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I think that I am crooked...(9 posts)

I think that I am crooked...dinky
Aug 23, 2001 9:55 AM
In my ongoing search for a comfortable saddle I have noticed that there is always more wear on the saddle on the right side (back to nose) even after as little as 100 miles. I have gone through 4 saddles in the past few months and the wear is very consistant. The nose is centered over the top bar, I don't feel like I'm working the right side more, my legs look symetrical......what is going on here? I saw a post a few weeks ago about off-centering the saddle as a way of getting a more comfortable fit, would this wear that I'm noticing be an indicator of why I'm having such a difficult time finding a good saddle fit? I wouldn't put much thought into this except that I am getting frustrated with my saddle hunt and am looking for any answers that could solve my problem. Thanks!
re: I think that I am crooked...davet
Aug 23, 2001 10:13 AM
Very few people are built symetrically. I found that by cocking my saddle about a 1/4" to the left, I am able to make myself more comfortable. I also can 'dress' right and everything stays in place. I use a couple of diferent saddles on my bikes, both have the 'pressure relief' cut-outs. I raise the nose of the saddles about a quarter bubble from level. I have ridden a two day, two hundred mile ride with this set-up and it has proven very comfortable for me.
re: I think that I am crooked...Jayson
Aug 23, 2001 10:19 AM
Over the past 20 years of riding, I've experienced consistent lower back pain (and numbness) and constant bruising on the inside of my right knee. Both were found (by Dr. Andy Pruitt - Olympic Cycling Trainer) to be attributed from a leg length discrepency (which everyone has to some degree). I had an orthodic made (prior to seeing him) for my everyday and running shoes and went to him to see if I needed a cleat shim to raise up my leg to balance me.

What he found, through exam and X ray, was that I needed a simple $0.25 shim under my cleats to adjust the natural angle of my leg outward and into a neutral position. This alleviated all pain and stopped my knee from knocking the top tube.

It sounds like you're experiencing the same (to a lesser degree) problems as I did. If you're in the Denver area, make an appointment to stop in to see him at his Boulder Sports Center for a bike fit (costs $100). If not, check out a true pro shop (not many out there) who know how to fit you with the cleat shims.
Unfortunately, .....dinky
Aug 23, 2001 2:26 PM
I am in Cen. TX so visiting your doc won't be happening any time soon. But we do have some decent bike shops, I will inquire about the shims. You response gave me something to think about though. I notice that my right foot pivots around a lot throughout the whole pedal stroke. Same foot also has a serious pronating problem and the toes tend to turn out. I ride with speedplay so the pivot is pretty easy to notice. If I focus I can keep the toes pointed forward but if I stop thinking about it my right foot looks like I am constantly squashing a bug. I thought about switching to pedals with less/no float but it seemed that I would be forcing that foot/leg into a position that it doesn't want to be in and I would feel some serious discomfort. Would a shim help with my right leg or are the shims more for length discrepencies? I guess the uneven saddle wear could be a result of my wacky leg but it doesn't feel like the pivot is going all the way up my leg. Aaaaahhhhh.......some day I'll be perfectly dialed in and this will all be a distant memory!!!
re: I think that I am crooked...mackgoo
Aug 23, 2001 10:34 AM
Try this site, Tech and fit. They talk about the cocking of the saddle to the side.
Have you tried a Brooks? Check out you can't go wrong as they have a money back garauntee. I picked on up in April, it's the most comfortable thing I've ever ridden.
Sounds like you need surgery. (nm)Trollman
Aug 23, 2001 12:24 PM
re: I think that I am crooked...LC
Aug 23, 2001 12:40 PM
Turning the saddle is usually a men thing so I don't think it will apply to you. Most people do have one leg stronger than the other which make them sit off center on the saddle. Try some one leg pedaling and find out. When you find out which leg is weak, then you will know which leg to work on getting stronger. One leg pedaling on the weak leg is a good way to make it stronger.
re: I think that I am crooked...Mel Erickson
Aug 23, 2001 1:08 PM
I've been noticing wear on my shorts and began observing where my legs rub on the saddle. Also took a look at the wear on my fairly new Selle Italia Flite Trans Am. There is more wear on one side than the other (both shorts and saddle). After closely watching where and how my legs rub on the saddle I could see my left leg rubs more of the saddle and in a slightly different place than my right. I'm comforable on my saddle so I'm not going to change it, I was more interested in why my shorts were wearing out. If you're not comfortable on your saddle then why not try moving it slightly off center, or nose up, or nose down, or make the seat higher, or lower? I'd try all of these things before buying another saddle but, you've probably done this already. Nonetheless, uneven saddle wear is probably very normal and may not be evidence of your problem at all. BTW, the wear on my shorts was not from my saddle. It was from rubbing on the beam of my Softride. Different problem, different fix.
Thanks all...dinky
Aug 23, 2001 2:14 PM
I know it seems like a small thing in overall bike fit but I guess that I was hoping that I had stumbled upon the magic "fit" button. In trying out new saddles I do work the fore/aft and up/down positions. I had never considered side to side adjustments.
I am considering a Brooks, it is appealling that the saddle custom fits to your backside. I am going to give the latest saddle (Specialized, body geometry) a fair shake and if it doesn't pan out then it is on to the Brooks. Thanks for the input!