Thursday, October 21, 2010

Saddle Discomfort

I went for a little ride today on Tony Stark, the Sam Hillborne. There was nothing special about it, and it wasn't even that far (only about 5 miles), but it was nice to just be on a bike. For your nauseating pleasure (and it does make me ill watching it because it's so jumpy and I turned the camera too much), a brief snippet of the ride today.
I also made a bit of a discovery... one that I think has been apparent for some time now, but I keep denying it: my saddle isn't supporting my sit bones. I've read quite a bit about saddles over the last year or so, and I've been on enough bicycles to know when a saddle feels good and when it doesn't. I keep denying that this one isn't working for me, but I don't understand why I'm in such denial. Maybe it's because it's a Brooks and I believe it should feel good, or maybe it's because I'm stubborn at times and just keep thinking that I'll break it in eventually, but I did try a little test on my ride today to see if it really is the lack of support.
Brooks saddle on Tony... Can't even find wear spots from my sit bones,
even after many, many miles of riding
Most of the time when I ride this bike, I have my hands either on the hoods or on the top of the bar, and I believe, in combination with the bars being set higher than the saddle, it's creating too much pressure on my backside on a seat that doesn't have the support in places it is needed. So, I tried leaning over on the drops of the bar to see if that helped, and, sure enough, it relieved the pressure on the sit bones. Hmmm.

Now the question becomes, do I keep the handlebars up high (where I am most comfortable) and find another saddle that is wider, do I continue to deal with the discomfort (which becomes far worse when on longer rides), or do I drop the handlebar height and keep the saddle as is (potentially causing more issues with my hands)? My gut tells me to leave everything as is and try out another saddle, but they aren't cheap and I hate to give up on something with out a fight. The other issue with a wider saddle is that I question how comfortable it will be when leaned over on the drop portion of the bars.
Pepper Potts Brooks Saddle, B66s
There is the option of taking my Brooks saddle from Pepper and trying it out on Tony to see if that might be an option. Then, if it does work, I just have to basically exchange one for the other(which of course, means selling the current saddle, and buying a replacement). Though I'm not quite sure which option is the right one, at least I'm ready to admit defeat (at least somewhat) and start looking for a better solution. After all, there is no reason I should be sore after a little 5 mile ride.


  1. I think it's apparent that the "style" of the saddle does not work for anything close to upright riding, i get the same feeling off of my saddle. For a while i thought it was because mine is a "womens" saddle, but i think it's because i'm more upright. Time to test..

  2. It's not a women's saddle... it's a 'short' saddle. :o) And that was my oops. Sorry. We'll get it figured out, I know it.


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