Is Biking Bad For Your Knees? 13 Causes of Knee Pain

People who bike regularly are often wondering if they’re harming their knees in the process. Some people think that cycling is bad for your body, and others believe it’s good for you. This article will discuss everything there is to know about biking and how it affects your joints. We’ll also look at which type of bicycle riding might be better for your health as well as what gear you should wear while biking to keep your joints happy!

Is Biking Bad For Your Knees

Is Biking Bad For Your Knees?

Cycling does not have any direct effect on the health of people’s knees.However, there are some indirect effects that can influence the health of your joints when cycling.

If you cycle with poor posture or over a long period of time in high intensity, it may have an effect on your knee joint as well as other body parts like the back and neck. 

In addition, to this, if you’re carrying weight from one side of your bike all day then eventually it is likely to affect how much pressure is put through different points in someone’s body including their joints such as knees.

Possible Causes of Knee Pain

  1. Sudden Speed
  2. Poor Posture
  3. Weight carried on bike
  4. Incorrect Gears
  5. Incorrect Saddle Height
  6. Narrow Handlebars
  7. Excessive Pedaling
  8. Excessive Cycling
  9. Sitting in the wrong place
  10. Poor Bike Maintenance
  11. Unsuitable Bike for Purpose
  12. Improper Attire
  13. Cleats can cause knee pain

Sudden Speed:

Sudden Speed
Sudden Speed

If you suddenly speed up while cycling, it can put more pressure through your knees.

This is why many cyclists will pedal in circles to prepare themselves for the sudden change of pace as they start going up hills or sprinting towards traffic lights!

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Poor Posture:

Poor Posture
Poor Posture

In the case that a cyclist does not have good posture or doesn’t take care when cycling at high speeds , they may suffer from knee injuries.

Weight Carried on Bike:

Weight Carried on Bike
Weight Carried on Bike

It’s important to remember that the weight of a bike should be distributed evenly across both wheels for people who are carrying some sort of backpack or rucksack.

As this will place additional strain and pressure through their knees at high speeds.

Incorrect Gears:

Incorrect Gears
Incorrect Gears

In addition  to this, if you’re cycling at high speeds and are in the wrong gear then it is likely that your knees will take a lot of strain. Learn How to Change Gears on a Road Bike!

Incorrect Saddle:

Incorrect Saddle
Incorrect Saddle

You may also find that an incorrect saddle height can place additional pressure on your knee joints when cycling for long periods of time.

Narrow Handlebars:

Narrow Handlebars
Narrow Handlebars

If you’re riding a bike with narrow handlebars (such as those found on children’s bikes) then there will be less distance between each side of the bars.

which means greater likelihood of bumping one’s knee against the other bar while cycling.

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Excessive Pedaling:

Excessive Pedaling
Excessive Pedaling

If you’re cycling excessively, then this is also likely to cause additional strain on your knees due to the repetitive motion of pedaling.

Excessive Cycling:

Excessive Cycling
Excessive Cycling

As with all sports, it’s important not to over-train and take adequate rest periods between sessions – otherwise this will put added pressure through your knee joints and may lead  to injury.

Sitting in the Wrong Place:

Sitting in the Wrong Place
Sitting in the Wrong Place

It’s also important to ensure that you’re sitting in the correct position on your bike, with a straight back and feet parallel.

This will help prevent knee pain by ensuring that cyclists have everything aligned correctly as they cycle.

Poor Bike Maintenance:

Poor Bike Maintenance
Poor Bike Maintenance

A poorly maintained bike can also cause knee pain, as a malfunctioning bicycle could lead to increased strain and put an uneven load on your body.

This is because if the brakes are faulty or worn out then you’ll need to use more pressure for them work – this will mean that one side of your leg will be exerting much  more force than the other side.

Also read How to Clean a Bike Chain with Household Products

Unsuitable Bike for Purpose:

Unsuitable Bike for Purpose
Unsuitable Bike for Purpose

If you’re cycling for leisure, then a light-weight bike may be suitable.

However if you are looking to cycle as part of your fitness routine or commute to work every day, then it’s worth investing in a more robust and durable cycle.

This will provide increased comfort and help prevent injury.

Improper Attire:

Improper Attire
Improper Attire

If you wear clothes that are too tight or don’t allow for enough airflow, then this can lead to discomfort and make it harder to pedal as smoothly.

Likewise, if your shoes do not have the proper grip or cushioning they could put increased pressure on your knees – leading them to become sore over time.

Cleats can cause knee pain: 

Cleats are designed to give you a better grip on your bike pedal. They do this by providing more traction and stability with the bottom of your shoe.

But can also cause some knee pain for cyclists who don’t get them properly fitted or aren’t wearing cycling shoes when they ride their bikes.

Other Related Problem For Knees Pain

  1. Your Core Muscle Get Soft
  2. No Body workout
  3. Squat Form
Your Core Muscle
Your Core Muscle

Your Core Muscle Gets Soft: You use your core every time you ride a bike! If it’s not strong enough then this can cause back pain and knee pain as well.

According to  the American College of Sports Medicine, you need to do 20-30 minutes of core strengthening exercises for the best results.

To make it easier and more effective: Do a few sets of planks with no hands (on your forearms) on an incline bench up against a wall – this will work out all the muscles in your core. 

No Body workout: To avoid all sorts of aches and pains, make sure that you’re doing some form of exercise on a regular basis – even if cycling isn’t for you.

Squat Form: Make sure to follow the right technique when performing squats or lunges- if they are done incorrectly then this could lead to sore knees over time.

Ways To Prevent Knee Pain While Biking

Ways To Prevent Knee Pain While Biking
Ways To Prevent Knee Pain While Biking
  • Wear good biking shoes that have a strong protective plate and arch support.
  • Don’t put too much pressure on your toes or heels when you’re pedaling, keep your feet flat in the pedals to avoid overloading these areas of the body.
  • Sit up straight – “scooping” out your abs will  protect the spine, pelvis and back of your legs so you can keep pedaling.
  • When you are at a stoplight, don’t rest your weight on one leg as this will put pressure on that knee
  • Make sure to stretch after riding too – pull out those quads with some simple stretches!

Exercises That Alleviate Knee Pain After Cycling

Exercises That Alleviate Knee Pain After Cycling
Exercises That Alleviate Knee Pain After Cycling
  • Housework, gardening or going for a walk can help to alleviate knee pain after cycling.
  • Try doing some stretches before you return home in order to limit the strain on your knees and joints during exercise.
  • Be sure to warm up with a five minute walk before any vigorous activity like biking too! This will keep things supple as well as prevent injury from occurring.

It is important to remain aware of your posture, avoid hunching over or using the same motion for too long.

This will keep things from becoming unbearable and you’ll have a happier and healthier knee experience!

Why Do My Knees Hurt When Riding A Bike?

Why Do My Knees Hurt When Riding A Bike
Why Do My Knees Hurt When Riding A Bike

If you are new to cycling, it may take a while for your body to get used to the motion.

After some time on the bike, try adjusting position or shifting gears so that you’re not sitting in an awkward way.

You might also want to invest in bicycle shorts which help distribute pressure more evenly around your knees and can have specially designed gel pads placed near where they will rest most often.

While biking is generally considered safe exercise because it’s low-impact.

There are instances when knee pain could be caused by cycling-specific problems such as improper positioning of one’s feet on the pedals or too much resistance causing strains on joints.

Can Cycling Damage Knees?

Can Cycling Damage Knees
Can Cycling Damage Knees

Cycling is not always the best exercise for those with knee pain.

If you have been diagnosed as having a knee injury, it is important to avoid any activities that may worsen your condition and contact a physician.

Cycling too hard or without proper gear can cause damage to the patella tendon in one’s knees over time.

It also requires strong quads and hamstrings which will put more strain on their joints than other exercises might do – so if you are going to be cycling regularly it would probably benefit you to invest in some special bike shorts!

Is Peloton Bad For Your Knees?

Is Peloton Bad For Your Knees
Is Peloton Bad For Your Knees

Recent research has found that using the Peloton bike may be bad for your knees.

The company was sued in 2018 by two riders who said they had developed chronic knee pain after riding their bikes on a regular basis and claimed it was due to an “unreasonably unsafe design.”

The problem seems to stem from how people naturally pedal, with most of them pushing down harder than necessary while also leaning forward when going uphill or sprinting.

This can cause one’s foot to hit the ground at up to four times normal force – which is enough pressure alone (even without extra weight) that could damage any joint if used over time.

Is Riding A Stationary Bike Bad For Your Knees?

Is Riding A Stationary Bike Bad For Your Knees
Is Riding A Stationary Bike Bad For Your Knees

Stationary bike riding is not bad for your knees. It’s actually a better option than cycling outdoors because it reduces the risk of injury from uneven terrain and collisions with other cyclists or pedestrians.

Is Spinning Bad For Your Knees?

Is Spinning Bad For Your Knees
Is Spinning Bad For Your Knees

Spinning is not bad for your knees. However, it’s important to make sure you’re using proper form and positioning while cycling or spinning so that the pressure on your joints isn’t too intense.

Is A Recumbent Bike Good For Bad Knees?

Is A Recumbent Bike Good For Bad Knees
Is A Recumbent Bike Good For Bad Knees

A recumbent is a good option for people with knee problems or injuries.

It is also a more comfortable bike to ride than the upright model because it has a lower center of gravity which reduces pressure on your knees, and provides support for your back.


There is no direct effect of cycling on the health of people’s knees. Some doctors and physical therapists will tell you that cycling can cause knee damage, but there is no scientific evidence to back up these claims.

The possible causes of knee pain include overuse, age, obesity and injury. This article details why people think bike riding causes knee damage and how to reduce any chance you might be putting yourself at risk in the future.

If you’re interested in reading more about this topic, please click on our link below! 


Is mountain biking bad for your knees?

Mountain biking is often not recommended for people who have knee problems, as it can put stress on your knees. If you haven’t had any problem previously then with your knees, then mountain biking can be good for you.

Is biking ok for bad knees?

Biking is usually ok for people with bad knees. However, some biking styles may put extra stress on your knee if you have a specific condition or injury like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, the runner’s syndrome and patellofemoral pain syndrome.

Is riding a bicycle bad for your knees?

Riding a bicycle is not bad for your knees if you don’t place too much pressure on them. However, it can cause some issues with the bike’s alignment and make pedaling more difficult.

Is biking or running worse for your knees?

If you are in good health, biking is a better option for your knees because it doesn’t place as much pressure on them. However, if you have specific knee problems or injuries and need to rest your joints then running may be a more appropriate activity.


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