A quick ride around town isn’t likely to get your rear end aching, but an extended motorcycle ride can result in a painful or numb backside. Manufacturer seats aren’t what they should be, and often do not provide much padding. In addition, their flat design means that the bulk of the force and weight of your body rests on the middle part of your rear and your thighs instead of being spread out equally. This can result in the numbness or aching that can interfere with an otherwise awesome ride.
Most every biker has experienced some degree of numbness or aching in their rear end during extended rides. The quick remedy is to adjust your positioning or get off your bike and walk around for a few minutes. Although this alleviates that pain and numbness, it often creeps right back in again just a few more miles down the road. That’s why it is important to tackle backside numbness at its core and put an end to the problem.
The best (and probably most expensive) solution is to purchase a new seat for your motorcycle. Quality seats can go for $400 (or more), so be sure you have found the right one before you make this kind of an investment. Well-designed seats come with gel cushioning or memory foam, which is designed to cradle your nether regions and provide additional support and padding. Foam comes in a variety of density levels, and it is important to understand that even the best foam padding will deteriorate over time. Gel padding, especially the gel honeycomb support offered in some seats, may hold up better over time.
Air-based seats allow you the ability to pump your seat to adjust it based on road conditions or your own preference. Larger riders especially benefit from these seats, as they help relieve and cushion some of the weight. These seats can be easily adjusted to provide more or less cushioning and support.
If you experience aching or numbness in your lower back or rear end, you may want to consider your position when you ride. The handlebars of your bike are set for an average size biker. If you are taller or shorter than average you may need to change out the handlebars for ones more appropriate for your size. If you are overweight, you may want to consider a seat that is wider than average. It will provide additional comfort and support while you ride.
Pinched nerves and bulging discs are common and can add to back pain, especially during long rides. Slouching on your bike will simply make this bad situation even worse. Sit up straight, adjust your shoulders back instead of curving them forward, and stretch your neck muscles regularly.
If you experience lower back/buttock pain and/or numbness when you aren’t on your bike, consider visiting a chiropractor. Manual adjustments can help with back pain, especially when you follow up with the exercises your chiropractor will suggest for you at home. It is important to maintain strong muscles in your core to support your body, both on and off your bike.
In today’s modern age, many of us spend hours sitting at a desk. If you spend all day sitting in an office and then hop on your bike for an hour or so, don’t be surprised when you experience numbness or pain. Human bodies were not designed to remain seated all day, and we suffer the consequences of this sedentary behavior. Try to get up and be active for a few minutes each hour. This adjusts your body position, allows you to stretch your muscles, and provides relief to the nerves that can get irritated when you sit for a prolonged period of time.
It is important to remember that numbness and tingling is actually an injury. Yes, it’s a mild injury that is usually alleviated within a few minutes, but it is an injury nonetheless. It occurs when the nerves have been jostled about or compressed enough to stop working properly. And like other injuries, it will often get worse without treatment.
Repetitive injuries can appear minor, but over time can cause lasting damage (think about those folks who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome). If you experience lasting numbness or pain, see your physician right away. Prolonged stress on the nerves is bad news- and you do not want to take chances with your lower back!
If you have begun experiencing numbness or pain in the buttocks recently, it could be your bike. There may be a vibration issue that is causing extra stress on your body. Did you recently adjust the seat? Did you purchase new gear that might somehow be affecting you? Be sure to rule out these relatively easy to fix issues whenever any pain or numbness strikes.
At Kass & Moses, our team of experienced motorcycle crash lawyers know a thing or two about bikes- because we are all bikers! We encourage you to read up on our blog, use effective gear for safety, and keep 1-800-MOTORCYCLE in your phone in case you are in a crash. We are team of experienced biker lawyers you can count on if you are in a crash!