How To Make Your Head Stop Hurting For Cycling: 3 Strategies [Prevention]

Stop Hurting Cycling Head Pain Prevention and Treatment Strategies

Cycling head pain, also known as exertional headaches, occurs when intense exertion increases blood flow to the head and neck muscles. This causes the blood vessels in the head, neck, scalp, and face to expand, facilitating improved circulation.

To relieve headaches and neck pain post-bike rides, try stretching, foam rolling, and using a lacrosse ball to loosen
tight muscles.

Add head and neck strengthening exercises for better support during cycling. This holistic approach can reduce discomfort and boost your biking experience.

This blog post discusses prevention strategies and treatment tips for stopping head hurting while cycling.

Key Takeaways

  • Resting in a cool, shaded area and taking acetaminophen or Ibuprofen over the counter can provide immediate relief from cycling-related headaches.
  • Cold compresses to the neck and forehead can help reduce headache pain.
  • Techniques like mindfulness, meditation, deep breathing exercises, relaxed posture during rides, and ergonomic adjustments can help manage and prevent headaches.
  • Increased blood flow because of physical activity like cycling can cause exertional headaches.
  • A properly fitted bike can help prevent head pain and subsequent headaches.
  • Regular stretching and mobility exercises can ease pain and help maintain neck flexibility.
  • Adequate sleep (around 7-8 hours) and hydration before, during, and after rides are crucial preventive measures for cycling-induced headaches.
  • Proper nutrition, comprising proteins, healthy fats, carbohydrates, and timed meals and snacks around cycling schedules, can help prevent exertional headaches.
  • Cycling headaches can be mitigated by wearing lightweight clothing and riding during cooler times of the day.

How To Make Your Head Stop Hurting For Cycling: Prevention Strategies

Here are some strategies for preventing head pain while cycling

Cycling should be exciting, with the wind in your hair and your legs pedaling on your favorite trail. But it can be a bummer when you get cycling headaches, also called exertional headaches. These sudden head pains can ruin your ride, but fear not! This guide will explain these head pains and give tips on stopping and handling them.

Rest and Hydration to Prevent Cycling Headaches

The key to preventing head pain while cycling is to get enough sleep. When you don’t sleep well, your body becomes tired and more prone to pain. Aim for at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night to keep your body functioning correctly.

Staying Hydrated Before, During, and After Rides

Maintaining good health requires drinking water and avoiding headaches. Dehydration can cause headaches, so drink water throughout the day. Here are some tips:

  • Before Your Ride: Drink a glass of water about 30 minutes before you start.
  • During Your Ride: Take small sips of water every 15-20 minutes.
  • After Your Ride: Replenish lost fluids by drinking another glass of water.

Proper Nutrition to Avoid Cycling Head Pain

Nourish your body with balanced meals full of essential nutrients for overall health. Enjoy a colorful plate with lean proteins, whole grains, healthy fats, fruits, and veggies to stay energized. Eating the right foods helps your body stay strong and prevents headaches. Make sure your meals include:

    Proteins: Like chicken, fish, or beans.
    Carbohydrates: such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.
    Fats: Healthy options like nuts, seeds, and avocados.

Timing Snacks and Meals Around Your Cycling Schedule

When you eat is just as important as what you eat. Here are some tips:

  • Pre-Ride Snack: Have a light snack, like an energy bar or banana, about 20-30 minutes before you start.
  • During Your Ride: Carry small snacks, like dried fruit or nuts, to keep your energy up.
  • Post-Ride Meal: Eat a balanced meal within an hour of finishing your ride.

Cooling Down Techniques to Mitigate Cycling Headaches

Keeping cool during your ride can help prevent headaches. Consider these strategies:

  • Dress Appropriately: Wear lightweight and breathable clothing.
  • Ride in Cooler Times: Try to cycle in the early morning or late evening when it’s cooler outside.

To Stop Head Hurting From Cycling: 5 Best Ways

The 5 best ways to stop head aches from cycling

When you engage in physical activity, such as cycling, the muscles in your head, neck, and scalp require increased blood flow. This may trigger exertional headaches due to the dilation of blood vessels. Here are some options to stop your head hurting while cycling.

Immediate Relief for Cycling Headaches

Suppose you feel a headache while cycling. Find a cool, shaded area to rest. Heat and direct sunlight can worsen headaches, and taking a break in a cooler environment can help ease the pain.

Taking Pain Relievers as Needed

Sometimes, over-the-counter pain relievers can provide quick relief from cycling headaches. Consider taking:

  • Ibuprofen or acetaminophen: These can help reduce headache pain. Always follow the recommended dosage instructions.

Cold Compresses for Stop Hurting Cycling Head Pain

Cold compresses can be very effective at relieving headache pain. Here’s how to use them:

  • Ice Pack on Neck: Place an ice pack on the back of your neck to reduce blood flow and numb the pain.
  • Cold Cloth on Forehead: Apply a damp cloth to your forehead for additional relief.

Relaxation Techniques to Manage Cycling Headaches

Practice mindfulness by focusing on the present, your breath, and sensations for peace of mind. Techniques like body scans and loving-kindness meditations can ease headache pain by promoting relaxation. Try these methods to boost mental and physical well-being.

  • Exercises for Deep Breathing: Relax your body and mind by taking slow breaths.
  • Meditation Sessions: Take a few minutes to clear your mind and manage pain.

Relaxing Upper Body, Arms, Shoulders, and Face During Rides

Staying relaxed while cycling can prevent tension headaches. Pay attention to these areas:

  • Upper Body: Keep your upper body loose and avoid tensing up.
  • Arms and shoulders: Let your arms and shoulders hang naturally without tightening them.
  • Face: Make sure your face is relaxed, not scrunched up.

Ergonomic Adjustments for Cycling Headaches

Adjustments for stop hurting cycling headaches

Cycling in the same position for too long can strain your neck. Here are some tips for changing positions:

  • Alternate Hand Positions: Move your hands between different spots on the handlebars.
  • Sit Up Straight: Occasionally ride upright to relieve neck tension.

Ensuring Proper Bike Fit for Your Body Dimensions

A bike that fits you well can help prevent neck pain and headaches. Consider these adjustments:

  • Seat Height: Ensure your knees are bent slightly when the pedal is depressed.
  • Handlebar Position: Adjust the handlebars so you don’t have to reach too far or hunch over.

Stretching and Mobility Exercises to Prevent Cycling Headaches

Taking breaks to stretch your neck can help reduce pain. Try these stretches:

  • Side Stretches: Gently tilt your head to one side, hold for a few seconds, then switch sides.
  • Forward Stretches: Slowly lower your chin to your chest, hold, and lift your head back up.

Gentle Head Rotations and Maintaining Upright Posture

Keeping your neck mobile and maintaining good posture are key. Follow these tips:

  • Head Rotations: Slowly turn your head from side to side to keep your neck muscles flexible.
  • Upright Posture: Keep your back straight and shoulders relaxed while riding.

Making ergonomic adjustments and practicing regular stretching can mitigate neck pain and headaches while riding.


Cycling offers a sense of liberation – exciting adrenaline, stunning scenery, and the exhilarating taste of freedom. This delightful experience should not be marred by the disabling nuisance of headaches.

You can hit the road with renewed energy by identifying the triggers of cycling-induced headaches and adopting effective preventive measures. Whether maintaining a balanced diet, staying well-hydrated, or practicing mindfulness, you hold the key to enjoying a pain-free cycling adventure.

So, gear up and ride towards the horizon, embracing less discomfort and heaps of joy, transforming your cycling escapades from challenging to delightful. Enjoy your ride.


Try wearing a bandana or cap under your helmet to keep your head cool while cycling. Wet it, squeeze it out, and put it back on. As others have suggested, starting early is key.

Engaging in yoga can ease stress, a key trigger for migraines, through intentional and mindful movements. Research suggests that a consistent yoga practice of five to six times per week can notably reduce migraine symptoms and episodes.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share via
Copy link