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Experience trying road bikes

Old 05-18-22, 04:46 PM
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Awesomeguy
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Experience trying road bikes

I currently been riding a hybrid bike , but n+1 has been calling and wanted to try /buy road bike.
after trying several, the issue I’ve been having is discomfort in the privates area. I was told that bike shorts Would help, but I feel it shouldn’t be that way.

do you recall when you first tried road bikes , how did you get past this if you had such issues ?
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Old 05-18-22, 04:54 PM
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I was never planning on riding in blue jeans and underwear. I always assumed padded shorts were recommended and worn by experienced riders for a reason. Its part of the comfort equation. Obviously its a long learning curve finding a comfortable saddle but thats a road you need to travel on. On a first road bike from a local shop, they should work with you on a saddle alternative and should be able to recommend an alternative to whatever ass hatchet you did not like.
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Old 05-18-22, 04:54 PM
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Padded shorts will help with the contact points in your butt, but you really shouldn't be experiencing discomfort in your scrotum or penis. I would guess the bikes you have tried have not had the saddles adjusted to where you need them.
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Old 05-18-22, 05:02 PM
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I got bike shorts or bibs. Then I got butt cream for really long rides. You also need road bike miles on that butt to really feel comfortable so start off with 30-40min rides and work up from there.
If you don't like the look you can get mountain bike shorts which are a little less formfitting but have a chamois inside.

I would say I'm fairly typical but this being bikeforums you'll get a few of, "Well shucks, I just ride my grandfather's Schwinn Paramount in my old dungarees and horse hair underwear 12,000miles every year and I'm perfectly fine." But most of us go the bike shorts route.
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Old 05-18-22, 05:09 PM
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Coming off of a hybrid, a road bike will place you in a position that will take some getting used to. Chamois cream, a padded liner, a firm, well-adjusted saddle, and some hours on the bike should help. Be patient.
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Old 05-18-22, 05:15 PM
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"discomfort in the privates" is rather vague. It could be something that a different saddle would remedy. It could be something that cycling specific clothing would remedy. It could be something that requires both in addition to a dollop of cream.
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Old 05-18-22, 05:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Awesomeguy View Post
I currently been riding a hybrid bike , but n+1 has been calling and wanted to try /buy road bike.
after trying several, the issue I’ve been having is discomfort in the privates area. I was told that bike shorts Would help, but I feel it shouldn’t be that way.

do you recall when you first tried road bikes , how did you get past this if you had such issues ?
It depends on the nature of the discomfort. Are we talking your junk falling asleep? Or a feeling of pressure on the perineum? Or are you crushing your junk?

It also depends on what you're wearing now - gym shorts? Jeans with undies? Briefs or boxers?

The first place to look is the saddle. Not just the shape, but also the height, setback, and angle. Ideally, your weight should be carried on your sit bones. If not, you'll have issues. I've had saddles that allowed my sit bones to sink in too far, which led to the middle of the saddle pressing on the perineum, causing numbness where I don't want it. I've had others where the top of the saddle was straight from front to back, which doesn't work for me because I'm low flexibility and roll my hips forward, rather than bending at the waist, so I need a 'wave' saddle, which is higher at front ant back than the middle. If your saddle is too high for your leg length and pedaling style, that can be a problem. and on and on.

Regarding what you're wearing, mostly what padded cycling shorts do is less about padding and more about fitting to you so well that the shorts provide a good interface between you and the saddle, with no rubbing, chafing, or lumpy seams. The snug fit also helps keeping the jewels out from between you and the saddle.
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Old 05-18-22, 05:34 PM
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Shorts

+1
Go to Padded Bike shorts.
If you really must... padded MTB shorts are not nearly as tight.
But.... self respecting road cyclists won't ride with you.


Barry
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Old 05-18-22, 05:59 PM
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get a good bike fit, ride more, be patient and if the discomfort does not go away, start looking into getting a saddle that fits you better, padded riding shorts help,

Last edited by Eds0123; 05-18-22 at 08:59 PM.
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Old 05-18-22, 06:04 PM
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what are you comparing it to? can you show a photo of your current hybrid saddle?

Last edited by rumrunn6; 05-20-22 at 08:56 AM.
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Old 05-18-22, 06:05 PM
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Takes a few rides to get used to it.
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Old 05-18-22, 07:16 PM
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If I'm riding more than 20 miles, I'll wear padded shorts, but most days I ride 15-20 miles, no padding, and no problem. As others have said, either you need to do some more riding to get used to the new bike, or there is a problem with the saddle/fit on the bike. We don't know what the problem is, but from my experience, you don't NEED padded shorts to prevent discomfort when you ride a road bike.
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Old 05-19-22, 08:16 PM
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You have tried several road bikes so I'm assuming that this was with multiple stock saddles on each bike. My first suggestion would be to use a padded short. I prefer the gel shorts as they don't use their shape as a chamois pad does and seem to be a little thicker. If you don't like the road bike type of bike short you get a bike short liner. Basically it's underwear with a chamois pad inside. Then you can wear whatever type of clothing you want over it. The next thing I would try is a saddle with a section that is cut out in the middle. That helps to relieve any pressure in the center. You can also find different types of saddles in regards to the "hardness" or "softness" of the saddle.
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Old 05-19-22, 08:52 PM
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When I first rode a road bike it was over 50 years ago, I rode in cutoffs and Jeepers. The first time I tried riding shorts was in 1983 and I had a leather chamois.
Funny, I had cleated cycling shoes before I had cycling shorts.

You should look into adjusting the saddle or looking for a better fitting saddle.
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Old 05-20-22, 08:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Awesomeguy View Post
I currently been riding a hybrid bike , but n+1 has been calling and wanted to try /buy road bike.
after trying several, the issue I’ve been having is discomfort in the privates area. I was told that bike shorts Would help, but I feel it shouldn’t be that way.

do you recall when you first tried road bikes , how did you get past this if you had such issues ?

It took me nearly 2 years of riding 40 miles a day (2hrs) on the skinny saddle on my new Bianchi (1985) road bike 3-5 days a week before my butt got hardened up enough to not be in serious pain, and I always wore bike shorts with padding.

Now, 35 years of riding later, my ass only hurts after about 4 hours of hard riding. By the time I finish a 5hr Century I can’t feel my butt at all!

It’s a process your ass must go through to get toughened up when you switch to a skinny seat.

Last edited by A350driver; 05-20-22 at 08:45 PM.
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Old 05-20-22, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by A350driver View Post
It took me nearly 2 years of riding 40 miles a day (2hrs) on the skinny saddle on my new Bianchi (1985) road bike 3-5 days a week before my butt got hardened up enough to not be in serious pain, and I always wore bike shorts with padding.

Now, 35 years of riding later, my ass only hurts after about 4 hours of hard riding. By the time I finish a 5hr Century I can’t feel my butt at all!

It’s a process your ass must go through to get toughened up when you switch to a skinny seat.
No offense, but someone that's been at it for 35 years, and still can't finish a century without a numb ass, is the last person that I'd take saddle advice from.
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Old 05-20-22, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
No offense, but someone that's been at it for 35 years, and still can't finish a century without a numb ass, is the last person that I'd take saddle advice from.
And how’s your ass feel after 5 hrs in the saddle?

I only do a couple centuries a year, maybe you ride the TDF?
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Old 05-20-22, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by cyclist2000 View Post
When I first rode a road bike it was over 50 years ago, I rode in cutoffs and Jeepers.
You should look into adjusting the saddle or looking for a better fitting saddle.
WTH are Jeepers ???

Been wanting to bring up Sheldon's Wisdom again...
OP, this:
https://www.sheldonbrown.com/real-man.html

Ride On
Yuri
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Old 05-20-22, 11:50 PM
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Originally Posted by A350driver View Post
And how’s your ass feel after 5 hrs in the saddle?

I only do a couple centuries a year, maybe you ride the TDF?

I ride a century every Saturday about 8 months out of the year. I've never had butt pain or numbness. I don't think numbness is normal and would indicate something is wrong with your setup.

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Old 05-21-22, 12:17 AM
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It takes time to HTFU and you can lose it fast too. Some people never build up the mileage either. Don’t be ashamed to take some comfort in the meantime. Hurting yourself is macho but not actually beneficial to your heart or lungs or muscles. Try cycling shorts or softer saddles or cutout saddles. A wide saddle isn’t going to help as you sit on a narrower part of your sit bones when you lean forward

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Old 05-21-22, 04:10 AM
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I didn't take from the OP that his pain was in the keister. I assumed it was more frontal.
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Old 05-21-22, 05:53 AM
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If you ride a hybrid now without bike shorts and without pain, I think it is more about the saddle setup or the saddle itself.

As you bend over more to lower handlebars you are going to compress things. I have found that saddle tilt, and the right saddle, is pretty important on a road bike, at least for me. But too much downward nose tilt can put too much weight on wrists and shoulders.

Years ago, no one made cut-out saddles and few had channels. Brooks was, and still is for some, the saddle of choice to conform to your shape. Today saddles are designed to reduce perineal pain.

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Old 05-21-22, 05:57 AM
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Originally Posted by A350driver View Post
And how’s your ass feel after 5 hrs in the saddle?

I only do a couple centuries a year, maybe you ride the TDF?
I typically only ride 5,000-7,000 miles per, but I usually do a fair number of 80+ mile rides. My ass feels fine, even after 120+.

For me, the worst isn't long rides at a hard pace, but when I'm accompanying someone that's riding at a slower pace - less pressure on the pedals, more weight on the ass. Even so, that's only a mild discomfort after 6+ hours.

As mentioned above, what you're describing indicates something not right.
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Old 05-21-22, 06:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Chuck M View Post
Padded shorts will help with the contact points in your butt, but you really shouldn't be experiencing discomfort in your scrotum or penis. I would guess the bikes you have tried have not had the saddles adjusted to where you need them.
Agreed. I rode from Michigan to Seattle to SFO in cutoff jeans and tighty whities. Bike shorts are much better, but not necessary for comfort. And of course even with bike shorts it does take some time to "toughen up."
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Old 05-21-22, 06:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Awesomeguy View Post
I currently been riding a hybrid bike , but n+1 has been calling and wanted to try /buy road bike.
after trying several, the issue I’ve been having is discomfort in the privates area. I was told that bike shorts Would help, but I feel it shouldn’t be that way.

do you recall when you first tried road bikes , how did you get past this if you had such issues ?
your pain comes after just trying several ​​​​​road bikes? How far did you go on these?
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