Researchers of Yale University studied 48 competitive female cyclists, who rode at least 10 miles per week, 4 weeks per month, and found a link between decreased genital sensation and low handlebars.
The results show that when the handlebar is positioned lower than the saddle, there’s more pressure on the genital region, which may lead to loss of sensation in this area.
By positioning the handlebar a bit higher than the saddle, the pressure on the sit bones increases while the vagina is less affected.
A simple change, which provides important beneficial effects to the pelvic floor of the cyclists, conclude the researchers.
Reference: Partin, S.N., Connell, K.A., Schrader, S., LaCombe, J., Lowe, B., Sweeney, A., Reutman, S., Wang, A., Toennis, C., Melman, A., Mikhail, M., & Guess, M.K. (2012). The Bar Sinister: Does Handlebar Level Damage the Pelvic Floor in Female Cyclists? The Journal of Sexual Medicine DOI: 10.1111/j.1743-6109.2012.02680.x