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  1. #1
    . . . rosebud . . . Diggy18's Avatar
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    Do you REALLY sit on your sit bones?

    When I make my back straight, I'm leaning pretty far forward and a lot more than just my sit-bones are contacting the saddle? Everyone is like this?

    What do most people do, tilt the seat down a tad to relieve the pressure? Or just live with it?

    I mean, if you're a roadie and in the drops, you're practically lying prone on the saddle, aren't you?

  2. #2
    Senior Member d2create's Avatar
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    Good question. I hardly ever sit back far enough that I feel my actual sit bones up on the rear of the saddle. I was wondering if that's where they should be?
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  3. #3
    Senior Member JavaMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diggy18
    When I make my back straight, I'm leaning pretty far forward and a lot more than just my sit-bones are contacting the saddle? Everyone is like this?

    What do most people do, tilt the seat down a tad to relieve the pressure? Or just live with it?

    I mean, if you're a roadie and in the drops, you're practically lying prone on the saddle, aren't you?
    No, when you lean forward, bend at your waist. Your hips and butt should stay put. Try it. If this is hard, practice touching your toes with your legs straight and knees locked.

    I'm just guessing now, but your seat may be a little high. The one on the bike
    Tom

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    If you have the saddle tilted down, it may be making you slide forward. so your sitbones are either side of the narrow part of the saddle

  5. #5
    Work hard, Play hard forum*rider's Avatar
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    I actually tilt the saddle up a bit. Not too much or else it hurts

  6. #6
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    I agree, its too hard to sit up properly on the saddle while riding. I do lean forward, but as Java Man said, my hips and everything sort of stay where they should be. It felt weird when i tried it, but its a lot more comfortable on those longer rides

  7. #7
    . . . rosebud . . . Diggy18's Avatar
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    But if you don't rotate your hips forward, how can you keep your back straight?

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    I bleed celeste Chorus_Girl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diggy18
    When I make my back straight, I'm leaning pretty far forward and a lot more than just my sit-bones are contacting the saddle? Everyone is like this?

    What do most people do, tilt the seat down a tad to relieve the pressure? Or just live with it?

    I mean, if you're a roadie and in the drops, you're practically lying prone on the saddle, aren't you?
    I'm on my sit bones. Then again, I don't have the "extra bits" that you guys do getting in the way.
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  9. #9
    Reformed Rebel Nicco's Avatar
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    Here is a link to about 10,000 words on the subject.
    Just scroll down to the articles refering to positioning.
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    I just grin and bare it.

  11. #11
    Senior Member JavaMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diggy18
    But if you don't rotate your hips forward, how can you keep your back straight?
    When you say "straight", do you mean parallel to the ground? Try sitting on a wooden chair with no padding, like a kitchen chair. Then bend your upper body all the way down until your chest is resting against your thighs. Your back should now be flat, even though your hips have not moved. I'm doing it right now in front of a mirror. That's what it should feel like on the bike.
    Tom

  12. #12
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    I think its another case of the pro's are like that so i should be.
    Touch every 3rd person and you'll find an idiot.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by JavaMan
    When you say "straight", do you mean parallel to the ground? Try sitting on a wooden chair with no padding, like a kitchen chair. Then bend your upper body all the way down until your chest is resting against your thighs. Your back should now be flat, even though your hips have not moved. I'm doing it right now in front of a mirror. That's what it should feel like on the bike.
    Tom
    must be hard to type like that huh
    rather be forgoten than remembered for not trying

  14. #14
    . . . rosebud . . . Diggy18's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JavaMan
    When you say "straight", do you mean parallel to the ground?
    In my case, I don't mean parallel to the ground. (Actually I'm riding a MTB/hybrid with flat bars.) I mean not bending your spine where it connects to the pelvis. I think (maybe this is where I'm mistaken) this is the way to ride, and it seems like I need to pivot my pelvis forward to sit in this way which in turn puts more weight on my perineum. I'm new at this so I'm trying to figure out the best posture to let me ride 4~5 hours relatively comfortably.

    So then I was looking at photos on the web of cyclists, and noticed the roadies in the drops. Seems like with the handles lower then the seat and all, they gotta be rotating their hips forward. Or else keeping the back straight isn't as important as I think it is.

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    starving for knowledge
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    not sure how to expalin it but major t -a member of the forum- said to bend at your hips not at your back rotate your pelvis and with that you will have a straight back and i ride about 5 hrs like that relatively comfortable
    rather be forgoten than remembered for not trying

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    Half a century ago, most "good" bikes had the stem and top bar set as high or higher than the saddle, and the saddle was a firm leather Brooks. And yes, people were sitting on your "sit" bones. High quality bikes of the 1960's were designed for "real" people to tour in comfort, not for pretending to be getting ready for the "Tour de France".

    "Marketing" has dictated that most new bikes today, even the ones at Wal-Mart, look like "racing" bikes. So, I often see people cruising to the grocery store, bent over in racing position, their stem three inches lower than their saddle. To deal with the resulting pain, they have a heavily padded seat, with the padding pressing hard on things that are not enjoying the ride.

    I have set up most of my bikes so that my hands will be higher than the saddle. I use fairly wide, but firm Specialized Body Geometry saddle. The BG saddle puts firm support under my sit bones, and open air under the stuff that I don't want to sit on. The combination of having my hands higher than my saddle, and a wider, firmer saddle has allowed me to be comfortable on both long and short rides.

    And, the bonus of the higher hand position is the elimination of pain or stress on my hands, wrists, arms, and neck. Most of us ought to give up trying to look like Lance, and start enjoying riding in comfort.

  17. #17
    . . . rosebud . . . Diggy18's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
    I have set up most of my bikes so that my hands will be higher than the saddle. I use fairly wide, but firm Specialized Body Geometry saddle.
    He-hey! Me too, I just put my handle-bars up above my seat! Feels pretty good. I think I'm going to try lowering them down to the level of the seat and then if that's no good slowly raise them up bit by bit.

    Man two weeks ago I lowered the bars way under the seat, and holy crap I thouhgt I broke my back it hurt so much. It was almost making me nauseus (or however you spell it ) for one day.

    I still can't figure how you can bend at the waist (not back) without rotating your pelvis forward.

  18. #18
    05 Roubaix Comp Double
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
    Half a century ago, most "good" bikes had the stem and top bar set as high or higher than the saddle, and the saddle was a firm leather Brooks. And yes, people were sitting on your "sit" bones. High quality bikes of the 1960's were designed for "real" people to tour in comfort, not for pretending to be getting ready for the "Tour de France".

    "Marketing" has dictated that most new bikes today, even the ones at Wal-Mart, look like "racing" bikes. So, I often see people cruising to the grocery store, bent over in racing position, their stem three inches lower than their saddle. To deal with the resulting pain, they have a heavily padded seat, with the padding pressing hard on things that are not enjoying the ride.

    I have set up most of my bikes so that my hands will be higher than the saddle. I use fairly wide, but firm Specialized Body Geometry saddle. The BG saddle puts firm support under my sit bones, and open air under the stuff that I don't want to sit on. The combination of having my hands higher than my saddle, and a wider, firmer saddle has allowed me to be comfortable on both long and short rides.

    And, the bonus of the higher hand position is the elimination of pain or stress on my hands, wrists, arms, and neck. Most of us ought to give up trying to look like Lance, and start enjoying riding in comfort.
    I thought is was the other way around,the market will make what we buy or want. They wouldnt make bikes look like racing bike if most didnt want them and now that more want a more relaxed type racing bike they are doing those now. Do you think they say,oh we'll makle this and they will just buy it. If we dont,do they keep making it,nope. If we stop buying carbon,they dont keep making it but we are buying it and they are making more.
    Touch every 3rd person and you'll find an idiot.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by shokhead
    I thought is was the other way around,the market will make what we buy or want. They wouldnt make bikes look like racing bike if most didnt want them and now that more want a more relaxed type racing bike they are doing those now. Do you think they say,oh we'll makle this and they will just buy it. If we dont,do they keep making it,nope. If we stop buying carbon,they dont keep making it but we are buying it and they are making more.
    The "high end" bike industry, bikes that sell in the USA for $400 and up, is centered around the images of racing. When you look at an American bike magazine, whether a "general" magazine, a mountain bike magazine, or a BMX magazine, the photos, the articles, and the ads feature people and equipment from racing. Most of the riders featured are in their twenties and appear to weigh about 140 pounds. In REAL life, most Americans are over forty, and most American men weigh more than 200 pounds.

    American bike riding in the 1950's and 1960's was about recreation, relaxation, and touring. Bike ads and catalogs often featured people who were too young or too old for racing. Bike reviews often centered on comfort, reliability, and quality. Articles were written about people who took 3000 mile summer tours, and did so slowly, but comfortably.

    The "racing" image of bike riding turns off people who are NOT interested in speed. MOST American adults do not own a good bike. And MOST adult Americans who own a bike ride it less than two hours a month. "My neck hurts...my hands hurt...my wrist hurts...my privates hurt..." All evidence of people riding with their hands lower than their saddle, or being stretched too far forward in the saddle".

    One of the few companies that understands that most people want to RIDE a bike, not RACE a bike, is Rivendell. Their bikes are designed to use 28mm and 32mm tires that provide comfort and stability, in contrast to 20mm tires used to promote a "racy" image. Most of their bikes are designed so that fenders and racks can easily be added. Ride in the rain? Ride in our "go to work" clothes? Yes, on a Rivendell.

    Comfort? Every Rivendell model is designed so that the stem (and your hands) can be higher than the saddle. A Rivendell owner can ride 365 days a year, and feel better, not worse, after completing a ride.

    Some excellent articles about bike fitting and bike comfort are archived on the Rivendell web site. They also sell CD's containing collections of articles about bike design, bike riding, and bike history. Rivendell is all about bike riding, not bike racing.

    www.rivendellbicycles.com

  20. #20
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    Uh there's other classifications of riders out there. For example, some of us need to get to work in a hurry. To get somewhere fast aerodynamics comes into play. That might even mean riding on the drops. So riding on the drops *and* having a seat that works is the best case scenario for some of us.

  21. #21
    @ Checkmate Cycling jbhowat's Avatar
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    I think there are plenty of bikes that are not "racy". There are tons of comfort bikes out there, you could always buy a frameset and build it up exactly how you like it for comfort. I would say that the majority of people who buy road bikes, and ride them quite a bit are at least fitness enthusiasts and should learn to set up the position correctly. Most people who buy road bikes are into at least going fast, and pushing their limits. There are a few poseurs, but they don't ride a lot, the rest of us ARE racers.
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    The "cool" thing about getting the stem higher than the saddle is that riding on the drops actually becomes comfortable. Except when riding into a strong wind, the real world time savings of an ultra-low riding position is of small value at speeds under 20 mph. (A minute or two savings over a one hour commute?)

    For most people over age 40 (which means "most" Americans) the major factor in NOT riding bikes is that their bike is not comfortable. Most of us old folks have enough aches and pains before we get on our bikes...we don't need a way too low stem and low bar giving us even more pain. And, a pain in the rear is as likely to be caused by the stem being too low as it is by any "defect" in the saddle.

    Yesterday, I was reading some of the reports on injuries and medical problems that result from saddle pressure on the crotch area. To my surprise, the medical research seemed to indicate two thing: that leaning forward on the saddle is the primary cause of genital pain and injuries to males and females, but the problems are worse for females. And, second, the cure for pain in the crotch area riding is to sit with the pelvis upright, and with your weight on your sit bones. The second surprise was that the upright pelvis position was more important for women than for men.

    An easy test: spend two weeks riding with your hands positioned as high as your saddle. If you don't feel more comfortable, it is easy enough to switch back to an ultra low hand position.
    Last edited by alanbikehouston; 10-18-04 at 01:32 AM.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Mueslix's Avatar
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    I've been having problem with my seat, and it killing my "bits", as it were. I finally changed the angle, and no problem. I can't believe I've been dealing with that numbness so long.

  24. #24
    . . . rosebud . . . Diggy18's Avatar
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    Yeah, about just a few days ago I leveled my seat, and now with the handle bars a wee-bit higher than the seat, I'm not leaning forward on my pereneum. It's also definitely not aero, but that doesn't matter to me. I'm on a MTB with knobbies anyhow!

    I've read some contrary info on crotch damage. Some places have said there's no such thing as permanent or serious damage. Other sites say there is. Better to err on the side of safety?

    If I ever got numb down there you know I'd be off that saddle in a second!

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