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Old 07-31-09, 04:45 AM   #1
hwburgess@comca
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50+ prostatitis BPH MTBer Saddle recomendations

I use to bike alot in my 40's, and now that I am over 50, I get prostate problems a couple times a year. I like to mtb more than road bike, but I now have a really bad case of prostatitis that has left me with a sore butt. I went to the urologist and he told me to "stay off the bike" because doing that only hurts your prostate more (and he put me on flomax). I have been looking at different saddles (Selle italia, Selle SMP, Specialized), and I was wondering if anyone was an mtber and had the same problem and what type of saddle they use. I do not believe that all of these saddle claims to relieve pressure from the prostate area. I'm 6'0'' and weigh 185 pds, and currently use a Selle Italia Flite Trans-am which is a pretty wide (155 mm), hard saddle with a cut-away in the middle. I have enjoyed this saddle for more than 10 years, and have bought two others because the quality of the seat maker is very good. But, now I'm at a loss as to what to do . . . .give up biking?
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Old 07-31-09, 05:26 AM   #2
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Time to try saddles.

1) If your bars are lower than the saddle, make them even.

2) There are saddles made for that riding position. I use a B17 Champion Special,
and I also like the SelleAnatomica Titanico.

3) If that doesn't work, the next step is a saddle with springs like the Brooks Flyer.

4) Larger tires make for a cushier ride. I use 32c and next year I may go to 35c.

Last edited by late; 07-31-09 at 05:33 AM.
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Old 07-31-09, 06:55 AM   #3
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Have you confirmed that the doctor knows what he is talking about re: cycling impact on Prostatitis? Just a side issue, Flomax can cause hypostatic hypotension (or some such name) - a drop in blood pressure when standing up. I took it and got periodic dizzy spells including two fainting episodes after biking. Apparently, this is not very common with Flomax but... I switched meds but Flomax is better. I would recommend watching for the dizziness symptoms but stick with Flomax unless you have issues.
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Old 07-31-09, 07:29 AM   #4
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If your main interest is MTB, then I won't mention recumbents.
I use a WTB Rocket V Race on my hybrid and tandem.
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Old 07-31-09, 08:05 AM   #5
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With the caveat that everyone is different, I second the vote for a Brooks Team Pro saddle, which is what graces my mountain bike. The Sella Anatomica also looks interesting, and the three 50+ pastors on the bamboo-framed www.TourDeRevs.org triple swear by them.
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Old 07-31-09, 08:18 AM   #6
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Article in the most recent "Road Bike Action" magazine on this very subject. Proper bike fit is the place to start in resolving your problem(before dropping $$$ on saddles).
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Old 08-01-09, 04:19 AM   #7
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Saddle choice is a personal thing and most people would probably need a different saddle on a road bike compared to an MTB. As others have said, a saddle can feel very different if its a couple of mm higher or lower...

personally I am happy with the SMP4Bike from Selle SMP. The channel is better than just a hole for me - I sit forward a lot

I am sure that they aren't the best for absolutely everyone, but I think they need to be on the list of the ones you consider next time you make a change
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Old 08-01-09, 06:46 AM   #8
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I had a radical prostatectomy 8 years ago and if you want pain- Try sitting on a saddle after that.

Saddle comfort is difficult for some of us so a few tips and these will work for everyone.

Make certain you are sitting with the sit bones on the wings of the saddle. This takes most pressure off the Pubic bone that is where most of the pain will be coming from. This will normally require that the saddle is moved forward to get the bones in the right place- and they have to be firmly on the wings. Then drop the nose of the saddle till no pain can be felt on the Pubic bone. This may mean that you are sliding forward on the saddle but try it. If you are slipping forward all the time then the nose is just too low. So elevate the nose- drop the nose till it is comfortable. That may take a while. If necessary- put a pair of Cotton shorts over the slippy lycra till you get it right.

And the Selle Trans Am saddle is the one I use on the Tandem. Lots of sitting on the Tandem and not much chance of getting out of the saddle to relieve pressure. At least on an MTB you do have the chance to take pressure off the Butt by standing.

And the prostate is in a well protected area of the body. Unless you are doing unsavoury things with the saddle-I doubt that sitting on a saddle would be the cause of your problem. An Enlarged prostate that then gets affected by sitting is a better reason.

And stick with the saddle you have. Saddles are expensive and you will take a long time to find the "One" that works. Took me 6 years and was just an updated version of the saddle I was using pre R.P.
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Old 08-01-09, 08:01 AM   #9
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Saw Palmetto

I've been taking Saw Palmeto for the past decade. One capsule a day, non prescription 'NOW' brand; never have any prostate problems, although prior to taking Saw Palmetto, I occasionally had some prostate inflammation and slow urine. There are no side effects, and my doctor knows of my usage. Cycling 10 years, turned 70 last year, and ride a Fi'zi:k Arione Saddle.
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Old 08-01-09, 01:34 PM   #10
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First, proper saddle fit in width is the most important thing. If the saddle is too narrow, you will be sitting on the fleshy portion of your anatomy. Try 143mm in width instead of 130mm.

Secondly, for prostatitis you will NEED a saddle with a cutout to relieve any pressure there. There are tons of saddles to choose from and a Brooks is not the answer for everyone.

Third, I suffer from prostatitis on occasion. I use a Specialized Phenom. Cheaper than a Toupe and made for mtn biking. It has more padding than the toupe as well as being stronger in the seat pan (better for us fat fellows). This works for me, YMMV.

Last, take the medicine and listen to your doc. Something you can try as well is a hot soak in the tub with epsom salts after riding. It will reduce the irritation somewhat (and any swelling - NO, NOT that kind) as well as soothe your muscles.

Prostatitis is NOT fun. BPH is probably worse. I would gladly spend money to avoid or reduce the pain and other effects from either.
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Old 08-01-09, 02:10 PM   #11
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I do not have a problem with prostatitus; however it was pain to find a confortable saddle. What struck me was that only a few mm's up or downwards the feel the saddle gave could be way different. Fwiw I ride a a sell smp stratos and it's pointed a tiny bit downwards on the front and only 3 mm lower than the toupe which almost felt OK but for the pressure. I also removed 1cm of spacers on the front. It
took a while to find that spot. But worth it.
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Old 08-02-09, 08:58 AM   #12
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One thing that I believe helps a lot, is to find a doctor that is a cyclist. I was fortunate to find one for my PCP. (Keeps his bike in his office!) They are out there.

Why I say this: It seems common that when a cyclist has a health issue, he / she is advised to "Stay off the bike" by the non-cycling doctor. Anyone run into this?
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Old 08-02-09, 09:56 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trackhub View Post
Why I say this: It seems common that when a cyclist has a health issue, he / she is advised to "Stay off the bike" by the non-cycling doctor. Anyone run into this?
I was told by my Doctor that I was overweight. At 5'6" and 150 lbs I ought to get more exercise so I suggested to her that a ride of around 20 miles on a couple of eveneings and a 60 mile at Weekends-Would that be OK? And If I get the time- I would go down the gym for an hours cardio workout.

Considering as she was verging on the Obese- I thought this was a bit out of place. But she did agree that she had made a mistake.
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Old 08-02-09, 12:34 PM   #14
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I have a Brooks Flyer...it has springs.. I sent it to Selle Anatomica and had it cut out.
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Old 08-03-09, 05:38 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by late View Post


Time to try saddles.

1) If your bars are lower than the saddle, make them even.

2) There are saddles made for that riding position. I use a B17 Champion Special,
and I also like the SelleAnatomica Titanico.

3) If that doesn't work, the next step is a saddle with springs like the Brooks Flyer.

4) Larger tires make for a cushier ride. I use 32c and next year I may go to 35c.
Selle Anatomica Titanico...try one...you can return it if it does not work for you. At least check the site out. I sent them a B17 and a Flyer to be cut out. for me. The problem with saddles is that you have to try them to find out what works best. I use the Flyer on a 1988 Panasonic MC7500 MTB. The frame is Tange Prestige steel and with the Brooks it is a joy to ride. I weigh 150 and have the 'Clydesdale' extra leather on both saddles.
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Old 08-27-09, 08:38 AM   #16
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I wanted to give everyone a big "thank you" for responding to my post. I find it amazing that there are so many different opinons, and experiences, with saddles. After about a month off the bike, I went back to my Urologist, and he told me I could continue biking, but to get a seat with a cut-away. I ordered the Brooks 17 (with springs in the back -- different model), and tried it out, even though it did not have a cut-away. It is a very nicely made saddle, but I continued to experience sharp pain in the pelvic regions b/t my butt-and-balls. I finally stumbled across what I probably have been having trouble with -- my prudendal nerve. I read-up on the compression of this nerve and how it causes sharp pain in the area that I have had pain ("prudendal nerve entrapment" a/k/a/ "cyclist syndrome"). I researched saddles again, and I came across the "ISM Adamo" web page. I checked out their saddles, and bought one. It took only one ride to realize that, over the past ten years I have been putting too much pressure on this nerve, and it has caused me pain, other than my prostate, and I really needed a "large cut-away" in order to improve this condition and continue biking. For me, this is a happy ending to a long miserable process, but well worth it because biking in my life gives me stability. Without it, I drive my wife crazy.
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