Cycling and men's health

Discussion in 'Health Nutrition and Supplements' started by Chuckabutty, Oct 14, 2018.

  1. Chuckabutty

    Chuckabutty Active Member

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    I found this interesting. I've been riding a bike almost every day for four years, and for at least 8 miles a day, sometimes 20 - 30 miles (not every day). I'm 72 and have no current problems. The hardest one I encountered was getting the right saddle because of the discomfort I was experiencing. I tried an exotic Italian saddle based on the correct sizing by measuring my sit bones, but it was torture. I can't understood how anyone can ride a bike with a saddle so narrow that it almost goes up yer bum. It seems to me such a saddle could cause some problems.

    Anyway, how does cycling affect our personal parts?
     
    #1 Chuckabutty, Oct 14, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2018
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  2. cyclintom

    cyclintom Well-Known Member

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    I would recommend you try a Prologo Scratch. You can sometimes find them on Ebay as the "Try and Buy" version that was used as a test saddle at shops. These versions are pretty cheap. The normal version isn't expensive like saddles used to be so you can try these a lot easier than you used to. Concor and Regal and the like used to be the only descent saddles available and they would leave you walking bow-legged for days.
     
  3. Chuckabutty

    Chuckabutty Active Member

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    My fault for not making it clear that I was posting a video pertaining to men's health. The last two words (personal parts) of my original post (underlined) provided a link to the video. Click on the words and it will take you to the YouTube video.
     
  4. BrianNystrom

    BrianNystrom Member

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    Saddle choices is very personal, which is why there are so many designs on the market. It takes time and experience to determine what fits you best; no guidelines can substitute for that. Perhaps one may get lucky and find a great saddle on the first try, but that's not the norm.

    Comfort is not something that happens immediately, either. Even if you have the "perfect" saddle, it's going to take time for your body to adjust to having a lot of pressure on your ischial tuberosities ("sit bones") and the soft tissue between the bones and the saddle. Soreness in that area is normal and should be expected. It subsides after a few rides, but you need to ride on a consistent basis to prevent discomfort from returning.

    I've found a couple of saddles that work for me, one for road and another for off-road ('gravel & MTB). I actually modify my road saddles to make them just right. It's extra work, but it's worth it.

    Keep in mind that even plastic-base saddles break in and eventually wear out. The padding compresses to fit you initially, but after thousands of miles, it can break down to the point that it's less comfortable. Saddles are not a "forever" purchase.

    As the video points out, cycling is good for your health and unless you're crazy enough to ignore numbness or other potentially serious symptoms, nothing bad is going to happen due to riding.
     
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  5. RoWarrior

    RoWarrior New Member

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    I've been noticing my bits going numb recently, and it isn't the cold.

    I'm thinking I need to invest in a bigger saddle and lose some weight (120kg!)
     
  6. BrianNystrom

    BrianNystrom Member

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    You don't necessarily need a bigger saddle, what you need is one that fits your body properly. Avoid saddles with thick padding, as they actually can make the problem worse. Having your bike fitted to you by a professional fitter can make all the difference in the world, so consider finding one in your area and getting fitted.

    Losing weight certainly won't hurt.
     
  7. Chuckabutty

    Chuckabutty Active Member

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    002.JPG
    That is a lot of weight for any saddle, but it's easier to find a better saddle than to lose weight. I've tried quite a few (I weigh 86kg.) My widest one was 10" (254mm) and it wasn't comfortable. I bought a gel saddle from my LBS, one that they recommended, but it wasn't comfortable, so they allowed me to return it. I bought one from Walmart and it works well. It's memory foam and 8" wide (200mm).

    I have two bikes, a fat one and a hybrid. Both have identical saddles, yet they feel different because of the angle at which I'm sitting. Both are comfortable but can still give me butt ache sometimes. I recently did a 34 mile run on the fatty but it wasn't so much my butt aching as my arms. I'm 72 years old so I suppose I should expect some aches from time to time.

    And 'cold' in Florida, means sixty degrees. :)
     
  8. BRITANY

    BRITANY New Member

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    I was experiencing. I tried an exotic Italian saddle based on the correct sizing by measuring my sit bones, but it was torture. I can't understood how anyone can ride a bike with a saddle so narrow that it almost goes up yer bum.
     
  9. BrianNystrom

    BrianNystrom Member

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    Where a saddle is made or how much it costs has no bearing on comfort. It doesn't mean that a similar-sized saddle of a different design won't work for you or a $30 model made in China won't turn out to be perfect.

    Saddle width is only one of several considerations. The curvature of the saddle, both across the sitting area and along its length, is extremely important. The overall shape when viewed from above varies dramatically, from nearly triangular to more T-shaped and has a huge effect on comfort. The width of the nose matters. The amount of flex in the shell and the amount of padding are both critical elements. A central groove or cutout can also make a big difference.

    I don't know how much you ride, but if you're new to cycling, keep in mind that no saddle is likely to be immediately comfortable, since you're sitting on bones and tissue that don't normally experience the same level of pressure that they do when riding. Some degree of saddle soreness is inevitable until your body adapts.

    Unfortunately, there's really no way to tell what's going to work without trying a few saddles. If you're confident that the width measurement was done properly, stick with that and try more saddles of similar width, but different designs. Many manufacturers and shops have test programs that allow you to try a saddle and exchange it toward another if it doesn't work for you.

    Over the years, I've learned that I need a relatively narrow saddle with narrow nose, an abrupt transition from the nose to the sitting area, a firm shell with moderate padding, and a groove or cutout down the center. For many other riders, this may be exactly the wrong design. That's why there are so many options on the market.

    Don't give up! You will eventually find what you need.
     
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