Hi Everyone. Just joined from Amherst, MA. I've been riding a Trek hybrid for a while and find that it's somewhat tiring after an hour or so, even going up a minimum grade on a bike path. And- the worst is that the bicycle seat is chafing my butt which makes for a somewhat unpleasant ride-- but I feel virtuous after the ride and glad I did it.
Several weeks ago, during a trip in the midwest, I rented a Fuji Sunfire bike with a wider saddle than I the one I have, and rode in some pretty rough terrain-- grass, sand, dirt-- anything but pavement, and felt great after a couple of hours. Now I'm in a real quandry as to whether I need a mountain bike or a better seat. (I'm 70- and weign about 170).
I've looked on various web site and on this forum for several hours and have discovered some interesting info about specialized seats--Bi-saddle, Spiderflex, The Seat, Brooks' B-17, etc. as well as some bikes in the $1,000+ category. And- still don't know what to check out.
I do a lot of my riding on a rail trail-- and I've tried out several mt bikes but still haven't found the dream bike that feels really different than the hybrid I have.
If anyone has any suggestions for me or can comment on the seats I've mentioned above, I'd be grateful.
(see http://wildavis.smugmug.com/Bikes) Bianchi Veloce (2005), Nishiki Cascade (1992), Schwinn Super Sport (1983)
I still have a B17 (35+ years old) on my Schwinn Super Sport - it's like riding in an armchair. I have a Brooks Conquest on my MTB - the bike is early 90s vintage and has no suspension, but the saddle has springs on the back - rides like a "firm" armchair. Brooks saddles are really great - once your butt has become accustomed to them, they have no equal (IMNSHO )
I don't think a mountain bike will be less tiring...often they're heavier than hybrids. The chafing seat might be a sign that the seat is too high, causing you to rock a bit from side to side as you pedal. I suggest you check your fit on the hybrid and see if some repositioning of the seat and handlebars helps. A good bike store should be able to advise you. Or if you think the seat is simply too narrow one quick fix is to get a gel cover to throw over it. That's what I did after my last good seat was stolen 10 years ago...I grabbed a junk seat off an old bike and threw a gel cover on it and have ridden 15,000 km in comfort.
Many thanks. I went out for a brief spin on my Trek after having tried a Sirrus and Sequoia...with better seats. The Trek feels like a real clunker after trying out the others and I'll be tyring out some more bikes tomorrow. Thanks for the suggestions.
Find a bike shop that will let you exchange a seat after you have tried it for a week or so. I ride a hybrid with a $15 seat and have no problems with it. It is firm, wide enough at the back to support my sit bones, and narrow at the front so it doesnt rub the inside of my thighs.