Bike riding is terrific aerobic exercise, a healthy and economical way to commute, and a great way to run errands, sightsee, and get around town. There is, however, a potential downside to biking; sitting on the bicycle seat may result in the compression of nerves and blood vessels of the vulnerable area of the body called the perineum. The perineum contains both blood vessels and nerves. Compression of the perineum can lead to nerve damage, swelling, artery insufficiency (lack of blood flow through the vessel), and even occlusion (blockage) of blood vessels, which in turn can lead to temporary or permanent groin numbness, tingling sensations, decreased penile blood supply, erectile dysfunction (impotence), decreased orgasm sensitivity, and pain (from MedicineNet.com).
Triathlete Magazine, in its February 2011 issue, has an article on this issue affecting triathletes. There are numerous studies that both prove and disprove both sides to the question of whether cycling can lead to erectile dysfunction.
Happily, while I do not suffer from ED, my cycling has been marred by numbness. I’ve tried a variety of saddles, was professionally fit, and nothing seemed to help. That is, until I broke down and spent the money to buy an ISM Adamo Typhoon.
“Ideal Saddle Modification is the brainchild of Steve Toll, an avid cyclist and swimmer living in Tampa, Florida. In the winter of 1997, following a bike ride with his wife, Laura, Steve sketched out a design for a seat he thought would eliminate, or at least reduce, the discomfort most riders experience on a traditional bike saddle. By 1999, with some assistance from his family, the concept was patented. That’s a significant milestone for an industry that hasn’t seen a major saddle change in years.
Flash forward to today – through hard work and tenacity, Steve has not only created a state-of-the-art bike saddle, he is also being sought out by experts in the cycling industry who want the opportunity to test and ride the ISM™.”
First time in the saddle is a strange experience. Also, butt muscles you didn’t even know you had hurt. You wonder if you made the right choice. Is the saddle adjusted correctly? Did I waster my money?
Before installing and riding, I urge you to view the following video:
As stated, it will take some time to adjust the saddle correctly, then some miles under the belt to reduce or eliminate the soreness from the new setup. I’ve put about 30 miles on the saddles since installation, over 4 rides and this morning’s ride was noticeably more comfortable/ Definitely not without discomfort (but what ride is?), but I can tel this saddle will work for me.
Adamo saddles are not cheap, but in my mind, are worth every penny. Should you be struggling with discomfort of any kind during cycling, you owe it to yourself to check out a new saddle. One suggestion is to look at the ISM saddles – with 9 Adamo options as well as two “comfort,” one is bound to work for you.