Colin Batcher from Total Cycle coach give us his top 5 tips to stop you getting injured on your bike this season.
Total cycle coach works with riders making their first pedal turns for fitness or charity, through to full time professionals, their complete service is aimed at maximising your time to help your reach your cycling goals.
Colins 5 tops tips are:
1. Get a bike fit
- Would you buy a pair of shoes without trying them on? No, you wouldn’t. But many, many cyclists buy a bike, jump on it and ride without making sure it fits. The result of this can be a whole range of injury problems, knee injuries and back injuries along with increased fatigue, loss of speed and power
- The first thing to suggest is that any cyclist get a proper bike fit. They should go to a bike shop where they will be measured: length of limbs, angle of limbs etc. The type of riding they will be doing and their bike should then be adjusted to fit them. It’s important that the shop they go to has a ‘scientific’ method of analysing their position using laser, video or measuring instruments to achieve an ideal position
2. Look after your backside
- Even if you’re not pedalling, you’re putting stress on your backside and if your backside hurts, you’re going to suffer
- Wear a pair of cycling shorts with a padded insert. Cycling shorts are designed to be worn next to the skin, so no underwear. Underwear will absorb sweat and bunch up, chafing and causing soreness. Make sure your cycling shorts fit, so try before you buy
- Think about using chamois cream (most bike shops stock it). Basically it’s a lubricating gel that you can rub into the padded insert in your shorts, reducing friction and the chance of abrasion
3. Look after your back
- Your saddle position is vital. Start by making sure it’s level.
- If the saddle is too high as you pedal, your pelvis will rock from side to side, causing back ache
- Core stability issues can affect your lower back – a good strong core will help prevent injury
4. Look after your knees
- It’s estimated 40-60% of cyclists suffer from knee pain
- Pedaling too high a gear will stress joints, muscles and limbs, causing injury. There are no prizes for pedaling a big gear; try riding with a lower gear. Pushing a high gear does not necessarily mean that you will go faster; if you do not have the strength, it can mean slower plus guaranteed injury
- Your saddle position may be too far forward or too far back, so get a bike fit
5. Look after your hands
- Always wear cycling mitts (fingerless gloves) when riding; they are padded and will help absorb vibration
- Don’t grip the handles bars so tight. When riding, you can easily rest your hands on the bars without the need to tightly grip them and still have full control over the bike
- Exercise your hands as you ride. Wiggle your fingers as you ride. This will relax your hands, your arms, your back and will reduce stress, making your ride easier and ensuring you’re less fatigued at the end of the ride
For further details on Total Cycle Coach visit www.totalcyclecoach.com
They offer a complete coaching and support service for cyclists of all levels.
From riders making their first pedal turns for fitness or charity, through to full time professionals, our complete service is aimed at maximising your time to help your reach your cycling goals.
“We offer detailed day by day training plans, backed up by up to the minute advice on nutrition, skills and technique development sessions. For those racing, we provide a full tactical evaluation and planning service. We can analyse your riding and feedback on a day by day basis if needed. This allows us to make minute changes to your programme to ensure that your training continues to challenge and develop you at a pace that is manageable and appropriate.
Our training packages are bespoke, meeting your requirements and ensuring you are at the centre of every plan, allowing you to fit your training around your life.
At Total Cycle Coach we believe that you are unique, your goals are unique and so your training and support should be unique.”