Saddle



Ronanmk

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Apr 28, 2005
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Hello everyone.

Quick question: Is there a big difference in switching to a hole-in-the-middle saddle?. Are they more confortable?

I know that the answer is "it depends from one person to another" but, I'm interested in the general opinion of people who have tried them both, traditional and "anatomic" saddles.

Thanks!
 

Dr.Hairybiker

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Aug 23, 2004
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I like the "hole in the middle"(perennial relief) saddles. I think they are more comfortable, plus I just like the piece of mind knowing that I'm not putting pressure on that tender area. All I want touching the saddle are the sit bones and the tissue over them.
 

cwrb

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Nov 4, 2003
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Dr.Hairybiker said:
I like the "hole in the middle"(perennial relief) saddles. I think they are more comfortable, plus I just like the piece of mind knowing that I'm not putting pressure on that tender area. All I want touching the saddle are the sit bones and the tissue over them.

I am looking for the ultimate saddle.
Does anyone know an excellent saddle for men approx 185 lbs? I have tried a few (with dents or holes in the middle) and the sides still bother me on longer rides (more than 30 KMs).
I have tried one without the nose but it puts to much pressure on your hands.
There used to be one with two independent supports that swivelled but I can't find it anywhere.
 

jeo

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Aug 4, 2003
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cwrb said:
I am looking for the ultimate saddle.
Does anyone know an excellent saddle for men approx 185 lbs? I have tried a few (with dents or holes in the middle) and the sides still bother me on longer rides (more than 30 KMs).
I have tried one without the nose but it puts to much pressure on your hands.
There used to be one with two independent supports that swivelled but I can't find it anywhere.

I ride twice a day on a $9 discount saddle. It suits me well. Pretty comfortable. Looks like any other. It's got the perennial indentation. When I notice part of my bits are going numb, I scoot forward or backward to give the sore bits a rest. Have you tried that sort of thing?

FYI I'm a 26 year old, 140 lb., 5' 10" male.
 

dgregory57

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Jul 11, 2005
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At 365 pounds I bought a Giant Sedona DX, and have over 1800 miles and 50 less pounds on it. No significant problem with that saddle, and I they are sold after-market as well. There is also a narrower version that I almost bought before I picked up a Brooks B-17.

Even with the hole, a few times when my adjustment was off, I got a little numbness in the region that is supposed to be protected by the hole, so adjustment seems critical for any saddle.
 

Ronanmk

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Apr 28, 2005
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So, I am reading that perennial relief saddles are more than just a marketing scam to get 70+ dollars out of you?
 

WP33

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May 21, 2005
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Ronanmk said:
So, I am reading that perennial relief saddles are more than just a marketing scam to get 70+ dollars out of you?
If you mean little more than a marketing scam, might just be. My new bike has a Specialized Alias saddle and I also have a bike mounting a Selle Italia Flite. I've found the Specialized far more comfortable after getting used to it (I'd say breaking it in, but most new breed saddles don't require breaking in, really). It does have the cut out. The Flite, in comparison, has a "soft tissue gel zone" and that did fine by me for a long while. Where I found the Flite a bit problematic for me is at the back, where it's wider than the Specialized. Seems that for me that's more important than a gel or cut out. I'd say that any numbing issue may have more to do with the angle and position of the seat, and your position on the seat, than any whiz-bang technology. There are guys still riding Brooks saddles both among us here and in the pros. I've never had any numbness problems on any of my seats unless the angle of it, or my position on the bike was wrong.
 

dgregory57

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Jul 11, 2005
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WP33 said:
I'd say that any numbing issue may have more to do with the angle and position of the seat, and your position on the seat, than any whiz-bang technology. There are guys still riding Brooks saddles both among us here and in the pros. I've never had any numbness problems on any of my seats unless the angle of it, or my position on the bike was wrong.
I agree. I think that the possibility exists that the ergonomic seats are a little less prone to issues with adjustment as far as the numbness is concerned, but I have no scientific information to base that on.

However, I thought of a potential example, I confirmed that Eddy Merckx was a pro for about 8 years before his son was born. I strongly suspect that in those 8 years Merckx rode more than most of us will ride in a lifetime... and it was without the saddles that some think are essential today.

ronanmk said:
So, I am reading that perennial relief saddles are more than just a marketing scam to get 70+ dollars out of you?
You can get saddles that have the cut out for significantly less than $70... but yes, I would concur that it is an attempt to sell equipment when an adjustment is the better solution.
 

wineandkeyz

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Sep 30, 2003
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I use a Selle San Marco Era saddle. Before that, I rode the stock saddle that came on my Fuji bike. I was quite comfortable with the Fuji saddle, which didn't have a hole, but did have sort of a trench down the middle. But that seat got ripped up when I endo'ed one day.

I lucked out when I got the Selle San Marco, because it felt comfortable from day one, no matter how far I rode. In contrast, I recently bought a new bike that came with a Fi'zi:k Arione saddle. The salesman at the LBS bragged about how comfortable the saddle was. It was okay on shorter rides -- 20-25 miles or so. But after I did a 62-mile ride one weekend, for several days I was numb and tingling in places that a man doesn't like to be numb and tingling! :eek: So I switched the Selle San Marco saddle over to the new bike and put the Fi'zi:k one on the shelf.

From what I've read, though, saddle comfort is a personal thing. What feels good to me might feel awful to someone else. Like I said, many people rave about the Fi'zi:k saddle, but it didn't work for me.

BTW: Anyone interested in a barely used Fi'zi:k Arione saddle?
 

JulianL

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Aug 4, 2005
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I just bought a Terry Fly saddle for my road bike to replace a Specialized saddle. The Specialized never was very comfortable and I did get tingling in the zone down there after about 30-40 minutes in the saddle. The Terry is much more comfortable to me and I haven't had any tingling yet with this saddle-haven't had it long though.
 

cwrb

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Nov 4, 2003
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Thanks for the information in the various replies.
I am now trying a Terry Libarator and it is a little better.
If it doesn't work, I will try the Terry Fly or the Selle San Marco Era.
Perhaps my Trek 2300 isn't the right structure for me ... maybe I should try a more upright setup (like a Giant OCR).
BTW, I have approx 6 little used seats if anyone is interested ... and maybe a Trek 2300.
 

philso

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Jul 19, 2005
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hi guys,

i've been riding a lot and touring moderately extensively for about 33 years now. i just had some minor surgery on my urinary tract. it seems that the urinary tube had built up extra tissue on the inside in 1 tiny area, constricting it. take a guess where! the doctor initially wouldn't venture a guess on the cause. when i first got back on the saddle, i knew immediately. talking to my doctor later, he agreed that riding so much sounded like a likely candidate. i used to think the the saddles with holes in them were just marketing hype too, but now i know different.

that said, i'm still keeping my leather saddle on my road bike. i have a new split saddle on my mtb. i've never had a more comfortable saddle than leather. i think in retrospect that my physiological problems were due to about 25 years of riding on cheap after-market plastic saddles that felt comfortable enough at the time.
 

frenchyge

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Apr 3, 2005
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Ronanmk said:
So, I am reading that perennial relief saddles are more than just a marketing scam to get 70+ dollars out of you?
Go to your local bike store and have them put one on a bike for you to sit on. I considered them at one point but when I actually sat on one I found that there was a lot of pinching on the sides of my "perennial area" from the narrow strips of seat along the sides of the hole. I didn't feel it was a good fit for me.

If you get a good saddle that fits you properly you shouldn't have any numbness - hole or no hole.
 

Doctor Morbius

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Mar 15, 2004
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Ronanmk, as you can see, people's opinions on saddles offer nothing concrete to base a decision. I own about 15 different saddles. Many have the cutout and many don't. A couple of them with the cutout hurt my sit bones tremendously. Another one with a cut out hurts on either side of the cut out where the rails feel like their cutting into me. A few of them without the cutout hurt in the sit bones or other places.

Basically, the only way to tell if a saddle is going to fit your particular rear end is to try it for a period of several weeks. What Frenchyge says is absolutely correct ... If you get a good saddle that fits you properly you shouldn't have any numbness - hole or no hole. I'm sure he's talking about the saddle and not something else! However, a good saddle for you may be horrible for me. That's just how it works.

http://www.cyclingforums.com/t238336-.html
http://www.cyclingforums.com/t243432-.html
http://www.cyclingforums.com/t229432-.html
http://www.cyclingforums.com/t117074-.html
http://www.cyclingforums.com/t174801-.html
http://www.cyclingforums.com/t171850-.html

All of these threads hit on basically the same theme - the thread starters can't find a comfortable saddle! A quick search on the topic will reveal many more threads on this. The above is just a sample.
 

Ronanmk

New Member
Apr 28, 2005
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Thanks for your replies everyone. Mind you, I don't have problems with my current saddle, but just wanted to have your opinions on perennial releif vs traditional ones.

Looks like everyone's butts are different and no single "perfect" saddle.

Trouble is that the only way to reaaaally test-drive a saddle is for a few weeks, which is a bit unusual for a LBS to allow.

Cheers
 

shannons dad

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Jul 10, 2005
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I can only think of one reason for a hole in a saddle. It's there so that when you fart, the gas has an escape route and therefore won't clog up the pores in your skin!!:D