Geoffrey Vang from Madison WI has position problems on his Diamondback MTB. We give him some pointers on correcting his problems and getting rid of the pains in his back and his shoulders. If you are setting up a new bike, then have a read.
Question: I have just purchased Diamondback Sorrento MTB. After about an hour of riding, I have a tight lower back and a feeling between my shoulder blades as though it needs crunching. Does this mean I have not set my bike up for riding correctly, it’s become a real pain – literally.
Yes, stuff like this is a real pain! I think you are correct in thinking that your position on the bike is causing the pain. First, check that your position is the same as on your old bike. Take measurements, or put the bikes together as close as you can to see if there are any differences.
If this is your first bike or you don’t have your old bike anymore? Then you need to set up your new bike again.
Sit on the bike with your feet on the pedals; with the pedal at its lowest, you should be able to flex your knee. Not low, but not too high, not too much of a stretch.
Then with the cranks horizontal, your knee should be over the pedal. You should be able to draw a line from just behind the knee cap down through the knuckle of the big toe bone, which should be over the axle of the pedal, by moving the saddle back or forward you until you get this right.
Now that your legs are in the correct place then you need to look at your arms. Are they stretched out or are they too bent? You need your arms to be comfortable, and you need to be able to pull on the bars for extra speed.
You also need to have flex in your arms in order to take all the bumps out of the track. Having your arms too streched can cause you to have sore shoulders and neck.
If you are riding like this, then you either need to lift your handlebars or get a shorter stem. Also, if you are riding too high, this can put pressure on your back. On the other hand, if you are too high you need to lower the stem or get one with a shallower angle. If you are too low, your back will be bent over too much.
All this advice is based on what you have told us, without seeing you on the bike, if you get help from someone else to set you up that would be better, good luck.
Here are 6 easy stretches to loosen up your tight lower back and hips that I’ve just found at fitwirr.com.