Hand positioning

fire_munki Posts: 95
edited May 2009 in Road beginners
I guess this is a very basic and posibley obvious thing to ask. :oops:
Once your spinning along where should my hands be?
Up on the shifters or in the middle section of the bars, and when do I get on to the drops?
Sorry for asking what could be a very silly question but all my miles to date have been on XC and DH bikes.
Mountain biking: happily breaking me since 1994


  • Infamous
    Infamous Posts: 1,130
    There's a lot of personal preference on the subject. But generally, tops are for climbing or sitting up, hoods are for general flat riding, drops are when you want to go fast.

    Then again some people ride round all day on the tops and never use the drops and many like to ride on the tops in traffic, it's what feels right for you that's important.
  • Barrie_G
    Barrie_G Posts: 479
    Where ever is most comfortable for you at the time.

    If you are in a situation where you may be needing to brake or change gear often then having your hands on or near the hoods might be a good idea so that you have quick and easy access to the controls, other wise please your self.
  • fire_munki
    fire_munki Posts: 95
    Hoods? Tops?
    Sorry, hoods are the bits the shifters mount on? Tops the horizontal section in the middle?
    I'm not normally so ignorant on a bike but this is all so different, I mean it was intimidating to remove a hand to signal a lane change for gods sake!
    I did thousands of miles last year and today I feel like I've never ridden a bike before.
    Mountain biking: happily breaking me since 1994
  • Infamous
    Infamous Posts: 1,130
    Hoods are the bits the shifters mount on. Tops the horizontal section in the middle.

    why was it intimidating?
  • fire_munki
    fire_munki Posts: 95
    Going from a bike with a slack head angle and 27+ inch wide bars the steering is twitchy to say the least.
    But it is fast, well prob not as fast as people who ride them lots go but faster than normal.
    Mountain biking: happily breaking me since 1994
  • Infamous
    Infamous Posts: 1,130
    Yeah it can be twitchy at first, but you sound like you've ridden a lot so it'll probably only take you a week or 2 to get used to it.
  • That twitchy feeling is horrible at first!! I nearly went into a hedge the first time i tried to turn onto a minor road!! haha. As Infamous says, you'll get used to it soon enough. Won't be long before you're cycling no handed! :wink:

    I normally cycle on the hoods just for easy acess to the brakes and shifters but is nice to use the drops for downhill just to get that bit of extra speed! :D
  • Longwaydown
    Longwaydown Posts: 41
    Got my first road bike this week - 09 Specialised Allez - twitchy it definately the word for it! Cycled to work this morning, getting used to SPD SLs - a lot to take in all in one go!

    The ride home seemed much more natural and it's amazing the different muscles I'm using after having ridden an old hybrid for years - possibly more to do with now having the correct set-up.

    I ride mainly with hands on the hoods, but take a breather on the tops quite regularly!
  • Anonymous
    Anonymous Posts: 79,667
    Put your hands where you want mate, different roads and situations make for different positions, you will work it out, happy riding.
  • fire_munki
    fire_munki Posts: 95
    You're right just came back from my 1st proper ride. A nice 19 miles, which isn't far but I enjoyed it. Removing hands all nice and steady now. Even a short no-hander (only hand my hands a couple of inches from the bars but hey).
    And according to my speedo i hit 48mph, :shock: which i was dubios about but on the ride to my work it was correct for the distance, and i knocked 10 mins off the total ride to work time.
    All in all I rather like my new bike. :D
    Mountain biking: happily breaking me since 1994
  • teagar
    teagar Posts: 2,100
    The more you ride, the more you'll appreciate being on the drops when you turn on the gas or hit a serious headwind. Barely touched them for the first year I started riding a road bike but now...

    It's good to move about a bit on the handlebars anyway.
    Note: the above post is an opinion and not fact. It might be a lie.