With two long training rides under my belt as I prepare for GranFondo Niagara Falls one consistent feeling at the 3 hour mark, has been the slow creeping pain in my seat from my seat. So as I build towards 125km, here are some tips to keep your ride fun and pain free.
1. Is Your Bike The Right Size?
If your bike frame is either to big or two small, a sore butt can certainly be the result. The advice from the pros at my local Mountain Equipment Coop is to straddle the bike frame with your feet flat on the ground. If you have more than 2 inches between the top of the frame and your groin, the bike frame is too small. If you have less than 2 inches between you and the bike the frame is too big.
2. Adjust The Seat
If your frame is the right size, then it might be the placement of the seat that needs to move. Try this trick to see if you bike seat is in the correct position. Place one foot on the ground and the other foot on the pedal closest to the ground. If your leg that is on the pedal is super bent or if you can barely reach the pedal, a seat adjustment is necessary, so adjust the seat so that your leg has only a very slight bend when your foot is on the bottom pedal.
3. Adjust the Handlebars
This one I know from indoor cycling! When your handlebars aren’t set to the correct height it puts strain on your shoulders and back and can cause you to position yourself incorrectly on the seat. How do you know if you’re handlebars are in the right spot? Here’s what the experts say! Measure the distance between the tip of your middle finger and your elbow -this is the amount of space that should be between the front tip of your bike seat and the mid-section of your bike’s handlebars (we use this same trick for indoor cycling as well).
4. Get Some Padded Shorts!
I hate padded shorts. They feel like an icky diaper and apart from saving my butt (literally) the only pleasure I get from them is my ongoing (and overused) joke about looking like Kim Kardashian BUTT (hee hee) they work! The length of the shorts often prevents rubbing from your skin and the bike seat, thus reducing any chaffing. The giant gross pad minimizes pressure on the narrow seat which helps to reduce any pain and most shorts are made of moisture wicking fabrics, which helps to keep your skin dry.
Hey cyclists! How do you save your seat while spending lots of time on it? Leave you tip in the comment section!