Monday, August 29, 2011

Try A Welly On

The most summer I had all fun! This weekend CTS took a road trip to Wellington Brewery for a Private Group Tour. The tour included samples of their finest beers, a guided tour of our brewing facility, and a Wellington Brewery plastic mug. A big thanks to Wellington Brewery for their support of the CTS bike club.

Above: CTS drinking at the Duke's House.

Above: CTS taking a Private Tour of the brewery.

Above: 168 bottles of Trailhead for us to enjoy at the CTS BBQ Sunday Sept. 4th

Monday, August 22, 2011

Riding For A Good Paws

The topic of a group ride in Muskoka has come up a number of times and I recently came across an event that gives us the best reason as to why we should head north. There seems to be a lot of us in the CTS group that have dogs as companions and a lot of us just love animals in general. I have seen Angela come to a sudden stop in the middle of a trail to help a toad get across safely and Greg has bailed into a tree stump more than once to avoid running over a cute little squirrel. Well, at least that’s what he told us.

Well now, we have an opportunity to step it up and help get Guide Dogs off the street and into a good home with someone that needs them, and that opportunity is called Puppy Pedal. So we get to do what we enjoy the most (biking) and at the same time we gain some incredible brownie points for our good deeds. Can you imagine all the commitments we can get out of, just by performing this one selfless act of riding for Puppy Pedal? I can hear it now … “honey it’s only my mothers 75th birthday party! You rode for Puppy Pedal so just Cancel That $hit and go for a ride with your buddies” or even … “babe, no need to worry about going out for dinner on our 20th wedding anniversary. Don’t forget you rode Puppy Pedal 2 months ago so go ahead Cancel That $hit and get out for a ride. I’ll have a bbq’d steak and your favourite beer all ready for when you get home”.

So lets act quickly and sign up for this as it’s only a few weeks away (September 18th) and we may even be able to start to Cancel That $hit right away because this cause is that good!!!

Check out the link - http://puppypedal.ca/


Friday, August 12, 2011

Figaro Fist Pump

The CTS bike club out there enjoying the natural spaces of Ontario, during the Month of August 2011.

Warning: In this video there is a short clip that may be offensive to fellow CTS rider Meagen, I'd like to apologize in advance. I'm sorry I couldn't refrain from the humour of this clip. It fit so perfectly, don't hate me.

Monday, August 8, 2011


Well it’s the middle of the mountain bike season now and for many of us we have been on the trails for about 4 months already. The riding has been great this year and I’m sure many of you have been riding hard. Hopefully everyone has remained injury free and pain free (Except Ken of course….who is now thankfully on the mend). If not – here is some information on one of the most common problems/pain that I see in my clinic as a result of mountain biking.

Neck and Upper Back Pain

Neck pain can be exacerbated by several factors including: riding position, technique, and other pre-existing conditions. In the cycling position, the neck is extended and the back flexed for prolonged periods. Riding for long periods of time, increases the load on the arms and shoulders as well as hyperextension of the neck, leading to muscle fatigue and pain. If the virtual top tube length (top tube plus stem length) is too long for the rider, hyperextension of the neck is further increased. Prolonged hyperextension of the neck and associated muscle strain may lead to trigger points in the muscles of the neck and upper back (especially the upper trapezius muscles). Trigger points are small rubbery knots that form in muscle and adjacent muscle sheaths (fascia), which send pain signals to the brain and contribute to a pain-spasm-pain cycle. Trigger points are frequently caused by direct blunt trauma, or by repetitive micro trauma, as is seen in overuse athletic injuries. Additionally, cyclists (especially older riders), may present with referred or radicular symptoms down the arms or in the hands. This may be due to a certain degree of arthritis in the cervical spine. Similarly the facet joints of the neck may become aggravated due to prolonged hyperextension.

Riders suffering from neck pain should consider the fit of their bicycle. One way to reduce neck hyperextension is by raising the handlebars or using a more upright stem/handlebar combination or perhaps even by using a shorter stem. Moving the saddle forward also reduces virtual top tube length, but the rider should be cautious as improper fore/aft saddle position can lead to knee pain.

Changes to riding technique can also help with neck pain. A rigid riding position transmits more shock directly to the neck and shoulders. Riding with unlocked elbows and more dynamic leg and arm absorption can alter neck posture minimizing pain. Full suspension can help out as well.

The benefits of stretching are well documented by research. Therefore it would make sense to frequently stretch your neck during the more leisurely parts of the ride as well as directly after your ride to reduce the frequency and severity of neck pain.

Low Back Pain

Low back pain is also very common in mountain biking. Riding position leads to prolonged back flexion, resulting in muscle pain in the unconditioned back. The low back is the primary muscle group generating power and controlling the movement of the bike. If the back is not well conditioned and flexible, muscle fatigue and strain will occur, leading to pain.

The virtual top tube length and the amount of spinal flexion in the riders back should be considered in cyclists with back pain. If the handlebars are too low, the flexion (lordosis) of the spine is exaggerated resulting in increased pressure on the lumbar spine. If the top tube length is too short, the sacral spine will flex, increasing pressure on the intervertebral disks. Ensuring that the handlebar height and top tube length are correct should help minimize back pain.

Pelvic position also contributes to back pain, as a misaligned pelvis will cause strain to the back musculature. Tight quadriceps will tend to tilt the pelvis forward, while tight hamstrings predispose to backward pelvic tilt. Pushing large gears or extended hill climbing may fatigue the gluteus muscles and the hamstring muscles, causing the pelvis to tilt backwards, aggravating the back musculature, causing pain. Also, the strength of the core abdominal muscles is critical to maintaining stable pelvic positioning. Core muscle group strengthening and lower extremity stretching will help with proper pelvic positioning and lead to pedaling efficiency.

Other lower back structures such as the disc, the sacroiliac joints, and the various spinal ligaments can also be stressed/injured and cause pain as a result of mountain biking. The only way to accurately find out were your pain is coming from is to have a qualified professional assess your spine.

Stretching and Strength Training

Because mountain biking demands prolonged back flexion and neck extension, ensuring that your neck and back are flexible is very important. The movements and action involved in Mountain biking demands repetitive hip and leg flexion anchored by a stable pelvis. Core strength and stability should be something that all riders (regardless of level) should try to improve. A good manual or physical therapist can easily teach common back and neck stretches and back core-strengthening exercises.


Neck and back pain is a common complaint among cyclists. By making a few select adjustments to the bicycle fit and committing to a core strengthening and stretching program, this ailment can be easily remedied.

If symptoms persist please feel free to give me a call for a consultation.

Happy Trails,

Dr. Bill Cameron (Kinesiologist), (Chiropractor), (Mountain Bike Rider)


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Take A Kid Mountain Biking Day

Saturday, October 1st is International Take A Kid Mountain Biking Day!

This October marks the seventh annual celebration of Take A Kid Mountain Biking Day, an event which has put more than 43,000 kids and adults on bicycles worldwide. Organized by the International Mountain Bicycling Association, the event takes place on the first Saturday of every October. This is a great opportunity for you to pass your passion for pedaling on to kids!

Find additional information at www.imbacanada.com/kids

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