Cycling is a popular form of aerobic exercise that burns calories while strengthening the leg muscles.
More than a third of Americans ride a bicycle.
Some people go for a ride on a bicycle to enjoy themselves, while other people are very determined riders who spend many hours a day riding a bicycle.
But people with a penis and cyclists may experience erectile dysfunction as a result of the unintended consequences of spending too much time on a bicycle seat.
The link between ride issues and suspension is not new.
The Greek physician Hippocrates pointed to sexual problems in male riders when he said, “The movement of their horses disqualifies them from having sexual relations.”
Here’s why cycling may affect your ability to stand still, and how you can prevent cycling from applying your brakes on your sexual life.
How does cycling affect suspension?
If you are sitting on a bicycle for a long time, the seat puts pressure on your perineum, the space running between your penis and penis.
The perineum is filled with arteries and nerves that supply the blood with oxygen and sensation to your penis.
For a man to thrive, nerves from the brain send sexually explicit messages to the penis.
These nerve signals allow the blood vessels to relax, increasing the flow of blood through the arteries to the penis.
Any problem with emotions, blood vessels, or both can make you lose your appetite.
This is called erectile dysfunction (ED).
In the last few decades, researchers have discovered that some male cyclists have damage to the pudendal artery, the perineum artery, and the pudendal artery, which sends blood to the penis.
Men who spend hours on bicycles report dizziness and nausea.
Experts believe that ED begins when nerves and nerves are trapped between a narrow bicycle seat and the pubic bones of a rider.
How to reduce the risk of ED
With a few changes, you can still ride to exercise and enjoy without sacrificing your love life.
Here are a few steps you can take to reduce your risk of ED:
Change your seat. Change your narrow bicycle seat to get something wider, with extra padding that supports your perineum. Also, choose a seat with no nose (it will have a rectangular shape) to reduce pressure.
Lower the handles. Leaning forward will raise your back to the seat and reduce the pressure on your perineum.
Wear bicycle shorts with pads. This will give you an extra layer of protection.
Reduce your training intensity. Go around a few hours at a time.
Take regular breaks during long rides. Walk around or stand on the pedals from time to time.
Switch to a reclining bike. If you are going to spend a lot of time on a bike, sitting comfortably in your perineum.
Combine your exercise routine. Instead of cycling specifically, switch between running, swimming, and other forms of aerobic exercise.
Make cycling a part of a well-rounded exercise program.
If you notice any pain or numbness in the area between the rectum and scrotum, stop riding for a while.
Learn more about ED medicine:
Although usually chronic, ED and numbness caused by cycling can take weeks or months.
An easy solution is to reduce cycling or to stop riding altogether.
If a few months pass and you still have constipation, see your primary care physician or urologist.
A medical condition such as heart disease, neurological problems, or residual surgery may be other possible causes for your ED.
Depending on the cause of the problem, your doctor may prescribe one of the ED medications you have seen on TV, including:
These drugs increase blood flow to the penis to stimulate arousal.
But consider carefully – these drugs can have serious side effects.
ED drugs are not recommended for those taking a nitrate (nitroglycerin) for chest pain or people with very low or high blood pressure, liver disease, or kidney disease.
Other medications are also available to treat ED, as well as non-drug options such as penis pumps and implants.
Talk to your doctor
You should not stop cycling when you experience ED. Just make a few changes to your ride route.
If you are developing ED, talk to your doctor about what is causing the problem and find a solution that will restore your sexual health safely and effectively.