Pins and needles in hands on new gravel bike

Hi I just bought a Specialized Diverge and I am finding that I am getting pins and needles in both hands. My other road bike is much more aggressive and have written since 2009 with no issue. From my initial assessment there are two possible things which may be causing the issue:

  1. The shape of the handle bars as issue is when riding on the hoods.
  2. The handle bars are higher than my other road bike so agin putting pressure on wrists.

I would appreciate peoples views, and experience please.

Thanks

Ian

  • Different shape bars and hoods can alter fit for sure. Getting them placed appropriately (bar rotation up/down, hood placement on the bars up/down, hood rotation in/out) is a personal preference, but can very quickly change how you feel. Take a good hard look at the exact placement of each one, and determine if they are the best for your current needs. Considering the likely differences between this and your road bike, be cautious about “matching” setups and pay more attention to what you need on this bike.
  • All things being equal, higher bars will usually reduce loading on the hands, wrist and arms (not increase pressure). This is because you are sitting more upright relative to the saddle, with more weight on the saddle and less on the hands when compared to a lower bar position. It’s the basic weight distribution between two points and the load between them.
  • Height is one aspect to the fit, but Reach from the saddle to the bars and hoods must not be ignored. Higher bars with a longer reach could be problematic.

Essentially, you need to look at the entire range of placements from the saddle to the bars, hoods and such to figure out what needs to be altered to reduce the pain. But most likely one or more adjustments are needed to bring this into a comfortable setup for you.

This was one of the earliest adjustments I recall having done in a bike fit, and it made a big difference to me. Basically my wrist was “cocked” with the stock setup. Loosening the shifter clamps and tipping the shifter tops toward each other eliminated the wrist-cock; making it more like the alignment of the wrist when you shake someone’s hand.

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My wrists are bent on the gravel bike which is what I feel is the main issue, as the shape of the gravel bike bars are flared, I think I may change to standard road bars

Thanks. the reach is the same in a horizontal plane, but when you take into account the higher bar the reach is lesss, so could be adding to more of a bent wrist also when linked to the type of bars fitted to the gravel bike , I think higher bars means my wrists are bent.

Yup, that could be. That is why I mentioned considering changing the angle of the bars and/or hoods.
There can be big impact from small changes, for better or worse. So you have to look at everything and tweak as needed.

You could test with rotating the bars forward 2-5* and see how that feels. It will open the distance a bit and change the wrist angle a bit (depends on your position on the hoods). I suggest some small adjustments like this first, before doing a wholesale change like swapping bars.

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Get a professional fit.

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