Back Pain.

Question for Adam
It seems lower back pain is getting more common these days and it effects everyone(surprised to hear it that you have it as well Adam) and I know other pros and had to go through the same thing, Bruce Crisman, Ruben Alcantara, Taj Mihelich, and they found a way to ride their bikes again. My question is, what steps, exercise, surgeries etc, they had to do in order to be where they are now?

It’s definitely a huge problem for people who have been riding a long time. A lot of guys I ride with out here like Rich Hirsch and Jeff Z are constantly dealing with back pain and in Rich’s case it pretty much took him out of the pro rider picture altogether. He had back surgery and it never really got comfortable like it was before. Same deal with Taj, I know I’ve read that he can’t even bunnyhop because of his back. Ruben put out a web video recently where he said that he got braces and his back pain went away, which is pretty incredible if it’s true. Personally I definitely deal with it every day. It goes through phases, sometimes it’ll be really bad and sometimes it’ll be pretty minimal, it’s definitely always there though no matter how much I stretch, go to the chiropractor, etc. Jeff Z has got a lot of guys I ride with stretching every day before we ride though, which I definitely think makes a difference.

I have a theory that a lot of the back pain guys like us deal with is related to how illogical our bikes were built even just 10 years ago. Bars that are less than 8 inches tall are just stupid. Bunnyhopping with low ass bars is just asking for trouble. I’ve heard shops say that the Perfect Ten bars (with a whopping 10″ rise) are their best selling bars now, which tells me that even though most pro riders are still in the 8-9″ range, a lot of kids are sold on even bigger bars. Combine that with the fact that bikes used to weigh almost twice as much and it’s no wonder that so many riders are dealing with this stuff now.