What Does Cycling Do For Your Knees/Ankles?

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by trickpony, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. trickpony

    trickpony New Member

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    Hi... this may be a dumb question but...

    Is cycling considered good/bad/indifferent for your knees and ankles?

    I'm a converted runner - I can't run anymore because I've had too many ankle injuries (I'm a competitive horseback rider and have had a few major issues). It's not so much that running hurts or exasturbates problems... but it takes so long for me to recover from a sprained/twisted ankle that it's not worth the risk.

    Cycling doesn't really seem to hurt my ankles at all and it seems like risk of injuring them is significantly less than in running... but I'm not sure.

    Anybody know the statistics? And furthermore... is it better for your knees? I assume it has to be...
     
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  2. daveryanwyoming

    daveryanwyoming Well-Known Member

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    Road cycling is much lower impact than running. And if you use your gears appropriately for the terrain it's much easier on the joints than weight bearing impact sports like running. That assumes you keep the rubber side down, get hit by a car and all bets are off....
     
  3. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    Cycling makes your knees and ankles go up and down.

    If you get your cleat and seat position wrong it can make your knees go slightly in and out too and you look like a bow legged man who pissed his shorts. :p

    But seriously though, following basic principles of setting up your position on the bike, correctly setting up the cleats on the bottom of your shoes and using a reasonable gear for a given effort, you shouldn't experience the same problems that you encountered running. Unless you fall off, cycling is a very "kind" sport on the old joints - and when injuries do occour, the majority of times it's either through bad positioning or overuse.
     
  4. DV1976

    DV1976 New Member

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    Cycling and swimming are the only sports (that I am aware off at least) that use the muscles in a circular motion hence avoiding impacts tha cause stress to joints/ligaments. Statistically (falls excluding) they re the 2 safest sports from that respect. Just make sure that u set ur position right on a bike that fits u well then try to stay upright on it and all will be well. :)
     
  5. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    Yes, easy on the joints if you are sensible in your training but cycling also strengthens surrounding muscle such as the quads, calves that aid in support of ligaments and connective tissue.
     
  6. trickpony

    trickpony New Member

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    Thanks for the info...

    The biggest issue I have with cycling vs. running is the intensity difference... I could go run 4-5 miles is 30 minutes and feel like I'd done what I needed to do for the day, whereas cycling seems to require a bigger time investment.

    I've started doing more hills though and bought a computer so I know when I'm being a fatass and slacking... hopefully those will help!
     
  7. youhaditcoming

    youhaditcoming New Member

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    cycling 30 to 40 minutes in a home trainer will give you a similar sensation as running, in terms of time vs effort
     
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