Cycling and Prostititus

Prostatitis, inflammation of the prostate gland, is a common problem for men and there is evidence that longer distance cycling may be a possible cause.

The constant prolonged pressure from the saddle and the jarring forces felt through the bike seat when riding over rough terrain may be the source of cycling-associated prostatitis. The close proximity of the prostate gland to the seat can cause prostate swelling. This swelling clamps down on the urethra, resulting in urinary symptoms that include incomplete emptying of the bladder, urinary dribbling and frequent urination. Other symptoms may include pain and tenderness in the genital area.

Saddles have evolved accordingly over the years. In fact, there are noseless saddles that eliminate any possible pressure but these have not been well received by the cycling community despite success in several trials.  The saddle on my commuter is pictured above.  I wasn’t thinking of my prostate when I purchased it.  It was comfortable and the price was right.  Little did I know that the design purposely relieves pressure on the prostate.  I have other saddles on my road and touring bike – a fi’zi:k Antares and Brooks B17.  They are both comfortable and seen many miles.  But I have to admit the selle italia is the most comfortable and I seldom feel any pressure or numbness as a result of longer rides.  The recessed area at the back and cut-out in the nose minimizes pressure in that area.

If you suffer from cycling-associated prostatitis there are several things to consider:

  1. Find a saddle like the selle italia;
  2. Tilt the saddle forward slightly to relieve pressure in the area;
  3. Stand on the pedals from time to time on long rides to take pressure off the prostate; and,
  4. Get cushioned cycling pants (along with a cushioned saddle) to lesson the constant pressure and jarring when riding.

6 thoughts on “Cycling and Prostititus

  1. I could have addressed saddles designed specifically for women that relieves pressure on their parts but I didn’t feel I was qualified. Women-parts are equally important! My partner has had a lot of difficulty over the years inspite of trying wider saddles with shorter noses. She has tried extra padding, no padding and a variety of saddle designs. I (and she) would appreciate any advice you may have.

    • No worries. Maybe your partner could write a guest post about her attempts and struggles?

      Unfortunately, I have also had struggles. Maybe I’ll write one too. After trying thin, wide, hard, and padded…I am now settled on a pretty wide and padded saddle. It’s not TOO big, but it’s definitely kinda thick compared to many. And that’s for my road bike. My mountain bike saddle has less padding.

      I think, for me, the most crucial thing to have in a saddle for women that relieves pressure is a cut out. An actual hole in the saddle, not a stupid indent. That did nothing for me.

      And it took me a few saddles to realize that I need a wider one than is offered in most bike shops.

      When it comes to using a chamois … ugh. That’s whole other thing!

      • I appreciate your thoughtful comments.

        Unfortunately, my partner has not been able to find an adequate solution. She is fine cycling around the city but has given up on longer rides. My son’s partner, on the other hand, has absolutely no difficulty. She regularly rides 100-200 km, never complains about saddle related soreness and knows little about saddles. However, she does use chamois cream to prevent chafing and irritation. She gave me a tube for my birthday and, I must admit, I like the feeling and it does make a difference. I only use it for longer rides. Have you tried a cream?

  2. Pingback: S*** … 😟 | PedalWORKS

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