I did have spinning handle bar grips on my bike. I have now replaced them with some specialized lock on grips i.e. bolted on.

For example if you're cycling on the road, could spinning grips upset your balance to the extent the bike washes out from beneath you?

This may be a stupid question but I don't want another trip to A&E and 6 stitches to my chin.

  • 1
    Can you be a bit more specific about how extreme that "spinning" is, please? Is it something like "If I hold the grip tight and turn, then I am able to turn the grip around the handle bar" or is it more like "The grip does not really give any resistance and I can turn it easily with little force, e.g. by rubbing my hand along it"? Apr 4, 2016 at 11:03
  • What Benedikt said. Are you talking about a grip that spins freely or one that can be spun with some effort? Apr 5, 2016 at 3:58

2 Answers 2


In my humble personal opinion, I don't see it being an issue unless you are in an extreme situation such as downhill or freeride stuff, it which case it could result in a crash. Even then I feel like a good lock on grip is just fine and when tightened I have never spun one.

According to WTB is can be dangerous though as their newest line of grips is aimed at stopping exactly that.

Rotated grips. They end rides, dreams, and winning seasons. So, we solved the problem. In doing so, we also created a more comfortable grip, which utilizes a tapered inner-grip cylinder that interfaces directly with PadLoc-ready handlebars to eliminate rotational slippage entirely. It’s so unique that we applied for US and international patents. And yes, it rules – riding hard with comfort should have been figured out long ago – fortunately, we nailed it. Ride it to believe. Never go back. Locked comfort perfected.

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Although i can see the comfort side of their design i feel like they have created a solution to a problem that wasn't a very big one.

With that said i do feel like spinning grips could be potentially dangerous in the "perfect storm" sort of circumstance, especially with it in mind that if they can spin they could potentially slip off as well if your really yanking on them in the turns...

However, under normal everyday commuter and similar conditions I don't think it is something to stress about unless they are loose to the point of spinning freely. Lock ons are proven to work, as is using hairspray between the grips and bars for a little extra grip.

  • 1
    Freely spinning grips wouldn't need a perfect storm at all. They'd need only a routine moment in riding a bike. I can't imagine too many things more dangerous than something that compromises your grip on the bars and brakes. Apr 5, 2016 at 4:00
  • it spun when I turned the front wheel so yes free spinning. Ok I add that to my M check am supposed to do and never do.
    – Ageis
    Apr 5, 2016 at 9:48
  • Carey Gregory , freely being the key word. Im referring to slight twisting movement, if i grab a handlebar and the grip is all loose and free sliding around I'm not going to ride it.. that seems like a no brainer.
    – Nate W
    Apr 5, 2016 at 14:46

I am sure that there are cases where ridiculously easy spin of the handle could be problematic. E.g., pulling hard on the brake lever while your thumb is not optimally hooked on the handle for whatever reason. If the handle is loose, it could rotate and you could somehow slip or not be able to transfer enough force to the lever.

Besides, there are occasions where I grip the handles quite strongly during mountainbiking while having one or two fingers on the brake lever in "ready position"; if the handle would rotate, I would not have an immediate feeling of what the bike does. It would likely confuse me when I am cruising along near my limits.

EDIT: removed the mention of chalk.

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    As a climber, I would not see a benefit from using chalk between the grip and the bar. Chalk is mainly used as a drying agent, and I doubt that there is water between the grips and the bar.
    – anderas
    Apr 4, 2016 at 15:03
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    You're better off with a little hairspray.
    – Nate W
    Apr 4, 2016 at 15:12
  • I've used WD40 as well. Makes it super easy to slip the grips on, and seems to react with the rubber in some way cause once dry the rubber is left extra sticky on most grips I tried
    – stijn
    Apr 4, 2016 at 19:04
  • Dishwash and water works well for getting them off, and it wicks inwards too.. And once the water evaporates from the new grip,, the dishwash acts as a gripping agent.
    – Criggie
    Apr 5, 2016 at 10:25
  • @stijn Thats because the WD40 is deteriorating the rubber or plastic and accelerating the deterioration. So its gripping better because its "aging" the inside of the material. Not a good idea.
    – Criggie
    Apr 5, 2016 at 10:26

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