No doubt, cycling helps you get healthy. Those who cycle regularly are less likely to develop heart disease or cancer. It keeps you fit and leads to longer lives. However, there is little concern for men’s health, especially their private parts.
In recent years, scientists have linked cycling with several male health problems, including erectile dysfunction. A new review by Wroclaw Medical University in Poland suggests the best solution- Male cyclists should consider standing on the pedals every ten minutes to avoid damage.
Scientists reviewed 22 studies on how men can avoid crushing their private parts. They described the best solutions, including using a ‘no-nose’ bicycle seat without the narrower part at the front to redirect pressure from the genital area.
Men are advised that it is “essential” to refrain from damaging their private areas against the saddle since there is a link between erectile dysfunction and numbness in that area.
Scientists also suggest using a ‘no-nose’ bicycle seat without the narrower part at the front to redirect pressure from the genital area. A bicycle seat can compress nerves and momentarily reduce blood flow, leading to genital tingling or numbness and erectile dysfunction.
Dr. Ippokratis Sarris, a consultant in reproductive medicine and director of King’s Fertility, told DailyMail: “There is a suggestion that nerve damage from the pressure of cycling can cause loss of sensation and problems with erections, and cycling is linked to infertility, but much more research is needed.”
Kamil Litwinowicz, a lead author from Wroclaw Medical University, said: “Many men struggle with discomfort when riding a bike, and there are concerns this can lead to sexual problems.”
“However, there is also strong evidence that being sedentary is linked to erectile dysfunction, so cycling as a form of activity could reduce that risk.”
“We don’t want men to quit cycling, but instead to look at things like standing on the pedals or using a different saddle.”
The new review looked at various designs of saddles, bikes, shorts and handlebars for evidence of how they affected men’s genital area. Scientists found that no-nose saddles reduce pressure on the area.
- Litwinowicz, K., Choroszy, M. & Wróbel, A. Strategies for Reducing the Impact of Cycling on the Perineum in Healthy Males: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Sports Med 51, 275–287 (2021). DOI: 10.1007/s40279-020-01363-z