Bike seat recommendations? Hurts 😥

I started cycling again on !y stationary and will be cycling on my new outdoor bike in the future. The problem is after just 20minutes lets just say I feel numb down there. Would appreciate any bike seat recommendations, something that will be more comfortable.
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Replies

  • Machka9
    Machka9 Posts: 21,132 Member
    Check your setup.
    Get padded cycling shorts.
    Get a Brooks. :)
  • SweatsOnSunday
    SweatsOnSunday Posts: 514 Member
    Agree with all of the above. And if you're going to do some serious time on the outdoor bike, a bike fit is worth the money. It's been years since I've done it -- I've fallen out of the habit -- but back then it was about $50. They measure you, ask how often you ride, how often you workout, etc, etc, and really customize the bike to fit you. Just like a tailor for a good suit.

    Oh, and the numbness goes away.
  • amorfati601070
    amorfati601070 Posts: 2,670 Member
    sijomial is spot on.


    Dont fall for the fallacy that the wider saddle is more comfortable. Its all to do where you're sit bones place on the saddle. Its really hard, we are all different, anatomically speaking. Yes, investing in a good pair of bibs or shorts is always a wise move. Probably go check out your LBS and they can hopefully help u out.



    GCN has some pretty solid advice.
  • tbilly20
    tbilly20 Posts: 154 Member
    #1 - Get your bike fit. A $500 can ride like a dream if fit properly, and a $10k bike can feel like junk if it’s not setup.
    #2 - If you are going to be putting time in the saddle, getting a pair of bib shorts with a nice chamois is enormous! (If you are going even longer, opt for chamois cream as well.)
    #3 - Work on your core. Make sure you can ride in a position that puts your weight on the saddle properly. Lots of new riders lack the core strength to maintain good positioning on the bike. This leads to nose-heavy weighting of the saddle.
    #4 - Once you get the above figured out, you still need to put in the time. Your posterior will begin to acclimatize quicker than you think, but you need to be pretty consistent.
    #5 - Give the saddle time to break-in. Most modern saddles don’t require the grace period of a Brooks B17, but they still get better as you ride them.

    Don’t spend any money on a new saddle until you’ve fixed all the other stuff! (If your bike fitter suggests it, then it’s ok!)
  • veganbabe777
    veganbabe777 Posts: 374 Member
    Thank you all for the great suggestions!
  • NorthCascades
    NorthCascades Posts: 10,903 Member
    You've got a lot of great advice in here. I'm going to offer a different take, but I still want to say everybody else has given you good advice.

    Maybe you need a bike fit, maybe you don't. We don't know. It's common and good advice, but a lot of people get on bikes and don't have fit issues. We all have different tolerances. There's are plenty of folks who have perfectly good fitting bikes, with saddles that hurt them. So I would approach the saddle problem separately and think about getting a bike fit afterwards if I still needed one.

    A lot of bike shops, local and online, try to make it easy to get the right saddle because it's so different from one person to the next (messaging everybody goes through this). Some shops will lend you a saddle, let you keep it for a week, then lend you a different one, etc until you find the right one. Others have generous return policies. Some companies that make saddles have comfort guarantees, Fabric is one and their saddles are excellent.

    You look like a girl, so I'll throw this out there: a company called Butterfly makes bike saddles that a lot of women say work better for them. Normally recommendations for a saddle aren't worth much because we're all so different.
  • yirara
    yirara Posts: 7,358 Member
    Oh, and what's not been said yet: Cycle longer distances without undies! The seams also cause saddle burn. Get good cycling shorts with padding. That's enough.
  • barefootbridgey
    barefootbridgey Posts: 81 Member
    I don't bike outside, but I do 30-50 minutes spin workouts a week. I was initially like, dying. A buddy of mine (who is a bike mechanic/rider extraordinaire) ordered me some very basic padded cycling shorts and some chamois cream. She said "the shorts are just to get you started, but the chamois cream is magic. No matter how much I try to understand why it work, it just doesnt make sense that it works as well as it does"

    And she is not wrong. Magic. I do ride without underwear, chamois cream basically in the inner thigh/butt region (the places i know it's gonna hurt), toss on the padded shorts and go. Magic - and no pain - not during, not after.
  • veganbabe777
    veganbabe777 Posts: 374 Member
    I don't bike outside, but I do 30-50 minutes spin workouts a week. I was initially like, dying. A buddy of mine (who is a bike mechanic/rider extraordinaire) ordered me some very basic padded cycling shorts and some chamois cream. She said "the shorts are just to get you started, but the chamois cream is magic. No matter how much I try to understand why it work, it just doesnt make sense that it works as well as it does"

    And she is not wrong. Magic. I do ride without underwear, chamois cream basically in the inner thigh/butt region (the places i know it's gonna hurt), toss on the padded shorts and go. Magic - and no pain - not during, not after.

    Can you recommend the chamois cream you use.
  • barefootbridgey
    barefootbridgey Posts: 81 Member
    I don't bike outside, but I do 30-50 minutes spin workouts a week. I was initially like, dying. A buddy of mine (who is a bike mechanic/rider extraordinaire) ordered me some very basic padded cycling shorts and some chamois cream. She said "the shorts are just to get you started, but the chamois cream is magic. No matter how much I try to understand why it work, it just doesnt make sense that it works as well as it does"

    And she is not wrong. Magic. I do ride without underwear, chamois cream basically in the inner thigh/butt region (the places i know it's gonna hurt), toss on the padded shorts and go. Magic - and no pain - not during, not after.

    Can you recommend the chamois cream you use.

    (Quick side note, I left out a number...i do THREE 30-50 minute bike workouts a week. I guess I forgot that whole "3" thing...lol)

    Sure can!! It's this one. It's a good sized tub. I've used it before every ride for probably a month and a half and I think I still have more than 3/4 of it left. It's kind of got some sort of menthol/cooling deal to it, but not really enough to smell (maybe a little?) or even feel at first. It doesn't make your skin numb or cold or tingley...it's just really nice.

    https://www.amazon.com/Chamois-Buttr-Eurostyle-Anti-Chafe-Cream/dp/B001C69L6K/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=chamois+creme+european&qid=1614373124&sr=8-1
  • tbilly20
    tbilly20 Posts: 154 Member
    Chamois cream is a friction reducer. It also includes anti-fungal and anti-bacterial agents. The good ones are all-natural. The difference in a Euro-style is the addition of menthol and witch hazel. These ingredients cause an effervescent effect. Areas that are normally “hot spots” cool and tingle instead. For long rides, chamois cream is considered essential. Many riders will turn to chamois cream regardless of ride length.

    Some great brands include: Sportique, Assos, and DZ Nuts (named for David Zabriskie). At the pricepoint level: Chamois Butt’r and Muc Off.

    Most cyclists tend to pick a brand and stick with it. (Same as bib shorts). My favorite brand for each is Assos. They do great bibs, and they make an excellent, Euro-style, chamois cream! The great thing about Chamois Butt’r is that it comes in very small packages. They are great to pack in a ride bag if you are traveling with carry-on only.
  • Onedaywriter
    Onedaywriter Posts: 313 Member
    Machka9 wrote: »
    Check your setup.
    Get padded cycling shorts.
    Get a Brooks. :)

    Got a Brooks last year. Awesome!
    When I first start riding in the spring (I don’t like riding in the cold - just no fun for me) I always say the first month is just to harden my butt! It will get better after a couple of weeks!
  • pauliet7
    pauliet7 Posts: 31 Member
    I started cycling again on !y stationary and will be cycling on my new outdoor bike in the future. The problem is after just 20minutes lets just say I feel numb down there. Would appreciate any bike seat recommendations, something that will be more comfortable.

    Many comments have suggested bike fit and shorts which are all good points. Some women depending on their anatomy require a more specific saddle choice to reduce friction on the erm..frontal area.

    Probably a difficult subject to discuss at your LBS. However many products are available though not always budget friendly.

    Hope you find a solution. Cycling has literally been a life saver. Keep trying.
  • tristramtrent
    tristramtrent Posts: 257 Member
    edited March 2021
    I went to a Specialised (brand) shop which had a sitting bones measuring device. To my surprise I am wide but my sit bones are narrow. They size their saddles to fit the different parameters they measure . The narrow one I bought, looking like a racing bike’s terrifying blade like perch, has never given me a moment’s discomfort. It’s the last one I’d have expected to fit, from looking at it! It was not too costly either.
  • Antiopelle
    Antiopelle Posts: 906 Member
    I do some long outdoor bikes a lot, but during winter time I take a break as weather is permitting to ride.
    After such a break, it is always painful for the first two or three rides and then I'm off again.
    The things that help me:
    • Bikers shorts don't do anything for me except to aggravate the situation, just to show that everyone is different.
    • Fitting skinny jeans (not the stretch kind, nor the loose kind) are perfect for riding and way better than any sports equipment I've tried so far.
    • And a tip I got from a pro bicyclist woman: (might by TMI for some):
      keep your natural padding down there, so refrain of shaving
      .
  • kcjchang
    kcjchang Posts: 708 Member
    Chamois cream can be a crutch. I use it a few time, a 125 mile ride with 14,000 ft of elevation gain, a relatively flat double century, and when I had pressure sores. I normally don't use it.

    Assuming your fit is dialed and you're wearing proper clothing, it's just time in saddle. It normally take me a week or two before I get used to indoors. I added a rocker plate to my setup so I can get through a three hour ride. Before the rocker, 3 hour was my limit and I needed the next day for additional recovery of my behind. No problems after the rocker and limiting factor is now my endurance, physical and mental. My longest so far is just over 5 hours followed by an hour recovery the next day.

    Also assuming you are a roadie or becoming one, ignore the sit bones myth. It's a starting point but it plays no part on how normal cyclist sit on the saddle and how pressure is distrubted. It's a marketing gimmick at best and like KOPS, needs die. https://blog.bikefit.com/sit-bones-width-measurement-and-bike-saddle-selection/.

    In case you are not aware of KOPS myth, https://www.sheldonbrown.com/kops.html. It's a quick and easy screening for competent fitter.
  • dmkoenig
    dmkoenig Posts: 299 Member
    You are getting all kinds of feedback on this, some good ideas that would be relatively easy to implement, and some good ideas that may well be overkill. For example, bike fits are something that can be really helpful, but the good ones cost a lot of money and may not be that meaningful if you are riding a recreational bike, as you don't really care about optimizing performance. You're just trying to get comfortable. (1) Start with someone you know and trust that has experience riding and they should be able to provide guidance on whether your basic position is pretty good - seat height, whether the seat is too far forward or back, if you are stretched out too much, etc. If you go to a spin class the instructor will be able to eyeball this and provide feedback. (2) When you're riding, regularly change your position, moving forward and back on the saddle a bit, occasionally standing up. Same with your hand position. That will help keep the blood flowing and avoiding pressure points. (3) If you have a big fat saddle, consider going to your local bike shop and swapping it out for a supportive female anatomical saddle. There are a lot of good saddles that help eliminate a lot of the pressure points. Ask about their return policy if the saddle does not work for you. (3) Slowly build up how much time you are on the bike. (4) Consider investing in a decent pair of padded cycling shorts. It's not only the padding that's helpful but the support the spandex provides to keep all the "bits" in place. Good luck and ride on!
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 24,845 Member
    I agree that toughening up happens, and would add that it doesn't have . . . negative consequences in other respects, shall we say?

    This will probably horrify the serious bikers, but I didn't see this option mentioned so I'll risk it: You can get gel-padded seat covers for pretty cheap, and such a thing might help in the short term. I have and use bike shorts with chamois/padding for longer outdoor rides, but prefer to do stationary biking in normal workout clothes. Putting the padding on the bike, instead of in my clothing, seems to work fine, heretical though it may be. It's an option.
  • Machka9
    Machka9 Posts: 21,132 Member
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    I agree that toughening up happens, and would add that it doesn't have . . . negative consequences in other respects, shall we say?

    This will probably horrify the serious bikers, but I didn't see this option mentioned so I'll risk it: You can get gel-padded seat covers for pretty cheap, and such a thing might help in the short term. I have and use bike shorts with chamois/padding for longer outdoor rides, but prefer to do stationary biking in normal workout clothes. Putting the padding on the bike, instead of in my clothing, seems to work fine, heretical though it may be. It's an option.

    If you're new to cycling and not going very far, a gel saddle is all right.

    But if you're going longer distances you'll probably want something that won't cause so much friction.