Is the saddle always to blame? A discussion of potential causative factors of saddle discomfort
Cycling is a unique sport that requires fixed points of contact. Because riders need to distribute the load involved through their anatomical structures, they are vulnerable to the pressures and shear forces that occur as a consequence. Although it has been reported that the vast majority of cyclists experience genital numbness and other forms of discomfort when riding, the actual incidence rate is unknown. This is because there is a tendency for individuals to under-report their symptoms, which many regard as normal side effects of using a bicycle. The aim of this paper is to explain which parts of the bicycle may be involved in the discomfort experienced by riders, and how these can be adjusted to improve the experience of cycling.
Keywords: bike fitting, causative factors, cycling, pelvic pain, saddle.