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To Pad or Not To Pad??

Old 11-18-07, 05:24 PM
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Mobiker50
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To Pad or Not To Pad??

Simple question: Do you wear padded, purpose built bike shorts/bibs, or other shorts?

I started out using a gel seat pad and wearing ordinary shorts, graduated from the gel pad to the regular B'trager seat that came on my MTB and the Toupe on my Sequoia. With those I've just been wearing compression shorts under regular (baggy) gym or running shorts. Up to 50 miles, no problems.

This week I've tried using a padded short for the first time (two rides, 1 = 15 miles, 1 = 38 miles) and frankly, they made my tucus hurt.

So, stick with what has worked, or continue to experiment with the paddeds?
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Old 11-18-07, 05:43 PM
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If you've got something that works for you I wouldnt change it. I rode for years wearing various ordinary shorts, cutoffs, etc and was fine. In fact I sort of rebelled against the black spandex set. Eventually someone convinced me to start wearing them and after many thousands of miles I wont ride without them. I also went through the same thing with jerseys. I was a T-shirt rider, that is untill I finally got a real jersey. I also learned that in general you get what you pay for. The more expensive stuff is better. Whether it justifies the cost is up to you.
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Old 11-18-07, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Mobiker50 View Post
Simple question: Do you wear padded, purpose built bike shorts/bibs, or other shorts?
I wear padded shorts - I am preparing for the day I have to ride with depends
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Old 11-18-07, 06:11 PM
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Generally, there's a common sense reason for the things most cyclists do-- and some pretty dumb, vain, or pretentious reasons some other things they do. The more you ride, the more you'll appreciate the padded shorts...not merely for the cushiness but for their absorption as well. Cushiness itself is not a virtue....many riders don't like gel padded shorts because they're spongy and often bunch up. Likewise, "cushy" saddles aren't much good once you get out of the neighborhood and on the open road... as you've noticed in switching to the Bontrager.

Eventually, give a pair of reasonably priced shorts, not cheapies, a try and stay with them for a while. You may well stick with them.
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Old 11-18-07, 07:35 PM
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Like many products, you get what you pay for when it comes to bike shorts. Don't scrimp with bike shorts, go for quality. Personally, I like Pearl Izumi's stuff.

I would not ride my road bike without 'em any more than I'd ride without my helmet.
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Old 11-18-07, 07:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Mobiker50 View Post
Simple question: Do you wear padded, purpose built bike shorts/bibs, or other shorts?

I started out using a gel seat pad and wearing ordinary shorts, graduated from the gel pad to the regular B'trager seat that came on my MTB and the Toupe on my Sequoia. With those I've just been wearing compression shorts under regular (baggy) gym or running shorts. Up to 50 miles, no problems.

This week I've tried using a padded short for the first time (two rides, 1 = 15 miles, 1 = 38 miles) and frankly, they made my tucus hurt.

So, stick with what has worked, or continue to experiment with the paddeds?
I find padded shorts a necessity, even for little 8-mile neighborhood rides.
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Old 11-18-07, 07:55 PM
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Bike shorts have pads for moisture control, not padding. I have older bibs with just a chamois that I can ride in all day on my crotch hatchet seat.
Like getting stronger, you get used to the saddle and sitting on it. But it takes time to work up to.
I have one pair of bibs with gel that actually bug me.
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Old 11-18-07, 08:36 PM
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Some don't pad:
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Old 11-18-07, 09:31 PM
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Darn, cyclinfool, I pushed my nose up so close to the monitor screen I left a smudge on her........pad.
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Old 11-18-07, 09:32 PM
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Another important aspect of comfort with biking shorts is fit. If they are too loose, they can sort of crease and give you grief. I only ride with padded shorts, some bibs, some not. I have several different brands from $40 Performance century shorts, up to $180 Assos bibs. I'm happy with all of them, but they all fit me appropriatly.

P.S. I'm drafting that chick the next time I see her out.
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Old 11-18-07, 09:54 PM
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Why would I need padded shorts with a RANS seat? The Comfy Chair.
Always wear padded baggy shorts on tandem rides.
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Old 11-18-07, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
Why would I need padded shorts with a RANS seat? The Comfy Chair.
Always wear padded baggy shorts on tandem rides.
Hey JanMM, is that you in your avatar? If so, I'll bet you'd roll better if your wheels were rounder.
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Old 11-18-07, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by JanMM View Post
Why would I need padded shorts with a RANS seat? The Comfy Chair.
Always wear padded baggy shorts on tandem rides.
Oh, God, no, not..................THE COMFY CHAIR!!!!!!!!
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Old 11-18-07, 10:14 PM
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I got bike shorts and tights in the last 6 weeks or so. This week I am at my sons and brought the bike along but not the bike clothes. I can't believe how uncomfortable it is riding in jeans now.
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Old 11-18-07, 10:28 PM
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Yeah, a lot of the deal is in personal preference. Myself, I am done with cheap shorts that have inadequate/thin/loose pads, ie. Nashbar, Perfomance, even some Pearl Izumi and Louis Garneaux. My current faves are Assos Series and especially Santini. Also, I'm ALL about bibs anymore.
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Old 11-18-07, 10:32 PM
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Originally Posted by airbrake View Post
I got bike shorts and tights in the last 6 weeks or so. This week I am at my sons and brought the bike along but not the bike clothes. I can't believe how uncomfortable it is riding in jeans now.
+1. Good God yes.
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Old 11-18-07, 11:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Old Hammer Boy View Post
Another important aspect of comfort with biking shorts is fit. If they are too loose, they can sort of crease and give you grief. I only ride with padded shorts, some bibs, some not. I have several different brands from $40 Performance century shorts, up to $180 Assos bibs. I'm happy with all of them, but they all fit me appropriatly.

P.S. I'm drafting that chick the next time I see her out.
What is the best fit? On the tight side? Somehow I just know I will regret asking this.
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Old 11-18-07, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by cccorlew View Post
Hey JanMM, is that you in your avatar? If so, I'll bet you'd roll better if your wheels were rounder.

Those out of round wheels are to compensate for potholes. Even I got enuff smarts to know that.
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Old 11-19-07, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by tntom View Post
What is the best fit? On the tight side? Somehow I just know I will regret asking this.




Goldielocks!






But I'm not shopping in any LBS where you guys have been trying on bibs.
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Old 11-19-07, 06:38 AM
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For short rides (about 20 miles or less), I will wear just about anything. For longer rides, I prefer bicycling bibs.
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Old 11-19-07, 06:46 AM
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To pad, or not to pad. That is the question.
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The chafing and sorrow of outrageous friction,
Or to take arms against a seat of tourture,
And by opposing end them? To wince from pain;
No more; and by proper shorts to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wish'd...
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Old 11-19-07, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Spokes man View Post
Like many products, you get what you pay for when it comes to bike shorts. Don't scrimp with bike shorts, go for quality. Personally, I like Pearl Izumi's stuff.

I would not ride my road bike without 'em any more than I'd ride without my helmet.
+1, not many people like the Bontrager saddles, but if you do great.
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Old 11-19-07, 08:36 AM
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I always wear padded shorts for riding. In addition to the benefits already listed by others, they compress the thighs reducing fatigue.
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Old 11-19-07, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by cccorlew View Post
Hey JanMM, is that you in your avatar? If so, I'll bet you'd roll better if your wheels were rounder.
That's a Biopace front wheel.
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Old 11-19-07, 09:35 AM
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I tried padded bike shorts about a year and a half ago when I was having a problem with chafing and saddle sores on longer trips. Never had a problem after switching to the shorts, and now I wear them on any ride over 15 or 20 miles.

I don't mind running around in lycra if the main purpose of the trip is a bike ride. But if the ride is just commuting to some non-biking thing, like a concert, a hike, or a restaurant, I'll wear a pair of casual pants over the padded shorts, or pack pants in a trunk bag to slip on when I get there.
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