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Old 04-22-11, 10:32 PM   #1
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Love my new bike, but getting squished.

Hi everyone. I didn't see a general "newbies go here" forum, but I have a hybrid bike, so here I am!
I can't begin to tell you how ecstatic I am over my new bicycle. It has everything I could want- fenders, a rear rack, a chain guard, some gears but not too many to make me confused.

So far I've gone all over the place with it and even noticed an improvement today in the gear I could cruise around in- I'm up to 4 comfortably instead of 3! Anyway, I ride 4-5 days a week for about an hour. I think my longest circle was 11 miles. I'm limited by time in my breaks at work but I hope to get faster. Hubby has the car all day after I pick him up and he drops me back off.

Anyway, I seem to be doing great except: the seat starts to bug me after a while. Maybe halfway through my ride I notice it, but I'm female and my front parts are getting squished. I did tilt my seat up one notch because it felt like I was falling forward off it all the time.

I never had an issue with this seat hurting my sit bones at all. The picture doesn't show my seat- mine is rounded instead of with that curve up in back.

What sort of adjustment might fix this? Now that I've ridden more maybe I should tilt it back down? I'm not sure which position is level, but one notch on the teeth is a big difference in feel. When I was comparing them I opted for this current position, but I'd like to ride longer, without the discomfort.
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Old 04-22-11, 10:41 PM   #2
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It sounds like a saddle adjustment issue. You can check if the seat is tilted by placing a hardware level on the top.

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Old 04-23-11, 01:07 AM   #3
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You might need a different saddle. Some riders try a dozen before finding their perfect one. Saddles are a very individual item - a saddle that's perfect for one person can be torture for another.

BTW, perfectly level isn't necessarily the correct position. That's just a good starting point.

Also keep in mind that the saddle can be adjusted forward or backward, and the seatpost can be adjusted up or down.
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Old 04-23-11, 03:19 AM   #4
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I find a "harder", less padded saddle works much better for me.

If adjustments don't seem to work, try changing your saddle.
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Old 04-23-11, 04:15 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Machka View Post
I find a "harder", less padded saddle works much better for me.

If adjustments don't seem to work, try changing your saddle.
It may take several saddle changes to get one that works well for you. My wife is on her third saddle, once we get one she likes I am going to be buying more of them for the other bikes.

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Old 04-23-11, 05:19 AM   #6
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Suggest saddle with flat top, wide enough for your sit bones, soft is not good, level front to back. As you noticed, sliding forward can hurt, so if you're hurting in the front, tip the nose up.

Note the type of saddle experienced riders use. They are not masochists. They use what works best.
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Old 04-23-11, 08:25 AM   #7
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You may need to try different saddles. Some bike stores will allow returns or exchanges. They often have inexpensive "take-off" saddles that came with a bike where the customer swapped out the original saddle.

See Sheldon Brown's Comfortable Saddle page. And scroll down to the bottom for the section titled "Women's Issues"

From the article:
A saddle with excessively soft, thick padding can make you less comfortable by increasing the pressure between your sit bones.

Many cyclists are unaware of this, and many saddles are made to appeal to the purchaser who chooses a saddle on the basis of how easily the thumb can sink into the squishy top. This type of saddle is only comfortable for very short rides, (though an inexperienced cyclist will often find it more comfortable than a better saddle, as long as rides don't exceed a mile or two.)

Last edited by rm -rf; 04-23-11 at 08:31 AM.
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Old 04-23-11, 11:15 PM   #8
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Sounds like the saddle isn't level. I agree with CbadRider. Also make sure the saddle is at the correct height for you.
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Old 04-24-11, 03:23 AM   #9
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I have two bikes. One of them used to belong to my GF before I bought her a new one. My seat is firm, it has a cut-out in the middle about where a woman's bits would be I guess. I find it comfortable. One day I rode my GF's old bike and her seat was terrible. It was too soft and I sunk into it. The result was a lot of pressure from the front of the seat seemed to be pushing about where a woman's bits would be (I guess). CONCLUSION:- you want a firm seat with a cut-out where your bits are.

Funny however, GF never complained about that seat!
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