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Whether you cycle for fun, exercise, or work, the way you move your body impacts your long-term performance and physical health. To curb any back pain or mishaps, here are the best tips for a better bike riding posture.
Engage Your Core
Let’s face it, riding your bike over long distances is tiring, and you don’t want to clench your core the whole way through. However, your torso will not stay straight unless you put thought into it. Many of us are accustomed to a slouched posture when sitting at the table or typing at a computer. This muscular disengagement affects how we default when sitting on bikes, too. Improve your bike riding posture by forming a naturally straight line from your hips to your shoulders. Don’t bend in or out from yourself, as this will stress your spine and move your core from its proper position.
Account for Your Hands
You learned early on how to position your hands on a bike, but there are more nuanced aspects you must know. You should have a straight line from your elbows to your fingers; do not bend your hands at the wrist. This changes how your muscles and nerves operate when pulling the brake. Since you sit on your bike with your hands in the same position for long periods, you want to preserve your strength and reduce joint soreness with the proper grip. A linear posture will increase your response time while braking, and reduce pain after riding.
Bend Those Elbows
Bent elbows are key to a good posture while riding. If you can’t keep them bent, you will have difficulty turning quickly and absorbing bumps in the mountain path or road. Straight elbows will reduce your reaction time and force stiff movements, which can mean the difference between navigating a tree root or flipping head first over your wheel when speeding down a forested incline.
Whether you are an extreme mountain biker or a road cyclist, your posture changes everything. Use these tips for a better bike riding posture the next time you get out on your bike. Your aches and pains will melt away.