Mr. Daniel Johnson, B.Sc.
Post updated July 10, 2018.
Get the Facts: Is Biking Bad for Varicocele?
Get Focused: Yes, biking is bad for varicocele. But, it doesn't have to be. If you set yourself up well, you can make biking perfectly fine for varicocele. It does take some work to set up, but it is possible! Stay and Read More!
Here is what you need to know:
Biking Causes Micro Trauma
The biking seat is positioned right where the testicular veins leave the scrotum. Biking in this position rubs and bumps into this area, and causes micro-trauma. This micro-trauma damages the testicular veins, vein valves, and supportive tissue, and may also damage the testicles. Micro-trauma is associated with varicocele and varicocele severity.
What you can do:
Testicular Hyperthermia Means Testicular Damage
Now, you might have been tempted to buy a nice cushion seat to prevent micro-trauma, but thick cushion seats trap heat and impair ventilation! Trapped heat damages the testicles and increases varicocele swelling.
Think about it: Testicular heat damage is very real. Your testicles have enzymes and organelles that only function at lower temperatures. Even elevating the temperature of the testicles by 1-2 degree (average daily) can almost completely halt sperm and testosterone production, and may even lead to testicular shrinkage.
What you can do:
Pressure (Major Cause of Varicocele)
Biking is a unique form of exercise because it isolates and places large amounts of pressure in the lower torso. When exerting and pushing down on the peddle, you create high abdominal abdominal pressure. Chronically, this pressure increases varicocele swelling.
What you can do:
Pelvic Floor Tightness & Inflammation
To make matters worse, biking can also tighten up and can cause inflammation of the pelvic floor muscles & tissue. Pelvic floor imbalances have been known for some time to be associated with varicocele and can cause some very debilitating disease in some men.
What you can do:
Biking & Muscular Imbalances
Biking in most cases is technically an innately imbalanced activity. It is quadriceps dominant, tightens the hip flexors and hamstrings, can cause inactivity of the glutes, and in some weakens the posterior chain and cause neck postural imbalances if not done correctly.
What you can do:
Varicocele: Get Focused on What You Can Do!
Yes, biking is bad for varicocele, but you now have some great ideas and tools to make it better.
Biking must be considered as a high-risk activity for varicocele; you must take precautions.
Great Varicocele Healing Resources:
Start Now: 100 Free Varicocele Natural Treatment Tips Course -- Yes, It's Free! Start Now
Swimming is the most underestimated exercise for treating varicocele. It has countless benefits for varicocele.
Minimal Vertical Load
Swimming is one of the only exercises in which the body is horizontal. This means that the heart does not have to pump blood against the force of gravity, leading to reduced blood pressure and an empty varicocele. Lying down reduces swelling of the varicocele for this same reason.
Furthermore, swimming is one of the only forms of exercise that cools the genitals, rather than heating them. This makes swimming critically important for those suffering from fertility issues. Moreover, it is important for healing the varicocele.
Core & Abdominal Health
Aside from the above, swimming moves the torso through all of its motions (forward and side flexion and extension, rotation, axial extension). It is also stimulating and strengthening for the muscles used to breathe. All this tones and massages all organs of the torso, giving swimming high efficacy for curing many bowel ailments. This is important because of the strong relationship of varicocele with bowel disorders.
It is also very easy to get into a flow or meditative state when swimming, therefore it a great exercise for improving quality of life and managing stress.
All this is not even mentioning the fact that swimming as a physical activity is great for improving cardiovascular and circulatory fitness.
So, get to the pool. But, remember: Don't wear wear tight trunks!
Post Updated July 1, 2018
Varicocele: How to Exercise Without Pain
You've been there--you go to the gym, weight lift or exercise, and leave with a massively swollen lump of swollen testicle veins.
Varicocele Toxic Blood Pooling:
For example: Exertion creates excessive abdominal pressure, pushing down and preventing blood in the testicular veins from returning to the heart. This pools blood. Pooled blood is toxic blood. It contains ROS (oxidizing agents), damaging chemicals, lack of nutrient exchnage, and even prevents your testicles from cooling properly. Pooled blood damages the veins, testicles, sperm, and sperm DNA, it causes pain, infertility, lower testosterone production, testicular shrinkage, and a whole host of other symptoms.
The Full Solution: So, we need to minimize varicocele toxic blood pooling, improve blood circulation, minimize excessive blood flow to the testicles, and keep the testicles cool, and on top all of that there are healing treatments that we can follow.
1. Breathing Technique & Bracing Sequence!
Now, if you're lifting lighter weights, it's easier to inhale with gravity and exhale against gravity, but as your weights increase, a core bracing sequence is fundamental for every strong lifter.
Holding your breath and exerting is called the Valsalva Maneuver, and is actually used in diagnosing varicocele grade because it swells the veins. It is also a main reason why weight lifters get hemorrhages (other than lifting heavy), and bleed from the anus.
As it turns out, inhaling and pressurizing your torso is fundamental for bracing sequence. I think no one really does a better job than Chris Duffin at explaining a proper breathing and bracing sequence, bellow is his must-watch video for to learn proper bracing. His bracing graphic is also much more informative than my axial extension one here. Note: This all definitely applies to varicocele.
He also mentions activating the pelvic floor, as well as the lower abs. Both of these are fundamentals that everyone with varicocele must practice when lifting.
I would also add that when possible (with sub-maximal lifts), exhale through pursed lips. And, especially, don't exert down into your pelvic when you lift. Lift compressed, strong, and especially with no energy leaks down into the pelvis!
2. Posture Is Fundamental! Introduction to Axial Extension (Beginner)
Now, you could exert better if you maintained good posture in your spine! It actually is not all about "neutral spine". It's about AXIAL EXTENSION. I would estimate the value of axial extension as $100,000. It is such an amazing posture to maintain. It totally alleviates excessive abdominal pressure, and has dozens of other benefits that "neutral spine" does not encompass.
Now, the axial extension exercise is great, but if you want to get a more advanced perspective on posture search these topics: Back-bracing, core-bracing, perfect technique, hip hinge, and thoracic extension, and chin tuck.
3. The Lower Abdominal Belt (Muscles!)
Now, I realize that different exercises have different technique (e.g. for some lifters what works is pushing abdominals out when deadlifting), but, in general it's actually it's not a good idea to allow your abs to sag out! Importantly, you need to pull your saggy lower abs in and keep them tight--think of your lower abs as a weight lifting belt that keeps everything nice and tight. And make sure to axially extend.
4. Very Important: Cooling Treatments
I am amazingly baffled by how much people completely ignore testicular temperature. What do you think produces your sperm and testosterone? Your testicles! So, you think that people would give proper testicular care more thought... But, most people keep thinking it's all about training harder and harder, but not smarter. Big mistake.
Well, yeah, you need to keep your testicles cool. You don't keep your entire genetic heritage outsideof your body for no reason. Your testicles need to be kept cool! So, you're pretty retarded if you wear a sauna suit to workout. Think of it, you were only born with a bit of pubes around your penis and balls. You're not born with 1 layer of underwear, 1 layer of pants, and 1 whatever else you wear. So, simply, don't wear so many layers. Wear something breathable!
Now, I have dedicated an entire chapter of the Varicocele Healing Guide to Cooling & Pain Relief, so, that should tell you how important I think the topic is.
5. Underwear: Make a BIG Difference.
Here are the options:
The next best option is going commando, simply because it helps keep the testicles maximally cooling. Testicular temperature is a major risk factor, so, again, this is very improtant.
The worst option is wearing random over-heating, supportive, or non-supportive underwear. Just a terrible option. Terrible. It will increase your varicocele swelling, and worsen varicocele toxic blood pooling. Avoid it. Get yourself better underwear.
Update: The best underwear for being physically active.
Some supplements have venous draining properties, and others help minimize damage to vein walls and valves (vasculo protective properties). There are many supplements that you can take that are proven to improve blood circulation (e.g. blood thinning agents).
There are many ways to minimize excessive blood flow to the testicles, litterally reducing the amount of blood that will pool during physical activity/working out!
Top 10 Varicocele Supplements
Varicocele Natural Treatment
Now, if you have varicocele, make your life easier! Get the Varicocele Healing Guide. I have reviewed pretty much every single controllable varicocele risk factor and provided clear instructions on how to naturally treat varicocele without surgery. I have helped thousands of clients over the past 6 years and have gotten great results. The Complete Guide to Natural Healing of Varicocele is a must-buy for everyone with varicocele. Don't just take my word for it, just read the reviews for yourself (5 stars on Amazon). If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at anytime, I'm here to help.
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