My handlebars wobble when I am gripping the center of my handlebars at moderate-high speed. When holding the grips on the end of the bar it's fine but I like to sometimes give my hands a rest with a center grip. How can you prevent this condition?

  • 1
    I had something similar happen when my front QR skewer wasn't tightened properly - probably worth checking.
    – Diado
    Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 14:42
  • 2
    By not doing it!
    – Carel
    Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 18:31

2 Answers 2


Check the front wheel rim and tire are running true. Lift the front wheel off the ground and spin it. Looking at the rim and tire where they pass through the fork or rim brake makes it easier to see how much deviation from true there is.

If rim has more than a few mm of deviation, you can get a local bike shop to true it. If the tire is not on straight, deflate it, get it seated on the rim properly and re-inflate. Also check the tire for bulges or damage.

Check you have the wheel fixed in the fork correctly and the QR or thru-axle is done up sufficiently tightly.

Check the headset bearings. Hold the handlebars, apply front brake to rock the wheel and rock the bike forwards and backwards. If you feel any play between the fork and frame the headset bearing pre-load need to be adjusted. There are plenty of guides online that will show you how to do that.

BTW, you probably should not be gripping the bar in the center (right up against the stem) at high speed. You will have poor steering control and will not be able to get on the brakes in an emergency.

  • Not exactly gripping the bar at the centre, but aero bars are designed to put your hands near the centre line away from the brakes at speed. Steering control is better than a narrow grip on the bars themselves because of the forward leverage, but nowhere near as good as in the drops.
    – Chris H
    Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 17:54
  • That's the reason (lack of control) why the UCI prohibits the use of aerobars in races.
    – Carel
    Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 18:32
  • @Carel being a long way from the brakes is a form of lack of control, and another stated reason for the ban is that they're capable of causing injury in a crash (see also disc brakes, at least for quite a few years)
    – Chris H
    Commented Mar 19, 2019 at 11:21

Another possible cause is speed wobble, a phenomenon where steering, the frame and your body mass together create a sudden strong oscillation. There isn't a way to prevent it except switching to a stiffer frame, but fortunately it is easy to recover by changing the grip on handlebars or just touching top tube with your leg.

  • 1
    Speed wobble be exacerbated by a narrow grip on the bars also. Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 17:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.