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  1. #1
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    Nubmness of the Perineum, what is it exaclty???

    Hi All,

    I know that the topic of cycling causing ED has been argued endlessly and from what I have read it seems like proper saddle fitting should eliminte all risks.

    But most medical articles also say that one should be alarmed if any numbness or tingling sensation in the perineum is experienced which if unattended can caues the undesired effects to the reproductive system.

    Now this might sound like a stupid quesiton, but what exactly is numbness or a tingling sensation in the perineum?. I mean I have been sore as well in the crotch area when cycling hard after I had a break, but I don't think I could tell if I was numb in that area. Is nubmness or tingling equal to pain in the crotch ? Is it harmful if I am sore for a few days?

    Sorry I am just confused and any comment is greatly appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Jerry

  2. #2
    Senior Member coldfeet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikingjerome View Post
    Hi All,

    I know that the topic of cycling causing ED has been argued endlessly and from what I have read it seems like proper saddle fitting should eliminte all risks.

    But most medical articles also say that one should be alarmed if any numbness or tingling sensation in the perineum is experienced which if unattended can caues the undesired effects to the reproductive system.

    Now this might sound like a stupid quesiton, but what exactly is numbness or a tingling sensation in the perineum?. I mean I have been sore as well in the crotch area when cycling hard after I had a break, but I don't think I could tell if I was numb in that area. Is nubmness or tingling equal to pain in the crotch ? Is it harmful if I am sore for a few days?

    Sorry I am just confused and any comment is greatly appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Jerry
    Am not an expert on this, but I always thought they were talking about pressure on the perineum causing numbness in the penis.

  3. #3
    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
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    Compression of the nerve down yonder. Try a different angle on the saddle. And possibly the reach as well.
    How do you keep an idiot in suspense?

  4. #4
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    I purchased a wider seat (155mm) and it reduced the load on my perineum fixing my issue.

  5. #5
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    Commonly referred to as the taint...

    The first entry on a google search for perineum is a medical dictionary, which describes it pretty well.
    Slow Ride Cyclists of NEPA

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  6. #6
    rebmeM roineS JanMM's Avatar
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    numbness is not pain
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  7. #7
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    Not an absolute, but most numbness in the 'taint' is blood-flow related, rather than nerve-pressure. A nerve 'pressured' will react much faster (almost immediately), whereas the blood-flow issue builds up slowly.

    It's a pretty unique situation for nerves to gradually change activity; they're mostly on/off. The perineal numbness most cyclists experience (those that do) is like the numbness of your hand, for example, 'going to sleep'. That's a blood-flow thing, too.

  8. #8
    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
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    We have gloves with gel strategically placed to help this issue with the hands. Maybe someone will design and market shorts along the same line.
    How do you keep an idiot in suspense?

  9. #9
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    I get that numbness quiet often after riding for a few miles. I usually stand up on the pedals and stretch a bit and everything is fine, til I sit down for a lil bit more. How concerned should I be? Im currently trying to scrounge up some money for an extra seat post and new comfy/long riding seat. Currently, I have no ED.......although sometimes my wife wishes I did.

  10. #10
    Senior Member filtersweep's Avatar
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    There are two separate issues here. Blood flow is easily rectified by standing a bit--- and I don't view it as serious at all. A pinched nerve causes numbness that persists well after the ride is over. I have a pinched nerve in my shoulder causing numbness in my index finger. I could pound a nail through my finger---- and this has lasted weeks.

    Quote Originally Posted by DX-MAN View Post
    Not an absolute, but most numbness in the 'taint' is blood-flow related, rather than nerve-pressure. A nerve 'pressured' will react much faster (almost immediately), whereas the blood-flow issue builds up slowly.

    It's a pretty unique situation for nerves to gradually change activity; they're mostly on/off. The perineal numbness most cyclists experience (those that do) is like the numbness of your hand, for example, 'going to sleep'. That's a blood-flow thing, too.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Riverside_Guy's Avatar
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    Just got back into biking this summer for a decade long absence. My old, stock saddle, even with a huge gel pack, didn't cut it (I think the gel bunched up in my crotch and my sit bones were riding on the saddle itself). Got a Avenir Comfy. MUCH better.

    BUT, not ideal. While the saddle has a cut out from the crotch area, that only REALLY works when I am bolt upright, a position that doesn't happen all that much. I experimented with the seat fore/aft angle, and have concluded the issue is the rather fat (and well padded) front "tongue" of the saddle (not sure of the right term). When peddling hard (or if the front is angled down a bit) I kinda of slid forward and my family jewels rests mostly on that front protuberance. I got used to sliding back on the seat frequently. And yes, occasionally I seem to get a bit numb in the crotch (blood flow).

    Not sure how to approach this issue. Don't want to start burning through lots of different saddles, am thinking about extensions to my flat bars so I CAN ride more upright at times...

  12. #12
    50000 Guatts of power 127.0.0.1's Avatar
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    what is it ? WHAT IS IT ?

    it is a sign you are not pedaling hard enough, that's what. end of story.
    I like fat bikes
    and I cannot lie.

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    Thank you everyone for your input. I guess my question was a bit misleading. I guess I understand what it is, but I don't know how this numbness feels. The perineum is such a small hidden area. It's not like an arm or leg or finger where numbness is easily noticable. It's not really a part of the body that is used actively .

    My question is how do I test for this nubmness? I cetainly don't feel any tingling. Do I have to poke it to see if I feel anything? To me it's like saying my armpit is numb which is another hidden body part.

    Again I know that is sounding stupid to some, but I honestly have no concept of how a numb perineum supposed to feel like.

    Any further comments are greatly appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Jerry

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    Quote Originally Posted by 127.0.0.1 View Post
    what is it ? WHAT IS IT ?

    it is a sign you are not pedaling hard enough, that's what. end of story.
    Interesting point, could you please elaborate?

  15. #15
    Senior Member BlazingPedals's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Panthers007 View Post
    We have gloves with gel strategically placed to help this issue with the hands. Maybe someone will design and market shorts along the same line.
    We already have saddles with cutouts.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Riverside_Guy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikingjerome View Post
    My question is how do I test for this nubmness? I cetainly don't feel any tingling. Do I have to poke it to see if I feel anything? To me it's like saying my armpit is numb which is another hidden body part.

    Again I know that is sounding stupid to some, but I honestly have no concept of how a numb perineum supposed to feel like.

    Any further comments are greatly appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Jerry
    There's no specific "test" that I know of... for me, it's the whole area (especially genitals) that is numb. Like I said, not frequently... but it can happen. One caveat is that I do have very occasional circulation issues, not too frequent or severe enough to seek a medical solution.

  17. #17
    Infamous Member chipcom's Avatar
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    If you are putting that kind of pressure on your 'taint, you are not straddling the saddle correctly due to saddle position and/or overall bike fit and unbalanced weight displacement. Cut-outs and such are treating symptoms, not the root cause.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  18. #18
    Senior Member coldfeet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Riverside_Guy View Post
    (or if the front is angled down a bit) I kinda of slid forward and my family jewels rests mostly on that front protuberance.
    Try tilting the nose UP a bit, that tends to make you naturally slide to the back. Counterintuitive, but works for some people.
    Quote Originally Posted by bikingjerome View Post

    Again I know that is sounding stupid to some, but I honestly have no concept of how a numb perineum supposed to feel like.
    As I said earlier, the numbness isn't in the perineum, at least, not for me. Pressure on the perineum causes numbness in the penis.
    Quote Originally Posted by bikingjerome View Post
    Interesting point, could you please elaborate?
    I think what he meant was, if you ride harder, more of your weight is on the legs/feet, this means less on the saddle/perineum, and... well, less pressure, less (no) problem.

    I know the only time I get a problem is when I am pretty tired, and riding like a sack of spuds slumped on the saddle.

  19. #19
    rebmeM roineS JanMM's Avatar
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    What does it feel like? Doesn't feel like anything. Numbness is the absence of sensation.

    As clarified by coldfeet, cyclists (guys) are not talking about perineal numbness but, rather with that problem in the, uh, male part. The scientific/medical term is Numb Johnson Syndrome.

    Get up out of the saddle regularly.
    Look into recumbents.
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  20. #20
    Senior Member abstractform20's Avatar
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    why pay for an expensive city-folk bicycle saddle with a fancy city-boy taint cut out?

    do what i do and just cut out the taint!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
    numbness is not pain
    That doesn't make it a sign of anything good, either.
    ~

  22. #22
    Perineal Pressurized dobber's Avatar
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    Mr. Winky takes a cat-nap. The sensation is akin to what you might (not) feel when your hand or leg falls asleep.
    This is Africa, 1943. War spits out its violence overhead and the sandy graveyard swallows it up. Her name is King Nine, B-25, medium bomber, Twelfth Air Force. On a hot, still morning she took off from Tunisia to bomb the southern tip of Italy. An errant piece of flak tore a hole in a wing tank and, like a wounded bird, this is where she landed, not to return on this day, or any other day.

  23. #23
    aka Tom Reingold noglider's Avatar
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    A friend of mine had this and went to a sports doctor. Doctor said to use a saddle that's not as soft. Problem solve for him, though everyone is different.
    You don't read my signature anyway, do you?

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  24. #24
    Magnum Propulsion
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    I don't think it's so much a numb perinium that's a problem. It's when pressure on the perinium area causes your penis to go numb on you, for whichever reason, and that's not good. I usually reach down and grab my goodies every now and then on longer rides just to make sure there's no numbness. If there is some numbness, or even just a hint of loss of feeling, I stand, or shift to one side of the saddle a little, or adjust my shorts.
    I've noticed that I can't tell I'm going numb unless I touch it. There were a couple times I rode quite a while, then adjust my shorts and noticed that I just about lost all feeling down there, and that was just a bit scary. That's why I do the regular "grab it" check when I'm riding.

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