On the topic of pump… does anyone have some good exercises to get rid of arm pump? It gets pretty bad for me on the longer descents.
stolen from Ridemonkey.com which stole this from a motocross forum.
You'll notice a lack of exercises listed. Having stronger arms likely isn't a bad thing, but if you just hold on tighter….well it really isnt going to help at all.Arm pump in moto is a big deal and i would say in all the years riding, arm pump from MTB is a fraction of what it is for Moto and more specifically Motocross racing.
"ontop of just "riding more" here are some sweet tips i got from some motocross forum
very good read
On the bike:
1. Dont hold the handlebar grips so tightly: If you are holding on to the handlebars with a death-grip, you are sure to get arm pump. Relax your hold. Flow with the bike, dont fight it. Learn to absorb bumps with your entire body being relaxed, not tense.
2. Grip the bike with your legs: Besides reducing arm pump, gripping the dirt bike with your legs instead of your hands, can greatly improve balance and speed. By gripping the tank with your knees you do not need to hold your handlebars so tightly.
3. Breathe, relax and have fun: State of mind is critical to reducing arm pump. Ever notice that you never get arm pump while practicing hard for hours, yet its an immediate factor at a 20 minute race? Thats because you are tensing up and stiff, and not breathing oxygen into your lungs, hence into your blood. Relax. Dont hold your breathe. Breathe deeply and remind yourself to have fun while riding!
4. Ride more often: This is the most common solution given by motocross trainers. Probably because it forces all these tips to occur naturally. By riding often your body not only gets the consistent cardio workout part executed, but riding often also trains your muscles to oxygenate themselves during intense activity too. Best of all, riding more often will help you become a better, smoother rider, allowing the forearm muscles to do less work.
5. Avoid wrist restriction: Often overlooked, it is important not to restrict your wrists movement or blood-flow with overly tight jersey cuffs or glove closures. Less blood flowing through your wrist, means less blood flowing through your forearms. Keep your Velcro glove closures loose.
6. Buy quality aftermarket products designed to help: There are several high quality products on the market that have proven to reduce rider fatigue and arm pump. Steering dampers, anti vibration handlebars, impact absorbing handlebar gel, and newer grip design, can all reduce arm pump. ChronicMX has done product reviews on most of these with positive results (See product reviews).
7. Ensure proper bike settings: Suspension, Handlebar choice, and lever positioning must be properly set for each riders custom weight, height, skill level, comfort and terrain. Incorrect settings will lead to the need for an increased grip on the handlebars, causing arm fatigue and creating a higher likelihood of arm pump.
Off the bike:
8. Follow a weekly cardio workout program: Cardiovascular exercise increases your bodys ability to replenish muscles with oxygen. By teaching the muscles to replenish themselves with a fresh supply of oxygenated blood during stress, arm pump becomes greatly reduced.
9. Take supplements: It is very important to keep your bodys level of minerals and nutrients high, so that it can replenish itself during intense cardio exercise. Numerous companies make supplements that include minerals such as magnesium, that have been proven to work well in combating arm pump. Some even help break up lactic acid build up. Cytomax is a chosen favorite amongst motocrossers .so is taking a small dose of aspirin as a blood thinner.
10. Drink more H20: Staying hydrated is a critical factor for obvious reasons. Dehydration can lead to muscle cramps and fatigue. Not only will drinking more water help reduce arm pump, but it can improve the bodys ability to absorb critical minerals and prevent heat stroke too.
11. Do 15 minutes of cardio exercise just prior to riding: This is critical and one of the most important factors in reducing arm pump. Raising your heart rate prior to your first moto or ride is a guaranteed way to increase blood flow throughout your body and hence, prevent arm pump. This is why you see the pros doing jumping jacks or riding stationary bicycles just before the start of each moto."