Finding the right saddle

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
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531colin
Posts: 12445
Joined: 4 Dec 2009, 6:56pm
Location: North Yorkshire

Re: Finding the right saddle

Postby 531colin » 11 Mar 2019, 5:31pm

"Red Orbea"......I'll say again, I don't think what you have is entirely a saddle problem. I will go so far as to say I doubt the saddle itself is even a significant part of the problem.
You say you get pressure on your bum bones after 20 miles....is that similar to sitting on a wooden chair for 2 hours?
Sat on a wooden chair there is nothing you can do, you have to take your weight on your bum bones, unless you lean right forward, put your feet under the chair and take some weight on your feet.....a little obvious during a marriage ceremony, or a school function.
On a bike, you don't want to have all your weight on the saddle. You need to distribute your weight between the contact points, that is saddle, pedals, and handlebars. And the distribution should vary with the circumstances....pedalling hard, freewheeling, going over a pothole....you need to lower the front wheel into the pothole, then lift it out, then un-weight the back wheel as it goes through the pothole. The bike moves underneath you like a rocking horse. If you like, its the difference between sitting in a car and sitting on a pony; on a pony the rider constantly re-distributes their weight according to the animal's stride, and its different for different paces.
I have never damaged a cruciate ligament, the worst I have damaged was a cartilage (medial meniscus). Before surgery, I was actually unable to get out of the saddle, my legs wouldn't do as they were told, which frightened me, as if I had had a stroke. Apparently my muscles were simply "inhibited" by the joint injury. I ride lop-sided, my right bum bone makes a bigger dent in the (leather) saddle than my left bum bone, and although I'm left eye dominant I see the right side of the front wheel...ie. I lean the bike to the left. Exactly as I did before my injury. Most riders are to an extent lop-sided, although they probably don't realise it.
Its very tempting to think that you can buy your way out of pain with a new saddle or bike, but I don't think life is that simple.

Jamesh
Posts: 500
Joined: 2 Jan 2017, 5:56pm

Re: Finding the right saddle

Postby Jamesh » 11 Mar 2019, 6:35pm

I went though a dozen saddles last year and then found the rolls saddle to be the most comfortable. I was able to finally do a double century on it in September.

My freind had a brooks saddle which was armchair comfy. I
have since brought a spa leather saddle and have found it to be as comfortable as the rolls after 2 months of breaking it in.

I find that leather saddles have more positions to sit in than a typical saddle.

Cheers James

RedOrbea
Posts: 3
Joined: 7 Mar 2019, 3:42pm

Re: Finding the right saddle

Postby RedOrbea » 12 Mar 2019, 11:52am

Thank you all so much for your excellent advice.

If (and it's a big if) your problem has been caused by the injury and as a result you now have a pedalling technique that is causing excessive pressure under your sit bones, then the danger of focusing on changing saddles and bikes is that they might only provide temporary/limited relief, because they are likely only to reduce the symptoms, rather than fix the underlying cause (and an experienced cyclist getting such severe pain after only 20 miles suggests to my layman's understanding that there is a significant biomechanical problem/factor, rather than it just being a question of finding a saddle or a bike that you find more comfortable).


Thank you Slowster, I'll definitely try your suggestions.