June 28, 2011

BIKE SADDLES AND ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION: “I’ve spent much of my journalistic career debunking health scares, but the bike-saddle menace struck me as a no-brainer when I first heard about it. Why, if you had an easy alternative, would you take any risk with that part of the anatomy? Even if you didn’t feel any symptoms, even if you didn’t believe the researchers’ warnings, even if you thought it was perfectly healthy to feel numb during a ride — why not switch just for comfort’s sake? Why go on crushing your crotch?”

Plus this: “There’s as much penis inside the body as outside . . . When you sit on a regular bike saddle, you’re sitting on your penis.” It’s not any better for women, either, it turns out. “In another study, Dr. Marsha Guess and Dr. Kathleen Connell, who are urogynecologists at Yale, found that that more than 60 percent of female cyclists using nosed saddles reported symptoms of genital pain, numbness and tingling. Lab tests recorded lower levels of genital sensation in the cyclists than in a control group of runners.”

So give up that traditional bike seat.

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