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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I have a herniated disk in my lower back that i am mostly recovered from and the other day my physical therapist mentions to me that i might consider getting aero bars for my bike as they would take some of the strain off of my lower back. I know that this could depend on the setup of the aero bars and what bars a i have, but in a general sense does anybody find that their aero bars relax their back, or that their back feels better when in the aero position? Any others have experience with back pain and aero bars?

Thanks for your help,
Bilydu

edit: this edit also appears in a post below in response to dfleck,

my back pain (herniated disk) was not caused by riding my bike and the act of riding my bike does not cause me any discomfort in my back. My PT simply wants to lower the stress on my back in general, on and off the bike, to help my back heal. again, i have no problems with my back on my bike. Thus the question still stands, does an aero bar let one's back relax, or take a good amount of weight off the back?
 

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frankly your PT needs to pull their head out of their a$$
he/she had one client cyclist that mentioned thei back didn't hurt in the aero bars but did on the drops. He/she made the asumption this would work for most people.

your best bet is to get a really good bike fit by someone that can figgure out something more then saddle height and reach. Boulder Center for Sports Medicine is pretty well known for their work. Your problem could be one leg being longer then the other causing a slight a-symetric rock in your hips. Its rare to have both legs the same size but 2mm won't do much diffrence. You need a doc that specializes their work with cyclists.

that said, if slapping an aero bar on there does the trick, go for it. my guess is his/her idea was to take weight off the back. You might want to just look into a riser stem. hard to say what will work if you try going it alone...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
just to clarify. . . . .

my back pain (herniated disk) was not caused by riding my bike and the act of riding my bike does not cause me any discomfort in my back. My PT simply wants to lower the stress on my back in general, on and off the bike, to help my back heal. again, i have no problems with my back on my bike. Thus the question still stands, does an aero bar let one's back relax, or take a good amount of weight off the back?

thanks
bilydu
 

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Rollin' Stones
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I've seen that.

The problem withthat theory isn't positioning. The Dr. is right about stretching you out on the bike. Aero bars will give you different positions to choose from. However, most folks who use that method have the bars mounted in almost a 45deg. angle. It's whatever angle works best for you. Some cyclists may snicker behind you about the goofy look of the thing. My advice, get the bars, ride comfortably, avoid those who would laugh at you. mmmmmmmsnickers...drool. :)
 

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No pain, no pain.
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I use aerobars for back relief on rides longer than 80 miles. Works like a charm. Not that I get any back pain either way, but the aerobars let me rest my back periodically. Comparable to taking off a 50 lb backpack for a few minutes while backpacking/climbing a mountain.
 
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