Riding after broken wrist

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  • Riding after broken wrist
  • andyl

    that’s worrying! Maybe look at different bars/angles etc. What about a set of tri bars and work something else out for low speed stuff?

    I broke mine 3 months ago, still not been on a bike yet as building up the strength (although I did build a wall the other week)

    Premier Icon santacruzsi


    Broke my radial (radius?) on my right wrist about 12 years ago in a rock climbing fall. A clean cut but required 8 pins and 2 plates. Doctors said i’d never climb again, but 8 months later I was in the Alps climbing! Still able to ride both my mountain and road bikes with no problems. Just bought myself a 661 wrist pro (others are available!) to give support and comfort. Have the occassional ache but thats about it. In the early days after the break i had a fair bit of physio and plenty of exercises for it, and it doesnt hinder me much these days, if it all. Good luck!

    Busted my wrist, (amongst other things), in a climbing accident 7 years ago, ironically I can recommend climbing as an excellent way to build up strength!

    I had 4 hours of surgery to fix my wrist and then hit the climbing wall after the plaster was off and the pins were taken out, and it was not that long, say 6 months, before it was feeling pretty good again.

    I have no issues on the road or MTB, although it does ache a little more than the other one after a long race.

    Best of luck, work hard but don’t push it, the body is an incredible instrument that does respond to training.


    I found press-ups really helped my wrist after my break.

    Maybe build up a nice retro steel roadie where you can have brakes like these

    And down tube shifters, so you rarely have to ride on the hoods or lowers…?

    I couldn’t do press-ups for about 5 years, at least not with my palms flat on the floor, I had to do them off my knuckles or by using dumbbells.

    Broke scaphoid bone in wrist about 4 months ago, and still can’t ride my road bike.

    Am ok with my flat bar commuter bike, and on my MTB, but the drop bars just kill me – seem to put pressure/strain in all the wrong places.

    Physio says it may not get much better.

    Is this the end of road biking? Anyone else had similar injury?

    I do have tri bars but can’t steer with them! I think I’m a bit dyspraxic….

    I couldn’t do press-ups for about 5 years, at least not with my palms flat on the floor, I had to do them off my knuckles or by using dumbbells.

    I’m getting around doing press-ups at boot camp that way.

    I’d really like to do some climbing too, but not getting much chance, due to working away a lot at the moment and getting back at the weekend totally shattered. I’ve been once, and it wasn’t really causing too much bother. It just seems to be the road bike.

    ah well on with the rehab eh!


    For me it was the tendons and flexors that needed stretching after 3 months in plaster. Press ups hurt at first, but all good now.


    physio physio and more physio.

    broke mine and had it pinned, turbo trained when wearing the cast and struggled to put pressure on but was riding road 3/4 weeks after cast came off, mountain biking took a while maybe 8 or so weeks before I began gentle non technical routes off road but now fully recovered.


    you wont get full dexterity back, your wrist probably wont ever bend as much as the other you didnt break but it should be able to take a road bike and eventually a mountain bike. pain wise it is one of the most sensitive areas as all the connections to your hand go through it, obvious.

    oooh and do the physio.

    I’ve broken my radius twice. Each time I’ve lost a bit of rotation in it so I cant lift a barbell anymore which is a loss as I hate the gym 😉

    And my thumb’s lost a lot of strength/movement.

    As for gripping drops, I’ve not suffered from that but my physio’s recomendation for the barbell issue is to hold a rolling pin/broom handle/dumbell/wine bottle and let it stretch the wrist round using it’s weight, and use resistance bands for strengthening.

    Do you see an NHS Physio? IME the hospital based ones are many times beter than the ones attached to GP surgeries.


    I broke my other wrist (this was was left) last year just after buying a road bike so I have an idea of how it is hurting when you get down into the drops. I’ve still not ridden the damn thing properly as when my wrist recovered we hit monsoon season (never ridden a road bike before as wasn’t going to start in that weather), then it went icy, then it went wet and then the trails got in good shape given the choice of road bike or mountain bike there was no question…

    Maybe try rotating the bars, it might look and feel a bit odd but it might just take out some of the rotation which is causing the pain. I still whince doing silly things like opening a door in a funny way – basically anything that puts pressure on my wrist during rotation hurts. It is getting better though.

    Do you see an NHS Physio? IME the hospital based ones are many times beter than the ones attached to GP surgeries.

    I did, but only for 2 sessions!

    Premier Icon paladin

    Is it healed? I ended up getting a lot of ultrasound treatment on mine.

    For about 2 years afterwards I still struggled with gripping anything wide tightly.


    This is all scaring me!
    I’m currently in the daytime crew, signed off with a broken scaphoid bone and fractured elbow.
    My accident (road bike) was 4 weeks ago now, I have to wait until the 7th of November and they will decide if it needs an opp or not.
    Long story short I fractured my elbow in the accident, they found the boo boo in my wrist so it went in a cast for a week until my appointment with the hard expert because the X-ray looked “interesting”. The specialist told me my scaphoid bone has been broken for up to 10 years without me knowing about it and the accident had only done further damage to other bits? inside my wrist.

    I was hoping to hear stories from you lot about breaking it and returning to health in a month and becoming National Handstand Champion ect. I’m kinda imagining my wrist injury is going to drag on now, my elbow is back up to 85% but something feels “interesting” in my wrist still.

    the teaboy

    Broke my scaphoid in Feb.

    2 months in plaster,
    1 month getting it moving
    1 month of intermittent pain
    1 month until I was pain-free enough to ride a road bike.

    Basically took 5 months to get back to close to normal function.

    Now it’s more or less fine. Can’t push things with a flat hand or do press ups and often have some aching but otherwise ok. Survived 3 Peaks cyclocross on it anyway.


    broke both my ulna and radius to pieces 18 months ago, almost lost my hand and wrist, 12 hrs to put it back together in one sitting and 10 days in hospital,

    i was riding 3 months later,

    at first pain lasted and hard rides took their toll,

    after 12months it got a lot better, I never feel any issue while riding anymore,

    it will never be the same again and i still have a 6” Ti plate and eighteen screws, but hell who cares about that.

    give it time.

    Premier Icon camerone

    I suffered a clean break of radius bone 15th august. Plaster for seven weeks, been gently cycling afew timeas a week last two weeks. Building strength and movement every day. I am strictly on a no crash plan though for another 3 weeks so 12 in total since injury, otherwise tendon damage is a possibility….
    They reckon after three months it’ll be mostly mended…..

    My story


    Take the Physio option and do everything they say. Do your own research and learn the function of the joint so you understand what you are rehabbing, how it works and what you are really doing to it. Experiment with bar shapes ( I am now a confirmed salsa bar fan – cowbell/bell lap on road bikes and bend 2 on mtbs)

    And be patient. You can get stronger.


    My tale fits with those above pretty much entirely.

    I fell in Whistler (because I’m Sick^Rad) and broke my perilunate and schaphoid. I decided once my arm was set in the Whistler clinic to get it properly seen to by NHS docs once I came back to the UK. Which was 2 months later….

    I don’t think the wait really did too much further damage – the prescribed fix has been to gradually increase movement through physio exercises. I’ve not seen an operating table at all despite it being quite a mess inside my hand/wrist, because the surgeon was nervous about causing further damage and inflammation. This would ultimately lead to even worse arthritis than I can already expect because of the damaged wrist.

    My wrist is no-where near as flexible as it was, and sometimes will cause some pain (if I fall on it etc.) but is practically full strength now. I can ride road or MTB without any issues.

    I would recommend hitting the gym to do some weights. My whole left side of my body became noticeably weaker than my right as I naturally took on harder work with my right side. It’s amazing how quickly muscle mass drops away if you don’t use it!


    Distal radius fracture 7 weeks ago, plated in the US (where I broke it) and no plaster required, on the bike gently at 3 weeks, now at 7 weeks and while it gets tired and sore after an hour or so it works ok, limitations on movement are getting better with time, ligaments and the scar are the main sources of grief. Consultant says be careful until 12 weeks, improvement likely until 1 year after surgery . . . it’s grim in the early days, but it does get better, keep pushing but don’t go daft, it takes time to heal . . . nice scar . . . stay positive 😉


    I broke my scaphoid (don’t try riding back from a beer festival, at night, in the rain!..another story!). I was two weeks in a soft cast as the initial x-ray wasn’t conclusive and then a further 4 weeks in proper cast after further x-rays. Couple of weeks physio and was good to go. No further pain or problems. I do remember reading that its a common injury and not unusual to have problems with it later on in life, especially if its not allowed to heal properly first.



    I suffered a very bad break and used the above. Really helped build strength and helped with mobility.


    I broke my schaphoid years ago bouldering. A massive blow as I was climbing pretty well at the time and I was really keen. I had a cast for 3 months and when it came off the wrist hurt a lot, had limited mobility and climbing was really hard (like 6a instead of 8a hard!)

    I basically forced the wrist to start moving again by putting pressure on it while immersed in hot water (the hot water really helps). A couple of weeks of pain got it working to the point where I could start training seriously again and had reasonable flexibility. 3/4 months in a cast will make your wrist really stiff, you just need to get it moving properly again.

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