Saddle Sores– Getting back in the saddle

Posted on 21 December 2019

While many riders have ridden successfully without incurring any symptoms of saddle sores, the climate and natural environment together with the prolonged period of 8 days’ riding often lead to discomfort for the rider.

For this very reason, the “Bum Clinic” is an established part of Mediclinic’s service at any epic ride. Our team of medical professionals have developed excellent techniques to manage saddle sores – before they develop too badly – or to help repair damage that may have arisen after a long day in the saddle.

“Many international riders find that the dust and climate in South Africa results in a different riding experience. Some find out early about our clinic, while others only learn about it when the saddle sores start affecting their ride. We want to encourage you to come to our race hospital tent early on if you are experiencing discomfort – our team are experts in making sure that you are ready and riding the next day,” says Dr Darren Green, Race Doctor to Absa Cape Epic.

“We have morning and evening sessions to make sure our riders have the optimum riding experience. A camaraderie develops in the mornings as riders stand outside the clinic waiting their turn. It’s a sure sign that the Epic is underway and that riders are giving it all on route,” he explains.

While our medical staff have many years of experience working on Epic and have perfected the techniques to keep you in the saddle and as pain free as possible, here are a few tips on prevention:

  1. Never wear shorts for the first time on Epic – make sure they are well worn in.
  2. Use more than one brand of shorts – each brand has different stitching, so it’s good to change the pressure points.
  3. Make sure your shorts are a perfect fit. Too big or too small are a common cause of saddle sores.

Here are a few of good moments from previous races – and a few top tips!


Published in Cape Epic

In the interest of our patients, in accordance with SA law and our commitment to expertise, Mediclinic cannot subscribe to the practice of online diagnosis. Please consult a medical professional for specific medical advice. If you have any major concerns, please see your doctor for an assessment. If you have any cause for concern, your GP will be able to direct you to the appropriate specialists.