It is easy to see from my other blogs that contact points (or controls) are one of favourite subjects.
Grips are one are that are very personal as the interface between the hand and handle bar is a very individual thing. It is where our hands are going to spend the vast majority of our ride and, compared to a road bike or the ‘old days’ of bar ends, in a relatively limited number of positions.
If one looked through my photo file of bikes for the last ten years one can see that grips are one of those components that get changed pretty frequently. It is not so much that the previous grips were wrong but that a newer design is, in fact, better; more comfortable, better grip and more control.
After Crankworx in 2014 Ergon offered me a set of their GE1 grips, designed by Fabian Barel with the needs of the modern “enduro” (read: long travel trail bike rider) fore most.
The shape of the grip encourages a natural, elbows out stance which leads to greater control and performance, as well as reducing fatigue in the hands. There are cut outs in the hard plastic, inner lock-on barrel of the grip to allow greater vibration dampening and comfort. There is variety in the grip pattern, offering larger sections where vibration dampening is a priority and more texture where grip is the priority such as under the fingers and thumb. Also there is a single, inner lock ring allowing riders (like me) to rest the edge of the palm right on the edge of the grip without causing damage to the ulner nerve. The grips have a built in, hard plastic, bar end plug for safety.
Over all they are a well thought out and well excecuted product that provides in increase in comfort and perfomance at a relatively low price.