How can you prevent injury while cycling?

Cycling is very beneficial to you because it keeps you fit however, this also exposes you to various injuries that may not even be your fault. Some of these injuries include lower back pains, numb toes, hand injuries, knee injuries and even shoulder pains. The good news is that you can easily prevent these injuries by having the right body posture when cycling, wearing the right size of cycling shoes, wearing padded gloves and wearing protective cycling gear.

Cycling is a common mode of transport nowadays as it is more affordable than driving. The fact that you don’t have to fuel your bicycle every day makes it a good alternative to driving a car. In addition to this, maintaining a bicycle is also affordable as their parts are easy to find and not as costly as car parts. Cycling also improves your physical health as it is also an effective mode of exercise. However, it is important to note that you should always take care of yourself when you are riding, otherwise you may incur injuries.

Injuries that you may incur when cycling and how to prevent them

It is important to note that you should always ensure that you have the right body posture whenever you cycle. This is because cycling with a bad body posture is one of the causes of cycling related injuries. Let’s have a look at the injuries you may incur when cycling.

Lower back pain

This is one of the most common cycling related injuries and you have probably incurred it once in your lifetime as a cycler. You are highly likely to experience this injury if you have a weak upper torso that fails to resist the force being generated from your legs when you are cycling. Unfortunately, this makes your lower back to work harder than it should which causes fatigue on that area of your body.

However, you have no reason to panic if you frequently experience lower back pains every time you cycle. This is because you can easily prevent this by doing exercises that will strengthen your upper torso. Some of these exercises include cat stretches, pelvic tilts, and bridges. Additionally, you should also ensure that you keep your back straight when cycling as this will also reduce your chances of suffering from lower back pains.

Numb toes

Without doubt, cycling shoes are important cycling gear that you should have if you are serious about cycling. This is because they enable you to cycle comfortably even for long distances. However, there are some circumstances that you may end up suffering from numb toes which is normally cause by tight cycling shoes. Therefore, you should ensure that you wear well- fitting cycling shoes so that you don’t end up suffering from numb toes after cycling.

You should also adjust the straps and cleats of your cycling shoes so that they are not too tight whenever you wear them. Lastly, you should also ensure that your feet are straight when you put them on the pedal of your bicycle, especially if your shoes have cleats.

Hand injuries

This is also another very common injury, which involves numb fingers and palm, that you may experience if you cycle frequently. However, the good news is that this injury is not severe and can be prevented easily. First of all, you should ensure that you hold on to the handlebars in a firm yet relaxed manner so that your palms don’t incur too much pressure. Secondly, change the position of your hands frequently and ensure your wrist is straight throughout.

Shoulder pains

You are likely to suffer from shoulder pains if you frequently cycle for long distances. This injury occurs because of prolonged stress on your shoulders which is pretty normal. Therefore, you should maintain the right body posture and slightly flex your elbows when cycling. For sure, this will help to prevent chances of suffering from shoulder pains even when you cycle for long distances.

Knee injuries

There are various knee injuries that you can incur when cycling. This includes serious injuries such as knee fractures and the small injuries such as a bruise on your knee. It’s important to note that knee injuries are caused by too much stress on your knee and it normally affects cyclists who ride fast regularly. Therefore, you should ensure that you frequently ride your bicycle on lower gears so that you can reduce the stress on your knees.

In addition to this, you should exercise your knees regularly so that you can build strength around that area. This will allow your knee joints to be stronger and reduce your chances of suffering from knee injuries. Lastly, you should also adjust the height of your saddle and ensure that it is neither too high nor too low if you want to avoid getting knee injuries.

Head injuries

You are likely to suffer from head injuries if you either hit something and fall off the bicycle or if you are hit by a moving vehicle. Therefore, the best way of avoiding this is by being careful every time you go out cycling, especially on public roads. Additionally, you should always ensure that you wear a proper helmet every time you go cycling.

The table below is a summary of the injuries you may incur when cycling and how to prevent them.

Injury
How to prevent it
Lower back pain
Do exercises that strengthen your upper torso and always ensure your back is straight when cycling.
Numb toes
Wear well- fitting cycling shoes and adjust the straps so that they are not too tight.
Hand injury
Hold the handlebars in a firm yet relaxed manner and change your hand positions frequently when you cycle.
Shoulder pain
Always maintain the right body posture and slightly flex your elbows when cycling.
Knee injury
You should frequently cycle on lower gears so that you reduce stress on your knees. Additionally, exercise your knees to build strength.
Head injury
Wear a helmet and be careful when cyclin on public roads.

Conclusion

As you have seen, there are various injuries that you may incur when you go cycling. However, the good news is that you can easily prevent them if you follow the guidelines that we have laid down for you. In addition to this always remember to be careful when you are cycling on public roads and ensure that you maintain the right body posture every time you go cycling.

FAQs

What is the “right body posture” when cycling?

The right body posture involves cycling with a straight back throughout, whether you are standing or sitting on the saddle.

How effective is a cycling helmet?

This is a very important cycling gear that is normally tried and tested by manufacturers. It effectively helps to prevent head injuries.