Saddle Safety

Ergonomic bicycle seats take the pressure and pain out of long rides on the road

Matthew Schmidt bought his first mountain bike 10 years ago, and from the onset his recreational rides in the idyllic Mount Tamalpais area of California's Marin County left him numb in his personal undercarriage, where the crotch meets the bicycle saddle. Schmidt, 42, of San Rafael, Calif., dismissed the discomfort as the price to pay for vigorous riding on rough terrain. But by the end of 2002, the perineal pain and sexual problems he had experienced for years became intense. He stopped riding and, desperate for answers, saw several urologists before the last finally diagnosed pudendal-nerve damage, caused by his leaning...

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