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  1. #1
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    Soreness from bike seat

    I'm a newbie on this site, and actually to biking as well. I have a Norco Pinnacle mountain bike, that I ride for about 1/2 to 1 hour at a time on flat surfaces. I've been finding that the bike seat is really making me sore...down there. Not too sure how else to describe that area in a family forum, but it's right behind the family jewels. Anyways, you get the picture. I was just wondering if this was anything to be worried about. If this soreness doesn't go away, will it cause any permanent damage? Should I consider buying an aftermarket seat?

    Thanks,

    Tubejig

  2. #2
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    I get sore too, I usually just sit on the back of the seat.. Maybe get a gel pad?

  3. #3
    Trailmaster Pocorider's Avatar
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    I had the same soreness on the same norco seat and it took about 2 months for me to get used to it.

  4. #4
    Member mikebottone's Avatar
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    I just started riding 3 days ago I have a trek 1000 with a bontrager race lite seat and i am in cripling pain down thier also

  5. #5
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    Well, it's never hugely comfortable when you first start--your body isn't used to having that sort of stress on that area for very long.

    A couple things to do:

    1. Have your bike shop help you with your saddle position and general position on the bike. Odds are you will feel like you're sitting way too high up at first, bt you quickly get used to it. You reap huge benefits in butt comfort, efficiency, and knee health from these changes.

    2. Get a pair of cycling shorts. If you don't like the lycra look, there are plenty of baggy shorts on the market which have a lycra liner covered by a nylon shell that looks like a regular pair of shorts. These give you several benefits as well: A chamois pad that helps as far as pressure, the tight fit of the inner liner helps prevent chafing, and they're just generally a lot more comfortable.

  6. #6
    switching to guns ch0mb0's Avatar
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    or get a saddle that has a hollowed-out channel in the middle (to relieve pressure)
    Fate is the Hunter
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  7. #7
    Banned Bikepacker67's Avatar
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    Make sure you're sitting on your butt bones!

    And counter-intuitively, squishy gels and pads can actually make the soreness/numbness worse!

  8. #8
    But Getting Smaller Bigmark's Avatar
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    I'm a newbie on this site, and actually to biking as well. I have a Norco Pinnacle mountain bike, that I ride for about 1/2 to 1 hour at a time on flat surfaces. I've been finding that the bike seat is really making me sore...down there. Not too sure how else to describe that area in a family forum, but it's right behind the family jewels. Anyways, you get the picture. I was just wondering if this was anything to be worried about. If this soreness doesn't go away, will it cause any permanent damage? Should I consider buying an aftermarket seat?
    I had the same problem, I made every possible adjustment I could, and finally gave up. I purchased a Bontrager Comfort Saddle, and after a few miles and a few adjustments all the soreness is gone. What the LBS and I decided was the problem was the amount of cushion was pushing up and causing all kinds of problems. This seat is much firmer, and has a hole in the center for air conditioning.
    ~~"Get on your bikes and ride!"~~
    Working to be JustMark

  9. #9
    45 miles/week Eggplant Jeff's Avatar
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    Yeah for long riding, you want all pressure to be on your sit bones and NOWHERE ELSE. That's why harder saddles are actually more comfortable for long rides... there's no pressure on your s because all your weight is being borne by your bones. Usually when you switch to a harder saddle, the two spots where your bones sit will be a little sore at first but they'll get used to it fairly quickly (a week or so, varies by person of course, some people are comfortable right away).

    I know when I switched to my Brooks B17 (also known as "the hardest saddle on earth" at least until you break it in) I was amazed how much better it felt everywhere else.

    Big gel squishy saddles allow the bones to sink in, and result in a more even pressure across the whole crotch. For short rides this is OK but for longer rides the pressure on soft parts becomes an issue. The definition of "short" and "long" vary by person of course... for me, 4.5 miles (distance to work) on my old squishy saddle made me sore. 2-3 miles did not.

  10. #10
    More biking, less flying.
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    I had same prob with the stock seat on my GT. So, I bought bike shorts, and a new seat. Cheapy Diamondback with the open nose. Paid $20 for the seat and $20 for the shorts. Now I have no pains, unless I sit in the wrong position for too long. I also try and get off the seat for a minute every 10-15 minutes.

  11. #11
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    Wow, I'm shocked at the number of intelligent responses in such a short time. Looks like I stumbled on a great thing. Thanks!

    I'll definately check out some of the seats mentioned. The open crotch design sounds appealing. Also probably pick up some bike shorts...but definately the baggy kind. LOL!

    Thanks again.

    Tubejig (and yes, I do fish)

  12. #12
    Calamari to go cc_rider's Avatar
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    Terry makes some good saddles with cut-outs.

    Also, get in the habit of standing up on the pedals every so often. Stretches your legs, and give you rear a rest. I find 16 pedal strokes usually enough of a rest.

  13. #13
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    I second CC RIDER!!! Make sure to stand up occasionally, also move around on the seat a little and change positions. Unfortunately, it is a right of passage to a degree, but it will go away. Make sure to check the level of your seat-not front too high, or front too low...get fitted if you want to speed up the process. Shorts help tremendously, and a lotion like chamois buttr, etc cuts down on friction. Good luck and hang in there!!!!!

  14. #14
    The Rabbi seely's Avatar
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    Gel is a recipe for really sore junk over long rides, melted saddles, sticky shorts...

    Basically what you need is a saddle that supports your sit bones and not much else (the back "wings" should be about the width of your sit bones and really contact only your sitbones), and the nose provides some support + control. Most saddles are designed to have the nose level with the back of the saddle. Shorts make a difference if they have a good chamois, as they reduce chafing. For long rides I usually use a little bag balm on the chamois to reduce chafing and friction.

    It really does take some time to get comfortable on the saddle of a bike--RARELY does a saddle ever feel 100% the first ride. It goes with the sport... you can ask any equestrian and they will agree... you kind of have to toughen up down there a bit as well as find the right saddle/shorts.
    commuter turned bike mechanic turned commuter (also a Velocity USA employee, but this is my personal account)

  15. #15
    Senior Curmudgeon
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tubejig
    I've been finding that the bike seat is really making me sore...down there. Not too sure how else to describe that area in a family forum
    The word you're looking for is "perineum." Perineum soreness is common in bicyclists. There are many theories of saddle design that claim to minimize perineum soreness with varying results. What works for one individual may not work for another. Unfortunately, you may just have to try different saddles until you find the one that best minimizes your discomfort.

    Good luck!

  16. #16
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    There are lots of saddles on the market, and different folks have different preferences. But, the Specialized Body Geometry family has saddles for everyone, at least three widths and three degrees of firmness.

    For most guys, a BG of medium width and medium firmness will work well. The saddle needs to be wider than your rear. So, if need be, get the wide size. One of my mountain bikes has, what the salesman says, is a woman's saddle. But, it is exactly as wide as my rear, and is very comfortable.

    Make sure your pelvis is upright, with your weight on your sitbones. If your pelvis is tilted forward, your weight will be on the sensitive areas, not on the pelvis. Forward rotation is usually caused by having the bars too low, and having the saddle too far from the bars. So, raise the bars, and slide the saddle forward.

    By the way, in theory, the positions that are most comfortable are the least "aero". That is why Pro's look so uncomfortable.

  17. #17
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    Always pictured Alan riding a girls seat.

  18. #18
    Bent_Rider
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  19. #19
    Me. mrchristian's Avatar
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    I used to ride a NOS 80's Vetta saddle with no problems, but I got a Velo Pronto Z2 on my new bike and I like it a lot better, especially on long rides. Far less padding and an anotomical cutout. Looks uncomfortable, but feels great. I'd definately skip on the Pronto Z1 though because of the gel.

    Remember though, just because it works for me, doesn't mean it will work for you. Everybody's arse is different, so go to a LBS where they let you try some out.

    The Specialized Body Geometry is a popular option. A good saddle will cost you some $$.

    If a new saddle doesn't solve the pain problems, I'd think about going to a doctor. It could be a much worse problem...

    Stay clear of gel. The less padding the better, since it compresses your blood vessles and causes some nasty chafing.

    Will it cause permanent damage? Some doctors say that it can cause damage in the long run, but others say no. There's not really a definiate answer, but if it hurts, you should stop using the saddle. It might be positioned wrong though(!)
    Last edited by mrchristian; 07-22-05 at 05:02 PM.
    I just say something about fixies being sooo trendy right now. That is hipster kryptonite. -Anon

  20. #20
    Frosted Flake
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    When I first got the Kona, I opted for the Body Geometry seat that seemed to look like it would be comfy. In a word, mistake..
    I discovered on the first ride that the seat was not nearly slippery enough. The rubbery coating made moving around on the seat nearly impossible without the shorts dragging. So, back to LBS, and back out on the road with the stock saddle, which I seriously doubted was going to be comfortable.
    In another word... surprise
    The stock saddle was and is still the best I've ever ridden on. And cheap besides
    It's firm enough to give good support, the softer ones are too "squirmy" for my liking, has a cutout for the bad pressure points, and is slick enough to enable moving around a bit.
    Score one for the guys at Kona, they got it right (at least for me) the first time around.
    Secondly, step up to the secure-in-our-masculinity plate and take a swing with the rest of us in the spandex bike short game. I never thought I'd ever wear spandex shorts until I borrowed the GF's. She made a believer out of me on the first ride. Additionally, the ladies love spandex on good legs (you'll get those quick enough), they stay put, and I hate looking like this all by myself..
    It's either old age or I need more suspension...

    04 Kona Blast (mine)
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  21. #21
    Me. mrchristian's Avatar
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    Yeah...lycra is great and will stop any chafing problems.

    I think the stock saddle on the Kona Blast is a WTB Pure V Sport... WTB makes a nice saddle.
    Last edited by mrchristian; 07-22-05 at 05:11 PM.
    I just say something about fixies being sooo trendy right now. That is hipster kryptonite. -Anon

  22. #22
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    Soreness goes away after a day or two in my experience. I've always wondered about the dynamics but it goes away to quickly for me to seek an answer.

  23. #23
    Frosted Flake
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrchristian
    Yeah...lycra is great and will stop any chafing problems.

    I think the stock saddle on the Kona Blast is a WTB Pure V Sport... WTB makes a nice saddle.

    The new ones are the WTB, I believe. Mine is an 04, which has the Kona Comfort Comp saddle.
    It's either old age or I need more suspension...

    04 Kona Blast (mine)
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  24. #24
    One day at a time H2OChick's Avatar
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    I think you'll find that finding the right saddle is like finding the right spouse. You've got to kiss a lot of toads before you find your handsome prince (princess, whatever...)

    I think the conventional wisdom is 1) it takes a while to break a saddle in 2) it takes your undercarriage a while to get "used to riding" 3) gel is not your friend over the long haul 4) you have to keep trying til you find one that works - where you feel like you could ride all day and 5) what works for one person may not work for you. If you're in that kind of pain after half an hour, I'd say that's not the right saddle for you.

    Also do a search in the forums on "saddle" and you'll get lots more wisdom.

  25. #25
    Senior Member onbike 1939's Avatar
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    Forgetthe cleft saddle idea. It's something that's been around since the early 1900's and it doesn't work. Save yourself a lot of grief and but a Brooks B17.

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