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  1. #1
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    Numb Hands after 15 minutes of riding...

    Noob here. Just started riding this bike .

    I feel fine except after 15 minutes or so of riding, my hands go numb. I take them off and shake them out, but that only last for 5-10 minutes after the initial numbing. I assume too much pressure on my hands. Any ideas on what I can adjust to help this? I am 6' 3", 220lbs. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    Take a look into Ergon grips. They helped me, and I have a slight case of carpel tunnel.
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  3. #3
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    A front shock would help... there are other posts here on the Ergon GP1 grip. Helped my hands and wrists.
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  4. #4
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    Also try using well padded gloves. Ususally DH & AM bike gloves have pretty lofty padding for the palm.

  5. #5
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    I eexperienced this on my road bike. the solution was padded gloves as a band-aid and to correct my body position... not using my hands to "hold myself up" but using my core muscles to maintain my body position.
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  6. #6
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    My list of suspects, in order of likelihood, would be:

    1. Lack of front suspension. (Makes a world of difference!)
    2. Seating position. You might be putting too much weight on your hands. This could be arising from any combination of frame size (top tube ("cockpit") too long), handlebar height (too low), stem length (too long). Even the seat height play into it.
    3. Bad grips or lack of padded gloves.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by erginguney
    My list of suspects, in order of likelihood, would be:

    1. Lack of front suspension. (Makes a world of difference!)
    2. Seating position. You might be putting too much weight on your hands. This could be arising from any combination of frame size (top tube ("cockpit") too long), handlebar height (too low), stem length (too long). Even the seat height play into it.
    3. Bad grips or lack of padded gloves.

    Thanks. No front suspension in the works. This happens on flat smooth ground as well. I will mess around with seat/handlebar height and see if that helps.

  8. #8
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    Try tilting the nose of the saddle up a few degrees. It might look uncomfortable, but it will put the weight on your sit bones in your butt and off of your hands.

    <--- not a beginner
    Last edited by laurenlex; 07-27-2010 at 07:29 PM.

  9. #9
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    I think jeckelljockey has a good answer. Are you squeezing your grips for dear life? You need to hold the handlbar for steering, but use your whole body to control the bike. Clipless pedals might help too.
    Disclaimer: I haven't ridden a fully rigid in years, so input from people riding rigids may be more helpful.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by laurenlex
    Try tilting the nose of the saddle up a few degrees. It might look uncomfortable, but it will put the weight on you sit bones in your butt and off of your hands.
    I agree, this might be your best advice along with some good quality padded gloves. Also, a different seat might be a good idea. Your seat looks cushy and all, but just because it looks comfy doesnt mean it's best for the rest of your body.

  11. #11
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    Another set of grips that really help are the ESI Chunky. They are extremely cushy and very light (if that matters).
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    i use some specialized gloves that have the "BG" technology stuff. i haven't compared any other ones but they seem to be everything they should be.

  13. #13
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    I find that bike fit is the #1 culprit when it comes to hand issues. Make sure you're on your bike correctly before you start throwing money at grips, bars, suspension or gloves. After that I'd look at your cockpit first then consider a fork. And of course good gloves are a must.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by upNdown
    I think jeckelljockey has a good answer. Are you squeezing your grips for dear life? You need to hold the handlbar for steering, but use your whole body to control the bike. Clipless pedals might help too.
    Disclaimer: I haven't ridden a fully rigid in years, so input from people riding rigids may be more helpful.
    Thanks. No, no death grip. I think it's purely from weight on my palm area.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeff
    I find that bike fit is the #1 culprit when it comes to hand issues. Make sure you're on your bike correctly before you start throwing money at grips, bars, suspension or gloves. After that I'd look at your cockpit first then consider a fork. And of course good gloves are a must.
    I will try raising the bar some. Would the bar being too forward impact this as well?

  16. #16
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    Ok, it has been touched on but I can not stress this enough. You need to activate your core muscles. Bike fit it very important as well as it will shift your weight in the appropriate way and relieve some of the stress from your hands. So here are my suggestions, coming from someone who raced road bikes for over 13 years as well as currently riding a fully rigid single speed mtb. I am also a personal trainer (part time)

    1. Check out the Ergon Grips as mentioned or the ESI Chunky grips. The Ergon design helps to alleviate pressure from the hands and were designed with folks having carple tunnel in mind. The ESI Chunky grips are a slightly thicker version of their Race grip (I have a set of the race grips myself) and are a type of foam that is quite grippy and spongy feeling.

    2. Adjust your seat slightly as mentioned above. You may want to start with trying to raise the tip of the seat up a tad or even possibly sliding the seat rearward slightly.

    3. You need to do some core exercises to help strengthen the muscles in your lower back and abs. My suggestion would be start with some crunches and some stiff legged dead lifts. (you can look up both exercises on You Tube for examples of how to properly perform these-note that you do not have to do the stiff legged deads with a barbell in the beginning).

    Exercises like this will really help to strengthen you lower back and core (mid section) which in turn will help you to hold yourself up more and rely less on leaning on your arms. Also remember to always keep a slight bend in your elbows which allows your arms to work like a shock of its own.

    Lastly, consider a pair of bar ends for your bars. This will allow you different hand positions to use. Changing out your grip frequently will allow for a little more relaxation in your hands and help to alleviate some fatigue.
    Last edited by 1SPD; 07-28-2010 at 10:00 AM.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1SPD
    Ok, it has been touched on but I can not stress this enough. You need to activate your core muscles. Bike fit it very important as well as it will shift your weight in the appropriate way and relieve some of the stress from your hands. So here are my suggestions, coming from someone who raced road bikes for over 13 years as well as currently riding a fully rigid single speed mtb. I am also a personal trainer (part time)

    1. Check out the Ergon Grips as mentioned or the ESI Chunky grips. The Ergon design helps to alleviate pressure from the hands and were designed with folks having carple tunnel in mind. The ESI Chunky grips are a slightly thicker version of their Race grip (I have a set of the race grips myself) and are a type of foam that is quite grippy and spongy feeling.

    2. Adjust your seat slightly as mentioned above. You may want to start with trying to raise the tip of the seat up a tad or even possibly sliding the seat forward slightly.

    3. You need to do some core exercises to help strengthen the muscles in your lower back and abs. My suggestion would be start with some crunches and some stiff legged dead lifts. (you can look up both exercises on You Tube for examples of how to properly perform these-note that you do not have to do the stiff legged deads with a barbell in the beginning).

    Exercises like this will really help to strengthen you lower back and core (mid section) which in turn will help you to hold yourself up more and rely less on leaning on your arms. Also remember to always keep a slight bend in your elbows which allows your arms to work like a shock of its own.

    Lastly, consider a pair of bar ends for your bars. This will allow you different hand positions to use. Changing out your grip frequently will allow for a little more relaxation in your hands and help to alleviate some fatigue.
    Thanks for the tips. I will try these out.

  18. #18
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    Oh, my hands still get numb every once in a while. I found that when I hit some of the smoother sections of trails that if I take a hand off the bar and shake it, open/close it a couple of times that it helps to get the blood circulating and they feel much better. After all that is why they are going numb, you are cutting off the blood supply to them by putting so much pressure on them when leaning on the bars.

  19. #19
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    You're saddle looks FAR too low for being 6'3". Get it up where it belongs, and move it back in the rails. You're putting weight on your hands because your hips aren't far enough back from your pedals.

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    Woops I just noticed I said slide the seat forward. Sorry, I meant back a little.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by metaljim
    You're saddle looks FAR too low for being 6'3". Get it up where it belongs, and move it back in the rails. You're putting weight on your hands because your hips aren't far enough back from your pedals.
    Thanks, as a noob, I have no idea about bike setup. I will check it out.

  22. #22
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    For what's generally accepted for setting saddle height: you want a slight bend in the knee at the bottom of your pedal stroke. The quick and dirty way to get close to this is to set the saddle at a height at which, if you place your heels on the pedals, you're legs are straight and your hips aren't rocking. That way, when you're pedaling properly on the balls of your feet, you're getting proper extension. Adjust a few mm here and there if you feel like you should, but not too much; you want to stay in that general area, give or take about 5mm.

    Also, try moving the saddle all the way back, just as a test. You can start moving it forward as you see fit but it's easier to go too far back at first and move in, rather than vice versa. You butt will tell you what you need to know. Pay attention to your hands!

  23. #23
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    I read this thread a month ago and thought i would come back and share my experience.. My hands would go numb really fast (putting ur arm behind ur back and reaching up to middle of spine immediatley releives the numbness - my temp remedy while riding (be carfull)) ugg it was ruining my new mtbing life haha... i tried everything each time seperatelty so that i could find exactly what the problem was heres what i tried in order cost alot so maybe this willl save your wallet! I ride a 2011 xcall 17.5 im 5'9 my bars were factory flat big backsweep i think 6deg.-12deg. (notsure)
    in order of change:
    - evo ergo grips (slightly helped)
    - raised and lowered stem all position (did not help)
    - truvativ stylo t40 risers 720mm15mm rise 6deg. backsweep (set these at almost the same backsweep as factory) (reason changed for increased height (stem at max height))(did not help)
    - then cut bar down to 640mm (did not help)
    - went to DMR grips (round) (did not help)
    - went to oversized foam grips (did not help)
    I was convinced after reading someones post that it could be a condition (cant remember name) that hand gets numb when shoulder is raised above hanging level (it happens to me on my scooter) i realise the weight from leaning on them adds to the condition but on scooter i dont lean at all and they still go numb

    just the other day i got the fsa sl-k carbon flat 3deg. backsweep 620mm bars and the crank brothers cobalt foam grips (i didnt buy these to try and fix the prob) and to my suprise boom no more numb hands... i dont think its the dampening of the carbon these have aluminum sleeve and its not noticable at all that they dampen but it could be part of it... i think it is the strait bar.. the 3deg is just enough and almost not even visable... i know how much numbness sucks!!! wow so great to be freeee

    try a strait or 3deg backsweep bar and goodluck

    thanks for your time!-

  24. #24
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    sorry .. was just thinking about it all and forgot i got a sportline ion necklace from walmart about a week ago and it made a difference then i got a bracelette and it made it even better in fact my left would always go numb first and sometimes only the left and when i first started wearing the bracelet on my left.. only my right would go numb... wierd but those things can actually work its very likely that the numbness comes from bad circulation (wich ions help with) and having wrist location set right (strait bar)

  25. #25
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    My bike came fitted originally with Ergon GA1 grips. I busted a bolt on one of them recently while changing handlebars and needed to get new grips quickly for a ride. My LBS did not have the GA1 grips, so I bought some Odi grips, which get really good reviews. They made my hands go numb, which had never happened to me before. I even switched back to my old handlebars with these grips (another story), but the numbness still happened.

    So, I ordered another pair of GA1s online (which seem to have bigger bolts now, so hopefully less chance of breaking them in future) and will ride with them for the first time today.

    So, there's lots of things to try (see the other posts), but I can vouch for the fact that the grips can make a difference.

  26. #26
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    I installed ergo grips AND bar ends. I like the bar ends when on open road and when climbing up a hill or standing. The feel is much more comfortable.
    I did not cut the grips down, merely pushed them in enough to slip the bar ends on. I have very large hands so it worked out nicely.
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  27. #27
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    I had the same issue when I started. Did some stretching for the hands for a week or so and it helped. Changing hand positions help too if you have bar ends.

  28. #28
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    I eexperienced this on my road bike. the solution was padded gloves as a band-aid and to correct my body position... not using my hands to "hold myself up" but using my core muscles to maintain my body position.
    As with most sports, body position is huge! yes grips and gloves help, but body position could correct the problem with no money spent. keep your wight back toward your seat and use your "core muscles" to keep you were you need to be. this also adds a little to you workout.

  29. #29
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    Your grip will get stronger as you ride more often. My hands ached for 2 months when I first started riding. A large part of it is also what kind of bike you're riding. Full suspension bikes do wonders to your grip.

  30. #30
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    I have the same problem but buing a new bike to replace my 12 year old bike should help.

    Finally 5 posts so I can ask a question.

  31. #31
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    Check how your brake levers are set up. If you have to move or "cock" your wrists to use the brakes, you need move the levers ( most likely rotate downward ). Your wrists should be more or less straight when braking.

  32. #32
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    I had the same problem. I lowered my saddle and problem solved ! Or if your happy with your saddle height adjust your stem or get some riser bars . Its nothing to do with front shocks etc my bike is very smooth and the shocks are plush , when i adjusted my position it was all good. Lower saddle means your not leaning onto your hands.

  33. #33
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    I have same problem occassionally, when riding, holding fishing pole in same position, etc. Carpal tunnel.

    No easy fix for me.

  34. #34
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    I'm same dimensions and found that playing with the angle and horizontal position solved the problem on a 03 SJ'r. I do use the Ergon grips which do a nice job at spreading the pressure across your palm evenly but you need to setup right or you'll just keep having issues: if your hands get used to it you'll have issues with upper back/shoulders.
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  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbense View Post
    Check how your brake levers are set up. If you have to move or "cock" your wrists to use the brakes, you need move the levers ( most likely rotate downward ). Your wrists should be more or less straight when braking.
    Plus 10 on this^, lever position makes a big difference, especially if you " cover" your brakes with one or two fingers.
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  36. #36
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    I always throw this in the "hands get numb" threads. Try loosening your backpack straps. You never know.
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  37. #37
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    could have trigger points in your neck.

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