Bike Tips: Your knees

Prevention of knee pain on your bike

When pedaling, the knee is the joint that requires the most stability to generate optimal efficiency. The foot and pelvis being supported by the pedal and the saddle at all times, the knee is the only part of your leg without direct support. To keep it healthy, here are some tips and advices:

  • Positioning tip: In order to limit the pressure on the kneecap during the push phase of pedaling, the clip must be centered under the shoe between the 1st and 5th metatarsal head.  Also, the saddle must be at a good height with a sufficient recoil so that the patella is behind or equal to the pedal hinge at all times during pedaling.
  • Mechanical Advice: Your saddle post should have a sufficient recoil to allow the kneecap to be behind the pedal after you have adjusted your saddle.
  • Technical Tip: Have your foot flexed and not pointed when you push, which slightly moves the knee back in relation to the pedal and increases your effectiveness. Push with the patella centered between the second toe and middle of the hip to avoid uneven tension on the knee joint.
  • Bonus Technical Tip: Pull on the pedals as much as you push to balance the contribution of the quadriceps and hamstrings. Unloading the quadriceps decreases the pressure on the kneecap and increases the fluidity of the pedaling.