About Sore Testicles and Pain from Cycling

Updated on December 23, 2016
CyclingFitness profile image

Liam Hallam is a sports science graduate. A keen cyclist, runner, and obstacle racer, he ran his first ultra-marathon in 2016.

Are you getting sore testicles from cycling?
Are you getting sore testicles from cycling?

Sore testicles and erectile problems are some of the main cycling problems experienced by men.

Some men experience sore testicles or simply a dull ache or sensitive feeling in their testicles post cycling. Many men actually believe that cycling can cause further erectile problems in the form of impotence and infertility. Nevertheless, with the right steps and action it's possible for a male cyclist to guard against such problems and assure comfort while cycling.

Sore testes can be unbearable and be detrimental to your life away from the bicycle.

So if you're getting sore or painful balls from biking, below is information to help you.

Have You Ever Suffered From Testes Pains From Cycling?

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A Common Misconception About Cycling and Fertility

In the past, many men have steered away from cycling. Whether on the road, path, or a spinning class at the gym. This has been due to fears regarding their sexual health as it has previously been widely reported in a number of scientific studies that cycling can cause impotence.

In fact, many studies have disproved that information. Certain aspects of cycling and its nature can have a detrimental effect, however, with the right riding clothing and position, a rider can protect their testicles.

With a few simple changes and a little additional knowledge, you can avoid pain and discomfort on your next rides.

How Can Cycling Cause Testicular Pain?

Factors that can cause pain in the testicles from cycling.

  1. Poor Saddle Position
    An incorrectly positioned bicycle saddle can be extremely uncomfortable for a rider. A saddle that is too high or too low can lead to a sensation of numbness which is often as a result of pudendal neuralgia—the trapping of the pudendal nerve. Pudendal neuralgia is also known as Alcock canal syndrome.
    How high should your bicycle saddle be? Your saddle should initially be horizontal (or close to) and when fully extended at the base of your pedal stroke there should be a small amount of flex in your knee when your foot is parallel to the ground.
  2. Testis Trauma
    If you consider how many times you turn your cranks each minute and hour you start to realise just how many crank revolutions you achieve on a ride. Unfortunately, there is a high possibility you may catch your testicles at a point either while normally pedaling, or while sitting back onto the saddle after a period of standing up pedaling. Also while riding can cause pressure trauma due to nerve compression which can lead to a sensation of temporary numbness.
  3. Testicular Torsion
    Testicular torsion occurs when your testicle rotates around the scrotum which leads to restrictions in blood flow, therefore leading to swelling and very intense pain. Though not often associated with cycling if you do have issues with testicular torsion from cycling it's recommended to visit Accident and Emergency Ward of your local Hospital very quickly after the problems arise.
  4. Fluid Accumulation in the Testes
    The testes are a very complex area of the male body. Varicoceles, spermatoceles and hydroceles within the organ can be affected by non-cycling related problems and can lead to infections and fluid accumulation. Tiredness from cycling can weaken the immune system giving rise to such problems.

Address these issues and you're well on the way to preventing sore balls from cycling.

Cycling related testis pain can be a problem, but with a little adjustment it usually can be resolved. (Featured- Riders at Losehill in the Peak District)
Cycling related testis pain can be a problem, but with a little adjustment it usually can be resolved. (Featured- Riders at Losehill in the Peak District) | Source

Identifying Sore Testicles From Cycling

If you have sore testicles as a man you generally know about it (and your partner likely does too!). Identification of a sore testicle is relatively straightforward as there will be a generally feeling of soreness or torsion in the area and on inspection you may also be able to feel additional warmth radiated from the sacks or be visibly able to see redness and inflammation.

It's recommended that for any problems with testis pain to go and see your doctor or physician as you may have an infection as a result of your cycling activity—do not assume the issue will just clear up as these are your reproductive organs and could potentially have long-term consequences.

Prevention

There are a number of things you can consider doing to prevent cycling related testis problems.

  1. Stand out of the saddle and pedal regularly to allow blood flow to resume to the testes and genitalia.
  2. Choose a pair of padded bicycle shorts which will provide protection to your undercarriage while cycling.
  3. If you have had problems with your testicles from cycling you could consider one of the specialist cycling saddles from companies featured right that remove the nose section of the saddle and remove the testes from the seating area of a cyclist.
  4. Set up your saddle height correctly to alleviate any excess pressure on your testes.

Questions & Answers

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      • profile image

        Joe 

        8 months ago

        I had a woman's orthopedic seat that worked better than the mens. It's wider, bigger and has more cushion. Your ass, balls and Gooch will thank you for it.

      • profile image

        Gordon 

        12 months ago

        I get a sore arse also soar bollocks,I wear padded shorts to stop this but my bollocks are a little larger than most ...should I stop cycling....

      • profile image

        Andy 

        12 months ago

        A guy on youtube explained how to run faster by practicing cadence on your bike. Last Sunday, I rode a long ride up the hill on bigger back gear, I guess that was too much for fist attempt. I've been feeling some pain in my right ball for a week but doesn't feel like stabbing pain when I rub or roll my hand around my ball. I hope it will clear out soon. I don't get too over reacted like some health freaks to see doctor for every little thing. I will tilt the seat. Who wants to use his balls as part of the cushion?

      • CyclingFitness profile imageAUTHOR

        Liam Hallam 

        24 months ago from Nottingham UK

        Thanks for your feedback Bernard. I'd actually argue against extra padding- If you sink into the padding you increase the friction against your skin. People seem to think padding is the answer- yet It's rare you'll see a professional cyclist with an armchair for a saddle. Also tilting the saddle down forces you to have to stabilise your body in position which often puts more stress onto your hip flexors which can lead to other problems.

      • profile image

        bernard 

        2 years ago

        A good trick to reduce the pressure on your balls is by adjusting the tilt of the seat.

        Just undo the bolt screw of your bicycle seat and tilt it down (forward direction) slightly. That way the point of gravity is in your buttcheeks rather than the base your balls. Because most bikes require you to slightly lean forward which automatically make you lean on your balls while sitting down.

        Getting a better seat would be great, but I would try the trick above first, it might save you $40.

        Another trick is to buy soft gell seat cover which you can place on top of your currect seat. You can even add foam or sponge underneat the cover, sandwich in between the cover and your seat.

      • parkournut profile image

        parkournut 

        5 years ago

        Wow, never knew this was a problem as I've never encountered it myself. Now I'm scared to get back on the bike! ;) But not really.

      • CyclingFitness profile imageAUTHOR

        Liam Hallam 

        6 years ago from Nottingham UK

        Thanks for your feedback chrissie.

      • chrissieklinger profile image

        chrissieklinger 

        6 years ago from Pennsylvania

        very informative hub!

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