US firm launches bum-friendly road saddle as willy docs rattle cycling's cage again

The E3 Form saddle has premiered in the US and is the work of Joshua Cohen, author of 'Finding the Perfect Bicycle Seat'. Cohen's road saddle launches at an opportune time: the September edition of the US Journal of Sexual Medicine carries three papers on erectile dysfunction (ED) caused by cycling. In 1997, a worldwide 'cycling-is-bad-for-the-bedroom' panic damaged cycle sales and led to the creation of ergonomic saddles such as those from Specialized, designed by Dr Roger Minkow.
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From the side the E3 Form saddle looks little different to most roadie saddles but from above the differences are much more apparent. There’s no central hole although there’s very definitely a nose.

The E3 Form's inventor Joshua Cohen PT, MS, said the saddle “has been clinically shown to increase blood and oxygen supply to the genitals by an average of four times over a traditional tear-drop shaped bicycle seat design while riding in an aero, drop bar position.”

The base of the E3 Form saddle has been designed with "the appropriate varied wall thicknesses to create optimum compliancy. A saddle’s base design and shell compliancy have a greater impact on comfort and shock absorption than padding does.”

According to Cohen, "excessive amounts of padding or gel can create pressure on the sensitive nerves and arteries in the perineal area. This is because excessively soft and thick material moves to the areas of least resistance when it is compressed, creating uncomfortable compression and friction where it is wanted least.”

The E3 Form, though, has “just enough padding to ensure a high level of comfort; without exhibiting any negative characteristics commonly found on highly-padded saddles.”

The September issue of The Journal for Sexual Medicine puts the 'cycling causes impotency' subject back on the agenda.

Studies in the journal show that compression forces exerted during cycling can block penile blood flow causing permanent artery blockage and erectile dysfunction.

One of the studies was by Stephen Schrader, a supervisory research biologist at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health.

Dr Schrader has a history of 'cycling is bad for your health' papers.

In 2002, he published a paper on US bike cops. Schrader said the cycling police had many fewer erections while they slept than their fellow officers.

You may or may not want to know this, but bike cops had erections during 27.1 percent of recorded sleep sessions. Coach potato cops had nearly twice as many erections per night.

Schrader has a challenge for the bike trade. It needs to develop "effective strategies based on sound ergonometrics and urogenital physiologic principles and testing are needed to reduce the risk of erectile dysfunction from bicycle riding.”

E3 is distributed in the US by powerhouse retailer Performance Bike. The saddle is discussed in greater detail here:

http://www.performancebike.com/E3saddle.cfm

There's no UK importer as yet.

'Finding the Perfect Bicycle Seat' is a $14.95 download from http://www.roadbikerider.com/bookstore.htm

Check out the link below for a HUGE article on comfort saddles available today.

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