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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been riding my Giant Rainier and my pinky and ring finger have felt numb for the past I'm guessing 4-5 days. I rode all of those days except today. I can move the fingers fine but they just have this numb feeling. I do get some pain from the handlebars when riding (think I need gloves) but I started to get a little worried as it hasn't gone away. Any suggestions/experience?
 

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No cause for alarm yet

I'm not a medical doctor but is it just one hand and does it perhaps go up to the elbow on the underside of your arm? Such numbness and/or tingling in *just* the pinky and ring finger *may* indicate an ulnar nerve problem. I've had it for two years and it's gotten much worse recently. Yesterday I found out I need surgery on it because it is compressed. If left untreated for a *long* time it could lead to loss of muscles in the hand. But you are a long way from that. The doctor said most cases take care of themselves. I wouldn't worry about it unless it persists for a long time. If it does then by all means have it checked out. If it is just general numbness in the hands that is not an uncommon problem. I alleviate it by using bar ends and varying my hand position regularly depending on the trail conditions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It's just on those two fingers on my left hand. It doesn't extend down to my palm/wrist/arm. I'm thinking I might need gloves because my right hand isn't numb and I had been wearing a brace that padded my right palm because I had sprained that wrist earlier. I'm just hoping the tingling will go away.
 

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Give it time

Ulnar nerve problem is indicated by numbness in *all* the pinky and *just* the outside of the ring finger (next to pinky). It is highly unlikely that you would get it in both hands at the same time. But give it some time before seeing a doctor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the reply. I had been wearing a wrist brace on my right hand because it's sprained. It supplied some padding to my right hand. I think that might be why my right hand is ok at the moment.

So anyone have any recommendations for new grips or a set of gloves to get rid of this problem? I'd prefer black half-finger gloves and nothing too flashy. I suck too much to draw attentention through my attire.
 

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dissonance said:
Thanks for the reply. I had been wearing a wrist brace on my right hand because it's sprained. It supplied some padding to my right hand. I think that might be why my right hand is ok at the moment.

So anyone have any recommendations for new grips or a set of gloves to get rid of this problem? I'd prefer black half-finger gloves and nothing too flashy. I suck too much to draw attentention through my attire.
i use a padded glove(black, half-finger)by specialized when i ride my rigid bike, but an unpadded glove on my FS. i used to get that numbness and tingling on every ride on the rigid. if you have a suspension fork you could set it up a bit softer.

Rita
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have a suspension fork but it's probably one of the worst Marzocchis (EXR Comp). I plan to eventually replace it with a MX Pro/Comp. I was surprised Specialized would put the EXR Comp on it's urban assault p.1 and p.2. I haven't had the shock adjusted since I got it and I don't have a shock pump so I'm not sure if it's set up for my weight. I can have that checked out. In the mean time my handlebars dig into my palms sometimes on long rides even on pavement. Guess I'll get some gloves.
 

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Of course you need gloves! Other suggestions.

Gloves, absolutely. You can get a cheap pair, but they wont last you as long as a good pair--though even a good pair only lasts a year if you ride a lot, same as shoes pretty much.

A tip: if you buy FOX brand gloves then you should buy them rather snug because they stretch out.

I wouldn't recommend Specialized Body Geometry gloves for you because of you're used to wearing no gloves at all. The extra padding will reduce your 'feel' of the ground compared to what you're used to--and this is coming from someone owns two pairs of the Body Geometry gloves.

Another thing is geometry of the bike, and this is an easy fix. You can get different spacers to raise or lower your handlebar height. They're cheap and you can do the fix yourself.

Cheap is the word of the day, by the way.

Also consider changing your grips. Especially if you haven't had this problem before, unless you're seriously increased the amount of riding you do, then it's bound to be time to change the grips.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hey thanks for the reply. I recently started mountain biking. I hadn't really since I was a kid. Perhaps 10 years ago.

I was thinking of getting the Fox Mesa gloves.



You mention that the Fox's tend to stretch out. If I did the measurement they suggested and am 8" which is a small for them, would you think I'd need to go XS? I might try to find a pair around town but selection seems limited. Thanks again.
 

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What I love about FOX gloves

I love FOX gloves. They break in so well. I only wish they were a shy bit better padded on the palms, but for 'feel' and comfort I really think they're the best--tough as hell.

They do make some gloves that don't stretch out, but the Mesas probably will. They don't need to be cutting off your rubber glove, Trojan ribless, cutting off your circulation tight, but they should be fairly snug when you buy them. The sweat probably loosens up the fibers more than anything else.

It's a tough call, but I can tell you that even if they do stretch out to the point that they're a little loose, there are no gloves more comfortable. FOX simply makes great stuff that has saved my a$$ from even worse gore fests than I suffered when wearing their clothes (gloves, jacket, jersey: For the rest I wear Pearl Izumi and Sugoi) in horrible, bloody crashes--just a few actually.

Enjoy!
 

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Ulnar neuropraxia

Like Wherewolf said, you've almost certainly got an ulnar nerve compression problem. Specialized used to make a glove with a pad over the little finger side of the base of the hand for this, not sure if they still do.

Any glove will likely help, but if your first choice doesn't, try a Specialized dealer.

The median nerve innervates the rest of the fingers except for part of the thumb. If anyone has problems there (carpal tunnel syndrome), the spot to worry about is in the middle of the base of the hand, just beyond the wrist joint.

Good luck, I think gloves will solve your problem.
 

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Check out the Specialized line of Body Geometry gloves.
They have strategically (or was that strategory?) placed padding to address the ulna nerve area. You can read their claims here:
Specialized site info on gloves here!

I used to ride with just thin Fox gloves, then had some numbness and the Specialized gloves fixed it.

Also, remember to not rest you entire weight on the hands and bars. Use your torso in addition to keep yourself up. Check your seat to bar height aswell. Sometimes raising your bar or stem helps shift more your weight away from your hands.
 

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the Fox Mesa glove has no padding. i know, that is my glove of choice on my FS. i love 'em, but i really think you need padding with your problem. Fox makes a glove that looks like the Mesa but has padding. the name of said glove escapes me...it may be Mohave, but i would not swear to it.

Rita
 

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this is messed up, i was just out for about a 6 hour ride a couple of days ago and about halfway through my pinky and forefinger went numb, and stayed that way for about 24 hours. the thing thats bizarre is im riding a '04 rainier.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Adaray said:
this is messed up, i was just out for about a 6 hour ride a couple of days ago and about halfway through my pinky and forefinger went numb, and stayed that way for about 24 hours. the thing thats bizarre is im riding a '04 rainier.....
Haha mine's a 04 also. Mine have been numb to some degree for about a week. I've kept on riding. Still need to get some gloves though.
 

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Ulnar compression...

I'll echo some of the others here and state it's most definitely a problem with your Ulnar nerve. I rode rigid bikes for years and started developing the exact symptoms you've mentioned. I got some nice gel padded gloves and forgot about it until... it got worse, way worse. I play bass guitar professionally and started to really notice the pain and numbness when playing about six years ago. I thought it was CTS and tried every type of instrument position, stretching exercise, anti-inflamitory med, massage, etc... Nothing made it any better.

I finally wound up at a neurologists office. The diagnosis was Tardy Ulnar Palsey. Basically, my Ulnar nerve had been permanently damaged and I required surgery. To "drive home" the extent of the damage my "degree of loss of nerve conductivity" on a scale from 1-10 (one being the least amount of damage) I was at an 8. The muscles in my left hand had started to atrophy and are visibly different to this day. I'll add as well that it only hurt "sometimes" and being the "tough-guy" that I think myself to be led me not to bring it to anybodys attention as I didn't want to "complain". Big mistake on my part! Surgery stopped the problem from getting any worse but it also removed mtbing from my life for the past five years. It also took me months to be able to play music again.

My suggestion to you would be to bring it up to your doctor now before it gets any worse. The Specialized BG gloves will definitely help (I use them) but they will not fix the problem. Other things that might help would be to run your fork a little plusher (I went with the MX Pro w/ETA btw), tire pressure a little lower, shorter stem, riser bars, and use your abdomen and lower back to support your weight on the bike. I still feel you should consult a physician though and make sure you haven't already done irreparable damage. Like I said, mine only hurt "sometimes" and that was with permanent damage already done.
 

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i was out for a longer ride today, and just my forefinger went numb, same hand as last time. i think one reason may be my seat height, im 6.2 and have a 19 inch frame, i have the seat about as high as it goes and i noticed lowering it took some weight of my hands. this time when i went biking tho i wore some specialized gloves i had lying around (really padded in the palm) and it didnt fix it. going to look into getting a pair of those special gloves.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Adaray said:
i was out for a longer ride today, and just my forefinger went numb, same hand as last time. i think one reason may be my seat height, im 6.2 and have a 19 inch frame, i have the seat about as high as it goes and i noticed lowering it took some weight of my hands. this time when i went biking tho i wore some specialized gloves i had lying around (really padded in the palm) and it didnt fix it. going to look into getting a pair of those special gloves.
Which Specialized gloves did you try? Were they the Body Geometry ones? I was thinking of trying those since they're designed to eliminate numbness/discomfort.

Which "special gloves" are you talking about getting?
 

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ya, sorry about my messages. i'm a little rushed here replying at work. anyway the gloves i have now just say specialized, i can't find a model on them anywhere. they are pretty old my friend got them when he got a bike like 5 years ago. and by special gloves i was talking about those specialized body geometry ones. was thinking about getting a set of the grips too. i cant seem to find any good reviews of either tho, the gloves only got like 2 reviews each on this site and the grips that are on the specialized site i cant seem to find a review for at all. it gives a link to here for a review but its not even the same grip =/
 

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Adaray said:
ya, sorry about my messages. i'm a little rushed here replying at work. anyway the gloves i have now just say specialized, i can't find a model on them anywhere. they are pretty old my friend got them when he got a bike like 5 years ago. and by special gloves i was talking about those specialized body geometry ones. was thinking about getting a set of the grips too. i cant seem to find any good reviews of either tho, the gloves only got like 2 reviews each on this site and the grips that are on the specialized site i cant seem to find a review for at all. it gives a link to here for a review but its not even the same grip =/
Dirtpaws provided the link above to the Specialized Body Geometry explanation for the gloves and grips. There are reviews here at Mt.BikeReview of these products. Although the cosmetics and colors have changed from year to year on the grips, the same "body geometry" that Dr. Minkow designed to eliminate/relieve pain/numbness is used in the grips from Specialized that sell under the label of "Specialized Body Geometry". I have a set on a commute bike and am thinking of replacing a set on my Sugar with them as well since they seem to fit my large hands so well. I even have a review of the grips which I have now been using for over 2 years on my daily commute:

http://www.mtbreview.com/reviews/Grip/product_72279.shtml

I have never tried the Specialized Body Geometry gloves as I use the Pear Isumi Gel Lites, but would imagine that anyone who is interested in addressing the issues of pain/numbness should at least start with the Specialized grips and gloves.

Don't know if they sell them in the US, but when I was looking at the Specialized grips I also was looking at a similar design called Bio-grip. Again, this is an ergonomic grip designed to make it quite easy to get your wrist in proper alignment on the bar as well as a thicker, meatier grip for the palm using a design to relieve stress on the nerves that lead to the pain.

They come in Mango or Black colors:

http://www.3sat.de/3sat.php?http://www.3sat.de/tips/sportiv/aktuell/07414/

http://electronic.conrad.at/biogrip.asp

As everyone has already stated in this thread, getting properly set up with grips, gloves and riding position to take stress off of the nerves that create the discomfort will help improve one's enjoyment on the bike.

BB
 
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