All About Sit Bone Pain: Potential Causes And Tips For Relief

If you're a serious cyclist or even a casual bike rider, you may be all too familiar with sit bone pain. States all across the nation have seen a 46% increase in the number individuals commuting via bicycle since 2005. That means there are probably more sore rear ends than there were a decade ago, too. For many cyclists, combating saddle soreness is just as daunting a task as their next race might be. But the solution could be something as simple as switching out your bicycle saddles and getting a bit more rest. Let's take a closer look at the potential causes of sit bone pain (including saddle soreness) and how you can find some relief.


What causes sit bone pain?

You probably know the scenario: cyclists think they've purchased the most comfortable bike seats on the market... until they experience horrible pain in their lower buttocks. But sit bone pain can be caused by more than picking the wrong bicycle saddles. This pain can also be caused by:


  • Long periods of exercise/activity for the legs
  • Direct injury to sitting bones (i.e., stress fracture of the ischial tuberosity, hamstring bruising)
  • Overstretching of muscles surrounding the sits bones (usually accidental)
  • Prolonged sitting (particularly on hard surfaces)

The problem often lies in the care taken (or not taken) after the initial injury or incident. When cyclists don't take care of their bodies after an injury or period of stress to this area, additional swelling can occur and make pain worse. If left untreated for long enough, this can even impact the sciatic nerve, which can impact the legs -- and therefore, your ability to even ride.


How can you relieve sit bone pain?

There are several ways you can prevent and manage saddle soreness and other causes of sit bone pain. Rest is one of the most important. If you don't give your body ample time to recover, it won't be able to heal properly, which leaves you vulnerable to additional injury. It can be tough to take time off from what you love, but it's extremely important that you do so. Icing the inflamed area can also be extremely helpful, as can some over-the-counter medications, as long as you don't use these in lieu of rest. In some cases, more invasive procedures (such as steroid injections) may be warranted; however, these cases are typically more extreme and these treatment options should be explored by you and your doctor only if other treatment methods have not worked.


When sit bone pain can be attributed to bike riding rather than other factors, it's key for cyclists to use the proper bicycle saddles. In fact, leather bike saddles can prevent this kind of pain for many riders. Although saddles with a lot of cushioning might seem more comfortable at first, these cushions actually put more pressure on that area and create more stress over time. When it comes to bicycle saddles, minimal cushioning is actually the better option.


When you want to stave off sit bone pain, take a close look at your saddle. Is it really right for your needs? If not, we're here to help. Get in touch with us today to find out more about our seats and how they can help eliminate saddle soreness from the equation.


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