Fixed and dodgy knees


Huge Member
Fly Fifer
Ok I had an op on my right knee 3 years ago, due to injury playing football. Basicly I tore some cartlidge in my knee, it was removed and all seems well, I`m still managing to kick a ball anyway :ohmy: . However riding fixed may put some strain on the knee, is it advisable to ride a fixed wheel with dodgy knees ? I suppose keeping the gearing sensible should help.


Well-Known Member
Ummm yeah, a sensible gear is one thing, but trying to use back-pressure on the fixed drive is far more the issue I believe. I had a few twinges and aches for 3 or 4 months until some under-employed leg muscles got a bit better at it.

Use a brake for slowing down, and don't push it too hard until you feel adequately prepared.

FWIW I've come to believe riding fixed is no better nor worse for your legs and knees than geared, providing you don't act like a dick (a general term which includes riding brakeless, skidstopping at every occasion, etc). Have fun!!


Über Member
My knees hurt if the saddle is too low or the cleats are out of alignment, not whether I am riding fixed or free. I don't backpedal much though as I use two brakes. Riding fixed keeps my ankles supple too.


New Member
If your knees are hurting as Frustruck stated, it could be your position. are you clipped or clipless.

If clipless try adjusting cleat position or go for something with a little more float like time atacs.

I did have problems with my knees aswell, I put my seat higher and it sorted it for me.


Huge Member
Fly Fifer
Not gone fixed yet and had no big issues with my knees on my other bikes apart from saddle position which was quickly sorted. Just the thought of only one gear where as on a geared bike you would tend to gear down for the hills or if your legs are hurting. Probably won`t be an issue, oh and i`ve got time atacs on my list to go with the bike purchase.


New Member
Bury, Lancashire
Leg braking might present a problem. It is quite difficult NOT to leg brake on fixed - it comes naturally. However, yes, a sensible gear and flattish rides to start with are a good idea.

Do you have one leg shorter than the other or wear orthotics/footbeds or use wedges under you cleats? If you don't know/don't use any orthotics, perhaps you could investigate this. I had knee problems this year in the left knee (due to tight IT band, probably - which effectively shortened my left leg by 2 mm). The knee no longer 'waggles' when I pedal, but tracks straight and the pain has gone completely since I started using custom food beds and a wedge under the left cleat (from Cycle fit in London).

Twenty Inch

New Member
Behind a desk
You'd be much better off not playing football. It's murder on the joints, especially as the sunday leaguers try to play like Premiership professionals, but without the training, conditioning, physiotherapists, masseurs, hydro-spas etc that the pros enjoy. Most of my university football team can now barely walk.
GET the seat at the right hight if you dont and its to low you will damage your cartlidge over time.
If your seat is to high you will do in your tendons and ligaments.
To get your seat at the right hight put your bike next to a wall and sit on the bike using the wall. Now put your heal on the peddle with it at the lowst point. If the seat is at the right hight you will have firm placement with ont bending the knee or filling like you have to strach.
it might fill a but strange riding at first but it works and you can spin faster.
thanks mickle for teaching me that one


Rider of Seolferwulf
South London
And don't try to do as much on fixed as you would on geared. Take months to build up slowly, it's much harder work so you need to give your body time to adapt.


howdy fellas and sorry for a slight hijack

I'm building up to a new bike on insurance after my hybrid got trashed

I'm planning my first road bike for my commute, 12.5 miles across London, a few decent hills at Camden Road and Seven Sisters, I'm 42 nearly but I'm athletic and keen, I like what I read about fixed but I'm not sure about how much extra work is involved, I put plenty of puff in now and perhaps use four of the 27? gears on the bike, I like the ethos and the simplicity of it all

Am I being silly?

edit, forget me, I am being silly, I need panniers at least and that's not on at all is it?

I appreciate it's a very vague question, ta
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