Top Advice And Tips To Select Perfect Bicycle Saddle
Bicycle saddle forms one of the important parts of the bicycle. For those who don’t know much about these, consider that saddles are meant to be uncomfortable. However, if the saddle is perfect, there is no way on the earth it will provide any sort of disruption to the normal biking experience.
Although the shopkeeper or the mechanic will tell you what to buy, yet it is good practice if you research well before buying anything.
Saddles rank as a high-wear component. They are a personal fit item that needs to be checked for size. Without that, chances are you will end up getting the wrong saddle for yourself. A few factors to check before finalising the saddle are:
Shape: This factor varies according to the body type of different people. If we look in a general manner, women have broader sit muscles. Hence, women saddles are wider. However, this is not the case with men. Therefore, their saddles are sleek and pointed.
Shell and cutout design: The shell, usually made of injected molded plastic, is hard. It is usually made of nylon. At times, carbon fiber is mixed with this plastic so as to reduce the weight and alter some flex characteristics. Some models have an all-carbon shell so that the weight is minimised as much possible.
Padding: This gives the saddle a pushy feeling. Most likely, urethane foam is used in combination with polymer gels. These gels provide a rubbery, flesh like feeling. In fact, this gives most people a reassuring feeling that nothing is wrong, and all will be right.
At times, different materials are used on the single seat so as to add more comfort to specific areas. The usual notion is foam and gel will be molded in the shell, and the thickness can vary depending on manufacturers as well as models.
Height: The saddle height matters a lot when you are riding a bike. It should be attuned in such a way that during pedalling, the legs should bend a little even when the legs are at the farthest distance.
In fact, if the rider can put both his feet on the ground, flat, then the height of the saddle is wrong. Unless the bike is recumbent or any other crank-forward design, the saddle height must be adjusted to the right level.
Fore and aft
If we follow the traditional approach, it is said that the saddle should be in such a way that the crankarms lie horizontally. In that case, the pedals are on the head of the fibula of the leg that I forward. However, not all people agree to this and say that there is no anatomical basis for all this.
Types of riding
How you will ride the bike also determines what sort of saddle you need. The determining factors and aspects are given below:
Recreational: This means leisure biking. It includes random stuff like going to the local grocery store or going to your colony once in a while. In short, if you are the one who wants to sit upright while riding a bike, or prefer urban biking and are a simple short ride commuter, cushioning saddles are your answer. Such saddles are very versatile. They have wide plush padding/ springs; there is a short nose also, and this provides lots of comfort to the rider. A seat post can also be added for additional ease. It comes with plenty of springs, and this will all the more improve the biking experience for the rider.
Racing: If you are more of a racer and do it at the time with a clock, a performance saddle is what you need. A preferable one would be a long, narrow, and minimal sports padding. Since, while riding very little weight is exerted on the sit bones, however, due to the tucked position, one needs much more material between the legs because there will be maximum power transfer and minimal chafing.
Also, if you are very new to the biking world, it becomes easier for you if you try out a softer saddle so that when the body adjusts itself, it is no more a discomfort.
Mountain: Mountains are one difficult place to ride a bike. Pulling all the weight, against the force of gravity is a commendable task in itself. Occasionally, one will stand up on the pedals, to pull the way out of the uphill. The terrain of the mountains is not constant. Hence, one cannot predict what kind of saddle one needs. Since there are just so many positions, therefore it is advised to use a mountain- specific saddle that pad the bones when you sit. They are durable and have a streamlined shape to cut through the air resistance.
Touring: Long distance biking needs a performance saddle that should be durable as well. All leather saddle or some other high-performance saddle will fulfil the needs. Lots of sit-bone cushioning comes along with the saddle.
Women-specific: Since women have a different body structure and possess wider hips and ischial bones, it becomes different. They must go for a women’s special. These saddles are women specific and can accommodate any number of anatomical difference.
After knowing what sort saddle to choose, it is beneficial to know what to do and what not to do. There is a huge list, but we provide the most basic things that one must not forget when getting a saddle.
Things not to do
Taking it for a test ride
Admit it; it does make a huge difference. Just looking at the bike won’t tell you if the saddle is perfect for you or not. So take the new saddle for a test drive to check the compatibility of the new saddle.
Soft is not comfortable
Most people think that if the saddle is soft and has lots of cushion inside, it will be perfect. However, it is not just the way things work. It may have the wrong shape. Sit bones are also always looking for solid places to rest. So more cushiness can mean more pressure to the sensitive areas.
Assuming the saddle, you need
One important thing that stays between buying the perfect saddle and you are your over confidence. So do not undertake that you will need this particular saddle. Just research thoroughly and get the best match for you.
Don’t ignore the points you hit
We all know that acupressure works with pressing the acupoints. So if your sit muscles are resting clenched against something, chances are it will hit those areas.
Check your sit bone width
Sit bones vary a great deal in size. So it is better to get the knowledge about it and then check which one you want to buy.
Buying a saddle is an easy task. It may seem to be a little daunting, but once you know everything about the saddle, you will be able to find the best and most perfect solution. Be it for trekking or simple bike riding, saddles come for each special taste. So just make a pick whenever you are out to buy a bike or repair it and see the magic happen for yourself by just changing the saddle.