in my car, sleeping position, etc. A healthy back goes beyond cycling.

    Best regards and I hope this helps.
     
  16. allgoo19

    allgoo19 New Member

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    This is from my own experience. Biggest cause of back pain is lack of sleep.

    Long ago, I had many sleepless nights and couldn't figure out why. One day while I was lifting some object, normally I could do it with no effort. Then I felt this popping sensation in the lower back and I was on my knees, felt like all the strength in my body was sucked out in the air. From then on, the symptom got worse, at one point simple routine like putting socks on was ten minutes job instead of a few seconds. The lack of sleep got even worse because I couldn't find a comfortable position laying on the bed. I tried many things just to get a good sleep. Here's the result. I'm back pain free now.

    1) Avoid strenuous activity without a rest day(s) between them, in my case it was bike riding. I didn't know when it was happening. I hear many professional athletes have back pain problem, I don't doubt that. I believe some people can take it, some can't.

    2) Avoid drinking alcohol. It gives you a sleep but the body doesn't get rest. You are likely to wake up early in the morning before the sleep finishes all the body system repair work.

    3) Avoid taking sleeping pills. This sounds strange but quite similar to above, it doesn't give you the rest your body needs. I immediately noticed my back pain getting even worse after a few nights of taking them.

    4) Avoid drinking coffee in the afternoon. Last cup of coffee should be no later than noon, avoid all together if you can, until your back pain goes away completely.

    5) Avoid other things like smoking pot, smoking cigarettes, cold medicine, pain killer and all other drugs legal or illegal.

    Once you get the hang of getting good sleeps, the symptom goes away relatively quickly.

    I still have back discomfort once in a while but I know how to treat it right, so I go back to the program again, after a few days to week at most, my back feels just like brand new.
     
  17. Xsmoker

    Xsmoker New Member

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    That's crazy talk
     
  18. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    sitting at my computer leaning fowards probably contributes.

    Yes that makes sense, the "jelly" is the bone marrow.

    When you say your seat was moved fowards etc, does this mean you kept your same bike, but adjustments were made to the bike (i.e. your seat, and handlebars) to fit the bike to you?

    I have had no back pains from cycling today (althrough i did get them whilst standing up for a long while at work - not heavy lifting - for a long while.

    My back feels fine right now, and im sitting up straight, not lurching fowards at my keyboard.

    If these pains continue for another week or so, or i have any indication that my back is going to get worse, i will consult a doctor.


    How much money should i expect to pay to have me fitted to my bike?
    (not that this is an issue, £100 out my pocket is much better than a perminantly deformed back - just want to know what i should expect)

    Thanks, you guys are a great help. Glad i joined here!
     
  19. webbhost

    webbhost New Member

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    Just for the info btw, im not a pot head, i dont have a cold, dont smoke, i dont do drugs and i dont need pain killers.

    Getting to leicester 'might' be a problem as my dad is extremely buzy. Unless of course im gonna steal his GPS and bike there.. :)
     
  20. fix

    fix New Member

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    Not the bone marrow. The disk is the elastic (not bone) material between the vertebrae bones.

    Fortunately I was able to keep the same bike.

    My LBS will do a fitting for free since I bought the bike there. It's worth expecting the same from your LBS.
    I got fitted by my physical therapist (a cyclist and former LBS worker too) at the end of my therapy program.

    You are welcome

    Also, I wouldn't dare make any diagnosis about the descriptions of your curent intermittent pain. I'm just a recovering patient with similar symptoms, not a clinical practitioner.
     
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