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  1. #1
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    Must alleviate wrist pain

    Hello Iíve been biking about a year and really enjoy it. Just moved from a 2012 karate monkey to a 2016 Scott scale 930 carbon and am really enjoying how fast that light weight sucker is, breaking all my personal records. Iím not a big downhill risk taker and have really come into my own just racing the clock which the Scott scale does well. My problem is that I have a terrible wrist problem thatís eventually going to require a surgery and the other wrist which seems to be on the same path, my wrist are just small for my frame, genetics I guess. Either was I have got to figure out how to alleviate some or all of the pounding Iím taking on the rooty FL trails I ride.

    I love the light weight hardtails for the kinda riding I like doing but Iím wondering how much better a beefy full suspension bike would absorb the piercing pain Iím getting. Iím hooked on 29ers and also was thing about getting a 29er+, wouldnít that big tire absorb even more of the shock? Really like the look of the new trek full stache 8. Havenít rode one but I sat on one in a shop a few weeks ago and the suspension really feels squishy, seems to me like that would really take the sting out of my ride.

    So I guess Iím looking for info on just how much softer on the wrists a big FS 29+ would be vs my Scott scale 930 with the fox 32 fork. How much slower will it be, I know itís going to be about 10 pounds heavier but canít I make some of that up with not having to worry about every little root or rock I hit along with better traction from the suspension and wide tire? I know the best thing to do would be to stop riding til I can fix my wrist but thatís not an option and not happening. Thanks for any info.

  2. #2
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    Iíve had carpel tunnel syndrome and an ongoing TFCC injury.

    Whatís helped
    1. Time
    2. Yoga
    3. Myofascial release
    4. Well damped carbon bar
    5. Strengthening my core

    +/-
    1. More suspension
    2. Alt bar (rigid)
    3. 29+ front tire
    4. Rev grips

    I get about the same pounding from more cush up front because now Iím charging harder. The Rev grips might have my made pain worse. I would spend the money and experiment. Iíve managed to dodge surgery so far, but of course see a hand surgeon if you havenít already and get an second opinion. Try to find someone who bikes.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

  3. #3
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    Thanks. It seems this may not have been the correct sub forum for this thread so moss feel free to move it if you see fit

  4. #4
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    That scale probably has a pretty xc race geo, which typically puts a lot of weight/force on your hands for better climbing. Try raising your bars a little higher to get weight off of them, either with spacers under the stem or rotating the bar up a little, or get higher rise bars with the correct sweep for your particular needs.

    Coincidentally, I took a new bike out for its maiden ride today. One take away was that whatever sweep is on that handlebar isn't going to work for me longterm. no matter which way I rotated it, it just wasn't feeling right. maybe that's what bothers you about yours.

  5. #5
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    Thanks, I want to upgrade to a carbon bar to help make up for the weight penalty my dropper added so Iíll look into a bar with more rise. A FS bike is inevitable but Iíd like to keep the scale, is so damn fast

  6. #6
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    Ok I ordered some ESI extra chunky grips that reviewers say have been forgiving on the wrists. Iím thinking of getting a raceface atlas high rise bar with 1.25Ē of rise. I hear the rise will help as well as the carbon maybe dampening some of the shock as well. The carbon bar is actually about 25g heavier than the stock aluminum bar but oh well. What do yíall think about this plan? Also thinking of maybe going from a 2.25 tire up front and moving to a 2.6 or 2.8 up front to help soften the ride, whatever the fox32 fork will allow. I hate to ruin the speed of the XX style bike but I need the help to keep riding. Will it be a lot slower? Leaving the back as 2.25 will help keep me rolling quick right? Thanks for any info.

  7. #7
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    See if you can borrow a pair of high-sweep bars. They help my wrists & forearms a lot. I think ~20 degree sweep is in the ergonomic sweet spot. I run carbon Answer 20/20s on one bike and aluminum Salsa Bend 2s on another and they don't feel different to me in terms of compliance.

    I have a set of Fleegle Pros (15 degree sweep) in a 25.4 mm clamp if you want to try bigger sweep on the cheap. I ended up preferring more sweep and a wider bar. PM me.
    Stache 7 --- Rigid Surly 1x1 B+ --- Dirt Drop CrossCheck

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by jbrady5555 View Post
    Also thinking of maybe going from a 2.25 tire up front and moving to a 2.6 or 2.8 up front to help soften the ride, whatever the fox32 fork will allow. I hate to ruin the speed of the XX style bike but I need the help to keep riding. Will it be a lot slower? Leaving the back as 2.25 will help keep me rolling quick right? Thanks for any info.
    You need to know the internal rim width on your wheels, and optimize the tire size and air pressures for that. If your bike came with 2.25 tires, I doubt the rims will work well with 2.6 tires, even if your fork will fit it. You'll get a weird tire profile, and have to run higher air pressures than optimal. Get more tire roll over, squirm, and pinch flats. Maybe try 2.4f/2.35r with fast rolling tread, and lighter compounds, and dial in the air pressures.

    What fork travel do you have? If it's 100mm, maybe bump it up to 120mm with a new air spring. It won't affect speed or handling that much, but will make a difference in comfort.

  9. #9
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    You need to look at this from several different perspectives.

    First, hand/wrist position. More sweep to the bars is usually better for those of us with wrist issues.

    Bar height is critical. You have to experiment to find your own sweet spot.

    Then, grips. Many find improvement for wrist issues by using ergo grips. You may find that your ideal bar height changes with ergo grips.

    Once you have all that sorted then tire sizing and tire pressure is next. Bigger and softer is better, to a point, assuming you have suspension up front that's taking care of needed damping properties.

    Lastly, rear suspension if needed.

    My solution to my hand/wrist/neck issues is pictured below. Swept bars, ergo grips, low pressure poofy tires, full suspension.

    Nothing fast about it. But I can ride for hours and not be up all night aching afterward, then do it again the next day.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Must alleviate wrist pain-8a3a4133.jpg  


  10. #10
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    Seems you've got some weight-weenieism going and that's not a good thing when trying to work on stuff like this I'd bump the front tyre up to a reasonable width that will work properly with your rims, so if you have rims in the i25-30mm range, I would not go bigger than 2.6" and on an i25 rim that could be pushing it depending on what brand and model tyre it is. If it's an already round profile tyre and you put it on a too narrow rim, you will, as said, have to run higher pressure to alleviate tyre squirm, which defeats the whole purpose of going wider.

    I'd also say maybe look at some higher than avg sweep bars, maybe something in the 12-15 degree range. No wrist problems for me, but had damaged my thumbs and bought a SQ Lab 16 degree sweep bar to try and it really helped alleviate pressure on the thumb. You can get these bars in alu and carbon.

    Also as suggested, check bar height AND cockpit setup, make sure your levers are extreme one way or the other. Also check that your saddle is level and not sloping down causing you to slide forward and put more weight on your hands/wrists trying to stop yourself sliding forward.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Seems you've got some weight-weenieism going and that's not a good thing when trying to work on stuff like this I'd bump the front tyre up to a reasonable width that will work properly with your rims, so if you have rims in the i25-30mm range, I would not go bigger than 2.6" and on an i25 rim that could be pushing it depending on what brand and model tyre it is. If it's an already round profile tyre and you put it on a too narrow rim, you will, as said, have to run higher pressure to alleviate tyre squirm, which defeats the whole purpose of going wider.

    I'd also say maybe look at some higher than avg sweep bars, maybe something in the 12-15 degree range. No wrist problems for me, but had damaged my thumbs and bought a SQ Lab 16 degree sweep bar to try and it really helped alleviate pressure on the thumb. You can get these bars in alu and carbon.

    Also as suggested, check bar height AND cockpit setup, make sure your levers are extreme one way or the other. Also check that your saddle is level and not sloping down causing you to slide forward and put more weight on your hands/wrists trying to stop yourself sliding forward.
    My rims are alexrims x21 622x21. Not sure what width tire that will handle.

  12. #12
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    The race face bar has 1.25 inches of rise but know sweep. Should I go with that or look for something with more sweep even if there is less rise?

  13. #13
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    How much pressure is in your hands? How loose are your arms when riding? In addition to some bike fit things, it's probably worth looking into how you're riding. It seems a lot of people ride with stiff-ish arms and too much pressure on their hands. You should be able to ride with a light grip and very little weight on the bar. If you're not doing that now, that's the place to start.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    How much pressure is in your hands? How loose are your arms when riding? In addition to some bike fit things, it's probably worth looking into how you're riding. It seems a lot of people ride with stiff-ish arms and too much pressure on their hands. You should be able to ride with a light grip and very little weight on the bar. If you're not doing that now, that's the place to start.
    I do find myself doing exactly that and I try to shift my weight back into my core and off my arms/wrist but I still catch myself doing it.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    Seems you've got some weight-weenieism going and that's not a good thing when trying to work on stuff like this I'd bump the front tyre up to a reasonable width that will work properly with your rims, so if you have rims in the i25-30mm range, I would not go bigger than 2.6" and on an i25 rim that could be pushing it depending on what brand and model tyre it is. If it's an already round profile tyre and you put it on a too narrow rim, you will, as said, have to run higher pressure to alleviate tyre squirm, which defeats the whole purpose of going wider.

    I'd also say maybe look at some higher than avg sweep bars, maybe something in the 12-15 degree range. No wrist problems for me, but had damaged my thumbs and bought a SQ Lab 16 degree sweep bar to try and it really helped alleviate pressure on the thumb. You can get these bars in alu and carbon.

    Also as suggested, check bar height AND cockpit setup, make sure your levers are extreme one way or the other. Also check that your saddle is level and not sloping down causing you to slide forward and put more weight on your hands/wrists trying to stop yourself sliding forward.
    That sqlab 16 bar may be just the ticket for me as well. Just got on my bike and was seeing how that much sweep would change my wrist position and may help take the shock off the side of my wrist with the broken bone. Plus I can get 45mm of rise. For 80 dollars and only 30g of weight penalty over what I have now I may as well try it.

  16. #16
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    The Origin8 Trailsweeper has a 15 degree backsweep and is only like $40. No upsweep or rise though.

  17. #17
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    I went with the sqlab 30x. I need the rise I think. Amazon has a good return policy so we shall see

  18. #18
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    It's a sweet bar, I run it on my rigid Kona Unit, definitely not uber stiff, but not flexy that you feel it either. When I build my next bike that I will ride regularly, I'll have to purchase another one for that.

    Quote Originally Posted by jbrady5555 View Post
    That sqlab 16 bar may be just the ticket for me as well. Just got on my bike and was seeing how that much sweep would change my wrist position and may help take the shock off the side of my wrist with the broken bone. Plus I can get 45mm of rise. For 80 dollars and only 30g of weight penalty over what I have now I may as well try it.
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  19. #19
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    A little late to the thread, but probably worth posting anyway. Just installed Fabric Ergo Lock-on grips on SQlab 311 16* sweep riser bars along with SQlab 411 inner bar ends. Great combination for me. You can greatly relax your hands with all the multiple positions that can be used with this combination. The small wings on the Fabric Ergo donít hinder aggressive riding, yet they provide wonderful support. They are silicon, but not spongy and softer than the Ergon grips. Also have a slight bump for palm support too. Highly recommend.
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  20. #20
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    Also late to the party but here's what did. First off I do have a full suspension bike with 150mm front and 140mm rear so setup has an effect. I was getting hand and wrist pain even with that bike. I got an older race face next carbon bar and I've bee. Running Ergon ga2 grips for 3 years. They need replacing now but they greatly helped with the pain. A good set of gloves is a big one too. I have a very hard time finding full finger gloves that fit me. It seems like my middle, thumb, and pinky are different sizes. It's either fit the middle and maybe the pinky and have a very tight thumb or the opposite so for me at least it's very important to try before you buy.

    Loosey goosey up front with hands and arms is a big one too. I'm still working on that. Good luck to all in this.

  21. #21
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    I fractured my wrist three years ago, that required surgery and a plate with seven screws.
    I've had wrist pain while riding ever since.
    I've been riding FS since 2000, been using carbon bars for also as long. My current bike is a Turner RFX, 170mmF, 160mmR, carbon bars, big tires, and still had the pain. I tried the Ergon GA2 grips, which were better than the other grips I have used in the past to alleviate the pain, but then I tried some Rev Grips and now I ride almost pain free, I almost felt relieve immediately.
    EXODUX Jeff

  22. #22
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    Give the Surly Sunrise Bar a shot. It's not the lightest option but the added rise and sweepback 15* took my pain away. Sqlab and Hunter (out of stock) are some other lighter options.Must alleviate wrist pain-img_8631.jpg
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  23. #23
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    Salsa Carbon Bucksaw- Trek Farley 8

  24. #24
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    What about a brace for added support? I broke my right wrist back in 2011 and just sprained my left wrist pretty bad. I had an old 661 wrist brace that worked well but just got a Mobius X8 brace. This thing is pretty expensive but after using it I can say it is worth it. It has mechanical limiters you can set but also has a cable tension system that really firms it up while feeling natural.

    I have small wrists as well and have also found that exercising (lifting weights) has really improved wrist strength which allows me to grip a barbell/handlebar properly.
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  25. #25
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    I feel like coil suspension front and rear would probably help more than anything. If you want to keep it relatively light, look into a MRP Ribbon Coil or converting a Pike to coil and running a DB Coil IL with a lightweight steel spring (e.g. Fox SLS, Cane Creek Valt, etc.) in the rear. Make sure you get a frame with enough progressivity for a coil shock.

  26. #26
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    Although gripping a handlebar like a barbell, is not the solution, strengthening the muscles/tendons in the wrist forearm are is always a good idea, unless that makes it worse . Ya never know until you try. I suggest the services of an OC therapist or a kinesiologist might be the best way to aid in modifying the cockpit setup and strengthening/stretching the stuff that you can work on.
    Don't screw around with it on your own for long, as that is a pretty good way to make it worse.
    -Ray

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Radium View Post
    Although gripping a handlebar like a barbell, is not the solution, strengthening the muscles/tendons in the wrist forearm are is always a good idea, unless that makes it worse . Ya never know until you try. I suggest the services of an OC therapist or a kinesiologist might be the best way to aid in modifying the cockpit setup and strengthening/stretching the stuff that you can work on.
    Don't screw around with it on your own for long, as that is a pretty good way to make it worse.
    -Ray
    Was thinking about wrist position more than the grip itself. Watching people doing press movements with a limp wrist opposed to having a straight wrist for more direct power transfer and less stress on the wrist itself. Without seeing how he is gripping the bars I was kind of assuming that having a poor wrist position could be the issue and lifting with a barbell could help correct this as well as strengthen his wrist. In that sense I do feel the technique of having a straight wrist while pressing could translate over into a better handlebar grip/position.
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  28. #28
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    I'm currently still recovering from a couple of wrist surgeries following a big off last year.
    I basically shattered the end of my radius and mashed up the smaller bones in my hand. I had a bridging plate going from my Radius onto my middle finger. It's all gunged back together and the plate has been removed but the trauma destroyed most of the cartilage in my hand so I've been told that I have pretty serious arthritis (at one point the surgeons were contemplating removing my hand) and my tendons were nearly severed and had to be stitched.
    What has worked best for me is lots of physio, summarised as LOTS of long stretching of hand, arm and fingers, lots of resistance band exercise and the thing that has probably made the biggest difference is a powerball/gyro.

    I was told to go as hard as I could and that has meant literally pushing myself to the point of feinting due to pain but after 6 months I've gone from having to walk my fat bike down rocky descents because I physically couldn't hold on to the bars to now almost being back to full strength from a bike perspective. I reckon I've got around 50% movement back over all.

    As said above, get the advice of a wrist/hand specialist and do what they tell you. 18 months down the line if I go just 1 day without stretching it all properly it starts to seize up. Don't mess about, get it checked and start remedial action ASAP.

  29. #29
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    For what its worth I have been struggling with wrist pain, the pain originates in my wrist then travels down my little finger which eventually goes numb.

    About a month ago I reduced the pressure in my fork, making the fork feel alarmingly soft, since then I've had no pain!

    Not saying it will work for you, it costs nothing, so its worth a try.

  30. #30
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    For anyone else who might need to read this. I had wrist numbing.

    #1 changed my brake levers so they are at a more downward angle, so my wrist are not bent up.

    #2 esky thick grips

    #3 a 90mm gooseneck with a 35 degree up sweep, brought the bars up and closer to me

    #4 looser gloves

    Just did a 11 mile ride with 1400' elevation change, and my left wrist partially numb from 2 weeks ago, and it did not make it any worse and im seeing improvement

  31. #31
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    OP a FS bike will go a long way towards your wrist comfort, took my hard tail out and it was brutal in comparison on the rough trails we ride. No way could I do this on a hard ail all the time.

  32. #32
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    maybe try revgrips
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  33. #33
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    I struggled with wrist pain on my last couple of bikes (a FS & now Plus HT), and here is what worked for me:

    • Oury non-locking grips (pain in the ass to remove, but air compressor makes it easier, also try and get bar controls that can be removed without removing grips)
    • Had to get my bar height up to closer to level with my saddle - I cannot do the hunched over thing anymore, too much weight being pressed down on the hands
    • More sweep with my bars. I had these Ti "klunker bars" on a SS I parted out, so I decided to give them a shot with this bike. It may look unconventional, I think its kind of cool actually, but the sweep combined with the rise (and grips) made a huge difference in comfort
    • Less tire pressure in my front tire (i was running 15-16 PSI, now closer to 13 on 3.0" Purgatory) as well as taking a little bit of air pressure out of my fork. Dialing up the LSC helps it not brake dive, I didn't take out a huge amount but enough to soften it up.


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