Hi I have been having a lot of trouble with extreme shoulder / arm pain with numerous visits to the Chiro / Massage with slow results, which has kept me off the bike for a few weeks.

I have discovered it has been from a combination of being hunched over the computer at work and hunched over the handle bars.

I have noticed an Ad for a posture pole which claims to direct relax these muscles post ride in the May/June Bicycling Australia Magazine.  Refer www.posturepole.info 

Does anyone have any first hand knowledge or experience with this product and or problem?



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Yep - I'm familiar with this. Used to get it on long rides, felt like my right arm was frozen in place. You can substitute a couple of rolled up towells for a posture pole and lie along it so it aligns with your spine. If you place your arms out to the side it will start to open up the front of the shoulders. You might want to look at a physio and get some stretches as well - that's what seemed to help me alot.

Also, you might want to check out foam rollers. These can be used similar to a posture pole (I think - not having used a posture pole I'm no expert) and have the added bonus of allowing you to work on other sore muscles like ITB's and glutes. Best bet though is to talk to a professional, though it seems you're already doing that :)

I have one of those foam rollers, its great for a lot of things. The main difference between one of those and a posture pole is that the pole is only a half circle and sits flat on the floor. A foam roler is much higher off the ground and not as stable, but does the job well for me. As mentioned, also great for ITB, Quads and anything else really.

Something else you may like to look at is your position on your bike. You may just need to put your handle bars up a bit or something else fairly simple. I cant ride a bike these days with much if any drop below seat height, my neck and back just cant handle it ( due to a car accident I had back in 1990) and I've spent the last 15 years doing the rounds and the yellow pages between Physio, Chiro, Osteopath, Massage, Accupuncture etc etc. they all help a bit, but bike position by far was the biggest help.

+1 for foam rollers. They're amazing!

Have either of you you tried Thera-Roll for your ITBs and quads? One is on it's way to me.. I'm actually frightened!

Also Paul, to complement chiro/physio etc, perhaps get a nice deep tissue massage just to release fascia in your back and arms? Mmm, painful...

Crikey, that looks nasty! The foam roller hurts like a bastard at times, can only imagine what the Thera roll would feel like. Let us know, it may be my next purchase if it does the job, and, pain is only temporary!

The Chiro gave me a pretty deep massage which hurt like hell even when it was fully warmed up, probably not a deep tissue though

I have two foam rollers, one at work, one at home. They are much cheaper than the pole. Someone else mentioned stability, another Pilates: I have been practicing Pilates for a few years now, and can offer that this has been most beneficial to my bike riding and my stability on a foam roller. 
rollers have the added benefit of being able to provide excellent massage to back, legs, glutes, and enable some excellent stretching techniques.
I recommend physio by Marika at Rehabcorp, payneham rd, evandale, and Pilates with Daniella at same location.  
also if anyone is interested I know and can highly recommend a big and very strong masseur for excellent deep tissue & sports fascial massage....

for a good Chiro, go see Vitality Health and Well being centre at burnside

And also adjust your workstation ergonomics:

+1 for the ergonomics of one's workstation.  But another issue is holding the same position for too long.  I had back and arm pain problems at work in the mid 1990's, and the advice from the treating doctor and physotherapist was to change my position often.  Process one item, get up, file the paperwork, get the next one, process it etc.  Even though I was up and down like a yo-yo, at the end of the day, I was actually a little more productive than I had been before.  (I had forewarned my colleages of what I was doing, and why.)  And stretching and relaxing the cramped, spasm-affected muscles in my back, as Tim describes for the foam rollers, or Virgina describes for a couple of rolled-up towels, is certainly effective for me..

Good points David, I will try and be a bit more mobile at my desk.

I have had lots of back and neck issues and the main things that help is a great physio to find out where the posture problem is and work on exercises to correct the muscles to make you more stable. 

I have used chiropractors in the past and I am finding the physio I am seeing now  and combination of regular stretching in the form of Pilates, Yoga or other toning classes have helped me immensely.

To correct bad postures takes time and dedication but I am getting there. This is where I go but the website is not up to date but George McLemon is just great when I could not move my neck he sorted me out in just 2 sessions :-)

Reynella Sports Injury Clinic

Thank you all for your comments.

I should have my new bike this week which I have done a bike fit for so that may help, I will review my cycling position depending how I feel during and after, my old bike might be a little too long so I am reaching to far.

I must alter my desk ergonomics as well so I sit more upright.

I also think some pilates or similar will help.

Any suggestions on what I should be looking for in Pilates, do you do classes or a dvd for home?

I push down too much and not pull the peddle up enough, not sure how I get myself into the habit of peddling properly, any suggestions?

I will take the Chiro suggestions on board and see how I recover this week and perhaps giving one of them a try.

I went to my Chiro again yesterday and I am a little bit better again today, probably about 50 percent back to normal from where I was this time last week.


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