How to adjust a more suitable riding posture?

Angle of the body when riding

 

The suitable riding posture is the relative balance between the person and the bike. After clarifying our needs, we can adjust our body posture within a reasonable range to make our riding safer, more comfortable and more efficient. In this article, let’s learn together how to adjust our joint angles to a scientific range. 

Knee angle adjustment

Measurement method: use a long-arm goniometer to measure the angle of the knee joint. 

Three key points: the rotation point on the hip joint (the widest bone on the side of the hip), the knee joint and the ankle joint.

Measure with the knee joint as the fixed point and make sure the knee is behind the pedals before measuring.

Human skeleton


There are different reference ranges for different bikes, such as knee bend angle for road bikes is 108° to 112°, for mountain bikes is 110° to 115°, and for racing and triathlon bikes is 110° to 115°. 

The knee extension angle (the difference angle between the leg is fully extended or bent) for road and mountain bikes is 35° to 40°, and for racing and triathlon bikes is 37° to 42°.

Recommended knee bend angle.

Back angle adjustment

During riding, if your back is excessively bent for a long time, not only will you feel sore after riding, but it will also hinder breathing and damage the spine. According to the experience of professional rider Phil Burt, the optimal angle for the back of the road bike, mountain bike, time trial bike and triathlon bike is 45°,50°,20° and 25° respectively. Of course, if you are riding slowly in the city at low speeds, an upright upper body can give you better visibility.

Riding posture

Shoulder angle adjustment

The angle of the shoulder determines the strength of the neck and shoulder muscles. When riding for a long time, an inappropriate shoulder angle will affect the comfort and health of the neck and shoulders. The wrist joint angle is generally measured for road bikes and mountain bikes, the angle range is 90° and 75° to 80 ° respectively. In contrast, the elbow joint angle is generally measured for time trial racing bikes and triathlon bikes. For racing bikes, the angle is 75° to 80° and for triathlon bikes is 70° to 75°.

Elbow angle adjustment

A suitable elbow angle can effectively absorb impact on the arm, reduce shoulder pressure, and increase stability when riding. The general angle for road and mountain bikes is 150° to 170°, and for time trial racing and triathlon bikes it is generally 90° to 100°.

Riding posture elbow angle range

Ankle joint angle adjustment

Maintaining a more appropriate angle and relative position of the ankle joint and knee joint can better ensure riding comfort. The forward extension of the knee position relative to the foot for road bikes, mountain bikes, time trial racing and triathlon bikes should be -10 mm to 10 mm, -20 mm to 10 mm, and 50 mm to 100 mm respectively. 

The pedal axis should be between the first-foot metatarsal bone and the fifth-foot metatarsal bone. 

The maximum ankle joint angle when the foot is near the top of the pedaling cycle is generally 95° to 105°, in contrast, the minimum ankle joint angle is generally 70° to 80° when the foot is near the bottom of the pedaling cycle.

Relative position of feet and pedal.

References

[1] Phil Burt & Guang Huai Zhang. B IKE FIT [M]. Beijing: People’s Posts and Telecommunications Press, 2 015.7

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