Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

What bike style is easiest on wrists? (recovering roady here)

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

What bike style is easiest on wrists? (recovering roady here)

Old 09-16-22, 12:50 PM
  #1  
Spreggy
King of the Plukers
Thread Starter
 
Spreggy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: On the bus.
Posts: 891
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
What bike style is easiest on wrists? (recovering roady here)

Been a while, BF peeps!
I had surgery last year to rebuild the scafo-lunate ligament in my left wrist. The doctor said that the ligament popped most likely while riding many miles on a road bike with wrists in a less-than-neutral position. Years pass, the bones float away from each other, hurts lots, and then surgery.
I want to get back into riding but because of a now forever compromised wrist I don't think the roady position is going to work well. I see people riding the straight bar bikes and wonder if that's better. And are they slow as molasses?
Recommendations?
Spreggy is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 01:03 PM
  #2  
Iride01 
Plz hurry Dec 22!
 
Iride01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 11,911

Bikes: Tarmac Disc Comp Di2 - 2020

Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4879 Post(s)
Liked 3,399 Times in 2,356 Posts
If you weren't riding your drop bar bike with your hands and wrists in a neutral position, then don't blame the drop bars. That's all on you!

If I wasn't on a drop bar which offers 4 different hand positions, then I'd be using a bar that looks like the old roadster style bikes of the 50's and early 60's. The ones that the bar ends point almost straight back. Otherwise mustache bars, trekking bars or anything that gives you multiple hand positions. Not a flat bar with one hand positon that will let your wrist sag and give you the very bent wrist/hand position I'm supposing you may have had in the drops.
Iride01 is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 01:04 PM
  #3  
Polaris OBark
ignominious poltroon
 
Polaris OBark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Posts: 1,966
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1116 Post(s)
Liked 1,637 Times in 911 Posts
I ride drop bars primarily to avoid the wrist pain inflicted by flat bars. So I am a bit curious about what position lead to your injury.
Polaris OBark is offline  
Likes For Polaris OBark:
Old 09-16-22, 01:15 PM
  #4  
Milton Keynes
Senior Member
 
Milton Keynes's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 3,890

Bikes: Trek 1100 road bike, Roadmaster gravel/commuter/beater mountain bike

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2241 Post(s)
Liked 1,656 Times in 908 Posts
I ride flat bars, but always with bar ends which give me additional hand positions. I was getting pain in my hands and elbow from the drop bars on my 30 year old road bike, plus it wasn't really that comfortable because the hoods are not like modern hoods which give you plenty of room to rest your hands on. So I took the flat bars from my old bike and put them on this one, then added some new bar ends. It's a much more comfortable ride and I'm not slow as molasses. I know I am giving up some aero advantage but the tradeoff is worth it in my mind if I can ride further without so much discomfort.
Milton Keynes is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 01:53 PM
  #5  
ironwood
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Boston area
Posts: 1,995

Bikes: 1984 Bridgestone 400 1985Univega nouevo sport 650b conversion 1993b'stone RBT 1985 Schwinn Tempo

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 518 Post(s)
Liked 130 Times in 85 Posts
I ride bikes with drop bars, I like Nitto Noodles and I like randonneur bars. I also have taller stems. The drop bars allow for more hand positions, and the taller stems take more weight off my hands. I do not ride a narrow racing saddle..
ironwood is offline  
Likes For ironwood:
Old 09-16-22, 01:58 PM
  #6  
Pratt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Posts: 793
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 295 Post(s)
Liked 307 Times in 190 Posts
Not an expert, but, at a guess, a recumbent.
Pratt is offline  
Likes For Pratt:
Old 09-16-22, 01:58 PM
  #7  
70sSanO
Senior Member
 
70sSanO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Mission Viejo
Posts: 5,419

Bikes: 1986 Cannondale SR400 (Flat bar commuter), 1988 Cannondale Criterium XTR, 1992 Serotta T-Max, 1995 Trek 970

Mentioned: 20 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1802 Post(s)
Liked 1,940 Times in 1,189 Posts
If I might ask, what is a neutral position?

John
70sSanO is offline  
Likes For 70sSanO:
Old 09-16-22, 02:19 PM
  #8  
Polaris OBark
ignominious poltroon
 
Polaris OBark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Posts: 1,966
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1116 Post(s)
Liked 1,637 Times in 911 Posts
Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
If I might ask, what is a neutral position?

John
180° wrist angle, as if you were shaking hands.
Polaris OBark is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 02:42 PM
  #9  
rydabent
Senior Member
 
rydabent's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Lincoln Ne
Posts: 9,621

Bikes: RANS Stratus TerraTrike Tour II

Mentioned: 41 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2992 Post(s)
Liked 935 Times in 554 Posts
Originally Posted by Spreggy View Post
Been a while, BF peeps!
I had surgery last year to rebuild the scafo-lunate ligament in my left wrist. The doctor said that the ligament popped most likely while riding many miles on a road bike with wrists in a less-than-neutral position. Years pass, the bones float away from each other, hurts lots, and then surgery.
I want to get back into riding but because of a now forever compromised wrist I don't think the roady position is going to work well. I see people riding the straight bar bikes and wonder if that's better. And are they slow as molasses?
Recommendations?
Bents or trikes. No pressure at all.
rydabent is offline  
Likes For rydabent:
Old 09-16-22, 02:53 PM
  #10  
easyupbug 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 2,292

Bikes: too many sparkly Italians, some sweet Americans and a couple interesting Japanese

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 450 Post(s)
Liked 386 Times in 286 Posts
I have osteoarthritis in my wrists and as said many trikes like my Catrike Expedition have padded wrist rests so there is zero loading on the wrist. A trike will be slower overall.
easyupbug is offline  
Likes For easyupbug:
Old 09-16-22, 03:31 PM
  #11  
freeranger
Senior Member
 
freeranger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 2,348

Bikes: 06 Lemond Reno, 98 GT Timberline mtn.bike

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 345 Post(s)
Liked 550 Times in 341 Posts
I have a metal plate with 8 screws in my wrist from a break 3 months ago. Riding on the hoods of my road bike is by far more comfortable and a more neutral position than my mtn. bike flat bar. Road bike gets my vote! Only short rides so far, but easy to tell the difference, all rides on pavement so far--doc says no trail riding for a while longer,
freeranger is offline  
Likes For freeranger:
Old 09-16-22, 03:40 PM
  #12  
70sSanO
Senior Member
 
70sSanO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Mission Viejo
Posts: 5,419

Bikes: 1986 Cannondale SR400 (Flat bar commuter), 1988 Cannondale Criterium XTR, 1992 Serotta T-Max, 1995 Trek 970

Mentioned: 20 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1802 Post(s)
Liked 1,940 Times in 1,189 Posts
Originally Posted by Spreggy View Post
Been a while, BF peeps!
I had surgery last year to rebuild the scafo-lunate ligament in my left wrist. The doctor said that the ligament popped most likely while riding many miles on a road bike with wrists in a less-than-neutral position. Years pass, the bones float away from each other, hurts lots, and then surgery.
I want to get back into riding but because of a now forever compromised wrist I don't think the roady position is going to work well. I see people riding the straight bar bikes and wonder if that's better. And are they slow as molasses?
Recommendations?
If your ortho says a flat type of handlebar, palms down, will be okay for your wrists, you might want to look into trekking bar options.

Since you are looking to get back on the road, at some acceptable speed, maybe a butterfly or reversed, or some derivative that allows arm rests and ride with your palms down while stretched out. You would still need a neutral position for tight turns/sketchy situations, but for wide open riding it might give you what you want.

John
70sSanO is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 03:43 PM
  #13  
Polaris OBark
ignominious poltroon
 
Polaris OBark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2022
Posts: 1,966
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1116 Post(s)
Liked 1,637 Times in 911 Posts
Nobody has mentioned the most obvious answer:


Polaris OBark is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 06:51 PM
  #14  
JanMM
rebmeM roineS
 
JanMM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Metro Indy, IN
Posts: 16,181

Bikes: Bacchetta Giro A20, RANS V-Rex, RANS Screamer

Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 646 Post(s)
Liked 328 Times in 213 Posts
Originally Posted by Pratt View Post
Not an expert, but, at a guess, a recumbent.
No pressure on my hands, wrists, forearms on the 'bents that I ride.
__________________
Bacchetta Giro A20, RANS V-Rex, RANS Screamer
JanMM is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 08:06 PM
  #15  
Ironfish653
Dirty Heathen
 
Ironfish653's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: MC-778, 6250 fsw
Posts: 1,891

Bikes: 1997 Cannondale, 1976 Bridgestone, 1998 SoftRide, 1989 Klein

Mentioned: 17 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 735 Post(s)
Liked 624 Times in 385 Posts
Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
If I might ask, what is a neutral position?

John

Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
180° wrist angle, as if you were shaking hands.
.
Neutral position is wherever the normal, unforced alignment of your wrists when your arms are extended.


Everyone knows that this should align perfectly with a set of properly positioned Record brake levers, or the drops of a 40-42cm 3TTT Olympic.
​​​​​​
The only people who can possibly be comfortable on a straight handlebar, or another of those misshapen aberrations are somehow mobility challenged, genetic mutants, or those born after 1970, who have fallen from The One True Way.
Ironfish653 is offline  
Likes For Ironfish653:
Old 09-16-22, 08:37 PM
  #16  
Ironfish653
Dirty Heathen
 
Ironfish653's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: MC-778, 6250 fsw
Posts: 1,891

Bikes: 1997 Cannondale, 1976 Bridgestone, 1998 SoftRide, 1989 Klein

Mentioned: 17 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 735 Post(s)
Liked 624 Times in 385 Posts
Originally Posted by Spreggy View Post
. I see people riding the straight bar bikes and wonder if that's better. And are they slow as molasses?
Recommendations?
There's a lot of different "straight" bar shapes, and a lot of different bike layouts that they go on. Some of them, like the sit-up-and-beg 'comfort' bikes, are quite slow. Ease of use is their goal, not speed.

Do you still have the road bike? I've had good success with "Albatross" style swept bars on older road bikes to make a comfortable but still 'fast' ride in the Roadster/ Path-Racer style
They come in a wide range of widths and bends, so you may be able to find one to fit your particular needs.

Ironfish653 is offline  
Likes For Ironfish653:
Old 09-16-22, 09:48 PM
  #17  
70sSanO
Senior Member
 
70sSanO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Mission Viejo
Posts: 5,419

Bikes: 1986 Cannondale SR400 (Flat bar commuter), 1988 Cannondale Criterium XTR, 1992 Serotta T-Max, 1995 Trek 970

Mentioned: 20 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1802 Post(s)
Liked 1,940 Times in 1,189 Posts
Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
Everyone knows that this should align perfectly with a set of properly positioned Record brake levers, or the drops of a 40-42cm 3TTT Olympic.
Funny, my Ortho only recommends Cinelli 64-40.

John
70sSanO is offline  
Likes For 70sSanO:
Old 09-16-22, 10:57 PM
  #18  
MarcusT
Senior Member
 
MarcusT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: NE Italy
Posts: 1,354
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 623 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 238 Posts
City or dutch bike style.
https://www.rei.com/product/100808/electra-loft-7d-bike
or, get a hybrid/MTB and put sweep bars on it.
Example: the Surly Moloko
MarcusT is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 11:02 PM
  #19  
MarcusT
Senior Member
 
MarcusT's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: NE Italy
Posts: 1,354
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 623 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 238 Posts
Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
If you weren't riding your drop bar bike with your hands and wrists in a neutral position, then don't blame the drop bars. That's all on you!
I blame the drop bars
MarcusT is offline  
Old 09-16-22, 11:02 PM
  #20  
rsbob 
Sniveling Weasel
 
rsbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2020
Location: Seattle-ish
Posts: 3,377
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1264 Post(s)
Liked 2,384 Times in 1,383 Posts
The bars on the bike above should be ideal for your wrists. My wife has deteriorating wrist bones and can not ride a drop bar bike any longe. She has found that a bike with beach cruiser style bars is very forgiving. Best of luck
__________________
Beikforoom Cyclist “No regerts” 🚴🏾‍♂️





rsbob is offline  
Old 09-17-22, 04:27 AM
  #21  
Spreggy
King of the Plukers
Thread Starter
 
Spreggy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: On the bus.
Posts: 891
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
In reference to strain on that ligament, a straight wrist.
Spreggy is offline  
Old 09-17-22, 04:29 AM
  #22  
Spreggy
King of the Plukers
Thread Starter
 
Spreggy's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: On the bus.
Posts: 891
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
Originally Posted by freeranger View Post
I have a metal plate with 8 screws in my wrist from a break 3 months ago. Riding on the hoods of my road bike is by far more comfortable and a more neutral position than my mtn. bike flat bar. Road bike gets my vote! Only short rides so far, but easy to tell the difference, all rides on pavement so far--doc says no trail riding for a while longer,
Damn, I hope your recovery goes well! Thanks for the great info.
Spreggy is offline  
Old 09-17-22, 06:04 AM
  #23  
tcs
Palmer
 
tcs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Parts Unknown
Posts: 7,442

Bikes: Mike Melton custom, 1982 Stumpjumper, Alex Moulton AM, 2010 Dawes Briercliffe, 2017 Dahon Curl i8, 2021 Motobecane Turino 1x12

Mentioned: 31 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1168 Post(s)
Liked 889 Times in 550 Posts

tcs is offline  
Likes For tcs:
Old 09-17-22, 08:14 AM
  #24  
63rickert
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,049
Mentioned: 44 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1062 Post(s)
Liked 322 Times in 241 Posts
The suggested bars @ #16 above, or anything similar, will do the job.

On any handlebar, pull on the handlebar. Do not passively lean on the bar. Be active when you ride. No need to weight the bar more than you would riding a unicycle. In some control situations you might load the handlebar but that is always short term.

It is not what you ride. It is how you ride.

I have been recommending the above for decades and then had a wrist injury. Doctor knew I was a cyclist, told me no bikes for a year or a certainty of meeting the hand surgeon. Telling me not to ride is like telling me not to breathe. I rode daily, paying more attention than usual to pulling on the bar. Had the one year followup and doc told me OK to ride again. It is always OK to ride.
63rickert is offline  
Old 09-17-22, 08:57 AM
  #25  
Iride01 
Plz hurry Dec 22!
 
Iride01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 11,911

Bikes: Tarmac Disc Comp Di2 - 2020

Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4879 Post(s)
Liked 3,399 Times in 2,356 Posts
Having the wrong width bars for many different types might cause one to have very bent or otherwise incorrect hand/wrist position that is not a somewhat neutral position. The 42 cm wide bars on my new bike were making it difficult to keep my wrists straight with my hands and forearms, so I changed to 38 cm wide drops and haven't had an issue with that since.

In the days prior to STI's... which for me was 2016, I'd ride frequently with my hands on the horizontal part of the drop bar and frequently would find my hands rotated down with the wrists very bent and getting sore. That's perhaps why I see no benefit for a flat bar on a bike intended to be ridden for several hours at a time.
Iride01 is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2022 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.