What is Good Cycling Posture?
If you and your family have decided to take up cycling then this area is brilliant for easy cycling - it is all fairly flat terrain and the scenery in the Parks and along the river is magnificent.
However, before whizzing off along the banks of the Thames, make sure that your bicycle is correctly set up. Good cycling posture is different to when you are standing or sitting at a desk. Pedals should be at a height from the saddle that at full downward pedal you just stop short of fully extending and straightening your knee. Handlebars should be aligned so that your elbows remain bent rather than locked out straight.
Obviously, if you want to buy a racing bike then the posture alters again and it is really important not to allow your back to sag as you bend forwards over the handlebars. The back should be arched like a bridge with shoulders pushed forwards to help support the weight of the upper body.
Sigma Sport in Kingston offer a service to ensure that your racing bike fits you and is set up correctly.
Common Cycling Aches and Pains:
Neck pain is the most commonly reported cycling pain. On racing bikes this is often due to poor cycling posture with bad helmet adjustment. Ensure that you are not overextending your neck and tilt the helmet more to the back of the head. Keep elbows bent and shoulders forward to support the collar bones to give greater shock absorption. Make sure that the handlebars are not too low as this can greatly contribute to neck pain.
Shoulder Pain is also often a noticed ache after long rides. Again, check posture and that the saddle is angled correctly and not too low at the front. If you are sliding forwards along the saddle then you will automatically brace your weight on your arms and shoulders when riding and this will cause lots of postural problems. This position can also cause over-extension of the wrists leading to wrist and hand pain with possible pins and needles in the hands from pressure on the nerves.
Knee pain should be avoidable with cycling. In fact, cycling is a low impact sport and we often recommend it to patients with chronic back pain or arthritic knees. Again ensure that your saddle is at the correct height to avoid over-flexing the knees. Also, be careful to cycle with knees straight and do not allow any outward movement of the knee as that can cause damage behind the kneecap.
Here at Kingston & Teddington Osteopathy we can provide exercise sheets to help you develop good muscle balance for effective cycling. If you are suffering any problems with your cycling then call us and speak to one of our registered Osteopaths on 02089776396.