Chip Seal and Neck and Back Pain

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by awilki01, Aug 25, 2012.

  1. awilki01

    awilki01 New Member

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    I just finished the Hotter N Hell Century today. The roads were all chip seal - absolutely horrible. I've noticed that I sometimes get back pain when riding, but it just dawned on me that it really only happens when I ride on chip seal. My lower right back and neck is so tight and painful right now after the century today. It's always the same area. I know my pelvis is not completely alligned. I go to a chiropractor ever so often to get adjusted to help with the issue.

    Have any of you experienced similar issues? I know it will get better in a day or two - it always does. It just sucks.
     
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  2. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    Vibrations of the right frequency and amplitude can increase fatigue pretty quickly. Perhaps the increased fatigue from the road feedback is one cause of what you're feeling. Are you pretty confident that your fit on the bike is correct? It's also possible that your tensing up on the chip seal, and that extra tensing is leading to soreness.
     
  3. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    The only time I get neck or back soreness on the bike is if I'm out on a long ride and don't hydrate enough.
     
  4. awilki01

    awilki01 New Member

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    The bike fit is indeed in question. I have my TT bike fitted. I need to get my road bike fitted as well. Hydration wasn't an issue today. Tensing up on the chip seal may be it. I rode 80 miles last weekend on smooth roads and didn't have any pain.
     
  5. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    Have any of you experienced similar issues?

    Nope. Probably 50-75% of my training roads are chip & seal. They ARE slower than gen-you-wine pavement due to the texture, but I really don't notice any vibration issues or any more aches and pains that would come from the same mileage on smoothly paved asphalt.

    Now...the cracks, potholes and uneven bumps on some of those C&S roads will beat anyone up if the substrate is crappy, just as it will do on a broken up paved road.

    Are you sure your C&S roads aren't also more lumpy/bumpy than your asphalt roads?

    Perhaps you ARE tensing up on C&S. There's no reason to...other than falling on fresh C&S is like falling onto a cheese grater! And the odds of that happening are probably no better or worse than on good pavement. You 'might' want to drop your air pressure 5 PSI to cushion any bumps. I do not, but I'm used to crappy roads.

    Relax and enjoy the ride. If your C&S roads are like our Ohio C&S roads that's where the cars aren't!
     
  6. jpr95

    jpr95 Active Member

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    A little over a year ago, the county put down chip'n'seal on one of the roads I regularly ride for several miles. It's definitely slower and I can feel more vibrations. The worst part of it is that it didn't really fix anything on the road--there were cracks and dips (no real major potholes), but those cracks and dips are still there.

    On a related note, I don't know why it's called "chip'n'seal". The sealant goes down first, then the chips...
     
  7. doctorold

    doctorold Member

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    It's properly known as chipseal
     
  8. jpr95

    jpr95 Active Member

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    Tuh-may-toe, Toe-mah-toe. ;)
     
  9. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    A little over a year ago, the county put down chip'n'seal on one of the roads I regularly ride for several miles. It's definitely slower and I can feel more vibrations. The worst part of it is that it didn't really fix anything on the road--there were cracks and dips (no real major potholes), but those cracks and dips are still there.

    My county is so poor...they could no longer afford limestone chips and went to washed river rock. Small, round, brown stuff that if you hit a loose pile of it, it's like riding on ball bearings!

    The substrate below the fresh chip & seal is somewhat leveled and smoothed, but some of the roads were patch-over-patch-over-patch for decades and these can still feel somewhat pounding.

    On a related note, I don't know why it's called "chip'n'seal". The sealant goes down first, then the chips...

    We call it "spray & sprinkle".
     
  10. jpr95

    jpr95 Active Member

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    Tar and tinkle?
     
  11. ambal

    ambal Active Member

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    We have a lot of crappy roads like that around here, I'd prefer hot mix everywhere.
     
  12. awilki01

    awilki01 New Member

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    I have always had a little lower right back pain that goes int to the hip a bit. It's usually not an issue. I think the vibrations may be aggravating it. And, of course, it was 100 miles on the stuff. I ride on chip seal quite a bit as there is much less traffic. But, I usually kept it under 50 miles on the stuff. When I was doing longer rides, I tried to find some good roads with nice smooth shoulders.

    But, it could be me just tensing up too. I'll have to experiment a bit to fully determine. Thanks everyone!
     
  13. davereo

    davereo Well-Known Member

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    I took a spill on a freshly chipsealed road Saturday. The landing was brutal. Both gloves got torn up and my hands both have severe lacerations. My bell got rung up pretty loudly and I had the impression of the road surface in my left frontal region of my spent helmet. My right hip looks like it was attacked with a cheese grater. More blood than sweat on that ride for sure. The road had nothing to do with my spill but it sure did with my landing. It surely was a difficult ride home hanging on with two effed up hands.
     
  14. Radiati0n

    Radiati0n New Member

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    I didn't know what a "chipsealed" road was untill I looked it up. Never head that term before, and thank god I have yet to encounter any roads like these on my normal routes. They look brutal!
     
  15. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    I took a spill on a freshly chipsealed road Saturday. The landing was brutal. Both gloves got torn up and my hands both have severe lacerations. My bell got rung up pretty loudly and I had the impression of the road surface in my left frontal region of my spent helmet. My right hip looks like it was attacked with a cheese grater. More blood than sweat on that ride for sure. The road had nothing to do with my spill but it sure did with my landing. It surely was a difficult ride home hanging on with two effed up hands.

    I hope you heal up quickly.

    One of the young local racers and I were out training last night and we had to alter our route twice due to new stretches of C&S we found.

    Even if you don't fall, you chew the hell out of your tires and wedge rocks between your front tire and fork, scoring the crap out of your carbon. I've been putting short pieces of tape on the inside of my fork crowns to protect the fork from cuts.

    I was taken down on C&S back in April. My helmet was only lightly scuffed on the outer shell, but the impact cracked the styrofoam right thru to the inside in two spots! Keep a close eye on any symptoms of concussion and stock up on A&D and Neosporin and Nu-Skin and...crashing sucks! Crashing on C&S REALLY sucks!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  16. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    I didn't know what a "chipsealed" road was untill I looked it up. Never head that term before, and thank god I have yet to encounter any roads like these on my normal routes. They look brutal!

    Radiat0n,

    They vary. Some...ones that have been 'run in' for a couple of months and had a decent base under the C&S...can been as good as hot mix/rolled asphalt. Most of the one in my area are not too bumpy, but do have a pretty 'toothy' surface. Some are pretty bumpy, but this is due to the unrepaired substrate under the C&S.

    C&S eats racing tire rubber compounds. If you ride lots of C&S you might want to stock up on cheap training tires!

    For brutal 'this is worse than riding the cobbles!' stuff, Ohio has many miles of falling apart asphat...full of frost heaves, potholes, speedbumps, splits, separations, crumbling loose pavement, broken edges, 'bear grease' sealant, huge rocks laying all over...and that's some of the good stuff!
     
  17. davereo

    davereo Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]
    Heres what chipseal will do to your head. My replacement helmet came in today. Thankfully I have a few so my riding has not been interupted. You can also see some of the bandages on my hand.
     
  18. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

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    You win, Dave! Your skid lid looks a tad worse for the wear than mine does! Great trophy cabinet material you've got now!!!

    Sonnovabeotch! Those are some deep gouges in the shell. I see you got two good cracks going, also! I know exactly what taking big chunks of meat out of your hands feels like. It sucks!

    I hope your hide heals up quickly and I'm glad to hear you're riding thru the recovery...Hard Man Award, for sure!

    Somewhere around here I've got the cheese gratered shorts and jersey (hopefully I washed the blood out of them) I was wearing when I got knocked down in a road race that went over a few miles of fresh limestone C&S! You know those Tour pics that show some guy's bloody ass hanging out? Yeah...it was like that AND a bloody shoulder sticking out where a jersey used to be. Sidi Genius shoe ground down like a belt sander hit it. The base and side of one thumb got pretty carved up in that mess.

    Falling on C&S, I repeat, it sucks!
     
  19. Dave Cutter

    Dave Cutter Active Member

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    How often do we crash?

    I had a minor little fall while cycling today... not a big deal. But I got to thinking about it... crashing/wreaking was a topic of a conversation this past weekend. I openly admit... I crash, I have accidents and they hurt. I accept that all sports test the limits of the sportsmen... and so injury's will and do happen.

    I guess I expect a couple injuries a season.... does that sound about right?
     
  20. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    Nice! You left out the most important info though: the bike's condition. I hope it's okay.
     
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