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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 2:55 pm 
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Speaking with my doc about related issues, he mentioned to look into an anatomic seat for biking. Apparently, the "most efficient machine on the planet" (Life Cycles) has a downside. The nerves and blood vessels located in soft tissue of the perineum of both men and women can be permanently damaged. I'm sure everyone has at least heard of this. I got a WTB saddle with a Love Tunnel and didn't give it a second thought. After speaking with him I researched this issue a little more.

Funny thing is, many saddles with a Love Tunnel type of recession may not be sufficient. After all, the tunnel is primarily towards the rear, where it's not really needed.

A few saddle makers have placed a cutout at and forward of the seating area to address this problem. I was just wondering if anyone has had experience with these saddles, and what your opinions are.

Two saddles I am considering are the Koobi Saddles, and Selle Italia XO Gel Flow saddle. The Koobi Enduro or SI look like the nicer saddles, but they're a bit wider (maybe a good thing for sitting, but dropping behind the seat?), and has a cutout all the way through the nose, whereas the SI XO saddle has a large blunt nose. The Koobi scares me a bit as it seems the two thinner nose sections may do more harm than good. Think shearing forces in a crash. :shock:

Again, if anyone has any advice about anatomic saddles, please speak up.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:03 pm 
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I used to suffer from the same issue till I switched to WTB saddle with the famous and well working love channal and since then, I haven't even had one numbness.

As far as having the channal towards the front, I think it should be even more comfy, but personally, I don't have any experience with either one of those saddles.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:17 pm 
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I haven't used the saddles you mention but the only time I have a bit of numbness with my Rocket V is on extended climbs when I slide forward and shift my weight.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:23 pm 
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ha ha....those first two saddles have a bad case of camel toe

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:29 pm 
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yeah, really like the cush of my WTB Pure V. haven't had numbness/tingling with it either, but those are pretty radical signs of a problem. it's really accumulated saddle time and pressure over that period. fortunately, mtn bikers don't just sit in one position as long as roadies. i was pretty surprised by the articles i found of bike riders biopsies, people that had no outward signs of issues.

neither of the 3 saddles look as cush as the WTB, which is a concern.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:31 pm 
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his highness wrote:
ha ha....those first two saddles have a bad case of camel toe



thanks. that just finalized my decision.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:33 pm 
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:lol: :lol: :lol:



can you hear it already? ......"Joe, is that a camel toe on your seat?" :shock:

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:36 pm 
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his highness wrote:
:lol: :lol: :lol:



can you hear it already? ......"Joe, is that a camel toe on your seat?" :shock:



one can only dream.

i may never go home.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 4:55 pm 
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jSatch wrote:
The nerves and blood vessels located in soft tissue of the perineum of both men and women can be permanently damaged. I'm sure everyone has at least heard of this. I got a WTB saddle with a Love Tunnel and didn't give it a second thought. After speaking with him I researched this issue a little more.

News to me. So what happens? Is my pecker going to fall off? Or just a numb taint?
big fan of the WTB rocket 5

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 5:31 pm 
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406 wrote:
jSatch wrote:
The nerves and blood vessels located in soft tissue of the perineum of both men and women can be permanently damaged. I'm sure everyone has at least heard of this. I got a WTB saddle with a Love Tunnel and didn't give it a second thought. After speaking with him I researched this issue a little more.

News to me. So what happens? Is my pecker going to fall off? Or just a numb taint?
big fan of the WTB rocket 5



Turns out wider saddles are better to support your weight on your sit bones. For me, the WTB Pure V seems a good width (145mm). The Rockets are about 130mm. The less weight supported by the sit bones as they go off to the sides of the narrow saddle, think road saddles especially, the higher the proportion of your weight and impact from the trail that your soft tissue -nerves and vessels have to carry. Your LBS may have a seat guide to measure.

This affects both men and women. More female oriented saddles with cutouts or relief lately coming out. But for men, it won't fall off but there is a higher incidence of impotence. Probably have to ride thousands of miles to even be in that elite club though. This is somewhat controversial, but who's going to volunteer for the experiments? From what I remember of the biopsies of cyclists, increased incidence of inflammatory lesions and the like. But then again, these were pretty high milage riders, but displayed no outward signs of issue or trauma. So even though impotence is unlikely, there is evidence of accumulated tissue insult/damage.

What prompted me to look into this, even without tingly sensations and only a weekend rider, was a consult with my oncologist in regard to a nerve sparing operation. He said "the better the condition of the nerves going into the operation, the higher the chance of recovery".

So even with a novice, weekend rider, it's not always "I'll never get to that point with the mileage I ride", but rather trying to tilt the playing field in your favor should something unexpected arise.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 5:53 pm 
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your saddle height, tilt, and fore/aft position, stem rise and length, chamois, and other things may also influence pressure on your perineum. even if you have all your settings dialed in to the micron, it may be good to try a different position every now and then. if you are getting tingly down there, something as simple as dropping your stem stack by a washer might fix it, or it may not. saddles, shoes, bike fit, etc. are highly personal. i don't know how this question could be answered on a forum.

i like rocket vs and laser vs, but i am also a fan of flites and slrs. brooks saddles are rather popular among people who log many hours at a time in the saddle, such as randonneurs and tourists, and i think they recently added a model with a cutout (but no channel, i think.) never heard of the saddles you mentioned, but if your local shop carries those saddles, ask them if you can tape the rails and try them out.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 5:56 pm 
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I have been using the Serfas I think MH RX on two of my bikes for long rides. Everyone is happy.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 6:04 pm 
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tfitz wrote:
I have been using the Serfas I think MH RX on two of my bikes for long rides. Everyone is happy.


Thanks. Haven't looked into Serfas yet.

Nice photo.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 6:11 pm 
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This is an interesting topic.
I am no doctor, but through many years of experience I can honestly say that a majority of problems of which I have seen and also experienced myself, numbness etc, have been many times over, due to poor position on the bike or bad saddle position. All to include saddle height, fore, aft and tilt, to far bent over, sitting too straight up, stem length, bar height etc... There is a fine line of comfort and optimum pedal efficiency.
Sometimes, yes, its due to a horrible saddle. Sometimes not.
Saddles are like shoes. Each one will feel differently to each person. But positioned poorly, it doesn't matter what saddle it is.
If anyone says..."oh this is the best saddle you can get", its really misleading. It comes down to what works for you.
But again, no saddle will feel good if your are sitting on your bike in a less than optimal position.

So, with all the blah blah blah, make sure you are on your bike in the best possible position. Or have friend or professional to take a look. Sometimes a minor change ie: 1/8 of an inch, in saddle postion, handlebar postion, stem length, height etc.. can change the uncomfort into..."this saddle has never felt better".

Saddles are tough to define as good or bad.
One good option is the WTB "Try before you buy" program, which we do offer at the shop.
But prior to doing this make some minor adjustments. You saddle should be level with the ground. Tricky to do with suspension sag, but make sure you put that into the equation.
Or swing by the shop and we can look at your postion and try and help resolve the problem.

A funny story...
I ride primarily HT 29'rs. I demo'd a Turner Flux with a WTB saddle. Following the ride, I said that is the most comfortable saddle I have ever been on. So I bought one put one Crossbike. Didnt feel the same.??WTF? Then I realized it was the suspension on the bike that made the saddle so sweet.....DUH!

Hope this helps.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 13, 2010 6:54 pm 
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Thanks jabantik and Doug. Good advice, and well noted.

I've adjusted my seat angle/height, handelbars, etc. It's not a matter of numbness at this point, it's a matter of lowering the weight/pressure distribution on that soft tissue area as much as possible. I did, as have many others, experienced numbness from saddles, but to their credit, not with the WTB so I thought that was the end of the story. But with the cutouts it seems pressure can be further reduced, maybe substantially. Was basically trolling to see what others may have experienced in this arena, and if anyone had any experience with these seats, as per tfitz. I haven't seen many (any) of these cutout saddles on the trail to ask riders directly, but then peoples butts are generally in the way to notice.

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