Bike Fit: Flipping the Stem

Flipping the stem
Lately I've been having problems with my shoulders and back when I ride my bike. During our Timberland ride this morning, Agu and King suggested that I flip the stem from a negative to a positive rise.

Now I have to be honest. I'm not a big fan of an upright stem primarily because of the looks. A negative rise stem on a hardtail cross-country bike makes one seem like a bad-ass bike racer, while the opposite screams newbie.

Well, for the benefit of my back, I pulled out the allen wrench a couple of hours ago and flipped the stem to a positive five degree angle. Judging from the pictures, it doesn't look that bad at all.

We'll be riding in La Mesa tomorrow (I love this four-day weekend). I'll find out if my shoulders and back would thank me for valuing substance over style then.

Flipping the stem

Well, I didn't get to ride La Mesa today because King forgot to bring his bike shoes, but I took advantage of the situation and rode around the La Mesa parking area to try my bike's new stem position. Judging from this few minutes of riding from the car to the gate then back up to pavilion, I must say that there's a significant change in terms of my comfort. Of course the true outcome will reveal itself after a few hours on the saddle, but as of now it's very promising.