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Old 12-27-2012, 03:43 AM   #1
pingvin OP
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Arm pump

Might be other threads arounf but couldn't find it.

Always struggled with arm pump and after got into dirt riding it's worse to the point might have to give it up. So intersted in any tip that could help me redice the problem. What I do today:
  1. Do streching several times a day also during breaks during riding
  2. Do exercises (mostly hand grips)
  3. Try to use legs and be in balance to not strain arms...but not easy for a beginner
  4. Try focusing on relaxing grip while riding...but again not easy when bumpy and loose
  5. Taking breaks (even short ones hep)
  6. Tiger balm (actually a stick lasting way longer, really works)
  7. Muscle relaxing, anti-inflammatory drugs (normally take before riding)
  8. Try not to use PC too much
  9. Will reduce weight and get in better shape, less mass to control and easier having correct technique when not tired
  10. Get sme more basic technique training, still not that confident riding standing up
  11. Quick action throttle, less rotation=less train
  12. Just ordered leg pegs leg pegs (www.legpegs.com). Guess with proper teqhnique, balance etc it's not neccessary but having problems during hard acceleration not hanging onto bars. Worth a try.
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Old 12-27-2012, 05:05 AM   #2
buls4evr
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All of the above are fine but you are likely missing the most important thing.... The way you grip the grips! Are you gripping at a 45 degree angle across the grip or 90? 90 is incorrect! Ever wonder why that dogleg is in your lever that way? Your fingers go across that angle if you grip correctly. Tell yourself to center on the bike and keep your elbows up!!!! Your thumbs should not be down, but more in line with the bars.
Another tip is to use one of those velcro tennis elbow supports on your arms just below your elbow on your forearm. They help your bloodflow a lot. If you grip in this way your wrists and forearms will thank you.
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Old 12-27-2012, 05:42 AM   #3
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Use your legs and feet to grip the bike.


Slow down a bit until it becomes a natural thing to relax. Big help.

Oh and those legpeg things? When I see Knighter,RC or Dungey using them maybe I'll think about them. 'Til then useless billet bling.
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Old 12-27-2012, 06:31 AM   #4
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squeeze the seat with your knees, good kneepads help. Also proper suspension setup helps a lot depending on the terrain. My bike is set up for slow tech riding and as such I get pumped out fast in sand because the bars are moving so much on me. If you are having problems on acceleration lean forward and grip with your knees before giving it gas to counteract.

Warming up also helps a ton, ride mellow for a while until your blood is flowing good before wicking it up.
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Old 12-27-2012, 08:16 AM   #5
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When I was a young fellow racing MX, I often got arm cramps the first few moto's of the season. As my fitness improved, my arms were less likely to cramp. I think arm pump is something different. It seems to be a common circulatory ailment suffered by motorcycle racers and solved with surgery.

Today I can get various cramps when riding long distances. Usually legs, but also hands and forearms. I've learned that when cramps surface I am dehydrated. I wear a Camelbak and a few pulls on that will relieve my cramps in about 5 minutes. Maybe you have something like that going on?
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Old 12-27-2012, 11:01 AM   #6
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DynaFlex Dynagrip

Sometimes it's caused by an imbalance between your flexor and extensor muscles. Kind of like after typing for a long time. Being a writer/musician as well as a motorcycle nut, I've found these things to be a huge help in keeping my hands and arms balanced and flexible.

Here's the one for dirtbike riders: http://www.amazon.com/DynaFlex-80001.../dp/B000W1OMDS
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Old 12-27-2012, 11:50 AM   #7
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Throttlemeister.
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Old 12-27-2012, 12:23 PM   #8
Bald Kirk
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Have you tried eating a banana before you ride?
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Old 12-27-2012, 01:17 PM   #9
pingvin OP
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Thanks for all replies, appreciate that!

Maybe should mention what kind of riding I do. Used to do only road riding and track days on race tracks. But a few big crashes on road got me into dirt riding. Mostly been doing gravel roads as strictly forbidden doing any off road in Norway, even trails. But gravel roads aren't really that challenging so bought a RMZ250 this year for some MX as happen to have a track 5min from my house, to improve skills. Been to MX track maybe 10 times in total, but due to arm pump I cam only do a couple of laps at a time.

Road riding and gravel roads are OK if take breaks. It's race tracks and MX that's the biggest problem.

Quote:
Originally Posted by buls4evr View Post
All of the above are fine but you are likely missing the most important thing.... The way you grip the grips! Are you gripping at a 45 degree angle across the grip or 90? 90 is incorrect! Ever wonder why that dogleg is in your lever that way? Your fingers go across that angle if you grip correctly. Tell yourself to center on the bike and keep your elbows up!!!! Your thumbs should not be down, but more in line with the bars.
So 45 degrees is correct? Trying to get elbows up but tend to fall down. Thumbs pointing down, will try to change.
Quote:
Originally Posted by buls4evr View Post
Another tip is to use one of those velcro tennis elbow supports on your arms just below your elbow on your forearm. They help your bloodflow a lot. If you grip in this way your wrists and forearms will thank you.
OK, doesn't that restrict bloodflow? Trying not to have anything tight on arms wrist...
Quote:
Originally Posted by anotherguy View Post
Slow down a bit until it becomes a natural thing to relax. Big help..
Yes...must do this, agree! Must sacrifice ego to improve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anotherguy View Post
Oh and those legpeg things? When I see Knighter,RC or Dungey using them maybe I'll think about them. 'Til then useless billet bling.
Don't even know who they are...but bet they are a lot better than me. I'll just give it a try, fortunetely they can be taken off again.
Quote:
Originally Posted by VxZeroKnots View Post
Also proper suspension setup helps a lot depending on the terrain.
Rubbish with susepnsion set up but know guys that can help me so will have a look at it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by VxZeroKnots View Post
If you are having problems on acceleration lean forward and grip with your knees before giving it gas to counteract.
I'm, trying...but still end up hanging in bars a bit. It helps leaning but doesn't eliminate it. Maybe LegPegs will

Quote:
Originally Posted by VxZeroKnots View Post
Warming up also helps a ton, ride mellow for a while until your blood is flowing good before wicking it up.
Yes, started doing that as well, forgot to mention it. Even use the hand grips before riding. Helps.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pantah View Post
When I was a young fellow racing MX, I often got arm cramps the first few moto's of the season. As my fitness improved, my arms were less likely to cramp. I think arm pump is something different. It seems to be a common circulatory ailment suffered by motorcycle racers and solved with surgery.
Guess arm pump isn't a medical term but for some it's only a probelm right there and then. If been at MX track or race track, I have to wait a week before tpouching a bike again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pantah View Post
Today I can get various cramps when riding long distances. Usually legs, but also hands and forearms. I've learned that when cramps surface I am dehydrated. I wear a Camelbak and a few pulls on that will relieve my cramps in about 5 minutes. Maybe you have something like that going on?
Always use camel back on longer rides and never really hot in Norway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MADurstewitz View Post
Sometimes it's caused by an imbalance between your flexor and extensor muscles. Kind of like after typing for a long time. Being a writer/musician as well as a motorcycle nut, I've found these things to be a huge help in keeping my hands and arms balanced and flexible.

Here's the one for dirtbike riders: http://www.amazon.com/DynaFlex-80001.../dp/B000W1OMDS
Have a power ball, not used it lately. Might try the motorcycle specific, can't hurt to try.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bald Kirk View Post
Have you tried eating a banana before you ride?
Well, always ensure got food in stomach before riding...anything special with bananas (if you're serious)?
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Old 12-27-2012, 01:34 PM   #10
Bald Kirk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pingvin View Post
Thanks for all replies, appreciate that!

Well, always ensure got food in stomach before riding...anything special with bananas (if you're serious)?
Hey! I have always heard that potassium and plenty of water helps.
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Old 12-27-2012, 01:49 PM   #11
AlsoRan
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More riding will help to relax the grip and less arm pump. But if it's there now to that extent it will likely be a part of your riding life. A couple of quick things you can do to help. As others have mentioned eat bananas before you ride (not a joke). A second thing is the handle bar position. You said that your elbows fall back down. Roll the handlebars so that the ends are pointed slightly "up". If the bars are too far forward by doing this then get some different bars to insure at least flat across the bar ends. Think of a bench press where everything has to be in-line to lift maximum weight. Elbows are not at the sides. This will take pressure off your wrists and hands. Try it and see.
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Old 12-27-2012, 02:05 PM   #12
Pantah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pingvin View Post
Thanks for all replies, appreciate that!

Maybe should mention what kind of riding I do. But gravel roads aren't really that challenging so bought a RMZ250 this year for some MX as happen to have a track 5min from my house, to improve skills. Been to MX track maybe 10 times in total, but due to arm pump I cam only do a couple of laps at a time.
?
So there it is. You don't have arm pump. You are just not in athletic shape. Couple laps?!!!

Naw, you are just weak. You can fix that easy enough. You don't even need a trainer.
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Old 12-27-2012, 02:55 PM   #13
VxZeroKnots
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pantah View Post
So there it is. You don't have arm pump. You are just not in athletic shape. Couple laps?!!!

Naw, you are just weak. You can fix that easy enough. You don't even need a trainer.
Yup, go do a couple of laps, hold your hands above your head and shake them to get all the lactic acid out, repeat.
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Old 12-27-2012, 03:36 PM   #14
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Some repeats....

If your health allows, take a couple of real aspirin and a Niacin supplement about an hour before riding begins.
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Old 12-27-2012, 07:51 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pingvin View Post
Might be other threads arounf but couldn't find it.

Always struggled with arm pump and after got into dirt riding it's worse to the point might have to give it up. So intersted in any tip that could help me redice the problem. What I do today:
Do exercises (mostly hand grips)
Focus on the core muscles not the grip, the issue isn't grip strength but the fact that you're hanging on in the first place the core is what lets you be relaxed on the bars.

Quote:
[*]Try to use legs and be in balance to not strain arms...but not easy for a beginner
More importantly pinch the seat/tank with your legs, try turning your toes in so they're pointing into the center of the bike, this forces your knees to grip.

Quote:
[*]Will reduce weight and get in better shape, less mass to control and easier having correct technique when not tired
This is HUGE. Work the core, loose weight everything else will fall into place.
Quote:
[*]Get sme more basic technique training, still not that confident riding standing up
Without confidence there's almost no chance you aren't gripping to hard.

Quote:
[*]Quick action throttle, less rotation=less train
Pointless. Just overgrip the throttle.

Quote:
[*]Just ordered leg pegs leg pegs (www.legpegs.com). Guess with proper teqhnique, balance etc it's not neccessary but having problems during hard acceleration not hanging onto bars. Worth a try.[/LIST]
I'd not say pointless, but the biggest thing that helped me is _ anticipating_ what the bike is going to do. If you're about to get on the throttle lean forward into it _before_ you whack the gas open get your head over the number plate. About to bounce on the brakes get your weight back. Make sure you're pinching the entire time.
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