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Neck Pain

matttill1982matttill1982 Posts: 8
HI. i'm new to road cycling after purchasing my first ever road bike in febuary 08. i've utterly fallen in love with the sport and try to get out as often as possible. at the moment i'm doing 25 miles in the mornings before work on a week day and 40 miles on a sunday. i rest saturdays!

at first i the main problem was sore muscles preventing me from training everyday but i seem to have broken through that barrier now and i've really suprised myself with a sudden surge in my cycling ability.

there is one thing that's slightly ruining my training at the moment though and thats the pain in the back of my neck, shoulders and down my arms that i'm getting near the end of my rides. i'm sure this is down to my position on the bike being slightly wrong. Has anyone got any advice as to where i might be going wrong? Do i need to change the height of my saddle? Am i sitting too far forward or back? i find i'm most comfortable resting on the top of my handlebars with the top of the gear shifters between my thumb and index finger. Could this be the problem? Should i be looking to change my position?

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  • HI. i'm new to road cycling after purchasing my first ever road bike in febuary 08. i've utterly fallen in love with the sport and try to get out as often as possible. at the moment i'm doing 25 miles in the mornings before work on a week day and 40 miles on a sunday. i rest saturdays!

    at first i the main problem was sore muscles preventing me from training everyday but i seem to have broken through that barrier now and i've really suprised myself with a sudden surge in my cycling ability.

    there is one thing that's slightly ruining my training at the moment though and thats the pain in the back of my neck, shoulders and down my arms that i'm getting near the end of my rides. i'm sure this is down to my position on the bike being slightly wrong. Has anyone got any advice as to where i might be going wrong? Do i need to change the height of my saddle? Am i sitting too far forward or back? i find i'm most comfortable resting on the top of my handlebars with the top of the gear shifters between my thumb and index finger. Could this be the problem? Should i be looking to change my position?

    Hi there.

    The answer to all your questions is: maybe, it depends...

    It's pretty hard for anyone to sit and give advice from here, what you need to do is get yourself down to a shop specialising in road bikes and get advice from them. To take it a stage further you could find a shop which offers a professional bike fitting service.

    There is an element of your body just getting used to a new sport, so things will get easier, but you need to make sure you're on the right path before you develop any injuries.

    As for the surge in cycling ability - pretty cool eh? That's the great thing about taking up a new sport!

    Cheers, Andy
  • cheers andy.

    was also thinking maybe it's just me adjusting to road cycling but as you also point out i don't wanna start off with bad habits straight away and end up causing myself an injury. i understand that it's hard to give advice without seeing my stance on the bike i was just wondering if the symptoms i have discribed are a dead giveaway for a particular problem in positioning.

    pretty cool doesn't even come to describe it!!! i'm absolutely loving it at the moment. all of a sudden hills i wouldn't have even dreamt of attempting are seeming easy. i feel like i could tackle anything. i was really ill last autumn and ended up in intensive care for seven weeks part of which was spent in an induced coma. six months ago i couldn't walk after my muscles had wasted away and now i'm fitter and stronger than before i even got ill!! i'm just so happy to be out cycling!! i'm sure i'll hit another wall soon and feel like i'm not improving but if the last couple of weeks are anything to go by it's all more than with it when you hit a purple patch!
  • venstervenster Posts: 559
    I've been having physio for a neck problem and found my it was aggravated when I went out on my road bike. Today, I flipped my stem up the other way so I was not leaning over so much thus not having to lift my head up so much. It also meant less weight on my hands, which in turn takes some stress off the shoulders etc.

    This felt more comfortable for me and I had no pain or discomfort after 25 miles.

    I'm not saying this is the answer to your problem, but is a quick and free way to see if it helps before spending money on a bike fit.
  • bahzobbahzob Posts: 2,195
    I suffered from neck ache when I took up cycling again a couple of years ago.

    For me problem was caused by having saddle slightly tilted forward because it felt more comfortable. This meant leaning on the bars which meant my shoulders tensed up which in turn caused the neck ache. Problem was fixed by using spirit level to get saddle dead level. Soon got used to it in the new position.

    Try this but also would recommend going to a bike shop and get a proper fitting. It may cost (but many shops will knock this off the price of a bike) but will more than pay for itself because you will buy stuff thats right for you and could save pain in the long run.
    Martin S. Newbury RC
  • ut_och_cyklaut_och_cykla Posts: 1,594
    You are probably to low at the front - hence flipping stem might well help. but check glasses/helmet aren't making you lift head unecessarily and tight clothing round neck not giving too much resistance as this can also contribute to neck pain.
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