Perineum numbing...Any advice on avoiding this?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2015 12:35 pm

by Point

I have just built up my custom built frame, basically the same geo as my older bike (Giant Defy Advanced) which I was comfortable on, with the same stem length.

The only variations are shorter crank arms, new saddle, and a drop in bar height (1cm).

Now I'm getting numbing at the perineum, are saddles known to be the cause of this?
Could it be due to the drop in bar height?

I'm wondering if a bike fit would be a good bet? I can generally do setup's myself but not with complete confidence.

by Weenie

Posts: 72
Joined: Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:03 am

by pavel

Swap your saddle from one of your other bikes that you are used to and see if the problem goes away, thats probably easiest test. It the fit is the same as on your other bikes I would bet that is the culprit - new/unknown saddle.
I think if there was an issue from bar drop you would almost immediately feel it as pressure, not as numbing.

Posts: 35
Joined: Thu Dec 01, 2011 8:48 pm

by chickenbourne

More than likely a change in your saddle and make sure its level too. I went through several saddles before I found one just right.

Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2015 12:35 pm

by Point

Ok, i'll try the old saddle and see how that goes.

The old saddle is a Specialized Toupe Expert (with a cutout)
The new one is the Fabric Scoop which is supposedly very comfortable for a lot of people?

It's hard to fathom how something like that can actually make such a difference.

Saddle hunting is frustrating!

Posts: 72
Joined: Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:03 am

by pavel

Saddles make a huge difference and everyone is very different - hard to take advice from anyone regarding recommendations. Many people swear by selle italia for instance, but to me its like getting punched in the taint over and over again. Just have to try a lot of things before you figure out whats right, and then you'll probably end up with the same thing on every bike.

Posts: 64
Joined: Sun Dec 20, 2015 11:55 pm

by toastie

I have had all sorts of issues with numbing in this area after a few hours in the saddle and can 100% say that it will be the saddle, mine got so bad after one ride i couldn't urinate all night and in to the next morning. It was one of the most painful things I've had happen and nearly resulted in a trip to A&E.
After trying lots of saddles all with cutouts to relieve pressure i settled on a selle smp forma on one bike and a specialized toupe on the other two bikes and have had no issues since.
As a word of warning if this happens a lot and for prolonged periods of time after the ride it can actually cause some permanent damage

Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 3:56 pm

by KH

Another vote for SMP saddles here.

Also, saddle angle can be critical. Most people find level is best but this is not necessarily the case for everyone, it's worth experimenting.

Posts: 439
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 4:10 pm

by aaric

Saddles are very personal. And it gets expensive trying them out. I'd say just buy more of the one that works, especially if its on the lighter weight end of the scale

Posts: 194
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2009 2:30 am

by DeLuz

I was having saddle problems and went through a bunch saddles (and money) including a Toupe.
I ended up a SMP Drakon on my road bike and SMP Lite 209 on my tandem.
These saddles take some getting used to but they completely remove pressure off the soft tissue.
I would never go back to a conventional saddle.
They are expensive but worth it. You can find slightly used ones on Ebay for a much lower price.

Posts: 1804
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:52 pm

by AJS914

I buy used saddles off of ebay when I want to try one out. If it doesn't work out, I can just resell it.

Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2016 2:38 am

by feather


created an account while browsing op just to say selle smp solved my problems.

the fact the gap goes all the ways to the nose of the saddle was vital for me.

tried romin and a sell italia saddle but nothing matches the selle smp.

ebay is your friend - or bike-discount dot de if you must buy new

happy riding

Posts: 105
Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2015 7:05 pm
Location: Minnesota, USA

by WannabeWeenie

Another vote here for Selle SMP. Like others, I have tried Selle Italia without success. My most recent SMP is a Full Carbon which I still find comfortable despite a complete absence of padding.

Posts: 220
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2014 2:28 pm
Location: PR

by duvivr6

I had the same issue. Weird thing is mine started around a year after I had been riding on Selle Italia SLRs...
Tried a few other saddles but ended up with a Spec Romin after a fit. Has been working great for the last 1+year.

On a side note I also have tried SMP with great success. Even with a full carbon Chinese copy of the shape.

Posts: 98
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2015 12:35 pm

by Point

Very interesting. Thank you all for your help and input.

If anyone's interested in a Carbon/Nylon Fabric Scoop Shallow Pro saddle, I probably have one for sale... Like new.

by Weenie

Posts: 377
Joined: Sat Jul 30, 2011 6:38 pm

by drchull

I used to have this problem a lot with domed style saddles.
Tried the SMP and was good if you are someone who sits very still in the saddle but I like to slide up to the nose and vary the angle of my hips depending on position. I also found that it felt very hard, probably because you can't move around on it.
I solved my issues when I went flat and wide. The Antares made a huge difference and created much less numbness despite the lack of cutout. I have since gone to a SLR max in the wider size at is has width, flatness and a fairly large cutout but is no weight weenie. I still use Antares 00 on the light bike.

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