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Questions tagged [ergonomics]

For questions about the ergonomics (human factors) of cycling and related activities, mostly related to the positioning and motion of the body and its joints to avoid injury and increase comfort and performance.

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50 votes
9 answers
193k views

Is it possible to measure your sit bones at home?

Some bike shops have gel pads that you sit on to measure the distance between your sit bones. Is it possible to take this measurement on your own at home, or does this really require special-purpose ...
amcnabb's user avatar
  • 7,125
42 votes
3 answers
7k views

What is the optimal cadence?

I have heard that one ought to turn the pedals at 90rpm. However, I do so much slower, especially while standing, and would like to understand the argument behind this number (or any other number). So:...
Vorac's user avatar
  • 13.7k
36 votes
8 answers
15k views

How do I determine the correct position for my bicycle seat?

I have been suffering from IT band problems on my outer knee, which I'm pretty sure were caused by raising my seat height too much. I raised the seat on the advice of a friend who said that a higher ...
ire_and_curses's user avatar
27 votes
7 answers
5k views

Recommendation for panniers used off the bike a lot

I'm looking for panniers. I mostly just potter around town, and am not planning any cycle touring so my main criteria is that the panniers should be easy to carry around off the bike. Built in ...
Hamish Downer's user avatar
23 votes
8 answers
872 views

How to choose a bicycle seat

I'll need a new saddle for my bike soon. I use it mainly for short commutes (30 minutes). About once a year I go touring for a few days, up 8 hours in the saddle. My current saddle just came with the ...
Kevin's user avatar
  • 2,892
20 votes
9 answers
9k views

How many fingers on the brake lever of an MTB?

I have seen people stop with one finger, two fingers or the whole hands on the levers. Is there a recommended number of fingers on the brake levers when stopping/anticipating an emergency stop? Do ...
Vorac's user avatar
  • 13.7k
18 votes
9 answers
7k views

How can I keep my feet from falling asleep while riding?

I have mountain bike shoes and clipless pedals. When I go on long rides, my feet fall asleep and then very, very painfully wake up (on my most recent long ride, this started happening after 30ish ...
Rebekah's user avatar
  • 293
17 votes
2 answers
7k views

How should I angle my foot throughout a pedal stroke?

When I say "angle my foot," I mean in relation to the ground. Is it best to keep your foot level throughout the stroke? Should I point my toes downward or upward at any point? I'm wondering what's ...
Brock Boland's user avatar
  • 1,119
15 votes
2 answers
7k views

At what height should I have my seat on a road bike?

I am currently riding a loaner from my brother in-law, and I have set the seat height based upon feel. I was wondering though as to how I can set it to the right height for me to ride more ...
Anthony K's user avatar
  • 6,233
14 votes
5 answers
3k views

Correctly and incorrectly mounting a bicycle

I am very fond of mouting bicycles this way: Stand to the left of the bike. Put the left foot on the left pedal. Push forward with the right foot to set the bike in motion. Swing the right leg ...
user avatar
12 votes
3 answers
2k views

Why are foot-long pedals not widely used?

A lot of effort and resources go into making cycling shoes stiff, presumably to keep the foot in a suitable shape and spread the force across the sole. It seems like it would be possible to achieve a ...
bdsl's user avatar
  • 532
12 votes
5 answers
5k views

Did I choose the wrong size bike?

I don't know much about bicycles, and I have relatively little experience with them. I bike for fun, or to get around the city, not for sport. Recently I bought a BTWIN Rockrider 340 mountain bike, ...
Samu's user avatar
  • 121
11 votes
5 answers
15k views

I feel long rides exclusively in my quads, should my calf muscles be doing more work?

I notice a lot of cyclists with massive sculpted calf muscles, especially the kind that clearly ride as a life-style without worrying about minimizing body weight. I've switched cities, and gone from ...
user229044's user avatar
  • 3,606
11 votes
4 answers
5k views

Should I use a narrower saddle on a road bike than I would on my hybrid commuter?

I ride a hybrid (Trek Fx 7.3) as a daily commuter and have found a 143mm saddle to be the right width for me. However I am looking into getting a road bike for long rides and am finding 130mm ...
STW's user avatar
  • 2,569
11 votes
5 answers
46k views

Securing sliding bar grips without hair spray?

I have some Bell anatomic handlebar grips that tend to slide (rotate) on the bar. I've read that using hair spray is useful, but tends to be rather permanent. I'd like to make the grip tackier but not ...
memnoch_proxy's user avatar
11 votes
3 answers
6k views

Is adjusting the angle of a drop handlebar a viable way to reduce wrist pain?

Those who spend a lot of time typing on a computer keyboard or playing on a music keyboard (piano, ..) learn that their wrists should remain as straight as possible. The idea is that the tendons that ...
Sam7919's user avatar
  • 9,246
10 votes
4 answers
3k views

I'm an absolute beginner in bike touring, about to buy a bike. Is it worth it to hire a bike fitting service before the purchase?

I'm an absolute beginner in bike touring, about to buy a bike. Currently I'm using local shared bikes and I always wanted to start my adventures on a bike, camping and so on. Given this, is it worth ...
Victor F's user avatar
  • 203
10 votes
5 answers
4k views

How to prevent my bike from tipping over when using just one pannier?

I often carry gear in a pannier on my bike rack, as in the photo below (not my bike, but same pannier design. My actual bike frame is very different; I'll upload my own picture tomrrow): I have two ...
nhinkle's user avatar
  • 3,893
10 votes
2 answers
279 views

How do I make sure I'm sitting straight on a recumbent?

I have recently (at the time of original posting) taken up cycling a recumbent (a now discontinued Azub Eco 20" bicycle). My perineum thanks me, but immediately after a ride I feel a bit lopsided (...
Tom Hawtin - tackline's user avatar
9 votes
2 answers
12k views

How to carry a step-through/mixte bike

How can one carry a bike with a step-through/mixte frame effectively?-- In comparison, any diamond-frame bike is a breeze for me to shoulder regardless of weight (okay, carrying a 25+-kg roadster is ...
errantlinguist's user avatar
8 votes
5 answers
4k views

Healthiest bike posture for slower long rides

I'm looking for some evidence on bike posture and overall best positioning for healthiest rides that might be "long" (say around 30km) but also where speed is not a concern - think of ...
Luca Matteis's user avatar
  • 1,015
8 votes
3 answers
184 views

Bicycle design for a crooked hip

One of my hips turns out a bit more than it ‘ought’ to. It doesn't affect my walking, but on a bicycle it means that my knee on that side must transmit force at an unnatural angle. It was less of a ...
Anton Sherwood's user avatar
8 votes
3 answers
8k views

Should one buy a used Brooks saddle that is already broken in?

I understand that Brooks saddles (and similar leather hammock/sling style saddles) break in as they are used so that they conform to the particular shape of a riders sit bones, crotch, etc., and that, ...
mako's user avatar
  • 395
8 votes
2 answers
23k views

Proper Posture on a flat bar road bike

I've been commuting on a flat bar road bike for a couple of years now. The ride feels comfortable but whenever I see myself riding I always think my posture is wonky. Is there a guide somewhere or ...
hhafez's user avatar
  • 183
8 votes
1 answer
1k views

Cycling jargon: "relaxed geometry", "slack geometry", and "aggressive geometry"

In one sentence… What is the meaning (and for which parts), the implications, and, if possible, the etymology of these three terms? In more words… When I hear this bike has more aggressive geometry ...
Sam7919's user avatar
  • 9,246
8 votes
2 answers
14k views

Contradiction! Which back posture is correct for road biking?

It might be a basic question but I have searched and find no same question. The question is... There seems to be contradiction about the back posture for road biking. Some people suggest arch-...
Cray Kao's user avatar
  • 354
8 votes
1 answer
2k views

Knee position while on the aero bar

I find that my knees are coming ahead of the pedals while I am on the aero bars. I am not sure whether this is right or wrong. In the below image, I don't feel pain on my lower back for a long ...
Freakyuser's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers
688 views

Are recumbents good for your back?

I am in my late 40s and yes I have a sore lower back. Most likely from too many bicycle rides on incorrectly sized / fitted bicycles. I am thinking of getting a recumbent for my daily commute to work. ...
Fandango68's user avatar
  • 1,282
7 votes
4 answers
4k views

How to fix raised shoulder posture?

When riding, I have found myself in a posture where my shoulders are raised (like a shrug). I assume this is a bad posture. When I notice it, I correct myself. However, sometime later I might find ...
WW01's user avatar
  • 1,109
7 votes
5 answers
9k views

Cycling position for commuting

I'm looking into buying a commuter bike. Observing other bikers I see some are hunched over their bikes and some are almost vertical. What is considered the best position for commuting? [I will be ...
Marcus Leon's user avatar
7 votes
3 answers
588 views

Proper Posture for Preventing Painful Posteriors on Penny-farthings?

After riding relatively short distances (about five kilometers), I’ve developed a literal pain in the rear. I suspect the hard seat is the primary culprit, and I’m sure I’ll be able to replace with ...
Laurence Adams's user avatar
7 votes
5 answers
16k views

"Proper" cycling posture on a road bike with drop bars?

Sometimes I feel a little pain in my lower back after cycling (nothing too long, mainly cycling around London for general commuting...5-10Km). It could be due to a number of reasons (I have a bad back ...
Bernard Tyers's user avatar
6 votes
5 answers
9k views

Can I install an upright handlebar (curved towards me) on a touring bike?

I bike around the city on a daily basis, usually for short distances (5 km tops, typically less than that). I currently have a cheap, battered down touring bike that is nevertheless doing the job ...
abl's user avatar
  • 460
6 votes
3 answers
663 views

How to handle vibration (big bumps, etc.) on flat bar when touring?

I've got a fully-rigid mountain bike with flat bars that I'll be using on a 150 mile bikepacking trip on a "rails to trails" trail. So it'll get a bit bumpy. My hands get a little sore from all the ...
Clay Nichols's user avatar
  • 1,085
6 votes
2 answers
5k views

I can't sit on my sit bones

I'm 195cm and 80kg. For as long as I can remember, I haven't been able to sit on my sit bones comfortably. In hard wooden chairs I slouch or lean far forwards. Plastic seats, such as on a metro, are ...
Drew's user avatar
  • 515
6 votes
6 answers
11k views

I sit real far back on my saddle

Asked this on diaspora, but was urged to come here, so, here's my question: I tend to slide BACK on my saddle really far, to the point where my sit bones are very near to the edge. If I try to scoot ...
lokeen's user avatar
  • 61
6 votes
4 answers
21k views

Getting the right cockpit position. Sliding forward. What should I adjust to keep my sit bones on the seat?

I am experienced rider and I'm looking for some advice on how to adjust my cockpit position. I am a daily commuter, and do regular 40-50k rides on the weekends, and with the warmer weather will work ...
Doug D.'s user avatar
  • 86
6 votes
3 answers
580 views

Is a fitting worthwhile for me?

I'm a guy with banged up knees. I'm trying to decide if it is worthwhile for me to splurge for a high-end bike fitting or go with a more ordinary fitting or skip getting a fitting altogether. ...
CommuterBiker's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
1k views

quads feel over used while in an aero position

I typically ride on the hoods, but I've been working lately on a more aero position. When in the drops or using clip-on aero bars I find that my quads get fatigued much more than when I'm in a normal ...
jcjones1515's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
538 views

Can I think of bike fit purely as bike ergonomics, or is there a distinct or an additional aspect to the choice?

I used to take a simplistic view of choosing a frame size. It boiled down to choosing the largest frame that gives me sufficient top-bar clearance. On both road and MTB bikes, I can ride long ...
Sam7919's user avatar
  • 9,246
5 votes
4 answers
3k views

Recommendations on how to make grips more comfortable?

I find that on longer rides on my Trek FX3 that my palms (particularly my right palm) go numb from the pressure I am exerting on them. I appreciate that part of this is related to my posture and the ...
bated's user avatar
  • 197
5 votes
4 answers
1k views

Custom bike to offer smoothest possible ride on bad roads

So, I am in a peculiar situation - due to an injury, shaking in any direction leads to pain and my condition is improving very slowly. I'm looking to find/customize a bike so that it offers me the ...
Anton's user avatar
  • 53
5 votes
2 answers
1k views

How do I determine a suitable handlebar width on a fatbike?

Fatbike owners seem to be fond of using lavishly wide handlebars. They also don't just go from 640mm or 660mm to 680mm or 700mm, but often to 720mm or 740mm. I'm assuming their shoulders couldn't be ...
Sam7919's user avatar
  • 9,246
5 votes
1 answer
2k views

Tandem team with large height disparity - possible?

My wife and I would like to start riding tandem. I've been reading about it and am worried that we are not physically eligible. She's 165cm, I'm 195cm... I've considered buying a baby trailer and ...
Drew's user avatar
  • 515
5 votes
3 answers
782 views

Is there an improvement braking from the hoods from Shimano Sora 3500 to Sora R3000?

I'm struggling to brake from the hoods on my first drop handlebar second hand bike although braking from the drops is fine. I read on this site somewhere that older Shimano Sora ergonomics were ...
mallardz's user avatar
  • 151
4 votes
3 answers
2k views

Potential risks of sitting upright on the saddle during a daily commute

I ride my bike to work Monday through Friday, about forty minutes both ways. The elevation changes a bit but not too much. I'm not a huge fan of holding the handlebars, and I often ride with no ...
intcreator's user avatar
4 votes
4 answers
7k views

handlebar setup/selection to mitigate wrist pain on multiday rides

On my first multi-day bike tour the only physical trouble I had after a several long days on my bike was pain in the wrists. My current touring bike setup has drop bars with a long fork. I chose the ...
yep's user avatar
  • 141
4 votes
1 answer
315 views

Accuracy of pedal-based power meters when used with pedal extenders / pedal spacers

Is the accuracy of a pedal-based power meter (examples) significantly affected by using them with pedal extenders (example)? Thank you.
Jim's user avatar
  • 247
4 votes
7 answers
7k views

Breathable backpack [closed]

I carry a 15" laptop, headphones, tablet and other misc items in my backpack during the bike ride. This makes me sweaty in the back. Are there 'breathable' backpacks specifically meant for bike ...
Sridhar Ratnakumar's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
695 views

how much can i raise my stem?

I've got one of these stems: It's currently fully inserted into the bike, and it's too low for me. Can I simply loosen it, raise it 5cm and tighten it again? What's the minimum length that should ...
gcb's user avatar
  • 1,465