Cycling FIT for LIFE Knowledge Base

Seven points for a comfortable cycling posture

Whether you are an experienced cyclist or a newcomer on two wheels, the right technique and posture on the bike can make a big difference. Here are some valuable tips to make your riding experience more comfortable and efficient. Learn how to optimize your posture, bike setup, and equipment to ride relaxed and without “slumping.”

1. Relaxed Arms

Your arms should not be heavily supported but should rest relaxed and loose on the handlebars. They should be slightly bent to act as shock absorbers. Your upper body should be supported by your core muscles.

2. Active Tension

Shoulders and spine should form an arch that is actively tensioned upward. The frame length of your bike is appropriate if, when in the lower handlebar position and with the crank arm parallel to the downtube, your knees and elbows almost touch. At the start of the season, you can achieve a more upright position with a shorter and slightly steeper stem.

3. Choose a Marathon Model

Have the individually fitting frame geometry and preferred model (slightly shorter top tube and a longer head tube) analyzed by an expert in a specialty store. Sporty riders, if in doubt, choose a smaller frame size with a longer stem to make the racing bike more agile and the handling sportier. Comfort-oriented riders opt for a larger frame because of the longer head tube.

4. Saddle Position and Saddle Height

Saddle Position: The saddle should be adjusted so that the pelvis does not tilt while pedaling. The leg should still have a slight bend at the lowest point. The plumb line from the knee should be directly over the pedal axle in the forward pedal position. A horizontally aligned saddle prevents the upper body from sliding forward and helps avoid tension.

Saddle Height: For ambitious road cyclists, the saddle height is about ten centimeters. For touring rides, the height should be lower to increase comfort.

5. Handlebar Width and Helmet

Handlebar Width: The handlebar should be as wide as the distance between the frontmost points of the shoulder joints.

Compact Helmet: A helmet without a sun visor, as is common with bike helmets, limits the field of view less and prevents unnecessary neck lifting.

6. Avoid Backpacks

Carrying a (heavy) backpack strains the neck area and is not relaxing. The most important items should be stored in the jersey pockets or a saddlebag. Saddle-mounted luggage racks are not recommended for racing bikes with carbon seat posts.

7. Smart Tire Choice and Hand Position

Tire Choice: Wider tires or suspended rear sections increase riding comfort. Marathon bikes sometimes allow tires up to 32 millimeters wide.

Hand Position: Vary your hand position as much as possible to create balance and relief. However, when descending, the racing bike should only be controlled from the lower handlebars to ensure optimal braking power.


Text from FITforLIFE– This Blog article was made available to us from the Swiss Magazine FIT for LIFE. If you want to regularly read informative articles in the field of running and endurance sports, then click here.

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