Okay, bikers I know that it may not be very classy to talk about this but let’s face it; one of the main concerns when cycling is taking care of our bums.
Here are some serious seat facts;
You Really Need a Pair of Bike Shorts
The padding in a pair of bike shorts will range from thick to thin. The thickest pads act as shock a absorbent with layers of thick foams or gel inserts. The chamois padding that is inside a pair of bicycle shorts also will reduce abrasion and cushions the butt. If you are just starting to ride, or the longer your ride, the more density you need in a chamois pad. The elite pads are dense and designed for long distance riders. The pads are also distinguishing between gender in the higher end cycle shorts. The pads that have a line or compression through the center of the chamois are engineered for the male anatomy. The women’s chamois have more of a pillow. There are also unisex pads that both men and women enjoy. A more seasoned bicycle rider may want a thin pad in their bike shorts so that it prevents abrasion and yet feels invisible. Using a thin chamois pad is also popular in triathlon shorts where the short is worn for swim, bike, run.
Apparently, there is quite a bit to be said about the pad that goes between your buns and the “saddle”. Not only is this a shock absorbency issue but also a moisture barrier. The chamois must be worn without underwear in order to be worn properly.
Extra padding is not extra comfortable. As you pedal, your sitbones sink into your saddle, settling on the sturdiest surface available so as to provide the most power to your pedal stroke. The more foam you add, the harder they’re going to press to find that power—ultimately leading to soreness.
There are so many different shapes, sizes, styles, materials……what is the best bet for my booty?
Endurance racers should look more to the comfort end of the spectrum. If you’re strictly a recreational racer, then you want to look for the most comfortable saddle your budget will allow. Most saddles lie somewhere in between, providing a good level of comfort at a reasonable weight.
Speaking plainly; the seat is going to be a trial and error test for the most part. Yes, bikers before you have some good ideas about distance versus mountain versus men’s seats versus women’s seats, etc. There are several varieties of seats that are designed to release tension from certain pressure points that become exceedingly painful on a long bumpy ride.
Know what your tender areas are, keep in mind what kind of cycling you are into and find your fit. The seat matters.