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Impotence And Recumbents

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Impotence And Recumbents

Old 07-04-02, 01:28 PM
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Impotence And Recumbents

There seems o be a lot of cyclists out there worried about the problems a bike saddle can do to a male.
Why arnt they all converting to recumbents?
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Old 07-04-02, 02:57 PM
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Could be they know it is not true, and they don't like bent's anyway?
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Old 07-04-02, 03:02 PM
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If you ride a regular bike, they say that there is a very small chance that you may become impotent. If you ride a bent, you probably have never experienced a woman, making the whole question irrelavent...
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Old 07-04-02, 03:54 PM
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You Know what they say .You nver miss what you have never had.
Dare I say that recumbent riders know what they would miss so they ride recumbents to be on the safe side.
Plus they leave uprights standing in the dust.
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Old 07-04-02, 08:33 PM
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Because it's not true, and if it is the risk factor is about as low as losing your ability to walk by being hit from behind bad enough when driving in your car.

Seriously, if you are actually feel something is wrong in that area the problem is not biking, but rather your saddle position/tilt/height/type
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Old 07-04-02, 09:22 PM
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Originally posted by ORBIT
Plus they leave uprights standing in the dust.
... and if you believe that - I've got some swamp land I'd like to sell you.
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Old 07-05-02, 07:46 AM
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Thats why recumbents hold all the speed records.Plus the fact recumbents are banned from racing uprights because they have a unfair advantage.
So yes they are faster than uprights.
So much faster that they are not aloud to compete with them.
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Old 07-05-02, 08:21 AM
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To answer ORBIT's (rhetorical) questions:

First, are the speed records motor-paced? If so, were not talking normal recumbants anyway.

Second, there are good reasons why UCI and UCSF don't allow them for racing. They are not as stable in high speed descents. A website by Jobst Brandt has the details: https://yarchive.net/bike/recumbent.html

Third, despite the speed records, the pros wouldn't ride recumbants even if they were allowed. They are at a disadvantage in climbing, too, since they don't put the rider's weight over the pedals. And any aerodynamic advantages they may have disappear at speeds below 15-20 kmh. See above mentioned site.

I agree that if you feel somthing out of order, then your saddle position, or your position in the saddle, is wrong. And I would recommend getting it fixed, if only for the sake of comfort.

Cheers,
Jamie
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Old 07-05-02, 09:48 AM
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I do ride a recumbent and a upright.Using the spinnng
technque on the peddles ,i get up hills just as fast as i do on the upright. In cycling plus a UCI legal upright and a fully faired Windcheeter did a end to end.On the first 1000 mile which was very hilly the UCI bike covered this distance in 3 hours 58 mins the recumbent took 4 hour 4 mins only a few minutes behind the up right,and the recumbent was heavier.However by the end of the ride the uci bike had covered the distance in 44 hours and 4 mins ,the recumbent covered the distance in 41 hours 4 mins.3 hours faster,on the decents the recumbent was clocked do over 70 miles an hour.Yes it did suggest the recumbent was a bit slower on hills,but it was heavier but not by that much,and it was very stable on the decents,and the end result was that the recumbent was 3 hours in front.
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Old 07-05-02, 10:45 AM
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We're off the thread topic now, but this tangent interests me. The area I live in is hilly, well, mountainous , by many people's standards. The area also has a lot of recumbent riders. I see lots of recumbent riders on the flats, but in the past two years I have seen only two recumbents in the hilly areas. I wonder why that is. With their weight distribution, do recumbents come up easily on very steep hills?

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Old 07-05-02, 11:30 AM
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I find my recumbent fine on hills,but it does take getting used to at first.if you spin the peddles at a higher speed than on a upright you can get up the hill at about the same speed.
Some times I find my recumbent faster on certain types of hills
when i hit the bottom of the hill fast and start going up I dont slow down as quick.
I do find my recumbent is faster than my upright,except in one place.Heavy traffic.
Has for only seeing 2 recumbents on the hills,your lucky,I ride a recumbent and never seen any body on one while im riding it.
I really do think its a shame that races are not held between recumbents and uprights,i think it would be really interesting.
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Old 07-05-02, 11:37 AM
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I've ridden recumbents, ridden with other guys who had recumbents, and I even owned one for a while. My comments on their performance in different areas, comparing bikes without the plastic shields and bubbles:

(1) Climbing. Recumbents do not climb as well as uprights. One reason is that on shorter hills it's possible to stand up and mash the gears on uprights without losing any speed. Recumbents do not allow this. (And no, it's not a practical option to push hard against the seat back. It hurts the knees to do this more than very occasionally.)

But even while seated the upright position allows a rider to generate more power to the pedals, by making it possible to push with more force. This is controversial among some riders, I realize, but I'm convinced it's true because in my experience upright riders go a bit faster _and_ push a higher gear up hills than comparable recumbent riders-- and here I'm drawing on my own riding as well as what I've seen. It's noteworthy, too, that recumbents always come standard with triple rings, but better road bikes are usually sold with doubles. This is not just because recumbents are usually sold to older guys, but because the design doesn't allow for as much force to be directed on the pedals as the upright design does. The gears on a recumbent, then, must be smaller, other things equal.

_Why_ this is is less clear to me. Perhaps the upright position allows the use of the upper body muscles to move the weight of the upper body back and forth to aid pedaling, perhaps the freedom of the hip's movement makes for more efficient use of the leg muscles, I'm not sure. But the recumbents don't climb as well, of that I'm sure. The lower, higher performance models are worse than the more upright ones, too.

Recumbent riders often do well enough by spinning to keep up on a long ride, it should be noted. The climbing problems aren't awful, in other words, but they are real.

(2) Comfort. Recumbents are easier to set up comfortably than uprights, that's certain. The male plumbing problems aren't an issue, either. Recumbents don't allow you to stand while riding, though, and just change position. Some recumbent riders don't mind this, but I always yearned to stretch or just use different muscles after a while. I'm more used to uprights, I should note, though.

Many recumbent riders are very comfortable on their bikes and wouldn't go back to an upright. If you have comfort problems on an upright, I would recommend looking into recumbents.

(3) Aerodynamic performance. There is reason to think recumbents have some advantage here. They tend to have a smaller frontal area than an upright. Furthermore, as I mentioned above, I don't think as a practical matter riders can generate quite as much power on a recumbent as on an upright. Yet the cruising speeds of the two designs on the flat are about equal, and sometimes seem to favor the recumbent.

The advantage does depend on the model. Some recumbents have the rider fairly upright, and these are not better than a road bike with drop bars. The lower models seem pretty aerodynamic. But I haven't yet been convinced that even these lower models are significantly better into the wind than an upright trials bike, at least from what I've seen. The comparisons of frontal area here are inconclusive, because the shape of a recumbent's leading edge, with feet churning, pedals, and cranks, is irregular and would tend to mitigate the advantage of smaller size. I suspect recumbents are better here, but I just don't know.

(4) Starting/accelerating. One can stand on a upright and mash off the line. You'll be down the block before a recumbent rider can get going. As I said above, pushing hard against the seat back is not a practical option for very long on a recumbent. Riding this way crunches one's knees.

(5) Obstacles. No contest, for obvious reasons. This is less important in road biking, though, again for obvious reasons.


All things considered, it has been my experience that even pretty good recumbents were not quite as fast as good road bikes in a longer ride on mixed terrain. Here I mean entirely paved terrain with climbs, stops, starts, and some twisties. This was a bit surprising to me, having read so many guys' remarks on the internet about the performance of their recumbents. There it is, though, for what it's worth.
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Old 07-05-02, 01:50 PM
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For the most part, this thead is opinionated (as are all of the threads in bikeforums) and worse - the opinions are stated as facts (especially those claiming that our compaints are "not true"). What ORBIT has generated (flame bait! ) is an outlet for roadies to malign bents. Sounding like the same kind of people as those who drive past in cars and question our sexual orientation and things of that nature. They seem to be pretty much intolerant of "difference" as many are. Sad, huh?

Personally, I tried very hard to work the discomfort out of my upright before going to a bent. Not because I didn't want to ride a bent, but rather because I wanted to ride a bicycle - any bicycle. I couldn't manage it so I started building bents. I have absolutely no desire to ride an upright now, cool as some of them are. And I have never had a desire to ride a road bike, the posture just sucks, in my opinion. They can have it and their dorky wannabe jerseys that go with em.

I'm bent and happy. Not faster, just happier and I can ride my bicycle as much as I like without ending up with numb nuts. Also, (it just occured to me)...I get to hack up road bikes to build my bents! Hell...even road bike parts are good enough for building bents! Just the other day I chopped most of a set of drop bars up to make a post for mounting my heart rate monitor and my cyclocomputer on...worked great!

So recumbents have made continuing cycling possible/comfortable for me with the added advantage of allowing me the creative outlet of modifying or creating pretty much whatever I want to in a human powered vehicle. I don't feel any need whatsover to conform to a "code" or whatever it is that roadies have. As it is, I live in a small town where I have the only bent bikes. I think that it's possible that I could think differently about them if I knew other riders...more or less got into a recumbent club/environment, but that's not going to happen, not where I live. The great thing with bents is (as I see it), is that anything and everything is accepatble and encouraged.

I don't believe that one style of bicycle is better than another. To each his own. For those who want to believe different...hey! We're all entitled to our opinions and those that need to believe...well...they need to believe (poor things)!

In the end...what difference does it make what we ride...as long as we ride??? :confused: :confused:

Life is good!
Feet first and forward
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Old 07-05-02, 02:42 PM
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True.If the bikesuits you its the right one.
As I have said I ride both uprights and recumbents,and i say again over all I find the recumbent faster.This could be for many reasons.Comfort could be one of them on a recumbent you can just keep pedling.Come on all you bent riders come out of the closet.
All I can say is SAM WHITTINGHAM 80MPH+
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Old 07-05-02, 03:05 PM
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On the first 1000 mile which was very hilly the UCI bike covered this distance in 3 hours 58 mins the recumbent took 4 hour 4 mins
WOW these guys are FAST something like 250 miles per hour. . .
why aren't they riding the tour?

They seem to be pretty much intolerant of "difference" as many are. Sad, huh? . . .
. . . And I have never had a desire to ride a road bike, the posture just sucks, in my opinion. They can have it and their dorky wannabe jerseys that go with em.
I can't comment on bents since I've never ridden one,
but the above, isn't that a little like the pot calling the kettle
black? Funny how this starts talking about intolerance and ends
just as intolerant.

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Old 07-05-02, 03:46 PM
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Sorry it was 100 miles.But you get the point.I just a cant understand why more cyclists do not ride them.They are as fast if not faster than a upright road bike and more comfortable.No numb nuts ,no numb hands etc.
Is it just image.
The one big disadvantage of a recumbent is that they can attract
too much attention from the wrong type of people.
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Old 07-05-02, 05:15 PM
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Orbit,

I knew what you meant, I just couldn't resist.
No insult intended. As I said, I can't comment
since I've never ridden one.
as they say, live and let live

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Old 07-05-02, 07:28 PM
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Originally posted by ORBIT
Sorry it was 100 miles.But you get the point.I just a cant understand why more cyclists do not ride them.They are as fast if not faster than a upright road bike and more comfortable.No numb nuts ,no numb hands etc.
Is it just image.
The one big disadvantage of a recumbent is that they can attract
too much attention from the wrong type of people.
Usually older people ride them. I'm 18 and I have no intention of being a full time bent rider when I simply do not experince the numb nuts effect BS you are talking about or the aching back.

As I said before, if you got numb nuts by riding up rights then it was not set-up probably. I spend hours on my upright and I feel nothing of the sort (I used to when I hadn't made the adjustments). It's like a newbie getting on a road bike bike with a really low seat and then complain about hurting knees. DUH!

Make the effort to make the necessary adjustments.

I get tired hands after the ride, but I expect it and do not hate it. One technique I have learned from mountain bikers is that on very steep hills pull strong on the handles to counter-act the push on the pedals and gain more speed uphill. That makes my hands tired, so what? I don't complain just as I don't complain about my legs hurting after a long ride.

ANd no, they are not as fast as uprights. Maybe you are a really really seasoned rider that can take anyone on a upright, but that makes you the exception not the rule.
It's like some really good mountain biker taking on a average road biker on a hill and then says: "wow, look, mountain bikes are soooo much faster than road bikes".
And we all know that's not too true.

Ride what you like and ride it well. If I had a lot of money I'd buy a recumbent after I got 2 other road bikes, and I'd ride for those adventurous weekends.

It seems to me you are trying more to convince yourself that recumbents are the way to go more than you are eager to get others interested in them.
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Old 07-05-02, 11:44 PM
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whew, lots of recumbent hostility. I was 1/2 joking- I think they look like fun. Nothing wrong with them.
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Old 07-06-02, 03:16 AM
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Take a look at History.Recumbents were only banned from racing
because uprights could not keep up.
At one time recumbents did race uprights in th 1930s.
Francis Faure a undistinguished pro track racer beat the hour record for a push bike on a recumbent,upright even with 1st class
riders could not come close to his time,so in 1934 the UCI banned
recumbents.So that was the answer ,if you cant beat them ban them.
So recumbents are fast,not slow .
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Old 07-06-02, 07:09 AM
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I'd hate to be accused of bashing recumbents. I never meant to say that I thought that recumbents were bad, stupid, or wrong. They offer some folks some great advantages, most significantly in comfort issues, and design-wise I find them cool (I just don't prefer to ride them).

That said, I would be interested to see a recumbent rider access their descending capabilities and overall stability. Several have already confirmed the "perhaps slower while climbing" view. The dissenting opinions here offer the "high cadence" argument. Unfortunately, since up-rights can also use high cadences, the argument doesn't hold.

Unfortunately, physics will concede only one thing to the recumbent camp: lower air resistance, maybe. They don’t save on weight. The power transfer questions balance the rider’s weight (upright) vs. leverage gained by the seat-back, which again seems to favor uprights. And, as far as stability is concerned, recumbents might gain from a lower center of gravity (although that may actually not matter), but their small front tires and small wheelbases seem again to detract from stability at higher speeds.

So, we’re left with air resistance, an important consideration. But, by how much do they lower the frontal area? How do they compare to aero-positioning? On a steep descent, once you’ve stopped pedaling, you can get pretty small on a regular road bike. My guess would be that some riders may actually achieve a smaller frontal area than that of a recumbent.

Somebody please tell their stories about descending on a recumbent. I am curious to know what you have experienced. Do you really feel safe at 70 kmh?

I am skepical that, whatever their original reasons, UCI continues to ban recumbents because they are faster. That just wouldn't make sense. If they really were faster--i.e. if racers really wanted to race them--and they met all other safety requirements, UCI would go along. It would make for a faster sport. Faster = more exciting = more money. All three are manifestly in UCI's interest. So, the continued ban must have real reasons (either they are not faster, or they are not as safe at high speeds). Furthermore, the arm-chair athletes watching the Tour from their living rooms would be better able to identify with the laid-back riders. (sorry, I couldn't resist that.)

So, just because we have things to praise about recumbents, doesn’t mean we have to give them credit in all areas. As far as I am concerned, celebrating them out of bias is just as bad as dissing them out of bias.

Cheers,
Jamie
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Old 07-06-02, 09:55 AM
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I ride my recumbent very fast downhills.The fact remains that the UCI did ban them because they felt that they give the rider a advantage.
You cant argue with the figures,and recumbents hold all the speed records.However I will continue to ride both,and I enjoy
both for different reasons.
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Old 07-06-02, 10:11 AM
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Originally posted by ORBIT
Take a look at History.Recumbents were only banned from racing
because uprights could not keep up.
At one time recumbents did race uprights in th 1930s.
Francis Faure a undistinguished pro track racer beat the hour record for a push bike on a recumbent,upright even with 1st class
riders could not come close to his time,so in 1934 the UCI banned
recumbents.So that was the answer ,if you cant beat them ban them.
So recumbents are fast,not slow .
That was over 70 years ago, how can you possibly ignore the evolution road bikes have had over all this time?

Let's say recumbent were banned and still banned because everybody is scared of their insane speed.

Then what about Olympics? In the sprinting track event it is all about pure speed and nothing but, and the construction of these bikes is significantly different from the conventional touring bikes. If recumbents were truly such rockets then why didn't they eventually ditch the upright position and bring in the recumbent style pure-bred racers?

Let me guess, because they were too fast for the Olympics track event? That's like saying they don't allow for a different shaped Ski sticks in the winter Olympics cause they are way too fast. That's ridicolous. Just recently they allowed a different blade technology for ice skaters that made everyone faster.
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Old 07-06-02, 11:26 AM
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The UCI is notorious for being conservative in bike regulations.

Monocoque (Lotus/Corima) style carbon bikes first used by Chris Boardman in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics were banned by the UCI a year or 2 ago, so everone has to use a diamond shaped frame, even if they make it out of carbon. Even the advanced superman style aero positions have been banned.
The 1 hour record has been reset to the era of steel diamond track bikes, and all the high tech times discounted.

Im not making this up, you can easily look up the UCI regulations or reports in the cycling press.

The speeds of the IHPVA races are pretty high compared to uprights, they are much faster and safer on long fast descents, you can never go "over the bars" on a bent,

On the open road 'bents may go better, but in the urban jungle, they are limited. You cant jump potholes, you cant hop across curbs (the ones built to prevent through-access for cars), they are harder to carry up steps and across footbridges, and harder to transport by rail. You cant squeeze the tricycle versions through small gaps, so you have to wait in line like a car.

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Old 07-06-02, 11:30 AM
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This year in the HPV championships a Ian Chattington stared a 2 hour race and in that 2 hours completed nearly 70 miles ,just work out the average speed.See what I mean can a upright do this?
I dont know why they are not used in the olympics,but from the above you must see that thay are quicker than uprights.
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