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Lu Talks Position
By Lu Jun 2, 2017 6:04:15 PM Comments

Hello Riders!

I hope all of you have been enjoying your riding lately – here in the UK we’ve had some great days weather-wise here so it’s been great to get some hours in the sun whilst we can! In my last post, I mainly addressed new cyclists who were perhaps getting started in road cycling and trying to get some confidence and comfort on the saddle. Leading on from that – I wanted to talk today about just that.

When it comes to riding a bike, from personal experience one of the main factors in determining how well a ride goes can be the bike itself. For most of us, sitting on a certain chair for a long time can begin to get uncomfortable, so it’s no surprises that sitting on a saddle for long periods of time can often provide a new challenge! Although with lots of exercise, may people seem to think that pain is part of the game, but now within cycling there is quite simply no need to suffer in silence when it comes to sitting in the saddle. There are lots of ways to improve comfort when riding and hopefully, today I can provide some insight if you find yourself feeling those unwanted aches and pains that can make you feel as though you need to employ a soigneur after hitting the roads!

First of all, from your perspective as the rider, cycling apparel has come on leaps and bounds in the past few years and there are lots of great options when it comes to finding the right items for you. Whether you ride once a week or on a daily basis, the first thing I’d recommend when it comes to sitting pretty is a good quality pair of bib shorts or bib tights. Ideally in the bottom half of your cycling kit, there should be a high quality chamois that is more often than not tailored to be gender specific. The role of this on a broad level is to provide a ‘padding’ to the rider - as let’s face it, a saddle isn’t exactly the most cushioning experience! As well as giving an essential level of comfort, with being designed to be worn against the skin (you’ll soon know about it if you wear underwear!), the chamois pad in cycling shorts and tights consists of a specific anti-bacterial material that is designed to help wick sweat away which is ideal for those longer rides. I’d also recommend bib tights for their other purpose – as opposed to ordinary cycling shorts, the ‘braces’ on bib tights is another great aspect of keeping you comfortable, from the perspective that you don’t need to be constantly shuffling around on the saddle to keep all your clothes in place!

Cycling clothing aside, another major aspect of comfort when cycling is (believe it or not!) the bike itself. Although it may seem obvious, there are so many factors that play a crucial role in how comfortable you feel when riding, and many often get overlooked by new or less experienced cyclists. When buying a new bike, one of the first parts to look at is the saddle itself. There are now many different options for saddles, with various shapes and sizes to fit all anatomies! Again, women may benefit from a gender specific saddle that is designed with the female body in mind. It’s always worth trying out different saddles when buying a bike as this is an area that can easily be changed yet make all the difference.

Once you’ve established the right shape of saddle, it’s then important to look at the saddle height on your bike. The height of your saddle can not only ensure you’re comfortable ‘down there’, but also play a part in the knock-on effect of poor saddle positioning on areas such as your knees. Another factor is the angle or ‘tilt’ of the saddle and even adjusting this by a small amount can often make all the difference if you need to relieve some weight off more sensitive areas.

Well, I hope that today has given you just a small glimpse into how to start getting more comfortable whilst riding. The correct cycling kit and factors relating to the seating position and saddle itself, are just a small portion of all the factors that play a role in determining how well you ride! I’ll look forward to talking more in future posts about other areas of riding comfort and if you have any experiences you’d like to share with us then please do get in touch with us at hello@arriveeperformanceclothing.com or leave us a comment in the box below!

Until next time,

Lu

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