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Part of Murphy's Law
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i'm a male. used to never get chaffing in the past (20 years ago). restarted and thought i did things correctly, but, got horrible chaffing in the sit area including the scrotum and perineum. this killed me so much that i was constantly stopping and restarting cycling after i healed. in the few years prior, i would ride my mountain bike with a mtb lined short and a think specialized body geometry seat (very old) with the nose pointed way up and had no problems.

i don't know if it is due to the fact that i'm trying to stay in the seat more. (?)

here's the progression:

seat = fizik vitesse (i know this is described as a women's saddle, but, this is what came with this unisex bike).
. w/ castelli dome shorts = horrible chaffing afterwards
. w/ gore poser bib = bad chaffing afterwards. more padding helped.
. had did some micro adjustments w/o any significant improvement
. used 'chamois butter' on both bibs = same amount of chaffing
. can never develop / harden my 'seat'

seat = performance rs1 (knock off of arione (long nose))
. same bibs and same result with micro adjustments in between.

last 3 times out with long duration off the bike prior.
1. fours weeks ago: w/ 'butter' = chaffed
2. 2 days ago: w/OUT 'butter'; just the bib = OK
3. next day: same as #2 = OK (sit bones hurt a little)

so what gives? cream = chaffing. since 4 weeks ago, it does look i gained 10 pounds. so is my shorts more 'fitting' with the weight?

for reference, i'm 5' 9" (175cm), 170 pds (77 kilos), and wearing: castelli dome size Large and gore power 1 size Med. In the last 3 times, i used the gore.

i wish to resolve this because i don't want it to reoccur at the wrong time.

thanks.
 

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Satanic Watch Winder
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4,842 Posts
+1 DZ Nuts. Sounds like you saddle is "charging up the middle", especially after looking at one. Could be you just need to try a wider, flatter MEN'S saddle. Any issues with leg length discrepancies or scoliosis?
 

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Mad Pharmacist
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43 Posts
i had specialized saddle which i thought was pretty good, but it gave some problems including chaffing although it wasn't as severe as yours. then i got a new bike with trek rl saddle. all of my problem is gone! get a new saddle if you can. trying a chamois cream is a good idea and it did make a difference for me. stay away from assos if you are planning to apply to your scrotum.
 

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Part of Murphy's Law
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149 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
oily666 said:
+1 DZ Nuts. Sounds like you saddle is "charging up the middle", especially after looking at one. Could be you just need to try a wider, flatter MEN'S saddle. Any issues with leg length discrepancies or scoliosis?
in the past, i had a doc note that i had a leg length discrepancy,. after adjustments done by another doc / chiro, the initial doc checked and said i was within tolerance. what i got out of that is that the leg length discrepancy was due to a pelvic imbalance. one side was so much stronger than the other. at the current moment, i do not think i have it, but, i do have a bad (looser in the joint) in one of my hips.

the fake arione is better than the vitesse as it's flatter. will check into other saddles including cutouts which i believe may help me.

thanks.
 

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semi-literate moron
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151 Posts
While some folks (usually guys who sweat a lot) legitimately need the creams and lubes, the majority of folks do not, it's more a matter of getting bibs that fit and a saddle that agrees with you.

The root of chafing is when materials bunch and get wet. Right off the bat, ditch that saddle. Women's saddles tend to be padded more than mens, and the excess softness may mean you're sinking a bit too much into the saddle, the cover is bunching, and when you're sliding your sweaty taint on it, you chafe.

Also check your bibs. If they bunch in the taint area, ditch them in favor of ones that fit with a smooth, flat surface in that area.

When you first get on your bike, the bibs should be a little slippery on the saddle when you're dry. This means that no excess bib material or overly soft saddle padding is causing hitches which in turn creates friction, and when you begin to sweat, chafing.

With properly fitted bibs and a saddle with an appropriate amount of padding, the slipperiness will subside as you begin to sweat, creating nice grip, but you shouldn't experience chafing.

If you still are, that may mean you are one of the few that needs the cream products... But again, try the other solutions first... I have a friend that actually needs the creams despite his best efforts, and it's a sticky smelly mess...
 

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Part of Murphy's Law
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149 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Am I different?

Starter said:
While some folks (usually guys who sweat a lot) legitimately need the creams and lubes, the majority of folks do not, it's more a matter of getting bibs that fit and a saddle that agrees with you.

The root of chafing is when materials bunch and get wet. Right off the bat, ditch that saddle. Women's saddles tend to be padded more than mens, and the excess softness may mean you're sinking a bit too much into the saddle, the cover is bunching, and when you're sliding your sweaty taint on it, you chafe.

Also check your bibs. If they bunch in the taint area, ditch them in favor of ones that fit with a smooth, flat surface in that area.

When you first get on your bike, the bibs should be a little slippery on the saddle when you're dry. This means that no excess bib material or overly soft saddle padding is causing hitches which in turn creates friction, and when you begin to sweat, chafing.

With properly fitted bibs and a saddle with an appropriate amount of padding, the slipperiness will subside as you begin to sweat, creating nice grip, but you shouldn't experience chafing.

If you still are, that may mean you are one of the few that needs the cream products... But again, try the other solutions first... I have a friend that actually needs the creams despite his best efforts, and it's a sticky smelly mess...
thanks. interesting perspective. i have been thinking the cream might be giving me more movement than I need within the chamois. the saddle (arione knock-off) i have now is flat, but, long. i know i move around (unsure if more than normal), but, i have never seen any "hitches" on the shorts, chamois or seat.

i might be different from other riders and unsure if this factors into my problem. i have spondylolisthesis at the L4/L5 so I try to have a flat back, and thus put my pelvic floor flat on the seat. at this position, i know my sit bones are pointed rearward. it is also in this position that my scrotum is being "squashed" so i'm thinking about needing a cutout. due to a weak core (?), i cannot always hold this position and start curling up and making a "hump" in my lower back. and i also start moving around once i start having lower back pain, which is inevitable.
 

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Part of Murphy's Law
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149 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
speedyg55 said:
How's your seat height? If too high, you'll get some pelvic action going on which could lead to rashes and chaffing (not kode)
i think the seat height is fine. in my last adjustment (about 6 rides ago), i moved the seat forward a quarter (1/4) inch without bringing it up by the same measure. it didn't cause any noticeable differences. i do have 'pelvic movements', but, unsure more than normal.
 

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semi-literate moron
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151 Posts
bq_or_bust said:
thanks. interesting perspective. i have been thinking the cream might be giving me more movement than I need within the chamois. the saddle (arione knock-off) i have now is flat, but, long. i know i move around (unsure if more than normal), but, i have never seen any "hitches" on the shorts, chamois or seat.

i might be different from other riders and unsure if this factors into my problem. i have spondylolisthesis at the L4/L5 so I try to have a flat back, and thus put my pelvic floor flat on the seat. at this position, i know my sit bones are pointed rearward. it is also in this position that my scrotum is being "squashed" so i'm thinking about needing a cutout. due to a weak core (?), i cannot always hold this position and start curling up and making a "hump" in my lower back. and i also start moving around once i start having lower back pain, which is inevitable.
Hmmm, the medical condition definitely adds a wrinkle. Sounds like you may be pressing your sensitive area down into the saddle a bit more than riders utilizing the ideal "semi-seated" position, wherein a portion of their weight is on the pedals as well. As Gerry pointed out, you may need a specific saddle to rectify the situation.

The SMP line is certainly one to look at, although if I am understanding correctly your issue and the seated position you have subsequently adopted, then the hump of the "beak" on some of the SMP saddles may catch you right in the nuts... You'll have to try one out to see if this is an issue. If it is, you might also look at Adamo saddles...
 

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Part of Murphy's Law
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149 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Starter said:
Hmmm, the medical condition definitely adds a wrinkle. Sounds like you may be pressing your sensitive area down into the saddle a bit more than riders utilizing the ideal "semi-seated" position, wherein a portion of their weight is on the pedals as well. As Gerry pointed out, you may need a specific saddle to rectify the situation.

The SMP line is certainly one to look at, although if I am understanding correctly your issue and the seated position you have subsequently adopted, then the hump of the "beak" on some of the SMP saddles may catch you right in the nuts... You'll have to try one out to see if this is an issue. If it is, you might also look at Adamo saddles...
many thanks Starter.

been busy, but, i wanted to pass on the info that you have given to me: chamois cream is not always a must.

when i re-started without any cream, i was doing 15-22 miles in one sitting while scared to get any. now i've progressed to 30 miles non-stop. yesterday, i did 50 miles but with multiple starts because of my back. ALL these rides were WITHOUT major CHAFFING.

i do have a question:

i have changed my posture slightly to not put so much pressure on the gonads. BUT, this hurts my lower back more. i definitely need core exercise. would a bike fit aid? my worry is that they would focus on either putting me in a position without taking into account my spondylolisthesis.

thanks again.
 

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25.806975801127
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9,790 Posts
bq_or_bust said:
many thanks Starter.

been busy, but, i wanted to pass on the info that you have given to me: chamois cream is not always a must.

when i re-started without any cream, i was doing 15-22 miles in one sitting while scared to get any. now i've progressed to 30 miles non-stop. yesterday, i did 50 miles but with multiple starts because of my back. ALL these rides were WITHOUT major CHAFFING.

i do have a question:

i have changed my posture slightly to not put so much pressure on the gonads. BUT, this hurts my lower back more. i definitely need core exercise. would a bike fit aid? my worry is that they would focus on either putting me in a position without taking into account my spondylolisthesis.

thanks again.
A good bike fitter will ask all kinds of questions, including any medical conditions, and adjust according to that.
 
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