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I am posting this for my wife. I really enjoy riding with her and am looking for a solution. My wife rides a 2012 Specialized Vita Elite, its a decent bike that was set up and fit at our LBS. It does have a stem riser on it to give her a more up right position. After climbing a hill (medium roller), she hurts in a rather sensitive area. It seems that as she leans forward to climb her pelvis tips down and places pressure into an area that is uncomfortable, cycling shorts make it much worse. If I tip the saddle forward she feels like she is sliding off of it during normal riding.

My wife is not a petite woman, her fitness level is improving. She also has MS and riding is helping to keep her lower body strong. Right now we go 10-15 miles at about 10mph. Her goal is to ride 30 miles the second day of the Bike MS. The most climbing we have done is about 400' over 1 medium roller with the rest pretty gradual up and down.

Any ideas.
 

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okay, sometimes when the going gets tough you tend to pull yourself forward and sit on the more narrower part of the saddle which gets into those sensitive areas. try to get her to maintain her position when going uphills or alternatively slide the saddle forward just a bit. (Note the current saddle position so if it doesn't work you can move it back).

the thing is with a bike fit you are sitting on a stationary bike in a shop, whereas in the real world your position changes during a ride depending on whether u are going up, down, into the wind etc.

good luck!
 

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Finding the right combination of fit, seat and shorts is hard. Some soreness in the beginning is normal but constant pain is not. Work with your wife on position. Help her find a seat that works for her. If she is happy you will be too.
As my position changed to more aero my seat changed also. Sounds like she's sitting pretty straight up. That puts most of her weight on her saddle. If she leans forward when climbing have her concentrate on keeping her saddle position and arch her back more if possible.

Good luck
 

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Will your LBS allow you to try out different, higher end saddles before buying? I have yet to be happy with a saddle that has come with my bike. Also, when she climbs, have her concentrate on her peddle stroke, changing to an easier gear so she's not mashing, rather than bending forward.

Also, I find that compact, dense chamois, rather than bulky ones much easier on the more delicate areas.
 

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not a lady, but here are my thoughts just on what techniques may help on the climbs (if it is a matter of technique which perhaps can be corrected).

after cycling for a couple years relatively trouble free in flat illinois, i moved to colorado and was faced with hills. consistent, persistent, and often big hills. what i learned was that the natural tendency when faced with the exertion of climbing is to push down through the core, that plus leaning forward and grinding the gears puts a lot of stress on sensitve areas. so, of course, within a month i developed hemorrhoids, (not once, but twice).

thankfully, i had the good fortune to be around a lot of cyclists who were open with feedback and taught me techniques to keep my insides, well, inside. i learned to focus on cadence and spin up hills. (whereas before, my ego wanted to stay in a bigger gear, i was told to try and spin to a target cadence.) this helped massively. another thing was settling in and climbing on the tops, head up, butt shifted back in the saddle, open diaphragm, and breathe. i had to also learn to transfer the weight from my hands to my glutes, that is to say--release the death grip on the bars. a good technique i was taught to ensure this was to every so often grip then open the fingers on bars in a quick rhythm. that was a minor revelation. finally, the last piece of great piece of advice was to make 3 large exhales through the mouth whenever i feel myself losing technique and beginning to pant. i have no idea why this works so well, but it really does. i never did (still am not) become a strong climber, but at least i stopped damaging the sensitive areas of my body (haven't had a hemorrhoid since).

btw, i did follow the link to your fund raising page. my ex-gf (who is from portland, ironically enough) also had ms, and i know how much of a challenge that is. best to you and the missus.
 

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Tilting the saddle nose down is counterproductive as OP found out. Slightly nose up will actually help the rider keeping the right position on the seat, with the weight being taken up by bone structure and not the delicate parts. That said a modern saddle with a generous cutout never did anyone any harm. Selle SMP, Specialized* and Selle Italia all make good saddles with big holes in the middle.
And in general: Some seats just will not fit a particular individual, as Il Sogno suggests.

*If you shop does the full Spesh BG they'll most probably have a seat that will make her nethers happy.
 
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