Tailbone was definitely the wrong term for where it hurts. It’s more like both of the “ischium” on the inside (pubic arch area) as you can see in the pic below. There’s some padding on the cycling shorts I have in that area, which I think helps a bit. Maybe my seat position isn’t quite ideal? Any recommendations for the seat that I have? Should I try to tilt the nose up a bit more?
Absolutely. I have a KH Zero, with no handlebar. Yet. I think the only thing that makes those seats their best is if you have a handlebar. I’ve got to get a KH Muni handle for mine…
Based on your diagram, and my limited understanding of how it relates to what I can feel from the outside, I think the area we’re talking about is just next to the P and H of Pubic Arch.
Find a pair of good quality padded bike shorts. These can be Mountain or Road style (you can wear regular shorts over Road shorts if you don’t like the look). Check the padding to avoid seams that will be too close to that pressure area.
The KH One saddle is supposed to be an improvement on the KH Zero. I assume this is true, but I haven’t had a chance to compare. I got mine just as the new ones were coming out. So consider adding the KH handle (short if you mostly do Muni, long if you mostly do pavement). I think that, and just more saddle time, will make a big difference.
My personal record for no-dismount riding is 42 km; the Marathon race at Unicon XIV in Denmark. OWW! But I believe that if I trained up for longer distances without dismounting, my body would get used to it. I’ve ridden 50-62 miles a few times, and 72 and 100 miles once each. Got to train for those distances. As you train your legs, you are also training your crotch!
Bicyclists say “sit bones” for the ischial tuberosities. I know the tenderness there from when I get back on a hard racing saddle after some time away. (If I were to try a long road bike ride now…) I haven’t tried any of the narrow uni saddles yet but with bikes the main thing is to ease into it and give the tissue a chance to recover and adjust. It might be a bit bruised now. Give it a week or two to adapt and try not to overdue it before then and it’ll probably feel a lot better.
If you could describe for us the exercises necessary to build up that particular area, I’m sure we’d all “jump” at trying them! Because after nearly 40 years of unicycling, I’m pretty sure I would have built up that area from pedaling at some point…
I’ve always understood that you sit on your “sit bones” because they’re bones. If you sat on muscles that could be developed by riding, they’d be contracting and relaxing as you pedaled and that movement would cause abrasion and chafing; which is why serious bicyclists use really skinny saddles.
Muscles can be built up without much movement so long as they are loaded. This certainly the case for my lower back which has gone from being quite vulnerable to virtually indestructible since I took up unicycling.
However I think you are probably right. Sitting is a very modern phenomenon. The sit bones didn’t evolve for sitting. They are arches used for muscle anchors involved in leg movement. Humans squatted for an eternity so there has not been any evolutionary pressure to pad over them until very recently. The extent of padding is probably largely random.
I am fortunate to have quite a good thickness of covering. Bike and uni saddles have never been an issue. Maybe I come from a long line of people who had an advantage from sitting for long periods?
Either that or it was sexual selection. My wife told me that she always found that exact part of my body especially attractive. What uni does for my glutes is one of the reasons she is still my biggest uni fan.
Definitely play with the seat angle, but the zero seat does have limited movement possibilities… any chance of a finer ‘teeth’ set up. It made a big difference when I lifted the front of my freeride seat on my 29er by about a mm at the front bolts. I’d put up with the pain for years…
Regarding bars, I m getting some distance in on the 36 and haven’t put on the KH bar yet as I am quite happy with the seat handle and I do try to get a bit of weight on to that. So if the OP isn’t comfortable riding with both hands on the seat I would suggest that as the first move in truth.
Oh, and I do wear bike shorts too.
Done more riding in the last week and a half than in the previous two months (7 hours)
I was about to replace my UDC freeride seat when I was given advice to lift the front and where bike pants , I can now ride 5 - 10 kms with minimal pain and my back has never been better like one track but now my neck is complaining .
I think you’re right. I probably sat too far forward on my last ride. On another note, I did just purchase the KH One since there were a lot of people saying it was a big improvement.
Also since there was a mention about Unicon – Pretty sure my wife and myself will be at the Unicon in South Korea 2018. She’s from China, so we’ll be there for about 3 weeks and I told her I want to ride a unicycle on the Great Wall of china :). So we’ll probably fly to Beijing and then Seoul in the way home.