For the average bike ride, an individual will average 90 revolutions per minute or 5,400 strokes per hour. While biking yields tremendous cardiovascular and physical fitness benefits, the repetitive motion of cycling can lead to wear and tear on the cartilage, ligaments and tendons surrounding one’s joints. The physical therapists of Chiron want to reduce your risk of strains, sprains and injury and keep you riding all season.
TIPS for PAIN FREE BIKING
#1: Make sure your bike fits YOU
- The ball of your foot should be over the pedal spindle. If you wear cleats, it is important to maintain the neutral position as this will allow for proper tracking of the knee through the stroke;
- The saddle / seat height should allow the knee to be slightly bent at the most extended part of the stroke. For normal endurance cycling, the seat should be level;
- Position of the handle bar should not result in you leaning too far forward, straining the trunk - For recreational riders, the trunk angle should be between 40 – 80 degrees; - For the road riders, the trunk angle should be between 30 and 40 degrees;
#2: Wear your helmet because
- Everyone knows that wearing a helmet is essential to preventing head and brain injuries in the event you fall.
- But did you know that an improper fit could lead to neck pain? - Your helmet should not tip backwards or forwards; - There should be about 2 fingers breadth between your eyebrow and the edge of your helmet; - If your helmet sits too far forward, it will result in neck strain as you will constantly keep you head looking upright to be able to see the road.
#3: Lower resistance to prevent or recover from IT syndrome
- Your IT band (or iliotibial band) is a thick fibrous band of tissue that runs on the outside of your leg and can become tight. When this occurs, the IT band can rub over the bony prominences of the hip and knee resulting in pain.
- To avoid or recover from this, pedal with lower resistance and keep your cadence at 80-90 RPM
Your friends at Chiron Physical Therapy are committed to you and your health. If strains, sprains or injury occurs or if you want us to evaluate your technique, give us a call. Chiron wants you to stay on course this season and enjoy the riding season.
Chiron Physical Therapy . . . committed to making people feel better.