PRESENTED AS GENERAL INFORMATION FROM OVER 80 YEARS OF COMBINED CYCLING EXPERIENCE
It seems more comments are heard about getting comfortable on the saddle than any other area of cycling. So here are some well-proven thoughts on what to look for, when chasing the most comfortable riding position you can.
Bib Knicks make up more than 75% of total Knick sales for several reasons;
There is no restrictive elastic around the abdomen area
They act against leg grippers to keep the Knicks in the best position, even in wet weather
There is little chance of Jerseys riding up above the Bib Knicks, leaving bare skin exposed to sun or cold, especially in the vulnerable lower-back area.
From several decades ago, when natural chamois were used, often with woollen Knicks, it was usually the chamois that failed first. Left unoiled, they dried out and broke down, whilst the Knicks were often still very serviceable. Now, with huge improvements in synthetic chamois, the reverse is mostly the case.
Quality, predominantly Italian chamois, have a very long life, are made to suit different riding requirements and include anti-bacterial properties. With graduated thickness and density, these pads can provide remarkable comfort over long distances. Gel, Carbon Fibre and other materials are used to offer different benefits.
There are also many good looking Chinese-made chamois about, although many fail to perform at the level required.
Most Bib Knicks are made from Lycra or similar polyester/Elastane fabric that offers a lightweight, body hugging fit, a great base for multi-colour printing and quick drying properties. Well-fitted Knicks are more comfortable to wear and also look great too.
In recent times, silicone leg-grippers have been popular to stop the legs of Knicks riding too high. Recent changes have seen the emergence of wide printable elastic grippers, requiring less pressure to do the job. Personal choice is the usual decider here, whilst some riders have a reaction to the silicone style grippers.
Even with comfortable Knicks and a quality chamois, discomfort through chaffing effects some riders. The solution is to use a good quality Chamois Cream or chamois butter. Look for one that has antibacterial properties, does not affect sensitive skin and is relatively thick in consistency, so it stays in place. Application is easiest direct to the skin, but can also be applied directly to the chamois. Also ensure it is not petroleum jelly-based if you want it to wash out easily, without leaving greasy residue. Our VeloEx Chamois Cream is Australian-made from all natural ingredients and is very popular
Regular washing and effective rinsing of detergent from the Knicks is important. Better to rotate several pairs of Knicks, to allow frequent washing. In wet conditions especially, Knicks easily accumulate road spray which can work its way deep into the chamois, if left for an extended period. A bout of irritation in the groin area for either gender can lead to a significant period of recovery, leading one Tour de France leader several years ago with no choice but to abandon the race, whilst one year, Omega Pharma-QuickStep’s Stijn Vandenbergh didn’t even make the start.
Jens Voigt's cries of Shut Up Legs are well-known, but there are other parts of a cyclist that can be far more painful.