Preventing Saddle Sores

I had terrible issues my first two seasons of riding. Any time a week went over 8 hours riding time a sore was guaranteed. Any time I got caught out in the rain, a sore was guaranteed. I had a bike fit done, and part of it involved measuring my sit bones, turns out I’m pretty wide. I purchased a wide and flat saddle, the Specialized Power in its widest size, and have never had an issue since. Biggest game changer in my cycling life. If saddle width isn’t your issue, I second all the advice about hygiene before and after riding. Chlorhexidine is pretty amazing stuff they use it for surgical prep. It basically forms an anti microbial barrier that lasts several hours. You can use it before and after your ride. It burns a little, but works really well. If you ask at the pharmacy they’ll be able to direct you to an appropriate product. Until I sorted out the saddle width, the chlorhexedine was a big help. I still use it before and after any 6 hour + rides.


Check your saddle is the correct height, if it’s too high it can cause saddle sores.


+1, this is what helped me. I was getting some unfortunate rubbing when I was properly positioned on the saddle wings, so I tended to slide or rotate forward resulting in moving the problem. A few mm lower saddle position let me sit back and not get the same rub. :grin:

A different saddle shape might have helped also, but i’m already on one that curves a lot from the wings to nose.

Which alcohol wipes are you using? The small prep pads? Thanks!

I use these sensitive skin facial cleansers for cleanup after rides, when I don’t have access to a shower. They are all cheeks right? :stuck_out_tongue:

Get out of the bibs, wipe down, throw on some boxers and shorts and good to go.
I know others use baby wipes, and I have even seen a branded version called “Dude Wipes”.


I usually shower right after. I’m thinking the alcohol wipes before the ride or workout. Willing to try anything!

A few things I am doing, after my workout and morning shower:

#1) Witch hazel or 70% isopropyl alcohol, I have used both. I clean the area thoroughly with a soaked wash cloth.

#2) Desitin diaper rash ointment, the white zinc oxide kind, used during the day. Yeah, you kind of smell like a baby, but let’s face it…folks shouldn’t be THAT close to you.

#3) Bag Blam ( used at night before I go to bed. I equate this smell to a petting zoo, again who’s smelling you?

I’ve been doing this for a few week now and things are infinitely better in that area of my world :smiley:

All the best,


I like Sportique Century Riding cream. Since it’s anti-bacterial, I’ve noticed less, and been using for a long time, riding about 10-15k miles a year. Also, if you see one forming, you can put a dab on it after you shower and dry the area well, and seems to make them go away overnight.

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I buy a bottle of 90% isopropyl alcohol, and squirt that on a tissue, baby wipe, cotton pad or similar. That’s a lot cheaper vs individual wipes.

I do that before and after riding. And will dab the alcohol pad on my chamois also if it’s my 2nd ride on that chamois (I know, this violates the “only once” rule - but we all do it at some point :grin:)


To preface this I will average around 250-300 k’s a week, have a good pair of bibs, reasonably stretched out position but very low at the front end and I’m 15. Whenever I get on the trainer for more than an hour and a half with the more static position saddle sores will get exacerbated as well as rides upwards of three and a half hours, changing saddles doesn’t help nor does bike fit as I’ve had three different bikes and always had saddle sores. Anybody else not seem to be able to get rid of them or have any tips to get rid of them or at least limit the damage?

One option to consider is adding some motion via a rocker plate.

I find the fixed position of most trainers leads to overload on the sit bones and related tissues. Getting some motion alters the pressures more like we experience while riding outside.


Totally agree with Mr. Mcneese on a rocker plate. For longer rides I also use a product called Butt shield. Its a roll on and is amazing.

Ive ridden 11 hours in one day using it where I even rode through a severe hail storm where I went off the road into a ditch. It lasted all day.

No Do You Suffer From Butt Irritation
From Your Favorite Sport, Hobby, Gym Workouts Or Even Work?

Well look no further as 2Toms has the solution for even the worst butt irritation and saddle sores. 2Toms ButtShield, a revolutionary product which is applied to your butt or groin area to create a friction-free, satin-smooth surface that prevents chafing.

Applied with an easy to use roll-on applicator or travel-sized towelette, ButtShield will not rub off even under the most extreme condition. One application is all you need to guarantee a day of comfort, since the last thing you want to be doing all day is thinking about your butt!

Also wash your kit often and swap it out. Good luck!


If you’re riding that long indoors I hope you have good quality knicks. After one and half hours indoors I’m starting to feel it too - even with a good seat and ok knicks. And wash them after every ride - it helps reduce the chance of infections but also lengthens the life of the knicks. I have a top loader washing machine so I wash my kit in washing bags to lengthen their life.

I’ve had my fair share of saddle sore issues in the past and even now, still get them. What made a huge difference was to get a good bike fit which reduced my issues maybe by 90% last Summer.
If you have a particular area that is getting recurrent sores, that will always be a weak spot for them to reappear and that probably won’t change I’m afraid. Like everyone will say, wash shorts after every ride, keep the area clean and dry and if all else fails, take a week off the bike for the area to heal.
I also find that static trainers are a source of increased risk for this as you don’t stand up or change position much so wear the best shorts you have with the best and most confortable pad.
Hopefully some of these tips will help you out but unfortunately, the best way to treat a bad one is time off the bike.

  1. There are good pairs of bibs and good pairs of bibs. The ones I use for long rides cost £200. I see you’re in Australia, MAAP are really worth a try.

  2. Is the enthusiasm of youth making you ride in a lower position for longer than you need to? A good bike set-up should let you switch between an aero race position and a more relaxed position on the hoods. Could you bring up your front end a bit to give you more comfort but still be able to get low for racing?

  3. Have you actually had a bike fit? Do you know for certain that your saddle is the right height, your cleats are in the right position?

  4. Is the saddle in the right fore/aft position so that your sit bones are sat on the widest part? Often moving it forwards can help with this.

  5. What saddles have you actually tried? It sounds like what you need is something shorter and wider, which will give more support at the back so that you can tip forward while still having good contact with your sit bones rather than have all the pressure on the perineum. The Pro Stealth and Specialized Power saddles are apparently a popular choice for racers here in the UK, and I’ve had great results with the Specialized Romin Evo.

You may have done / considered all these, but it’s always worth being thorough.

  • Good bibs! You need to find some where the chamois and/or the chamois placement is suitable to your nether regions. This could be cheap or expensive! Emphasis on suitable to YOUR nether regions.
  • Always wear a fresh clean pair of bibs.
  • Get a fitting.
  • Stand up every 5-10min for a bit.
  • If you find your bibs and chamois soaked, you might want to consider additional cooling. That wet chamois isn’t doing you any favors. If it’s a long (e.g., >3hr) indoor ride, then maybe you change half way thru.
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I’ve had some recurring sores and the things that have made the biggest difference are

  1. Always wearing clean bibs
  2. Wash down there BEFORE you ride. If you’re 15 I’m assuming you’re riding a lot after school. I’d thats the case then there’s a bunch of sweat and stuff down there already from the day and then when you rub it with the saddle it can get in your skin and cause sores. I just use some kind of wet wipe before I put on my bibs.
  3. Get out of your bibs and wash down there as soon as you are done. If you finish your ride at home then shower ASAP. If it’s a race or it’s going to be more than 30 min before you can shower then I change and use the same wet wipes to clean down there as best as possible.

I use a product that is marketed to farmers for lubricating cow udders. Has a small amount of some antibiotic or something. Super cheap and has worked great for years now
Dr Naylor is the brand

How about zinc paste (diaper rash creme) where you don’t chafe and silicone lube where you do chafe? Also, shaven or not?