Pages: [1]
Reply Reply New Topic New Poll
  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) on: May 24, 2011, 04:43:43 PM
BigPsycheDadee


Posts: 1


View Profile
« on: May 24, 2011, 04:43:43 PM »

I bike around 2000-3000 miles a years, and have started bike-packing on some easier rail-trails.  The past few years I've gotten a pain on the inside of my elbow that seems linked to biking.  Things felt great in the winter (lots of skiing), and flared back up when getting back on the bike.  My question is if it's linked to my bike-setup with a too small frame.

I'm about 6'4", 205 lbs.  I ride a Specialized Stumpjumper with a 19" frame that I got about 15 years ago.  I was racing BMX at the time, and purposely got the small frame so I could manhandle it the way I did my BMX cruiser.  I used to keep the seat low (out of the way), with the understanding that when I really meant business I'd stand up on the pedals.  As I've gotten older (now in my early 40's), I still like my singletrack, but end up on rail-trails a lot.  To put the knees at a better angle I got an after market seatpost and cranked it way high (see attached pics).  Could this configuration be the source of my elbow pain?  I'm thinking of getting a new bike with a larger frame if it will help, but if not I'd rather save the $1k-$2k that I'd spend on the bike.

Logged

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #1 on: May 24, 2011, 05:19:10 PM
TobyGadd


Posts: 1388


View Profile WWW
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2011, 05:19:10 PM »

I'm no fit specialist, but that seat looks pretty darn high compared to the bars. I recently moved from on older bike (with a similar geometry to your bike) to a newer Cannondale RZ 120 with a more upright position--and I'm delighted with how much better my back and arms feel. I just finished riding 24-hours straight, and I'm only a little sore. I would have been crippled on my old bike!
Logged

http://tobygadd.blogspot.com/
"Do. It. Yourself. Dammit." -- overheard grumblings from Toby's lair.

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #2 on: May 24, 2011, 07:41:44 PM
cpblue

Cut it with a multi tool


Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 21


View Profile
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2011, 07:41:44 PM »

I'm far from an expert, but just looking at that photo made by elbows hurt.  I'd raise the bars.  Talk to someone at the LBS for a little help.  Hang in there and good luck!
Logged

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #3 on: May 24, 2011, 08:29:23 PM
paxton coyote


Location: Paxton, Nebraska
Posts: 166


View Profile WWW
« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2011, 08:29:23 PM »

A lot of shops usually have some old extra stems they may let you try to get the bars higher, that to me looks like the problem. As far as frame size, I'm around 6' 5" & ride a 22" Surly KM & an XL Salsa Fargo so your frame may be making you a bit cramped also.
Logged

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #4 on: May 24, 2011, 10:31:05 PM
drwelby


Posts: 17


View Profile
« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2011, 10:31:05 PM »

+1 to raising your bars and after that try moving your seat back. I think your torso is hanging out too far forwards putting too much weight on your arms. To see what I mean, try this experiment: Stand with your back against a wall, with your heels touching the baseboard. Try to bend forwards toward the ground and you'll see how your balance tips you forwards. Now take a step forwards away from the wall and bend over again. Naturally your hips will move backwards to keep your torso balanced. You need a seat position that offers similar balance, and then a stem (or bike) that puts the bars wherever your hands end up.
Logged

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #5 on: May 25, 2011, 03:06:45 AM
DesertDog

Explore and Enjoy!


Location: Vegas, Baby!
Posts: 120


View Profile
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2011, 03:06:45 AM »


Could be an optical illusion, but in your first photo with you on your bike, it seems like your elbows are extended pretty far out from the bike.  That could be the cause; elbows out and more parallel to the ground would put extra stress on the inside of the elbow from supporting your upper body.  See the pathetic drawings I have attached.

Your overall body position doesn't seem bad, though you do kinda look too big for the bike.

You didn't cut down/narrow the handlebars did you? 

Hmmm, ex-BMX racer?  Not use to keeping the elbows out for offensive or defensive purposes are you?


If my observations are correct, you may be able to fix things with a bit wider bars, a longer stem with a higher angle and/or riser bars (along with correcting your arm positioning)?

But, if I'm way off on my observations, I tried!



Logged

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #6 on: May 25, 2011, 04:21:22 AM
boddunn


Location: Kirby Muxloe, England
Posts: 86


View Profile
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2011, 04:21:22 AM »

I started getting similar pain a year or so ago so I've raised the bars up and back with a different stem and it's helped a lot. Looking at your bike though it looks too small, as mentioned, but you've got, what looks to be, a 130mm stem on there already so raising the bars will also shorten the effective top tube length which, considering your, size isn't ideal. From the pic it looks like most of your height comes from your legs so some riser bars will help but a frame with a larger seat tube would be the best solution, you can pick up a similar one on eBay relatively easy and the larger frames go for less money.
 Anyway, might be best to have a ride of some bikes at your local bike shop to see what feels good and then use the geometry of the bikes to give you a starting point.
Logged

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #7 on: June 24, 2011, 07:59:56 AM
Slim


Location: Duluth MN, North Central USA
Posts: 240


View Profile
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2011, 07:59:56 AM »

Typically someone of your height would ride a XL or XXL (21"/23") frame size.
Theoretically you can achieve the same fit on a (too)small frame as you could on a larger frame. Things you can do: Higher rise handlebars, longer and higher stem will bring the bars up and out. In practice there is a limit to how long and tall a stem you can buy, and having very long stem etc. might screw up the handling as well, wich would be an issue if you'd still want to ride singletrack on the bike.

I am a certified bike fitter and I can say the only way for me or anyone to help you truly is to do a real bike fit, meaning a history, physical evaluation and on bike(trainer) evaluation, this is not something that can be done by written word.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2011, 08:04:12 AM by Slim » Logged

  Topic Name: Elbow pain (from bike setup?) Reply #8 on: June 24, 2011, 11:54:41 AM
bbaker22


Location: Colorado
Posts: 26


View Profile WWW
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2011, 11:54:41 AM »

Bar sweep may also be a factor.  I have hosed elbows (from years of climbing abuse) and the solution for me is bars with lots of sweep.  Jones H-bar, Titec H-bar, and On-One Mary are good choices.  In addition to the sweep, the h-bars give multiple positions, including a semi-aero position by getting out on the front extensions...
Logged
  Pages: [1]
Reply New Topic New Poll
Jump to: