Might too much cycling affect male fertility?

Should men who are trying to conceive spend less time on their bicycles? Dr. Paul Turek writes about cycling and male fertility in his latest article on Turek on Men’s Health.

Dr. Turek highlighted a recent study conducted in the United Kingdom that provides the best evidence on whether cycling can impact male fertility. The British researchers gathered data on erectile dysfunction, infertility diagnosis, and prostrate cancer in relation to cycling time for 5,282 male cyclists. The results showed no association between cycling time (up to 8.5 hours a week) and erectile dysfunction or infertility – debunking the belief that cycling can cause male infertility. The researchers found that cycling between 4 to 6 hours a week actually reduced the likelihood of experiencing infertility. Not only does cycling contribute to overall health and wellbeing, but this recent evidence suggests there may be even more reason for men who are trying to conceive to get on their bicycles!

That said, the picture isn’t completely rosey. According to Dr. Turek, there are still concerns about “bicycle seat impotence” (or erectile dysfunction), which can impact men’s ability to impregnate their partner. Erectile dysfunction can be caused by prolonged periods of time on a bicycle seat, which causes the blood vessels and nerves in the perineum (the area between the anus and the scrotum) to be compressed, decreasing circulation to the penis. In order to reduce the risk of erectile dysfunction, Dr. Turek suggests that men use a noseless or gel bicycle seat, that allows them to sit back and take the pressure off the perineum.

So what should men do if they love to cycle and want to conceive? Dr. Turek suggests:

“Take the usual precautions [related to bicycle seats], but bicycle on. What a great way to exercise, improve health, cut stress and see the world.”

Read Dr. Turek’s post on cycling and fertility here.

Read about the UK study on male cycling here.

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