The seats installed on exercise bikes are not meant to be uncomfortable, but after cycling for a while it is possible to feel a certain degree of discomfort or even slight pain.
This can happen for a variety of reasons, although it doesn’t happen to everyone. Even the way you use the bicycle can lead to some discomfort.
If you’re in a group of people that experience discomfort when using an exercise bike, you may want to read the lines below and learn what you can do to make the seat more comfortable.
Why are exercise bike seats feeling uncomfortable?
If you’re looking to invest in an indoor exercise machine, a bicycle is one of the best pieces of equipment you can get.
Cycling can offer a wide range of benefits for your health and fitness, and an indoor bike gives you the chance to exercise even when the weather is bad.
However, a sore and painful bottom is something most people experience after a training session on an exercise bike. Why does this happen?
1. You adjusted the seat wrongfully
Most people blame the seat of the bike for their pain and discomfort, not realizing that it may be something they’re doing wrong that causes these issues.
During and after a cycling session, many people experience pain in the bottom or private parts, tending to believe that the design of the seat is the main culprit.
However, in most cases, a wrongful adjustment of the seat can trigger all these problems.
The shape and size of the bike’s saddle rarely cause any problems on their own. In most instances, it is the way people fit the saddle for their training sessions that gives them pain.
Thus, most of the body’s weight presses on the bottom and intimate area, leading to discomfort.
Before looking to buy another saddle or bike, experiment with adjusting this part of the bike and seeing which settings work for you best.
In very many cases, a proper adjustment eliminates all the problems.
2. You’re putting too much pressure on the hind as you exercise
When there’s too much pressure applied on the bottom or intimate area, you will experience sensations like pinching or feeling numb as you use the bike.
This can also happen when the saddle is either too narrow or too wide for your body. In such a case, your body parts are either oozing on the sides or are too compressed, causing the feeling of numbness or tingling.
Having all these in mind, it is important to get a bike that has the right saddle shape and size to suit the needs of your body.
To avoid putting too much pressure on certain body areas as you cycle, try not to lean entirely on the saddle.
By simply lifting your body a little you can increase your level of comfort during training.
There are other benefits to this aspect as well, and that is the fact that you’re training your core muscles as you do so.
If all these don’t work, you will need to be measured by a specialist and have a proper saddle installed on the bike.
3. You’re not wearing the right kind of equipment
Are you experiencing redness and soreness on the inside of your things, due to continuous chafing as you cycle?
Many people with bodyweight issues turn to an exercise bike intending to improve their fitness and lose weight.
While this can be achievable, most of them complain about discomfort around the inner part of the thighs, due to chafing.
This can be avoided if you switch your regular shorts with adequate cycling equipment. A pair of cycling shorts can do wonders and will keep your skin from rubbing against the bike.
There are reasons experienced athletes use such equipment, and that is because their skin is protected during extended hours of cycling.
Also, you can consider utilizing chamois cream, which increases the skin’s lubrication ability, keeping chafing at bay.
A UTI or urinary tract infection is the last thing on your mind when looking forward to training on a bike.
However, this can happen and it is quite common among those who prefer intense and prolonged training sessions.
When you train hard, you also sweat a lot, making it easy for harmful bacteria to get trapped in all the wrong places.
Because the skin is not always perfect everywhere, microscopic tears can provide the ideal hiding spot for bacteria.
If you add heat and moisture from sweat to the mixture, you can end up dealing with a UTI.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy an intense workout session. Instead of fearing a UTI, it’s best to take all the precautionary methods to avoid it.
For instance, once you’re done working out, remove all your clothing because it is soaked in sweat.
Then take a shower or clean yourself right and put on a clean pair of pants or shorts. Also, adequate cleaning of your cycling shorts will prevent bacteria from accumulating and creating problems.
How To Make Exercise Bike Seat More Comfortable (DIY)
Experiencing discomfort while using an exercise bike is a rather common problem.
Because you need to spend a good amount of time burning a considerable number of calories, discomfort and even pain can be felt by most users.
The good news is that solutions are simple in the majority of situations. You just need to determine what works best for you.
1. Make sure the bike’s settings are adequate
As mentioned earlier, many people experience discomfort when cycling because they adjust the saddle wrongfully.
In other words, due to the setting of the seat, the body’s weight is too low, putting too much pressure on the bottom.
Thus, after cycling for a while, the bottom and intimate area will feel sore and painful.
It is worth mentioning that pain in the bottom, because of extended cycling periods, happens because the seat is set too high or too low.
When this happens, your legs fail to properly support your body’s weight, which mostly falls on your bottom and intimate area.
When cycling outdoors, setting the handles in a lower position can help you ride faster.
However, this doesn’t apply to indoor cycling, since such a setting can lead to pain and soreness. So, opt for a higher setting of the handles when cycling indoors.
When the handles are higher, you can keep back pain at bay and use your core muscles during training sessions as well.
Another piece of advice would be to make sure the entire sole of your feet touches the pedal, including the heel.
At the same time, the knee should only be slightly bent, as this will allow the legs to support a good part of your body’s weight as you train.
2. Invest in high-quality cycling shorts
Proper cycling equipment is necessary even when using an exercise bike, not just when cycling outdoors.
Regular exercising shorts are not sufficient, as they can lead to chafing because they are not capable of providing all the protection your legs and skin need.
So, buying a pair of cycling shorts can save you from a lot of pain.
But instead of simply buying a pair of cycling shorts, try turning your attention toward padded cycling shorts.
These will not just save you from chafing, but will also provide additional padding as you exercise. You will discover just how comfortable cycling can become with the right kind of equipment.
The good news is that you can use padded shorts when cycling indoors and outdoors alike.
3. Get an additional cover for your bike’s seat
If the seat that is already installed on your bike is too hard and uncomfortable, you can always choose to use additional padding for it.
More precisely, you can get a seat cover made out of gel, which is softer and more comfortable. You will enjoy all the cushioning provided by such a cover.
Just make sure to measure the seat before buying a cover. Getting the right size is a must if you want to enjoy its benefits.
Whether you are cycling at home or you’re doing this as a part of a fitness class, a seat cover can be used anywhere and at any time because it is very easy to install.
Just have it along and you’ll never have to deal with discomfort again.
4. Use chafing cream
If you’re dealing with the chafing of the inner thighs when you cycle, a chafing cream can help, paired with a pair of proper cycling shorts.
In case you’ve experienced such a thing, you probably know just how uncomfortable it can be.
To those who don’t know it just yet, chafing appears when the inner things rub on each other, as a result of the legs moving up and down during the pedaling motion.
Chafing can be very painful, as the skin turns red, becomes highly irritated, and even feels like burning. For a while, you may not even want to feel any kind of touch in the area, not even of the clothes you’re wearing.
A tube of chafing cream can be extremely helpful in this case, reducing the friction and soothing your skin at the same time.
Using it will certainly increase comfort as you pedal, preventing your thighs from suffering from too much friction.
5. Change your saddle
When noting works, probably the best decision would be to get a new saddle for your exercise bike. If the saddle is too narrow or too wide, it will create a set of inconveniences and discomfort.
And if making new adjustments didn’t work on easing the pain, you may need the help of a professional in this case.
Your hip will have to be measured, so that the new saddle will have the right size, helping you get the best of your training session.
Popular Seat Cushions
1. Bikeroo Large Bike Seat Cushion
Equipped with an interior made out of gel, this bike seat cushion is ideal for men and women alike.
It has a size of 10 x 11 inches, which makes it suitable for a wide range of indoor bikes. Just check the size of the saddle before buying a seat cushion for it.
2. Most Comfortable Bike Seat for Seniors
Cycling is a preferred activity by seniors as well, as it helps them improve their mobility, stay fit, and get rid of additional pounds.
Designed to be wide and highly comfortable, this seat cushion can also absorb shocks, in case it is used for cycling outdoors.
Pain and numbness in the lower back area will no longer be an issue.
3. Large Exercise Bike Seat Cushion
Seats that are too small and too rigid are often the cause of pain in the bottom area, due to cycling exercises.
With a generously padded area, this seat cushion will transform cycling into an enjoyable activity, free from any discomfort.
What to do for comfort while cycling
- Check the bike’s saddle and its position, making sure it is not too tall or too short;
- Make sure the handles are high enough when cycling indoors, giving your body an adequate position;
- Your entire sole should reach and use the bike’s pedal so that they can also support the body’s weight right;
- Make sure to wear a pair of chamois and use chafing cream, if needed;
- You could also add a pair of cycling gloves to your cycling equipment if holding onto the handles for too long creates discomfort;
- Gradually increase the intensity and difficulty of your training as you get used to the effort.
What not do when working out on an exercise bike
- Don’t choose a simple workout routine, because it will be hard to evolve and obtain the desired results this way.
- Instead, perform mixed workouts if you want to lose weight fast and enjoy better growth of muscles;
- Don’t forget to use the bike’s control panel
- The control panel provides useful information throughout a workout session. Besides showing you details regarding your training it can also help you adjust certain factors that can influence your performance. So, don’t forget to use it as well.
FAQs of How To Make Exercise Bike Seat More Comfortable
Why is an exercise bike seat uncomfortable?
Very many people experience discomfort while using an exercise bike or after their training session, mostly because the bike’s seat has been set inadequately.
Thus, the seat is either set too high or too low, which causes an uneven distribution of your body’s weight as you exercise.
In other words, most of the weight will fall on your sit bones and bottom. To find suitable seats for yourself you should check bikespassion.com.
If twitching the seat’s settings does not help, you may need the help of a professional to find a suitable saddle in your case.
Is it possible to make the seat of an exercise bike softer?
In case your bottom feels sore or painful after working out on your indoor bike, especially after long cycling sessions, it may be because the seat is rather hard.
You can solve this issue by purchasing a seat cover made out of gel or by buying a pair of padded cycling shorts.
The shorts will also prevent your thighs from rubbing as you cycle, reducing the occurrence of chafing.
It is normal to feel some pain in the bottom area after cycling for a while because the body’s weight is distributed over a small area as you sit on the bike’s seat.
You can avoid this from happening if you make sure the entire sole of your feet pushes on the pedal as you exercise.
This way, the legs support a good part of your body’s weight. Also, you can easily lift your bottom off the seat as you pedal, which will remove the weight from this part.
My thighs feel sore after riding my exercise bike, is there anything I can do about it?
It is quite common for people to experience soreness, redness, and even a burning sensation in the thighs, after cycling.
This happens when things go through continuous and extended friction, as you pedal. Using cycling shorts instead of regular shorts will help, as so well as using a chafing cream.
These two will protect and soothe the skin as you pedal, providing proper lubrication and protection against chafing and, implicit, against sore thighs.
Is an exercise bike good for weight loss?
Yes, an exercise bike can be one of the best exercise machines you can get for using at home, for weight loss, and for improving fitness and mobility.
It is soft on your joints while allowing you to burn a lot of calories. You just need to make sure it can provide a proper size saddle and it is set correctly so that it is comfortable, even when you decide to exercise for longer periods.
An exercise bike is a great piece of equipment to have around if you enjoy cycling and you’re looking to improve your fitness and lose weight.
However, it is worth remembering that the bike’s seat can turn out to be uncomfortable, mostly because it has been set wrongfully.
Now that you know this is the main cause leading to pain and discomfort when cycling, try making slight tweaks until you reach a setting that works best for you.
Also, try following the other pieces of advice as well, as they can help you enjoy a pain-free cycling session at all times.
Working out is my life. I love to help others see the potential of their bodies as they transform into their best selves.