I have pudendal neuralgia issues which require that I use a noseless saddle (not shown in pic) which works great for relieving pelvic floor pain.

The result, though, is that much weight then is placed on the arms and so I'm battling sore hands and wrists after being on the bike for 45 minutes or more.

I've got the standard drop bars with the top part of the bars wrapped in double foam tape so its as soft and wide as possible but it just doesn't do enough and it really just seems that the only solution is to reduce the angle of my upper body so that I'm substantially more upright. I'm about 6'-0 and this is a 58 cm frame. I don't think raising or shortening the stem a few centimeters is going to be enough change. I think the only hope is to replace the handlebars with a some other handlebar pattern (or add-on) that might allow a range of positions including ones that might be 3-6" higher than the current top bar.

Does anyone know of some that I could look at online? Not sure if this will make the bike unstable. The noseless saddle does cause a fair amount of instability now.

I'm contemplating selling the bike and just getting something that will be comfortable enough to spend a couple hours of leisurely riding or commuting (any suggestions for <= $1000?)

If you see a handlebar modification that might be possible without getting into replacing brakes and all cables (which I expect to be expensive) let me know.
enter image description here

  • 3
    How does the noseless saddle put extra weight [on] your hands? On a regular saddle or noseless all your weight should be on the bones at the bottom of your pelvis. Commented May 9, 2020 at 15:21
  • 1
    A piece called "threadless steerer extension" may help you raise the handlebar more than just swapping the stem. I still recommend trying to achieve the best fit possible on your current bike, so you know what to look for on a new one. "butterfly handlebars" are a type of handlebar that offers a lot of positions. There exists also "H handlebars".
    – Jahaziel
    Commented May 9, 2020 at 16:00
  • 2
    Are you wearing a backpack? Commented May 9, 2020 at 16:13
  • 1
    For how long have you been cycling?
    – Carel
    Commented May 9, 2020 at 19:18
  • 4
    @ArgentiApparatus Noseless saddles tend to cause the rider to catch more weight on their hands the same way that nosing a saddle way down will cause one to slip forward. I've noticed this when test riding bikes with them. Commented May 10, 2020 at 3:30

4 Answers 4


Regardless of the bar type you wind up with, the main way to raise the bars that much without swapping forks is via a steerer extender, which isn't safe to use with a carbon-steerered fork such as this, especially under a larger rider.

If you want the ability to go very tall, that means a steel steerer. There are some carbon forks with them that would wouldn't be a horrible mismatch with the bike that exist for this kind of purpose. Origin8 makes one.

Opinions are a little mixed about the viability of getting the kind of height you're talking about out of a steerer extender on an al steerer. Usually manufacturers prescribe a spacer limit on such forks of no more than around 60mm and sometimes less, and I personally have never seen any reason why it makes sense to cheat that number using a steerer extender, as the resultant problems with excess leverage on the steerer will be the same. Again as a taller rider, I don't think this is a reasonable approach.

There is not a way to do any of this without re-cabling the bike unless the current cables and housings happen to all be way too long. Also, few if any of the bar types that would make sense for your situation use drop-bar type controls like you have, which is another major expense of switching. And, you're right to look in the direction of other bar types, because it's unlikely you're going to be able to make much use of the drops no matter what, at which point drop bars make little sense.

Unless you need to be on a road bike, I would look at getting something like an Elektra Townie, or a recumbent if you could find one where the seat ergonomics work.


This is a racing bike. It not designed for a couple of hours of leisurely riding or commute, but long and fast rides and people who are used to such rides. You can extend the handlebars higher and try to install wider tires, but you will still have handlebars way too forward, steering geometry that feels unstable and narrower tires than you need. My recommendation would be to sell this one and buy something more suitable for your needs. It also looks like the frame might be a bit too big for you.

  • 2
    It’s not a racing bike, the Domane is a typical endurance/beginner road bike. To quote the manufacturer: “Domane AL 3 is smooth, stable and confidence-inspiring. It's perfect for new riders and anyone looking to upgrade to a versatile aluminium road bike built for a comfortable riding experience. The quality parts are ready to tackle fast group rides and longer adventures.”
    – Michael
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 9:53
  • 1
    @Michael Every bike can be raced! But seriously - this is a drop bar bike for going fast on road, as opposed to a comfort bike or a commuter or a MTB. This answer makes the good point about the large cost of changes, to come up with a bike that is okay, but good at nothing much.
    – Criggie
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 10:05
  • 1
    For me a racing bike is a bike which is as fast as possible (under the constraints of the UCI rules and the available budget) and only as comfortable as necessary to finish a race. The Domane doesn’t fit that definition. It’s comfortable and cheap while still allowing you to go relatively fast and far. If OP doesn’t care about speed and power and only wants to sit on a bike for 3 hours then they can get a dutch bike, by all means.
    – Michael
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 10:12
  • 1
    @Criggie actually, this is not about large cost or changes. This is about how the OP is looking for a fundamentally different bike, and modifying this one will only turn it into something that is not what the OP is looking for or a good road bike either.
    – ojs
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 11:27
  • 1
    @Michael is correct that the Domane is an endurance road bike, which is inherently oriented towards a blend of comfort and performance. However, ojs may have a point that the OP could be looking for something fundamentally more different than this. The OP has zero handlebar drop as is, and they were talking about going to a position with significant rise. If that’s what the OP really wants, then even an endurance road bike is not the correct type of bike.
    – Weiwen Ng
    Commented May 10, 2020 at 12:19

Thanks for all your answers. My motives for posting were somewhat mixed. I did originally purchase the Domane for training in the hills and maybe even some bike touring. It was sized correctly at a bike store but the minute I pulled out my Hobson saddle, they balked and kind of disowned the whole sizing effort. They pointed to regular nosed seats with the usual slot cut through. I've tried several of these and they just don't work. When you have serious nerve issues down there, the solution is NOTHING in contact with it. But you'd be surprised how much control you exert over the bike by using your inner thighs and pelvic floor for support and guidance. So stability is jeopardized and then more weight is immediately placed through the arms. It doesn't all go into the sits bones. As one poster pointed out - I probably should be on a recumbant bike. There are a lot of fairly steep hills around here and also a lot of sport cyclists. I never see recumbant bikes around here and figure that they probably can't maintain balance so easily when speed drops way down up long steep hills. Maybe I'm wrong about this?

So I kind of lost hope in going out for a couple hours and riding fast in the hills. Now I'm thinking more along the lines of going for a decent mountain bike trail ride every now and then and commuting to work with bike a few times per week. For commuting I thought maybe I could convert this Domane if I could just get some handlebars that allow for upright seating. Even if I could, I see that all the cables have little slack and the brake levers aren't going to be a good fit on a bar with a very different geometry. So I've put the bike for sale and will look into one of those electras.

  • 1
    Too bad that this bike didn't work out for you, but it is better to sell it to someone who will use it! StackExchange operates on a different mode than most fora, and we would rather you edit this text into the question, rather than post it as an answer (because it's not quite an answer to the question). If you have no objections, I can do it for you. On recumbent bikes, I suspect they are more capable than it may seem. I'd suggest finding a bike shop specializing in them, or to connect with recumbent groups or adaptive cycling groups.
    – Weiwen Ng
    Commented May 11, 2020 at 15:39
  • I've not tried it personally, but a seat post with a negative rake might get your hips closer to the bars. Downside it will change the angle of the leg, being more like a triathlon bike posture. Could be good for seated climbing though. Depends how much money you want to throw at this problem.
    – Criggie
    Commented May 11, 2020 at 20:33
  • Yeah. There are # of character limitations when adding a note which is why I had to do it as an answer. Feel free to move it.
    – dam
    Commented May 11, 2020 at 20:55

Have you seen a bike fitter? If you can do 45 minutes right now I don’t think you need drastic measures to go to two hours or more. A few millimeters of saddle position change could be all you need. Some people ride extremely angled saddles in aggressive road bike positions without any issues.

Soft and wide bar tape could actually be counterproductive since it can put pressure on nerves and blood vessels. You could try bike gloves which have the padding where you actually want it. They could also help when riding on the hoods, which is where you should spend most of your time.

  • I've tried bike gloves of all styles and padding levels (even doubled up). I've got gel under the tape. I ride the hoods, the top bar in multiple positions. No matter what, my hands start going dead and get into numbness and pain problems after an hour. Computer work has done a number on the hands and the bike further irritates. Mountain biking with noseless saddle doesn't seem to cause so many problems- Thus I conclude it must be aggressive forward pitch on the road bike that is culprit.
    – dam
    Commented May 11, 2020 at 15:17

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.