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How To Prevent Saddle-Related Numbness & Discomfort

How To Prevent Saddle-Related Numbness & Discomfort


it’s a problem which many cyclists are affected by a numbness in the groin area after prolonged period spent sat in the cell happens new cyclists and also those have been riding for many years now it can severely reduce the enjoyment of riding a bike but it can also be quite dangerous if you choose to ignore it so how do you go about preventing it we’re going to go through a few tips in this video but firstly let’s explain it exactly what it is now the official term for this discomfort is perennial discomfort also known as numbness but it’s more uncouth people of the world that would refer to it as that now effectively just like a lot of other numbness that you might experience in your body through your lifetime it’s caused by a lack of blood flow to that particular area so in this case prolonged period spent sadness settle can compress the nerves and blood cells in that area now if you choose to ignore it and it goes untreated it can lead to something called Allcock syndrome which can also be known as I’m never going to remember this pudendal nerve entrapment syndrome definitely sounds like something you don’t want to get so let’s have a look at a few things you can do to make sure that you don’t ever get it now the first thing to look at fairly obviously is the saddle upon which you are perch now saddles are a very personal thing in a shape which suits one person won’t necessarily suit the next person just like in fact any item of clothing which comes in different sizes now what this means unfortunately is that experimenting with different saddles can become quite expensive if you buy them each time so if at all possible try to borrow one per week however from a friend or maybe a local bike shop until you find the right one for you and I can say from personal experience that when you do find that right shape saddle it makes an enormous difference to the comfort of your riding it’s worth bearing in mind though that it is the shape of the saddle generally which makes the most difference to comfort so don’t be fooled into thinking that the biggest softest comfiest looking saddle is going to be the most comfortable now you can also try experimenting with a saddle that has a cutout down the middle or indeed some kind of channel now these are designed so that the majority of your body weight there is perched upon the two sit bones either side as opposed to the soft tissue in the middle this allows more blood flow through that critical area and one more thing to consider is that women in general will have sit slightly farther apart than men but the good news is there are plenty of women’s specific sounds on the market that take this into account the next thing to look at is where you’re actually sitting on the saddle when you’re out riding now you should be perched on the slightly wider part here towards the back if you’re perching yourself further forwards that could be your problem so if this is you then try consciously when you’re out riding shimmying back and see if that makes a difference too although if you’re struggling to do this then you could always try pushing yourself forwards ever so slightly on the rails by a centimeter or so and again that could make a difference now you should also consider the angle of your saddle in general it should be almost perfectly horizontal the exception to this is if you’ve got some very low bars at the front end a quite a large saddle to bar drop in this instance you could try experimenting with having your saddle angled ever so slightly with the nose downwards not too much though otherwise then the tendency will be for you to slip forward and once again you’ll be sat on the wrong part of the saddle now the last thing to consider is your saddle high if you have it too high then you’re going to have to rub from side to side every time you pedal so if you think the sells too high just put it down ever so slightly and that could be what works for you now finally you want to make sure that when you’re out riding you get out the set for 15 to 20 seconds every 15 or 20 minutes this is actually one of the reasons why people finally get this discomfort more on an indoor trainer when them when they’re out riding is an indoor trainer you tend to stay seated in the saddle just getting out of the saddle for 15 to 20 seconds should get the blood flowing again and it could relieve the discomfort next up it almost goes without saying but riding with a specific pair of cycling shorts of a chamois answer like this will almost always make your riding more comfortable but do bear in mind that over time they do wear out and get more compressed so if you’re still using the same pair of shorts that you’ve done thousands and thousands of kilometers on it might be time to invest in a new pair and talking of equipment investing in some bigger tires of a larger volume can also really help the comfort whilst you’re out riding you’ll be able to run them at a lower pressure which will mean that your tires absorb more of the bumps and vibration from the road so that your undercarriage doesn’t have to finally it’s a really good idea to make sure that you raise yourself off the saddle slightly before anything like a speed bump or maybe a pothole which you can’t avoid if you stay seated in these situations your cell is just going to slam against your body and that’s not going to help things at all so there you have a few pointers to try and help alleviate or in your discomfort firstly make sure that you’ve got the right saddle for you secondly make sure that your salad in the right place and that you’re sitting in the right place of the saddle next make sure you’ve got the right equipment that’s going to make your riding as comfortable as possible and lastly make sure to get out of saddle occasionally particularly at appropriate moments that’s what I’m saying also that with any of these things just try doing them one at a time so you can single out exactly which one has worked for you now we’ve got a couple more videos now which should help you as well so just up there we’ve got a video which shows you how to find your perfect saddle height and just down there are a few tips on how to prevent saddle sores and summer on the screen you’ll see a red GT logo click on that and you’ll be able to subscribe to the channel for free

23 comments on “How To Prevent Saddle-Related Numbness & Discomfort

  1. Sitting in the wrong spot on the saddle is in part due to the rules of fitting you on the bike in the first place when you get fitted for a bike. This rule or guide needs to change so that the rider will always place their butt in the right place.

  2. Great video. Thanks! I had to abandon my beloved Brooks leather saddle as it was putting too much pressure on those areas keeping my Johnson healthy and happy. I am now using a Selle SMP Lite 209 and the improvement is striking. I had my Brooks saddle framed and it's now mounted on my living room wall enjoying a second life as artwork.

  3. I guess it'll differ from person to person, but I find that on the indoor trainer I can stay sat for 60-90 minutes without discomfort, whereas on the road my scranus feels like it's being pummeled to bits due to uneven surfaces – even though on the road you're not even pedalling about 30% of the time.

    For me, at 100kg-ish, road bumpiness is genuinely a gigantic pain in the taint; so much so that if I didn't have frame constraints I would replace my Maxxis Dolomites 25s with 28s (or even 32s) and decrease tyre pressure as much as I can. There's a very good GCN video about that.

    I can't do that with 25s without risking pinch-flats (or even rim damage – there are some 1"-2" lips on the bike paths around here).

    So instead… whack the bike on the KickR (or the dumb trainer). log into Zwift and ride at Tempo with zero discomfort and zero "not-pedalling".

    Zwift (and FullGaz, and SufferFest) are the awesomest things since power meters and HR monitors.

  4. Every time i go out biking i feel pain in the part between my nuts and anus i think its the pelvic area and when pee i feel pain too… what is the problem? Do all bikers feel that too?

  5. The solution is: Get married and don´t care about your numb nuts any longer as your sex life is non-existent anyway!

  6. I did a 44 mile gravel grind last Sunday and 3 days later, I am still sore. I typed "numb" in the search bar on your main channel page and found this video. I will never get numb nuts again (I hope)! Thanks GCN!

  7. I bet it took a few takes before Dan could say his lines without laughing. Before you ask yes I have had numb nuts it was after a 70km sportive it was a weird feeling once they started to wake up, I hope to never experience it again.

  8. So i am new to cycling and i am experiencing numbness in my legs and feet . What is causing this any feedback will be helpful thanks.

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