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Numb Fingers and Thumbs

Sutton_RiderSutton_Rider Posts: 480
edited November 2015 in Road general
I'm getting a numb 1st finger and thumb after about 1.5 hours of riding a road bike. I've tried lowering the saddle, longer stem and of course changing hand positions every few minutes. Nothing helps. I'm thinking of thicker bar tape. Anyone else had this problem? How did you solve it?
http://www.qsl.net/g4gvb
Ridley Fenix SL Ultegra Di2 - 2020 (Summer Bike)
Carrera Virtuoso - 2015 (Winter Bike)
Carrera Zelos - (Turbo Bike)
ex Focus Cayo Ultegra Di2 - 2016
ex Giant Defy 1 - 2015

Posts

  • This may sound weird, but try lowering your elbows by relaxing your shoulder blades. It helped me.

    And Grail gloves from Specialized.
  • I experience this, and for me it does appear to be associated with shoulder/arm tension & posture.

    I think I tend to unconsciously tense my upper body, and I find that making a deliberate effort to relax and stay loose does help.
  • k-dogk-dog Posts: 1,652
    Bar tape and decent gloves helped me a lot. The best I have used recently is Edinburgh Bicycle's gel tape. Only £5 and it's really comfy.

    Can sometimes mean your seat needs to go back a little - but you don't want to do that if your knee position is good.

    Core strength is the other thing.
    I'm left handed, if that matters.
  • Thanks for all of you're inputs. I've tried to relax, I keep a small bend at the elbows, but I don't think that's the answer in this case. That bar tape looks good and is now on my list of things to try, as are the cloves, Christmas is coming. I have just gone from an 80mm to a 100mm stem which did nothing, but I will try moving the saddle back a little just to see what happens, although it is more or less in the right place now, and I'll give a 110mm stem a go again to see what happens.
    http://www.qsl.net/g4gvb
    Ridley Fenix SL Ultegra Di2 - 2020 (Summer Bike)
    Carrera Virtuoso - 2015 (Winter Bike)
    Carrera Zelos - (Turbo Bike)
    ex Focus Cayo Ultegra Di2 - 2016
    ex Giant Defy 1 - 2015
  • I would put money on your carrying too much weight on the hands. The solution to that, as k-dog suggested, is to move the saddle back. In doing so you may have to reduce the stem length again. The combination of a rearward saddle and long stem may only be comfortable if you have an especially strong core and good flexibility. I think your first goal should be to reduce weight on the hands. Later you can worry about getting long and low.

    This is a very common problem these days, because most frames have overly steep seat tubes for the owner’s power output. The angles are fine if you’re pushing over 300 watts like the pros.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    Going up to 100mm probably increases the weight on the hands rather than lessens it.

    Is it cold related too ? And how do you hold the bars ? Most people are comfiest on the hoods - are yours in the wrong position maybe ?

    You might also want to try a little less air in the tyre in case its vibration related.
  • I've tried less air in the front, also moving the seat as far back as it would go when the 80mm stem was on. Nothing helped. Last weekend I went out on the winter bike for the first time since last Jan. It is slightly bigger than the Defy 1 (Summer bike) a longer reach to the hoods by about 20mm and no problems with the fingers. That's why I though a longer stem might be worth a try. I normally ride on the hoods and have tried them in various positions. I think you are right in that I have too much weight on my hands. I've had this problem throughout the summer so its not cold related.
    http://www.qsl.net/g4gvb
    Ridley Fenix SL Ultegra Di2 - 2020 (Summer Bike)
    Carrera Virtuoso - 2015 (Winter Bike)
    Carrera Zelos - (Turbo Bike)
    ex Focus Cayo Ultegra Di2 - 2016
    ex Giant Defy 1 - 2015
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