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philthyphil

Wrist Pain in Clutch Hand

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philthyphil
I've been riding the FZ-07 for about 2 months now. I've put on a little over 2000 miles over that period of time, so I've ridden her quite a bit. When I first started riding I experienced a little bit of discomfort in my left hand from habitually working the clutch while in traffic. Most of the pain I felt at that time was in my middle and ring fingers around the middle knuckles. I chalked it up to the fact that my hand was doing things that it wasn't used to and that I would get used to it. For the most part that turned out to be true.
 
Fast forward to 8 days ago when I sent my ECU out in the mail, and had to go those 8 days without being able to ride. Today was the first day back to riding after 8 days without, and my wrist on my left hand is freaking killing me when riding in traffic. I rode around ALLOT today in town, so there was allot of stopping and going, and working the clutch. The pain wasn't apparent at first, but after a while It got to where every time that I had to pull the clutch in was agony. Not exaggerating. I finally had to head home and end my hooliganism around town because my wrist couldn't handle it anymore. I don't know why my wrist is hurting so bad now while riding. It wasn't doing that before. I'm pretty sure that I've ridden around town as much, or more in the past as I did today.
 
Is there anything I can do to remedy and/or avoid this? That is besides not riding for hours on end, because that would totally defeat the purpose. Should I be adjusting the position of the clutch lever or something?

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Scrubbie
Maybe try going to a doctor instead of a forum, I'm sure the ergonomics of motorcycle that thousands ride aren't causing your problem.
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farble
Consider using a Gripmaster Hand Exerciser to build strength in fingers palm and wrist. I think it works for me to reduce pain, even though I have arthritis in the fingers. More hand strength for braking is a good thing too. I'm a software engineer at a keyboard all day. I keep that exerciser on my desk and use it frequently. You might move handle bar forward or back to slightly to change wrist angle also.
 

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Eastern Kayaker
Check the angle of the clutch lever itself, sometimes they are sitting too low or high when installed on the handlebars. Mine was sitting too low and when I raised the lever a few degrees it felt much better while riding.
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Beemer
Check the angle of the clutch lever itself, sometimes they are sitting too low or high when installed on the handlebars. Mine was sitting too low and when I raised the lever a few degrees it felt much better while riding.
Good advice from everyone so far but the comment on the angle of the handlebar grabbed my attention the most. I would check the adjustment on that and I also recommend getting some shorty levers as well. You can adjust them in a lot so you don't have to strain to reach & pull on the levers. It helped with the pain in my hands a lot and I have arthritis. (I stretch and exercise the hands/fingers a lot to help with that.) I don't mean to scare you but have you been diagnosed with arthritis, tendonitis or carpal tunnel? Sometimes the culprit of pain isn't so obvious. If nothing anyone mentioned helps you should see a doctor to be sure of what it is. Don't put it off too long, either cause you don't want it to get worse. I hope it gets better. 
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Beemer

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philthyphil
Maybe try going to a doctor instead of a forum, I'm sure the ergonomics of motorcycle that thousands ride aren't causing your problem.
I'm not having pain in my wrist any other time except for when I ride the motorcycle. That is what is causing it. I think a big part of it may have to do with the ridiculously long periods of time that I tend to ride around town on my free days. I'm talking like 8 or 9 hours of riding and clutching from stop light to stop light. I'm pretty sure that kind of repeated motion could cause pain in anyone's wrist. I'm just looking for some suggestions on how to minimize that wrist pain caused by this. Not looking for some smart a#! to tell me not to post about it in this forum. 

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philthyphil
Consider using a Gripmaster Hand Exerciser to build strength in fingers palm and wrist. I think it works for me to reduce pain, even though I have arthritis in the fingers. More hand strength for braking is a good thing too. I'm a software engineer at a keyboard all day. I keep that exerciser on my desk and use it frequently. You might move handle bar forward or back to slightly to change wrist angle also.
I'm a full time student working towards a computer science degree. Hoping to be a software engineer one day too. I also spend allot of time at a keyboard. I did see those little finger/hand exercisers for trumpet players, and guitarists. I'll probably pick one of those up and keep it at my desk too. Thanks for the advice!

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philthyphil
Check the angle of the clutch lever itself, sometimes they are sitting too low or high when installed on the handlebars. Mine was sitting too low and when I raised the lever a few degrees it felt much better while riding.
Now that you mention it the angle of the clutch lever does look like it's a little low. I'm gonna try bringing it up some and see if that helps. Thanks!

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booboobusfz07
Stock levers? If so some aftermarket adjustables will help out alot.
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ddog
Try moving the bars in their mounts and the lever rotation and position. Move everything multiple times, especially the rotation of the bars. A lot situations like this result from the angle at which your forearm is oriented to the bars while riding. Changing that angle may help.
 
Also try to put less force into the bars while riding. Keep your grip loose and grip tightly with your legs. That will keep weight off of your wrist under hard braking and general riding/stopping.
 
Get shorty levers for easier clutch pull (the adjustment feature is the most important, not the length).

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x3rolink
i did have issues with my wrist with the stock bars (but not to the extent that you have with your wrist), so i switched them out with clubman bars and it fitted me much better than stock. i also do clutchless up and downshifts and split lanes here in california, so i barely use the clutch; i only use it for takeoff. even when i come to a stop i kick it to neutral while using rear brake at stop so that i can take hands of my bars (i know you shouldnt be doing that, but i cant fathom a situation where i'd wish i was in gear ready to go... imho)

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farble
Consider using a Gripmaster Hand Exerciser to build strength in fingers palm and wrist. I think it works for me to reduce pain, even though I have arthritis in the fingers. More hand strength for braking is a good thing too. I'm a software engineer at a keyboard all day. I keep that exerciser on my desk and use it frequently. You might move handle bar forward or back to slightly to change wrist angle also.
I'm a full time student working towards a computer science degree. Hoping to be a software engineer one day too. I also spend allot of time at a keyboard. I did see those little finger/hand exercisers for trumpet players, and guitarists. I'll probably pick one of those up and keep it at my desk too. Thanks for the advice!
They come in different strengths. Try them out and get one you can do a lot of repetitions with but not too light. I always put it in my pocket when going to a meeting that might be stressful. Good luck with your career. 

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Beemer
Maybe try going to a doctor instead of a forum, I'm sure the ergonomics of motorcycle that thousands ride aren't causing your problem.
I'm not having pain in my wrist any other time except for when I ride the motorcycle. That is what is causing it. I think a big part of it may have to do with the ridiculously long periods of time that I tend to ride around town on my free days. I'm talking like 8 or 9 hours of riding and clutching from stop light to stop light. I'm pretty sure that kind of repeated motion could cause pain in anyone's wrist. I'm just looking for some suggestions on how to minimize that wrist pain caused by this. Not looking for some smart a#! to tell me not to post about it in this forum. 
Since you put it that way, when I remember to do it I sometimes take an Advil (ibuprofen) before a ride to prevent any pain or aching. It usually helps, try it. Keep a small bottle of it with you so that you can take another if pain rears it's ugly head during your long ride. It sounds like all that clutching is just simply agitating your wrist. Then again you could just ride a little less or take longer breaks while riding. GL! 

Beemer

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tag
Two things get my attention here: you are at the keyboard a lot, which causes repetitive motion problems, and the other is I don't know if you are putting weight on your hands when riding in stop and go traffic. While style dictates we mimic what's going on at the track, on the street we aren't trying to avoid a 150 mph wind blast. Leaning low into the wind is the way to go unless you are doing a lot of stop and go. Riding at the track will also train you to grip the tank with your thighs, and keep your weight off the bars. I think your hands/wrists are already stressed from repetitive computer tasks, and the motorcycle is aggravating it. Try gripping the tank with your thighs, use your stomach muscles to keep your weight off the bars. Just a guess, and it might be past the point of expecting it to get better without medical help.

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philthyphil
Stock levers? If so some aftermarket adjustables will help out alot.
I do have stock levers on right now. I definitely see a pair of aftermarket levers in my near future. 

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philthyphil
Try moving the bars in their mounts and the lever rotation and position. Move everything multiple times, especially the rotation of the bars. A lot situations like this result from the angle at which your forearm is oriented to the bars while riding. Changing that angle may help.  
Also try to put less force into the bars while riding. Keep your grip loose and grip tightly with your legs. That will keep weight off of your wrist under hard braking and general riding/stopping.
 
Get shorty levers for easier clutch pull (the adjustment feature is the most important, not the length).
Cool, thanks for the pointers. I'm going to make some adjustments and see if it helps. I'm gonna try some different levers too. I try to be diligent about my riding position and grip on the bars, but I'm sure there are times when I may be gripping a little too hard. It's weird because I didn't start having wrist pain until after I installed the flashed ECU and Akra pipe. I'm not in anyway blaming the exhaust or upgraded ECU, but it may be possible that with the extra bit of power, and extra scream of the bike that I'm subconsciously giving the bars more of a death grip. I was riding last night and forcing myself to stay conscious and aware of this, making sure my grip was light on the bars, and my wrist did seem to feel allot better! I'm hoping a combination of proper grip, and control adjustments will wipe out this problem, because it really hurts like hell. 
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philthyphil
Two things get my attention here: you are at the keyboard a lot, which causes repetitive motion problems, and the other is I don't know if you are putting weight on your hands when riding in stop and go traffic. While style dictates we mimic what's going on at the track, on the street we aren't trying to avoid a 150 mph wind blast. Leaning low into the wind is the way to go unless you are doing a lot of stop and go. Riding at the track will also train you to grip the tank with your thighs, and keep your weight off the bars. I think your hands/wrists are already stressed from repetitive computer tasks, and the motorcycle is aggravating it. Try gripping the tank with your thighs, use your stomach muscles to keep your weight off the bars. Just a guess, and it might be past the point of expecting it to get better without medical help.
Yea, it's kinda weird because the point at which my wrist really starts screaming with pain is when I'm releasing the clutch. Its like the resistance of the clutch paired with the motion of releasing it with my left hand just makes things inflamed. If after some adjustment it doesn't get better, as much as I hate to, I'll probably have to go to the DR. I play guitar also. Not nearly as much as I used to. But years ago, when I use to play daily, the same wrist would give me a little bit of problems. Nothing like the pain that I'm having from clutching my bike though. 

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gregjet
Ok . Always possible the problem is other than from the bike but here is some points.
The fact that thousands DON'T have a problem is irrelevant.
Ergonomics is how YOUR body fits on a bike.
First. Most people don't adjust the bike to them , they just adjust themselves to the bike. Cyclists would never do that, neither should motorcyclists.
On this particular issue the most important point is that a line along the top of the forearm and the top of the wrist should be straight. If your hand is kinked up or down at the wrist you are pushing on nerves or blood supply. Either of these can cause numb or aching . What is worse the most it hurts the more you tense everything else which creates a positive feedback loop and the pain gets worse.
Adjust the clutch ( and brake) lever , and the bars position, so in you natural body position the top of your arm and hand are flat and straight. Make sure that your shoulders are not hunched as well as that makes everything worse. Leg/ body position also has an effect on your upper body, but hand problems are usually related to wrist kink.
Everyone has a different hand grip alignment as well and too great or too straight a set of bars in the usual riding position can also cause problems. This is a more common problem with women than men, as the average woman needs a greater angled bars then men ( individual variation is greater than sex variation). It is a reason than many women just don't like riding as it is impossible to get a comfortable hand position and nobody tells them to change to a better fitting set of bars.
This the the first article a google search turned up and it will do well enough explaining. http://www.motorcyclecruiser.com/handlebars-body-position
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Go forth and modify my son...go forth and modify...

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hobbs
Do everything everyone else said.
 
However - if it is indeed a musculoskeletal issue, try some pull-apart bands. Iron-mind sells a cheap set that I've suggested before. Or use a broccoli rubber band, or a wad of regular rubber bands.
 
Point is that operating the clutch, klacking at the keyboard, jerking off and whatever else you grip works your forearm flexors and you might benefit from working the extensors to some degree since it's an area that typically goes overlooked.
 
 

Everything went braap.

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Beemer
i did have issues with my wrist with the stock bars (but not to the extent that you have with your wrist), so i switched them out with clubman bars and it fitted me much better than stock. i also do clutchless up and downshifts and split lanes here in california, so i barely use the clutch; i only use it for takeoff. even when i come to a stop i kick it to neutral while using rear brake at stop so that i can take hands of my bars (i know you shouldnt be doing that, but i cant fathom a situation where i'd wish i was in gear ready to go... imho)
Let me help you fathom a situation.  
[video src=https://youtu.be/u8oLIeCG3_k] Motorcyclists getting rear ended doesn't happen a lot but if this guy had been watching behind him and in gear he could've got out of the way. If nothing else, people should at least watch for cars coming up behind them, they're just as dangerous as from the front.
 
 
 
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Beemer

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x3rolink
[video src=https://youtu.be/u8oLIeCG3_k] Motorcyclists getting rear ended doesn't happen a lot but if this guy had been watching behind him and in gear he could've got out of the way. If nothing else, people should at least watch for cars coming up behind them, they're just as dangerous as from the front.
 
 

Yeah, that does suck :/ but i think for me, in california, i wouldve split lanes and not stop behind a car in the first place, so i wouldnt be in this specific situation myself. 
I do believe it's better to stay in gear/clutch pulled in when at a stop, but honestly the only time im at a stop is at the light. and the only time i could be rear ended at a light is when there are no cars at the intersection to begin with. if not, then there are already cars there, so when i split towards the interection, then there are close to no way i'd get rear ended by a car (unless there are freak accidents i.e. someone crashes through multiple cars and end up smashing me, God forbid)
 
dont get me wrong; i am mostly aware of my surroundings. but as i said before, i still cannot fathom a situation where i'd wish i was in gear/clutch in. because if its going to be a freak accident, then i'm screwed either way. aside from anything out of the norm, it just doesnt seem that necessary in the state of cali, or any country where lane splitting is legal. 

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Beemer
[video src=https://youtu.be/u8oLIeCG3_k] Motorcyclists getting rear ended doesn't happen a lot but if this guy had been watching behind him and in gear he could've got out of the way. If nothing else, people should at least watch for cars coming up behind them, they're just as dangerous as from the front. 
 

Yeah, that does suck :/ but i think for me, in california, i wouldve split lanes and not stop behind a car in the first place, so i wouldnt be in this specific situation myself. 
I do believe it's better to stay in gear/clutch pulled in when at a stop, but honestly the only time im at a stop is at the light. and the only time i could be rear ended at a light is when there are no cars at the intersection to begin with. if not, then there are already cars there, so when i split towards the interection, then there are close to no way i'd get rear ended by a car (unless there are freak accidents i.e. someone crashes through multiple cars and end up smashing me, God forbid)
 
dont get me wrong; i am mostly aware of my surroundings. but as i said before, i still cannot fathom a situation where i'd wish i was in gear/clutch in. because if its going to be a freak accident, then i'm screwed either way. aside from anything out of the norm, it just doesnt seem that necessary in the state of cali, or any country where lane splitting is legal. 
That's great! I wasn't thinking about lane splitting at stops to keep you safe since I don't live there and it's not legal here. It just didn't come to mind but you're right. Since I don't practice lane splitting or see it other than in video's occasionally do people always do it, even if there's just one or two cars in front of them at a stop do people always just go between cars and cut in front of people when those people are sitting right on the line for the stop? Do people really do that? It seems rude and unlawful if they do. 

Beemer

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philthyphil
Yeah, that does suck :/ but i think for me, in california, i wouldve split lanes and not stop behind a car in the first place, so i wouldnt be in this specific situation myself. 
I do believe it's better to stay in gear/clutch pulled in when at a stop, but honestly the only time im at a stop is at the light. and the only time i could be rear ended at a light is when there are no cars at the intersection to begin with. if not, then there are already cars there, so when i split towards the interection, then there are close to no way i'd get rear ended by a car (unless there are freak accidents i.e. someone crashes through multiple cars and end up smashing me, God forbid)
 
dont get me wrong; i am mostly aware of my surroundings. but as i said before, i still cannot fathom a situation where i'd wish i was in gear/clutch in. because if its going to be a freak accident, then i'm screwed either way. aside from anything out of the norm, it just doesnt seem that necessary in the state of cali, or any country where lane splitting is legal. 
That's great! I wasn't thinking about lane splitting at stops to keep you safe since I don't live there and it's not legal here. It just didn't come to mind but you're right. Since I don't practice lane splitting or see it other than in video's occasionally do people always do it, even if there's just one or two cars in front of them at a stop do people always just go between cars and cut in front of people when those people are sitting right on the line for the stop? Do people really do that? It seems rude and unlawful if they do.
I live in California and I pretty much always lane split at every red light I come to. We have allot of motorcyclist here, I believe we have the most out of all of the states, and most drivers here are used to motorcycles lane splitting. Most people are cool about it, and will even try to make room for you to get through. The only times that I don't move up to the front at red lights is if there doesn't look to be enough room to do so safely. I live in a city with close to a 500,000 population, so there are times when traffic gets thick. You may come to a line of traffic stopped for a red light that is several hundred yards ahead. When this happens I'll split lanes up as far as possible, but usually end up getting to a point where there's a big truck, or traffic is simply to thick and congested for me to get all the way to the front. Most people will squeeze over as far as they can when they see me coming, and sometimes I'll make it the whole way up to the very front before the light turns green. Other times the light will turn green while i'm moving up between the lanes. When this happens I just get in where I fit in and continue going with the flow of traffic. If I do end up blocked before I can make it all the way up while the light is still red, I'll just settle into waiting traffic as far up as I can get.  
The most important thing to me is that I'm not just hanging out in traffic with nothing but empty space behind me. This eliminates, or at least greatly reduces the chance that I'll get slammed into from behind like in the video that you linked. Being able to get up to the front and save a little time is just an added bonus. But yes, I do lane split when there is just a couple cars at a light too. Solely for the reason that I don't want to sit in traffic like a sitting duck waiting for some jackhole who isn't paying attention to run into me from behind. That seems like it would be very painful and something I'd rather not experience. 
 
For the most part drivers here in California are very cool about getting out of your way and letting you travel between lanes of traffic. Off course there are exceptions, but mostly no one really seems to care. Even if you do cut in front of everyone, chances are that your rate of acceleration on a motorcycle is going to be quick enough that your not gong to slow down anyone of the people that you cut in front of. 
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botticelli
Try to keep weight off the bars, you should be really really light on them. Never death grip or squeeze the bars. Even the pros at 150+ are barely on the bars. Check these shots of Lorenzo. Grip the bike with your legs.
 
Get some adjustable levers, and do make sure your cable is not bound up. It should be a feather to pull.
 
Just my .02
 
 
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jorge_lorenzo_sepang_test_motogp_yamaha_racing.jpg
 
jorge_lorenzo_austria.jpg
 
how do you upload a picture
 

'16 FZ07

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philthyphil
Try to keep weight off the bars, you should be really really light on them. Never death grip or squeeze the bars. Even the pros at 150+ are barely on the bars. Check these shots of Lorenzo. Grip the bike with your legs.  
Get some adjustable levers, and do make sure your cable is not bound up. It should be a feather to pull.
 
Just my .02
 
 
Yea, I've had this same advice given to me by several others as well. Out of all the suggestions given to me, this one is the easiest to implement. I don't have to buy anything, like a wrist exerciser or anything like that. I previously thought that I was doing a good job at not gripping the bars too much, but it turns out that I wasn't doing as good at that as I had previously thought. Over the past week or so I've been really forcing myself to be mindful of how i'm gripping the motorcycle. The times that it was really alluding me were when I was coming to a stop, and pulling away from a stop. I was gripping the bars far too much. Letting my arms hold back my weight when coming to a stop. I think this was putting undue pressure on my left wrist. Now that I'm forcing myself to grip the motorcycle with my thighs when starting and stopping my wrist pain has all but disappeared.  
 
how do you upload a picture

 
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