New Guy, New Bike, Pain in the A$$......I need help finding a comfy seat

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by theycallmeSDZ, Mar 18, 2011.

  1. theycallmeSDZ

    theycallmeSDZ New Member

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    Ok guys, I am a 38 year old guy who just bought a Giant Defy 3.
    It was a new bike but it is the 2009 model.
    The seat on this bike makes me not want to ride. I rode it for about 3 miles today (first day of ownership). My butt is in a very bad mood. LOL
    Could someone suggest a good seat for someone who is just riding for fitness?
     
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  2. BrianTX

    BrianTX New Member

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    I feel your "pain"...lol. I'm 37 and started riding just ~ 6 months ago.

    First things first....do you have proper riding shorts? The ones with the pads built into them. If not, pick up a good pair of those first. Next, make sure the bike is fitted properly for you. You don't want to ride with all of your weight on your rear. Your arms should be taking some of the weight off. And last, it will hurt your bottom for a little while as you get "acclimated" to the road bike. That was the case with me.

    If you've got a LBS nearby, I'd swing by and have them help you get it fitted for you.

    Cheers,
    Brian.
     
  3. carsnoceans

    carsnoceans New Member

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    This post reminds me of me few months ago.

    1. Burn the stock saddle. Start experimenting with different types (gel, leather, wide, narrow etc). There is no cheap way to do it. Sorry.
    2. Bike shorts. This is what cyclists wear. Its like that leather jacket for a biker.
    3. Keep the weight on legs and back. This will come with time as you train.
    4. Its not a cushy executive chair, mate. There will be some discomfort. Get used to it.

    Fitted saddle + padded shorts + posture.
     
  4. acapulco4ever

    acapulco4ever New Member

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    you are going to get use to it I'm still on my stock saddle and it's getting softer not sure if tue saddle or my butt
     
  5. BrianTX

    BrianTX New Member

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    Don't simply throw out the stock seat. An expensive seat from a big name brand does NOT automatically mean it's going to fit you right. You'll "toughen up the more you ride. Getting the seat set just right for you is the first step (no cost) either. I bought an expensive seat recently and it felt like it was cutting me in two. Took it off and played with my seat setting for a while and my original seat now feels great! Lesson learned. So once you've gotten some good riding shorts with good padding, put some miles on the bike (maybe 200), and gotten the seat dialed in for you...if it's not working for you then, then I'd recommend going to purchase a new seat. Some LBS will actually measure your sit bones to make sure you get the right size. Good luck.
     
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  6. davereo

    davereo Well-Known Member

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    Nothing a good arse pounding wont fix. Sorry could'nt help myself. My LBS has a selection of sample saddles that you can mount on your bike and ride for a few days. I am sure they are not the only ones doing this today. They will also make the adjustments on the position happily seeing as they may sell a saddle. Once you find the one that works you can purchase a new one. When you do find a saddle that works and you plan on riding for years ahead pick up an extra one because you may find in 5 years from now your nice comfy saddle is no longer available.
     
  7. OldGoat

    OldGoat New Member

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    Perhaps you might find some guidance at this earlier forum thread:
    http://www.cyclingforums.com/forum/thread/475853/seat-woes-help
     
  8. Phil85207

    Phil85207 New Member

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    You have some good advice here. Sorry it wasn't better news. There is no easy way to break in your butt, just go ride. The stuff about a good fit on the bike and good shorts are a must too. Notice it says "good" not cheap. I made that mistake and just wasted the money. Good luck.
     
  9. doctorold

    doctorold Member

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    Go buy a Brooks......JK. If you're struggling now, that would complicate things exponentially (they have to be broken in). Suggestions so far are good. The other thing I would recommend is don't stay glued to the saddle. Get up from time to time. Get on your pedals when you're doing some hills. Rest for the reary.
     
  10. theycallmeSDZ

    theycallmeSDZ New Member

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    Thanks for the excellent advice everyone. I do have shorts but they performance bike basic shorts. They have maybe a 1/4 of an inch of padding. What should a good pair have?
     
  11. jeff c

    jeff c New Member

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    Honestly it just takes some getting used to.

    I usually take a few months off during the winter months. (I'm no "flahutte"). And every year, getting back into the season means sore sit bones, a little chaffing and some neck pain.

    Take a few days off... then jump on the saddle again... then a few days off... and in time you will get used to the position, and the saddle.

    I have some light weight shorts from Performance that I wear on rides less than 40 miles. Anything over that and I wear my nicer Pearl Izumi shorts.

    But honestly, a lot of it is just getting used to it. :)
     
  12. dpeters11

    dpeters11 New Member

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    That depends. I found a Brooks was more comfortable from the start than the stock saddle on my bikes. But a friend of mine took one look at it and deemed it to be a medieval torture device.
     
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  13. swampy1970

    swampy1970 Well-Known Member

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    It's not the depth of the padding that matters - it's the materials and placement that's important. I remember bib-shorts back in the 80's and 90's having nowhere near the amount of padding that modern shorts do but they were still comfy. The Ultima pro team issue (like the ones that PDM got) were awesome.

    Now, I dig Pearl Izumi shorts and they work well for me and I'm lucky that I have a Pearl Izumi factory outlet about 2 miles from my house. Then again, my training bike weighs about 24lbs (with bottles, saddle back o' tools and spare tubes) and the money saved on a fancy frame goes on the $130 to $150 shorts (factory outlet sale prices) as I view the near infinite gain in butt comfort to be worth more than the ~1% loss in rider+bike weight.

    As for seats, I find that the Specialized saddles that come in several widths have been fantastically good. I have a lightweight saddle on the road bike (Toupe) and a random cheap (well cheap for Specialized) MTB saddle in a similar sit-bone width for my old school mountain bike. Both are awesomely comfy. The Toupe is so comfy that I can honestly say that after 15+hours in the saddle in mostly mountain roads I don't really notice any discomfort. It's like sitting on air... The Fizik Airone that came with my race bike and now resides on the training bike is also wickedly comfy. Not quite as good but good enough for the rides I do on that bike.
     
  14. theycallmeSDZ

    theycallmeSDZ New Member

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    Well, I am off for my 3rd ride. Wish me and my sore arse some luck gentlemen....LOL
    I did reposition the seat a little further forward and hopefully it will ease some of the pain. I honestly know what prison life is like now.
    So, I hope this helps a little.
    5 short miles will give me the answer.
     
  15. coneofsilence

    coneofsilence Member

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    Be sure to stand up every 10-15 minutes on longer rides to give your butt a rest.
     
  16. jeff c

    jeff c New Member

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    I think a lot of us that ride quite often forget that it can be quite painful at first. The position on a roadbike is really not designed for comfort. But the reality is that you will get used to it, and although its been a long time for many of us, we were probably all there at one point.

    Standing on your pedals or climbing out of the saddle is great advice, it will help get the blood flowing too :).

    Question, and not to be too graphic, is your issue more with your sit bones or is it actual chaffing? Chaffing and saddle pressure are kind of two different things.Chaffing is from the rubbing and is a bit of a sore (abrasion). Otherwise we are talking about a sore spot on those sit bones (more like a bruise).

    If its chaffing there are some products that can be used. I use Performance Chamois Cream sometimes on very long rides (75-100 miles).
     
  17. kahlenz

    kahlenz New Member

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    Here's my take on saddles (as a fifty three year old overweight guy):

    There are two main issues (assuming your bike is set up correctly and your seat is relatively level and at the right height). The first one (and easiest to solve), is chafing. If chafing is the issue, a narrower seat may be in order. The seat that came stock on your bike should be ok. Padded shorts and proper wicking of sweat will also help. Do not wear underwear under your bike shorts. After a while, your skin will toughen up and chafing will be less of a problem.

    The second issue is pressure. How your butt fits your seat. You may have excessive pressure on your sit bones, producing bruising and pain (ouch). Or you may be putting too much pressure on your perineum (soft tissue behind genitals), producing pain and possibly numbness. The first oder of business is to get the pressure off your perineum. Start with a level seat, then micro adjust. Assuming you are in a race style position, you need your seat level enough so that you can take your hands off the handle bars. Too much forward tilt, although it takes the pressure off, puts too much weight on the arms. Too much backward tilt will exacerbate the problem. If you are not in race position, and you are sitting more upright (using an adjustable stem, extra spacers, lower saddle, or whatever) you have the wrong bike. To get the maximum comfort from this bike set it up as it was intended. If a race style position seems uncomfortable at first, you will get used to it. If, after getting a proper set-up and fit, the saddle is still putting pressure on the perineum, you may try looking into saddles with cut outs.

    Pressure on the sit bones is another matter. Some saddles just simply don't fit. Everybody is built different. Try different saddles. I have a similar bike to yours, and use a Brooks B-17. These things will, after a few hundred miles, start to conform to your anatomy. The pressure will be evened out over a wider area (less pressure per square inch) as the saddle breaks in. Brooks saddles get mocked because of their dowdy looks. They are also as uncomfortable as hell at first. And if anybody else rides your bike, chances are they will be appalled at how uncomfortable it is (after all, the saddle has conformed to your sit bones. It does not have padding or gel which would make it more universal). For me, Brooks saddles are the magic elixer.

    Kevin
     
  18. sewupnut

    sewupnut New Member

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    I'm an old timer, but spend lots of time on a bike and still do some racing. Try a Brooks Swift. I got one on my old Masi 3V and on my Seven (that I race on).
    Have a steel rail version on an old Trek 950 and another with springs on my '86 Stumpjumper. Doesn't slow me down at all. Occasional application of olive oil
    keeps them soft. Better yet, find one that is used and worn in a little. All I have were comfortable from the start and got more so as they conformed to my anatomy.
    Wood shank shoes do that too. Plus Brooks saddles are cool and not made in a sweatshop.

    sun
     
  19. smiley 7421H

    smiley 7421H New Member

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    I have had pretty good luck with the toupe specialized seats & san marco selle line especially ones with a cutout in the middle to prevent numbness .. Is your seat level? .Are you wearing padded shorts or padded undershorts? the more you ride the less cushion you will need in the saddle up to a point. Have you checked seat height so you don't saw the sit bones from being too high ? .Have you done the knee over the pedal with a weighted string to see if you are riding over the middle of the pedal? Hope this helps
     
  20. rclouviere

    rclouviere New Member

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    I nearly gave up cycling a couple years ago due to the same problem. Then a buddy suggested the Selle An-atomica saddle. Unbelievable! Only drawback is it is heavy. But it is unbelievably comfortable. I never have any pain now.
     
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