You are here

Minkow seeking participants in large cycling health study

Published November 8, 2016

PETALUMA, Calif. (BRAIN) — Dr. Roger Minkow, who helped developed Specialized Body Geometry saddles and other products, is launching what he says could be the largest scientific study of cyclists' health ever conducted.

Minkow — who retired from his long time consulting agreement with Specialized earlier this year — is working with Stanford University urologist Dr. Michael Eisenberg on the survey. Minkow said the study could eventually include data from as many as 50,000 cyclists.

All cyclists are being invited to take the web survey, which takes about 15 minutes. It asks detailed questions about cycling habits, equipment, bike fit and health conditions, including erectile disfunction in men and women's health issues related to their cycling.

Minkow said the study aims to identify how cycling affects health and whether it is a safe activity.

In the early 1990s, Minkow developed the first saddles specifically designed to reduce the risk of ED, following a much publicized article in Bicycling magazine that showed a connection between cycling and ED. At the time, some health experts were saying cycling was an unsafe activity.

Minkow said in part, the study will try to get at whether riders who use "reasonable" equipment, reasonable riding habits, and reasonable bike fit are safe from cycling-caused health issues. He said the study is appropriate now because there are many cycling enthusiasts who have been riding for years and never used old-fashioned saddles.

Minkow said he and Eisenberg are volunteering their time to do the study, which he said is not intended as a product development tool.

"What we are trying to do is address real issues by looking at bike fit and other factors pretty deeply, in a way that hasn't been done before. We may be able to find out for sure that some saddles are safe and some aren't, so we can give people some real information that is not just marketing BS," he said.

The survey is at

Join the Conversation