How To Position Road Bike Handlebars

Last Updated on July 27, 2020

This guide has been written by cycling review expert Alex Bristol

Last Updated on July 27, 2020

Importance of handlebars:

Handlebars are the most vital part of a bike riding experience. It is very important to have it set up and positioned according to the need of your body. This is because it literally controls the handling of the bike. Hence, how to position road bike handlebars, is an important question that needs to be answered.

Some handlebars offer three different hand positions. This allows for a change in body posture while riding. Handlebars can also determine the aerodynamics of your bike which is crucial while trying to reach high speeds. Some handlebars can fit through more narrow spaces which are important for portability and ease of travel. Easy and quick access to brake levers is also very important, and all of this depends on the handlebar you choose. Handlebars need to be positioned correctly on a road bike. We will take a look at exactly how that is done.

How to position your handlebar:

First, we will start with handlebar height and angle. Height and angle are overlooked while setting up the proper position of road bike handlebars. But it is very important whether you’re aiming for improving your aerodynamics or getting a comfortable riding experience.


The first step is to have an idea as to what you want. If you are looking for a more general comfortable bike riding experience, you will want a little more height on the handlebars. This will allow for an upright position while riding and enable you to go longer durations on a single outing. If you are looking for a more aerodynamic friendly riding experience where you are after speed, then a lower height position is the best for you as it will help you shave milliseconds off of your track time.


Having a proper angle is just as crucial as the height when it comes to setting up a proper handlebar position. Usually, handlebars are mounted parallel to the ground, with a slight upward tilt. This is important to provide a natural holding position. A handlebar will never be angled downwards as this makes it difficult to hold the bike properly. The brake levers will preferably be mounted such that the end of the brake lever is even with the bottom of the bar.

These positions are important to take a note of, as they provide the basis for a proper handlebar position.


As we can see, handlebar position is just as important, if not more, when it comes to setting up a road bike. With that said, it is crucial to pay attention to the small angles and height adjustments that can either make or break a fulfilling bike riding experience. Road bike riding is a much-loved sport/hobby worldwide. People love doing it not only as a means of minimal transportation but also for peace of mind. And all of these little clocks in the shape of handlebar pre-requisites, need to work properly together to enable such an amazing ride.

Relevant article:

Cyclist tips – How To Set Up Road Bike Drop Handlebars

Related Post: Best Road Bike Handlebars [Review]

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