Saddle sores..

slowster
Posts: 1493
Joined: 7 Jul 2017, 10:37am

Re: Saddle sores..

Postby slowster » 21 May 2020, 12:49pm

Cowsham wrote: But some saddles have a rounded top all the way back and therefore the only thing you can control is how much sit bone spreading is going on but by the time your far enough back on the saddle to be comfortable the rest of the saddle is rubbing on your inner thighs. The saddle needs to have somewhere flat enough that your sit bones can sit on top thus lifting the delicate bits up enough to prevent excess pressure on them without another rounded bit or padded bit pushing up towards them. ie it may seem counter intuitive but heavily padded saddle can make things worse.

What you are describing sounds to me like the sort of very wide - and indeed usually heavily padded - saddle typically supplied with utility bikes and the like.

If it's the same specification as currently listed by Halfords, the OP's Carrera Vanquish has a fairly typical narrow road bike saddle which is relatively flat at the back:

Image

Sliding forwards or backwards on that saddle probably does not have the same effect of gradually increasing or reducing the pressure on the perineum/genitalia that doing so does on a traditional saddle with a rounded top like the San Marco Rolls or the Brooks Team Pro for example.

I think there were, and may still be, a good few professional riders who stuck with more traditionally shaped saddles like the Rolls, Bradley Wiggins being one I think, even though the Rolls' design is over 30 years old.

Moreover, the fact that many Brooks leather saddle users find that the rivets at the back of the saddle damage their shorts or even cause discomfort, indicates that they are seated at the rear of the saddle at least some of the time. Those riders apparently have no problem with their thighs rubbing on the saddle, which again tends to show that there is a huge range of differences between all of us, and that assuming that a saddle that is good or bad for one person will likewise be good or bad for another is unlikely to be helpful.

Image

Looking at the Steve Hogg article on the SMP saddles, not only do the saddles look rounded, they also have a dip in the middle (in addition to the large size of the cut outs): that dip must reduce pressure/weight on the perineum/genitalia (in addition to or in combination with the cut out).
Image
He also mentions the San Marco Concor, another ~30 year old design, which is still popular with many riders, and which similarly has a rise at the back/dip in the middle.
Image

Cowsham
Posts: 563
Joined: 4 Nov 2019, 1:33pm

Re: Saddle sores..

Postby Cowsham » 21 May 2020, 1:09pm

slowster wrote:
Cowsham wrote: But some saddles have a rounded top all the way back and therefore the only thing you can control is how much sit bone spreading is going on but by the time your far enough back on the saddle to be comfortable the rest of the saddle is rubbing on your inner thighs. The saddle needs to have somewhere flat enough that your sit bones can sit on top thus lifting the delicate bits up enough to prevent excess pressure on them without another rounded bit or padded bit pushing up towards them. ie it may seem counter intuitive but heavily padded saddle can make things worse.

What you are describing sounds to me like the sort of very wide - and indeed usually heavily padded - saddle typically supplied with utility bikes and the like.

If it's the same specification as currently listed by Halfords, the OP's Carrera Vanquish has a fairly typical narrow road bike saddle which is relatively flat at the back:

Image

Sliding forwards or backwards on that saddle probably does not have the same effect of gradually increasing or reducing the pressure on the perineum/genitalia that doing so does on a traditional saddle with a rounded top like the San Marco Rolls or the Brooks Team Pro for example.

I think there were, and may still be, a good few professional riders who stuck with more traditionally shaped saddles like the Rolls, Bradley Wiggins being one I think, even though the Rolls' design is over 30 years old.

Moreover, the fact that many Brooks leather saddle users find that the rivets at the back of the saddle damage their shorts or even cause discomfort, indicates that they are seated at the rear of the saddle at least some of the time. Those riders apparently have no problem with their thighs rubbing on the saddle, which again tends to show that there is a huge range of differences between all of us, and that assuming that a saddle that is good or bad for one person will likewise be good or bad for another is unlikely to be helpful.

Image

Looking at the Steve Hogg article on the SMP saddles, not only do the saddles look rounded, they also have a dip in the middle (in addition to the large size of the cut outs): that dip must reduce pressure/weight on the perineum/genitalia (in addition to or in combination with the cut out).
Image
He also mentions the San Marco Concor, another ~30 year old design, which is still popular with many riders, and which similarly has a rise at the back/dip in the middle.
Image



That first vanquish saddle isn't too bad but could do without the grooves -- the rest are a no go --- too curvy at the sides.

AimzOx
Posts: 10
Joined: 19 May 2020, 1:50pm

Re: Saddle sores..

Postby AimzOx » 21 May 2020, 2:28pm

Wow, thank you all for taking the time to respond.

My bike is around 2015 (didn't buy it new!), not sure if it's the original saddle but certainly hard with a pointy nose! Not gender specific.

I did the elbow measurement from the front of the nose to the centre of the handlebar post, and it fit perfectly. I would like to raise the bars but my partner isn't convinced that's the problem. He'll try it if I really want to but as he does all of the adjustments I don't want to ask him to do something that might prove useless!

I will try the balancing thing, that's a good idea.

The new saddle arrived today and I'll give it a go tomorrow, all being well. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

User avatar
531colin
Posts: 13018
Joined: 4 Dec 2009, 6:56pm
Location: North Yorkshire

Re: Saddle sores..

Postby 531colin » 21 May 2020, 3:27pm

AimzOx wrote:Wow, thank you all for taking the time to respond.

My bike is around 2015 (didn't buy it new!), not sure if it's the original saddle but certainly hard with a pointy nose! Not gender specific.

I did the elbow measurement from the front of the nose to the centre of the handlebar post, and it fit perfectly. I would like to raise the bars but my partner isn't convinced that's the problem. He'll try it if I really want to but as he does all of the adjustments I don't want to ask him to do something that might prove useless!

I will try the balancing thing, that's a good idea.

The new saddle arrived today and I'll give it a go tomorrow, all being well. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.


Elbow on saddle nose, fingertips should brush the handlebar (not the steerer tube) this is a "rule of thumb" which is helpful, at least for some of the people, some of the time.
However, it depends on the saddle being in the right place; the balance thing will tell you this.
For somebody who is used to doing these things, its about 5 minutes to flip the handlebar stem; but its possible to muck up the headset bearing adjustment if you don't know what you are doing. Any stem will go either way up; flipping it is only useful if it will get the bars higher.

pal
Posts: 381
Joined: 22 Mar 2008, 11:49am

Re: Saddle sores..

Postby pal » 29 Jul 2020, 2:05pm

Thought I'd revive this thread to say that here was quite an interesting discussion of saddles, saddle-sores, bike fitting, etc on 'Woman's Hour' yesterday: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000l8lh