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I have been using my Cube TM Reaction Pro now for about 5 months. Being my first half decent MTB I was initially just blown away with it – I still love it however now I’m more into riding and picking up more experience along the way I am beginning to think that it needs a tweak to get it more comfortable and set up correctly for me (Body shape/size ect).
Its hard to explain but on long rides and without noticing I frequently find myself resting the base of my palms on the grips (so on the palm area nearest my wrist/ ball of my thumbs) rather than my hands on the handle bar grips “gripping” the grips with my fingers curled round. .
Of course when I am negotiating tough terrain I grip the bars but on normal/smoother riding terrain (and more when I am tired) I default to palms resting on the grips as I have tried to explain above
Now my (normally screwed up) logic would tell me that I need a longer stem as the cockpit is currently too short/tight for my body make up, would this seem a reasonable conclusion? Currently have a Raceface 35 Stem which I think is 50mm long.
I am 5ft 10” however I have short legs (29” inside leg ect) and a long torso.
Any help/guidance and/or advice would be very much appreciated
 

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Without knowing more about your specific body dimensions or the size of the bike, it's hard to say if the bike is too small or if the stem is too short. You can always try a slightly longer stem or a wider bar if you are feeling cramped. Did you purchase the bike from a shop and have a fitting?

We all move our hands around on the handlebar the longer we ride or depending on the terrain. I have noticed myself that I bring my thumb up to the top of the bar when my hands start to cramp a bit. I have some TOGS that allow better grip when my hand is in that position. I'd recommend them to try before a new stem or bar if you are otherwise comfortable. There are handlebar options that have more rise, sweep or multiple hand positions for bike packing to alleviate hand or wrist pain if you need more hand holds.
 

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I shift my hand position in the exact same way on long, nontechnical rides.

I also do what db does with his thumbs (over the top), especially on long gravel sections. I've got some TOGS I used for awhile. I liked them better when I used a narrower, sweepier handlebar than I have now.

Neither position shift necessarily suggests you need to change your stem length. Feeling stretched or cramped up in the cockpit DOES suggest you'd benefit from a stem swap. I just built a new bike and I've got some saddle time on it, and feeling like a stem change might be a good idea, since I frequently find myself farther forward on the saddle than is ideally comfortable. It's subtle, so I don't need to make a big change, but it's there. This is the whole reason I put a super cheap stem on it to begin with.
 

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Does your neck hurt at all? Specifically, does it hurt in the back at the base of the neck? That would indicate you may need a longer stem. Possibly.

Do you have any other pain? If so, what in particular?
 

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big adjustments like bar and stem should be used to influence handling. A 10mm stem change is immediately obvious when you're close to dialed. Bar rotation, grip size, saddle position... that's the stuff to tweak for comfort. As has been said, it's normal to move you hands around on nontechnical climbs. When you're new it's extra confusing because part of it is learning how to relax some parts of your body as others work fairly hard.
 

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Sounds like you're thinking too much into it. In this day and age I'd never want a longer stem if I could avoid it. Moving your hands around on easy segments is natural and helps prevent cramps.
 

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What size frame do you have? That frame appears to have conservative reach measurements. With a short stem, at your height, I would have gone for the 20" model, which has a reach of 435mm.

You can make the bike a little longer in reach by lowering the grips too. Lower the stem on the fork, flip the stem over so it's pointed down (assuming this stem has a POS/neg rise) or put a lower or flat handlebar on your bike.

Otherwise, the alternative hand position you seek means you should try out TOGS. I have some of those sweet little nubs on my bike and I love them.
 

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Core strengthening exercises will help with this. You'll get less tired and won't feel the need to lean on the bars as soon/often. Only downside - you can't buy it at the store.
 

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Core strengthening exercises will help with this. You'll get less tired and won't feel the need to lean on the bars as soon/often. Only downside - you can't buy it at the store.
True, but using less time than it takes to go to store you can improve those abs today at home!
 
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