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Changing rider position to help lower back pain?

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Changing rider position to help lower back pain?

Old 05-02-19, 05:51 AM
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I just tried some 165 mm cranks, and they were a revelation for me. Very good for hip pain compared to the 170's and 175's I've been using for 30+ years.

I'm thinking the reason they work for that is, my hip is not flexed as much at the top of my pedal stroke when I'm applying power, as it would be with 175's. And when you do something like climbing a ladder, you will find that when the hip is flexed a lot, you have power, but not as much as you do as the leg straightens out, since we have an increasing ability to apply power as the leg straightens out.

So a shorter crank requires less hip flex with each pedal stroke, puts the leg in a more advantageous position at the top of the pedal stroke, and reduces the range of movement required for each revolution. I can really see this adding up over a 50 mile ride that requires thousands of pedal strokes, some under very heavy load.

To my mind, this is a different way of attacking the problem of reducing hip flex, via the crankarms, rather than attempting the same thing by having the rider sit up more, which will cause a whole slew of problems in and of itself by putting more weight onto the seat. Might be worth a try for the OP, especially if the woman has shorter than average legs, she might just need shorter crankarms.
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Old 05-29-19, 09:46 PM
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Originally Posted by rickrob View Post
A friend is having back issues and would like me to modify her road bike. We rode a century last year and her back was screaming after 60 miles.
The pain is at the right butt/hip from a pinched nerve. She was told she needs to sit up straighter.

The bike is an older Jamis Ventura 9 speed with Shimano 105 STI brifters. The bars have already been raised and it there are a bunch of spacers on it already.

I'm not sure what to do with this bike, with all the spacers that are already there-- and the stem already has a good rise. I was thinking the drops should be replaced with flat bars that have a rise, which means the brifters would need replacing as well. These Fairdale bars have a 50mm rise and also sweep back as well The bikes a 3 x 9 so I think could use these Alivio shifters.
Any other recommendations to change the rider position?


get a bike with aero bars eliminate the lower back issue
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Old 05-30-19, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by downtube42 View Post
I think she needs a taller frame. With that seat height, it's tough to get the hands high enough for an upright position. A taller frame but not a longer top tube.

Every spinal injury is unique. Conventional bike fit guidelines are not applicable.
That's what it appears to me too. The seat is plenty high, and the handlebars have as pointed out way to many spacers.

Also, it looks like the seat is setback with that post. Maybe she's comfortable sitting back like that over the pedals, but if it could be moved to a more neutral position then the reach issue on a bigger frame would also be avoided. This set up gives me the sense she looks like Easy Rider when biking.
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Old 05-30-19, 02:39 PM
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I adjusted my hips to not press down on the saddle nose 40 years ago ,

but I'm not trying to race, even back in the 70s..

Now I am 70..
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