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In Praise of Gel Padded Cycling Shorts!

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    In Praise of Gel Padded Cycling Shorts!

    I recently found that the foam seat in my 7yr old Wintec Pro Stock saddle became uncomfortable for me after about 2 hours in the saddle so was contemplating buying a new saddle, but I really like this saddle otherwise. So I bought a Cashel seat saver which is also made of memory foam, like the seat, and it helped some, but didn't cure my issue - sore seat bones.

    A new riding acquaintance then encouraged me to try a pair of gel padded cycling shorts which can be picked up very reasonably off of amazon, and I did, and problem solved! Just passing along in case anyone else is looking for a cheap solution when buying a different saddle with better padding may not be feasible. They do make a difference. There is a bit of a diaper feeling just walking around in the things but getting out of the saddle without a painful backside is totally worth it and no worse than wearing full seat breeches.

    I did run across this old thread from 10 years ago which mentioned cycling shorts:

    They can even be purchased as tights to smooth out the lines to below your knees and I will probably be getting a pair for winter riding. Truly a game changer without having to change saddles. Just a friendly PSA.
    Fat Cat Farm Sporthorses on Facebook

    Word of advice from an erstwhile cyclist about padded bike shorts: They’re designed for going commando. You can get some gnarly chafing and pressure sores (at least from a bike seat) if you wear something underneath them.


      Original Poster

      Yes indeed, just in case anyone got the impression that I or that you should, ride in cycling shorts/tights, sans breeches -- I did not. I wore them like underwear beneath my regular seat breeches and would do the same even with the padded cycling tights.
      Fat Cat Farm Sporthorses on Facebook


        FatCatFarm, when you buy them, check the tights carefully to make sure they are actually padded. Some tights assume you will wear cycling shorts under them, and therefore do not have padding. All of mine are like that. This is because a lot of cyclists dress in layers, and may remove the tights as the day warms up. It's really embarrassing when you suddenly realize you have nothing under those tights, right after you remove them. Ask me how I know.

        I don't know if it's still around, but I used to be a big fan of padded underwear when I was cycling long distances. I had a couple of different versions--some were briefs and others had the same shape as cycling shorts, but were made to be worn under unpadded shorts like gym shorts. That way I could wear outer shorts that had good pockets for when I was doing stuff off the bike, but still have padding where it counted. I used to bike to a lot of festivals and the like, and it was nice walking around the venue in gym shorts instead of bike shorts. I would think the padded underwear could be an option under breeches?



          Original Poster

          Hmmm, nope these are definitely gel padded cycling shorts and it would be hard to miss the padded bottoms. Not to mention if you turn them inside out, the gel padding is in a completly different color. That and the padding is definitely thicker and gives you that same diaperish feeling I mentioned that full seats do some. Nothing terrible and they don't look funny but you know they're padded! But yes, there are cycling tights and there are padded cycling tights, and I am sticking with the ones with gel padding for the reason mentioned above.
          Fat Cat Farm Sporthorses on Facebook


            Originally posted by FatCatFarm View Post
            Hmmm, nope these are definitely gel padded cycling shorts and it would be hard to miss the padded bottoms. Not to mention if you turn them inside out, the gel padding is in a completly different color. That and the padding is definitely thicker and gives you that same diaperish feeling I mentioned that full seats do some. Nothing terrible and they don't look funny but you know they're padded! But yes, there are cycling tights and there are padded cycling tights, and I am sticking with the ones with gel padding for the reason mentioned above.
            I wasn't questioning the padding on the shorts. Just pointing out that all cycling tights may not be padded.



              I'm on the verge of trying some. My dressage saddle from 1986 has no padding whatsoever under my seatbones.