How You Can Choose the Right Bicycle Saddle for Comfort
A new bike means a new ride to break it in, and we’re sure you'd like to take it for a ride on the country roads. Or are you just looking for a more comfortable bicycle saddle? Whatever the reason, it's essential to consider all your options before making a choice. After all, you'll be on that saddle for hours, so comfort is vital!
Amid an increasingly large number of options and manufacturers who put a lot of research and development into creating ever more comfortable saddles, where do you begin? Our guide will help!
Tips for Choosing the Perfect Bicycle Saddle
Here are what determines which seat is best for you:
- Morphology: The bicycle saddle must be wide enough to allow the sit bones to rest comfortably on it, and it should fit the width of the rider’s hips. Women have wider hips than men, so there are bike seats made specifically for women.
- Dorsal flexibility: The cycling position can vary from aerodynamic to more comfortable. Determine what kind of cycler you are to get the right saddle fit.
- Bike type: The bike you ride (e-bike, road bike, or mountain bike) also bears heavily on the seat you need. Remember, these three are for leisure, sports, or competition, which also hammers the point of figuring out what kind of biker you are.
- Shape: A bicycle saddle has a crescent shape, wider at the top for the buttocks and narrower for the legs. Depending on your position, the curve of the saddle will vary. The rider keeps their body weight back on the saddle for practising leisurely, which should be a large, wide saddle with a flat or semi-flat shape—the roundest shape possible. This lets riders comfortably sit back and relax as they ride.
For sports practice, the rider leans forward, especially on a road bike; therefore, they should pick a relatively thin and flat saddle to avoid friction. Triathlon and time trial bikes have strong curves that make finding a comfortable chord position; however, a low-profile seat allows riders to sit closer to the cycle and change their positions more quickly.
For competition practice and triathlon bikes, the rider's body weight rests on the front of the saddle; therefore, a deep-seated saddle is required—no matter how difficult it is for a rider to get on or off the bike. Usually, mountain bikers prefer wider saddles. However, depending on where they are riding, they might need to shift their saddle back to get off it quickly or adjust their seat height by several inches.
- Material: There are many different aspects to consider when buying a bike. The frame largely depends on the type of riding you’re doing. A nylon frame, flexible and padded with cushioning, is ideal for casual rides. This frame is not suitable for high-performance riding or professional cycling. That would mean buying a stiff carbon one without extra padding.
- Bike structure: A metal frame is easy to work with and comfortable but heavier than other materials, so it is best for leisurely practice. Carbon fibre is both light and stiff and critical for performance.
- The rails of a seat can be constructed from aluminium, steel or a combination of steel and carbon fibre; aluminium and carbon fibre contribute to the lightness and comfort of the seat, while steel offers flexibility. Monotube seats add weight and rigidity and are ideal for mountain bikes; they haven't been particularly successful yet.
- Cover: The type of cover on your bicycle saddle will affect your comfort:
- Leather saddles are comfortable and durable, but they are mainly used on road bikes.
- Plastic saddles are usually covered with synthetic fabrics, cotton, microfibre and padded with air, gel inserts, or foam.
- For racing, carbon saddles have no cover; this allows you to transmit the maximum pedalling force possible. It's worth noting that even though carbon is rigid and less comfortable than a leather saddle, it still absorbs some of the shocks from bumps in the road.
- Choose a saddle with more padding to absorb shock if you ride on trails. Be careful when choosing a saddle; even if a type is considered more comfortable for most people, it might not necessarily be the best choice.
Don't forget to try out any saddle before you buy it!
Try adjusting your new bicycle saddle to find the right comfort level before wheeling out of the store. It’s adjustable since riders aren’t all the same height and need the correct posture for intermediate to long rides in the country or during competitions. Your loins will thank you for a less painful experience the next time you and your buddies go on a ride!
Get a premium bicycle saddle from Cushbike today! We offer free and fast delivery, easy returns, and a 60-day money-back guarantee!