Hand numbness and tingling are very common issues among cyclists.
It can be debilitating and, except injuries or any specific medical condition is generally due to a bad positioning on the bike (upper body, hands, etc.).
These below are few variables to look at and may help you in the short term:
– The position and the orientation of your hands on the handlebars, itself. If the cyclist uses the carpal tunnel/channel to center his/her grip onto the handlebar, it will create pressure on the nerve and therefore numbness and other uncomfortable sensations.
– The famous “death-grip” onto the handle bars plays also a major role in the tingling and numbness of hands, wrist and pain all through the arms. While riding, try to relax and move your fingers regularly like you were playing the piano.
– If the elbows and shoulders are in a locked-out position (straight line from the shoulders to the knuckles), it tends to transfer the stress and vibrations onto the wrists and directly into palms of your hands.
– It is also very common to see that the weight of the rider is not correctly shared between to front (40%) and the rear (60%) on the bicycle. By having too much mass/weight towards the front of your bike (more than 40%), you will create more stress and pressure in your hands. This is mainly related to saddle height and fore-aft positioning issue.
– The saddle angle can also be a major factor in this issue. If your saddle tends to tilt down, it will also increase the pressure onto the hands and the wrist. Again, this mass shifting will create pressure onto the nerve.
– As you can tell, in any case, you need to have your position carefully looked at by an experienced Bike-Fitter.
Cycling tip: Riding with a backpack or a hydration pack can apply excessive pressure onto nerves in the shoulder area and create the “Pectoralis- Minor-Syndrome” which is also a key cause of hands numbness…