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    Mountain Bike & Wrist Pain
    While you may think of cycling as a lower-body sport, it's not uncommon for your upper limbs to suffer overuse injuries. Handlebar palsy is one condition that causes wrist and arm pain, especially for mountain bikers who take more impact from bumpy trails.
     

    Definition

    Handlebar palsy is a condition that results from the inflammation of the ulnar nerve.

     
     

    Name

    Handlebar palsy is named so because the wrist pain derived from the condition is common to cyclist who spend a lot of time with their wrists on their handlebars. It is the common name for ulnar neuropathy.

    Ulnar Nerve

    The ulnar nerve, or funny bone nerve, runs along the ulnar bone down to the end of your pinky finger.

    Symptoms

    Symptoms include tingling and numbness along the forearm that extend through your wrist and even to your little finger.

    Cause

    The ulna nerve becomes inflamed at the wrist after absorbing too much vibration from your bike's handlebars.

    Prevention

    With correct sizing and setup on your bike, you're less likely to put too much pressure on your wrists. Have a bike tech check out your riding positions to correct problems before they turn into pain.

     

    Article Written By Kathrine Cole

    Kathrine Cole is a professional outdoor educator. She teaches rock climbing, backpacking, cycling, and bike maintenance classes. She is a graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School, a Wilderness First Responder, and a Leave No Trace Trainer.

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