Neck/shoulder/ upper back pain?- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 21 of 21
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,231

    Neck/shoulder/ upper back pain?

    When I get close to two hours on my rides I get a burning pain in my trap back area. It's a muscle thing I'm pretty sure. It sucks, my cardio, legs, nutrition are feeling good but this is killing me. Bad posture? Bars too high/low? My bars about about even with my seat.

  2. #2
    Cars Are Evil
    Reputation: Vermont29er's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    1,125
    Is it the same muscles used for pulling up on the bars?

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,231
    Quote Originally Posted by Vermont29er
    Is it the same muscles used for pulling up on the bars?
    I guess they would come in to play for that. I notice it most on long flat sections. I don't really notice it during more technical riding.

  4. #4
    BBW
    BBW is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation: BBW's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,184
    Could be many thing but I think it could be related to:
    1- saddle nose tilted dwon putting pressure on your upper body because you are sliding forward (do you feel pain/numbness/pressure in your palms?)
    2- Handlebars too wide
    3- handlebars too low with respect to the saddle height
    4- Do you wear a heavy camelback that you are not used to?
    5- Are you relatively new to the sport? maybe you don't have the core strength and/or upper body strength?
    Food for thought
    BBW. MS, RD

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,231
    1- saddle nose tilted dwon putting pressure on your upper body because you are sliding forward (do you feel pain/numbness/pressure in your palms?)
    My saddle is pretty level I think. My hands get a little numb from time to time. Not too bad today.

    2- Handlebars too wide
    Not sure. have some bars that are cut. I may switch out and see what happens.

    3- handlebars too low with respect to the saddle height
    My bars are almost level with my seat. Maybe 1/2 inch lower than seat.

    4- Do you wear a heavy camelback that you are not used to?
    I have one and wear it when it's 107 here in Texas but not lately.

    5- Are you relatively new to the sport? maybe you don't have the core strength and/or upper body strength?
    Not really new. Upper body strength? I do some strenght training. Push ups, pull ups and such. I'll start working on my shoulders more and she what happens.
    Thanks for the help.

  6. #6
    BBW
    BBW is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation: BBW's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,184
    hummm..... the other thing I could think of is your reach (stem length)?
    Maybe you should have a bike fit guy take a look at you on your bike?
    sorry :-/
    BBW. MS, RD

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,231
    How wide should your hands be on the bars in relation to your shoulders?

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    467
    I would go to your LBS and get properly fitted. I was having the same problem and finally gave up. My LBS made changes to my handlebar stem, seat, tightened spokes, and shock pressure. That and core strength exercises has made all the difference. Most LBS's charge about $50 for this unless you purchased the bike from them.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    11
    I had the same issue I went and had a professional bike fitting done (try to stay away form bike shops that offer them some are to motivated to up sell you stuff) After the bike fitting the pain went away. I went to http://www.bch.org/sportsmedicine/de...-medicine.aspx
    Best,

    Neil

    29er Orbea Alma

  10. #10
    BBW
    BBW is offline
    mtbr member
    Reputation: BBW's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,184
    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny7
    How wide should your hands be on the bars in relation to your shoulders?
    Some people like shoulder width, others wider bars for more control. Too wide could cause pain... bike fitting would be the best
    BBW. MS, RD

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    11
    Also when I got the bike fit they said shoulder issue were common with people who ride 29er. Your seat tube angle makes you put more weight on your shoulder, the solutions was a setback seat post - Go get fitted
    Last edited by ktm1204; 09-27-2010 at 06:56 AM.
    Best,

    Neil

    29er Orbea Alma

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    347
    Quote Originally Posted by ktm1204
    Also we I got the bike fit they said shoulder issue were common with people who ride 29er. Your seat tube angle makes you put more weight on your shoulder, the solutions was a setback seat post - Go get fitted
    You're might be right. I did 12hr SS on 26er in May and had no problem except for my A$$ being sore. In July and Aug i did two more races on 29er instead of 26er and my upper back/shoulder hurt real bad after 6hrs on the saddle. Anyone else have this similar experience?

  13. #13
    Feral Roadie
    Reputation: bbense's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    734
    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny7
    1- saddle nose tilted dwon putting pressure on your upper body because you are sliding forward (do you feel pain/numbness/pressure in your palms?)
    My saddle is pretty level I think. My hands get a little numb from time to time. Not too bad today.
    .
    Your hands should never get numb.

    Here's a simple test that isn't based on magic ratios but also takes your core strength into account.

    Ride in your normal position, take both hands off the bars. If you need your hands on the bars to support your torso from falling over, you've got too much weight on your hands.

    Another sign of too much weight on the hands is riding with locked out elbows.

    As your flexibility and core strength improve, you can move to a less upright position, but the light hands rule should always apply. If you look at the pros, they have very forward flat positions, but they grip the bars lightly. Unless you've worked at it, most people can't use that position w/o putting a lot of weight on the bars.

    _ Booker C. Bense

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,231
    I had a bike fitting yesterday. The major changes were seat angle, flat bar to low riser, 110 stem to a 90. It felt good, but I'll know for sure after my 2.5 hour ride today.

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    6
    Lenny, how did that adjustment work out for you and what did they change specifically (if it worked)?

    I am in a similar boat in that my shoulders (shoulder blades) give sharp pains and are generally sore after each 5.5 mile commute to work. I may try some of the other suggestions on here too before going somewhere to be fitted...

    Thanks!

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    809
    Neck isometric exercises. Look them up and do every day. Helps more than anything else I have tried for this issue.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    1,231
    It helped some. But I ended up going to a chiropractor. I was all out of whack. One of my collar bones is a lot higher than the other. I shattered it several years ago and the Doc was doing good to get it back together much less perfect. So, the Chiro thinks I put a lot more pressure on that side of my body because of that. Anyway, that plus a 6 day backpacking trip I took a year and a half a go with a 45 pound pack(that's when the pain really started), plus all the miles I put in on the bike my back was a mess in that one spot. To answer your question, I think the fitting helped but that wasn't the main part of my problem.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    827
    I don't have close to the injury history you do, but I was experiencing frequent neck and lat pain as a result of hunching over while welding in a factory. I have since left that job but the sharp pain would come back once ever two weeks or so for about two or three days.

    The cure for me was a daily stretching routine for my back and spine while laying on my back the floor look right with your head and turn hips/legs to the left. Several variations include raising the left leg up to 90 degrees and bringing it down to the floor on the right while head is turned right.

    You can probably find more info/better directions somewhere online but this was recommended to me by an olympic track and field coach to improve my overall flexibility. As a plus it has relieved the tension in my neck and shoulders and the pain that was once frequent has not returned.

    It may be a bike fit issue, but regular stretching is free and could go a long way to curing the issue.

  19. #19
    Feral Roadie
    Reputation: bbense's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    734
    typo

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    467
    I've only done the $50 fit that my LBS does before. But I just watched them do a 3 hour complete fit on my wife's bike. Cost $175 and made all the differance in the world. I'm going to have that done for me too.

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    381
    Agree that real answer is LBS bike fit, but just to say, the stem/handlebars even with seat is a bit of an older style. If you are racing that is fine, but for most people, and as you head towards more Trail or All Mountain style riding, then you want to have certainly 1 and maybe more, 2 is fine, inches above the seat. Reading about your muscular/skeletal issues - you might consider a year at 3 inches, then go to 2 inches for a year, then if you want, try 1 inch, but it sounds like you will benefit from a 2/3-inch difference in order to have some pain-free riding for a while, then ratchet it down over time. If you end up at 2 inches that is fine. I would only do the stem/risers process, however, in concert with the guy who did your fit.

    Oh - another quick/easy thing you can do is get Ergon grips, the ones where they have a really big surface area that you push down on.

    Also, we don't know your goal - do you want to race, do you want to do 100s, do you want to do adventure cycling, etc. Because unless you have very specialized needs, a 2 inch rise is no big deal. 3 is a little much depending on the particular bike and details, but for a year it could be a great thing to do.

Members who have read this thread: 4

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2020 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.