Saddle problems

Hi i got a 36" unicycle about 5 weeks ago and i went on my first long ride on it yesterday (16miles) but i had to keep stopping becouse of the downward pressure of me on the saddle which was relly painfull, so i was wondering if anyone could help me prevent this so i can enjoy ridding my unicyle?

don’t forget to browse the forums first :wink: tons of useful info already here.

Usually people will use a handlebar for a ride that long. You can put downward pressure on it to take weight off the seat, and pushing forward puts your sit-bones in a better spot on the saddle (at least for me, I’m not sure I’m describing it correctly)

if you don’t care to use a handlebar, get a KH saddle, or a Qu-Ax air saddle, or see if you can try a few and see what you like. Beyond that the best way to get over that pain is to ride more.

I also have less pain when I ride with shorter cranks (which I don’t advise if you’re new to 36er riding) because your legs move less = less friction and it lessens the tendency to bounce. Granted the more you ride, the more you can smooth out that bounce which also lessens the pain in the long run.

If you’re not already, wear biking shorts!! (I’m a hippo when it comes to this . . . oh well)

oh, and the rule on biking is 20 seconds for 20 minutes. That is, you should be out of the saddle (standing) for at least 20 seconds every 20 minutes of riding. I try my best to get off every 30 minutes on a uni which probably isn’t enough. It’s not particularly convenient, but it’s more important on a uni because there’s more weight on the saddle, so if your ride has nice places to stop for a minute or two, it will make the ride more enjoyable and be better for your health. . . . some people might dispute this, to each their own.

basically. . . you may be doing the right thing already

A handlebar with a KH saddle will be even better, honestly.

JA mentioned crank size. While he/she is right about it being difficult to start riding for a month or two on a 36er with, say, 125mm cranks and then go down to 102, it is entirely possible and the main thing you would have to relearn is mounting. I made the switch awhile back. Although I live in the hilly city of Madison, I am great at climbing anyway and I like the added speed that I get on the flats. You get stronger with shorter cranks than you do with longer ones, I believe, also.

I go on 15 mile rides maybe 2 or 3 times a week, with some longer rides as well, and my rule of thumb is stand up on the uni and ride for a few minutes once every half hour, and completely get off once every hour. Unicycling puts a lot of pressure on the perineal nerve, and it’s important that you relieve this pressure often. Extended periods of time where you are crushing it can lead to nerve damage, loss of feeling in the genitalia, impotence in males and long standing pain.

You say 5 weeks. Is that new to riding, or coming back after some time off? Because I’ll echo what’s already been said. Ride more. 16 miles on a 36" how much time does that translate to in the saddle? A little over an hour? I’ve only got a 24", so that’s 3 hours for me - more than I can handle!

When I came back to my unicycle after some considerable time off I noticed, or better stated, couldn’t avoid noticing that just sitting on the thing hurt really bad. It continued to hurt for several weeks, but after about 6 weeks or so I’m numb to it. The only issue I have now is chaffing. I guess I’ll have to go the bike shorts route, but to quote Happy Gilmore:

So caving in to the bike shorts is really my last option. Though I think I’ve seen some that look like normal shorts, just don’t have the $60 that I’ve seen them go for.

thanks for all your tips

One more thing if you’re still listening. I’ve seen a lot of good distance riders say that they like a saddle with less padding. If you’re planning on switching seats, cushier may not be better, especially if you have a bicycling background and you’re used to a tiny seat with no padding.

If you’re worried about looking odd in spandex I’d find something similar to this:<>prd_id=845524442626847&FOLDER<>folder_id=2534374302692311

They’re kind of a cross between bike shorts and boxers so you can wear them under regular shorts or anything you like. I have a pair and they work great.