5 Most Common Cycling Injuries
What are the most common cycling injuries?
- Knee Pain
- Lower Back Pain
- Achilles Tendonitis
- Clavicle Fracture
- Neck Pain
1. Knee Pain
Knee pain is the most common injury cyclists face as it is an area that can get very overworked while cycling. If an athlete begins to feel some sort of knee pain, they should take a break from cycling and ice the knee caps. If after a couple of days this doesn’t resolve the issue, it’s best to see a doctor.
To prevent this injury, cyclists should be careful not to overwork themselves and their knees. Additionally, sometimes knee pain is a result of improper form. Athletes should make sure their cleats are positioned correctly, their seat isn’t too low, and practice alternating their pedal cadence.
2. Lower Back Pain
Another common injury is pain in the lumbar region or lower back. This is especially common after staying in the same position during a long bike ride. If a cyclist starts to notice lower back pain they should take some time off of riding before hitting the road again.
In order to stop back pain from happening, stretching and core exercises are recommended. These exercises will help make a cyclist stronger and able to keep their good form during long rides. It’s also helpful for bikers to know what form is best for cycling and to rest when they can’t maintain that position.
3. Achilles Tendonitis
Achilles tendonitis is another extremely common injury to occur from cycling. The achilles tendon is located where the back of the foot connects with the calf muscle. This injury occurs because this tendon gets worked very hard during a bike ride.
To avoid achilles tendonitis becoming too serious, rest and ice the area. Make sure it has plenty of time to heal. Additionally, check that the seat isn’t too high as this sometimes causes the problems. When a cyclist rides, the seat should be at a height where the foot can point up while down pedaling. This helps the tendon rest.
4. Clavicle Fracture
Although no biker likes to think of it, crashing causes a lot of injuries. A clavicle fracture (along with a scaphoid fracture) is the most common injury outcome of a crash. If a cyclist crashes they should immediately seek medical attention.
It is tough to prevent a fracture happening during a crash but there are some general safety precautions cyclists should be aware of. Obviously, they should always wear a helmet in order to protect their head from serious injuries. Additionally, if a crash is unavoidable, a cyclist should keep holding the handlebars so that the whole body absorbs the fall rather than just an outstretched arm.
5. Neck Pain
The last most common injury is neck pain. This is something most cyclists will experience at some point. This injury is normally caused by holding the weight of the head in one position for an extended period of time. As time goes on, the muscles in a cyclist's neck can get very tense.
There are some measures cyclists can take. First, make sure the bike fits well so that the biker is positioned correctly during a ride. While on a ride, bikers should try to relax their shoulders and loosen their grip on the handlebars to remove some tension. Also, neck and shoulder exercises can help to work and relax the muscles.