Let’s face it- none of us are getting any younger. With aging comes the typical aches and pains. Back pain, especially, can be exaggerated by using a motorcycle, especially for long periods of time. Your back takes the brunt of the body strain when riding. It may begin with a minor ache and quickly grow to the point that you avoid riding altogether. Fortunately, there are a number of steps you can take to alleviate back pain when on your motorcycle.
Alleviate back pain by:
- Match your bike to your riding style. If you plan on extended rides or lengthy commutes, a standard or cruiser bike is your best bet. With these bikes, your body is situated essentially upright, which reduces the amount of stress and impact on your bike. Sports bikes may be speedy and slick, but reserve them for short distances.
- Consider your body type. If you are well over six feet tall, for example, you probably will need a different bike than someone who is short. Weight also plays a role in this. That’s why it’s always best to try out a number of different bikes before making a purchase.
- Adjust the handlebars for comfort. Consider changing handlebars, especially if you experience any signs of discomfort. The arm and finger aches or numbness you experience are a sign of poor fit, and if you are hyperextending for the handlebars, you are likely playing undo strain on your back as well.
- Stretch – before, during, and after. Simply twisting your back gently from side to side allows your muscles to ease and prevent cramps. Taking a few minutes to stretch will alleviate pain before it strikes.
- Find a seat that will support your size and position it appropriately. If possible, adjust your seat periodically, especially on longer rides, to even out the strain and pressure placed on your back.
- Take a painkiller before the ride. If you already know that back pain is likely to be an issue, consider taking a painkiller before you begin. Obviously avoid opiates or any other medication that comes with warnings regarding operating motor vehicles. Consider anti-inflammatories and painkillers that will alleviate muscular pain. It’s always better to stay on top of the pain, so do not wait for it to kick in before you take something.
- Remain properly hydrated. Your body will fatigue and stress more quickly if you are not hydrated. If you become thirsty on a ride, chances are your body is already experiencing early signs of dehydration.
- Relax your body. Periodically during your trip, move, stretch, and relax your wrists, elbows, arms, and shoulders. As we ride, our muscles tighten which contributes to fatigue. This movement and relaxation will help you loosen your grip, relax straining muscles, and fight pain.
- For more information on issues that address many new riders, check out A New Riders Guide to Learning How to Ride a Motorcycle.
Our nationwide motorcycle injury lawyers are bikers, as well, and we want to keep you riding comfortably! We have found these tips to be especially effective as we address our own issues. Ride safely, ride comfortable, and if you ever are involved in a motorcycle accident, contact our experienced team of biker lawyers today.