I just started cycling with a racebike. I still have some questions concerning ladies biking and personal health issues.

I do find very little information about ladies and biking. I kind of want to know what to look for when shopping for clothing. Is there need for a special bra when you're constantly bend forward on a racebike? Are there things I need to watch out for?

Secondly I have some questions concerning my back and head. I suffer from migraines (about two a week) and my left shoulder is blocked sometimes. I was questioning if racing would affect this in any way?

I do have a ladies racebike fitted on my size, been to a person who put my steer and sadle at the right height, changed my steer pen to a longer one and fitted the clickpedals just about right.

  • 2
    Welcome to Bicycles! Looks like you ended mid-thought. Did you have more to say or ask?
    – Gary.Ray
    Jan 24, 2012 at 16:47
  • 1
    You say you just started with the racing bike - does that mean that you previously rode something else, or that this is your first bike?
    – Cascabel
    Jan 24, 2012 at 17:40
  • @Jefromi I previously rode a city bike (I still do) for years. But the race bike is a first, yes!
    – Hannelore
    Jan 25, 2012 at 7:35
  • 1
    @Hannelore this question is now 6 years old. How has your riding been? What worked for you, and what was a waste of time? Consider adding your own answer, that's encouraged.
    – Criggie
    Feb 15, 2018 at 8:30

2 Answers 2


From what you have written, I could give these advice:

  • Ladies use to bike a lot, since the dawn of the bike ages, and there seems not to be a significant difference on the bicycle itself. If a bike is properly fit to the rider, any style or level of activity may be performed for both women or men.
  • Cycling is not the "worst" sport regarding breast discomfort. Running, for example, would require firmer bras. I don't see the girls on my riding group complaining so much about bra, but from buttocks, which would require comfortable "sports" underpants and most probably a nice padded cycling short, which are the "default" cycling wear anyway.
  • If you are starting, and with so many doubts, perhaps RACING is not the best activity for you. Maybe you should get a more comfortable city bike (higher handlebars, larger saddle, wider tires, more gears) and get some exercise, improving your cardio and postural endurance BEFORE starting to actually race or train hard. Migraine and shoulder problems are a good indicative you should consider NOT to start with a racing bike.
  • If you have health problems, you should take extra care, perhaps go to a sports doctor, sports teacher or physical therapist to get some advice.

Besides that, cycling is a very nice, traditional and healthy activity, and if you don't demand too hard on yourself, there is no big mystery or over-complication about taking the bike out and just ride.

  • 1
    I bought the race bike to do some excercise, be healthy and most of all being outside and have a nice ride. I figured that a normal city bike would be boring because I use it all the time. With the race bike I feel more challenged. I'm not the most sporty person but I can ride the bike for about 34 miles (55 km) without being pushed to go a little further. With some support I rode up to 40.4 miles (65 km). About the migraine, I do have them anyways, I was just wondering that being in certain position would affect your bloodsystem in any way.
    – Hannelore
    Jan 25, 2012 at 7:46

First and foremost you just need to be comfortable. This means, among other things, avoiding clothes that chafe when doing the sort of riding you do. (Note that this means you may need different clothes for different types/durations of riding.)

With your shoulder problem you probably need a more "relaxed" riding position -- this may mean (compared to "normal") the seat slightly more forward, the handlebar raised, and a stem with a shorter forward extension (to bring the handlebar closer to you).

Both men and women have unique issues with regard to the pubic area. These can be partly addressed by using the proper seat (which varies not only with gender but with the detailed geometry of the pelvis, etc). Additionally, proper undergarments (or simply padded shorts) are important for longer rides.

But, as Heltonbiker suggests, don't over-complicate things. Other than shoes and maybe bike shorts, start with what's in your closet and add individual items as you find a need for them.

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.