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  1. #1
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    Choosing your saddle

    Hello everyone,

    Not sure if it's right section so my apologies if not.

    I want to ask more experienced crowd what are things you are looking for when choosing the saddle for your bike, apart from general thing like size.

    I am about to (probably) buy a saddle via web shop, so I was thinking about buying something THIN, with a flow-hole in it.

    I want to know how good of a option the hole in a saddle is?

    Thx.

  2. #2
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    I'm not very particular about my saddles unless they hurt my groin. The cut-out is not always necessary to alleviate pressure; many saddles accommodate that by a groove.

    I agree with going with a thinner saddle. Too much padding and my back starts to hurt from lack of support.

  3. #3
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    Thx, so priority will be thin design, then hole or groove.

  4. #4
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    The most important thing with getting a new saddle is to make sure the width is correct for your anatomy. You need to figure out the width measurement between your sitz bones and make sure you get a saddle wide enough to support you properly. Once you have this down, then you can figure out grooves, holes, channels etc., but without this first basic requirement being met, you will always be in some discomfort. You can do this either from knowing the width of a saddle that is already comfortable, or check with your LBS pro for the correct way to do this. It involves sitting on something which will leave a mark of the pressure points of these bones, and then you can measure between them. Personally, I knew what saddle was good for me, and I knew how wide it was. Everything I get since is at least 144 mm wide, and works nicely!
    It's all Here. Now.

  5. #5
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    Not my intention to threadjack, but im a complete noob and had a sore arse for a couple of days after my first trail. Is this something that the body becomes used to, or is it an incorrect saddle?

  6. #6
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    That is normal m8, you must get used to MTB saddle and position.

    Luckily, it only takes few days/rides and you'll never feel it again. (Except if you have really bad saddle on which you'd ride 30 miles)


  7. #7
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    I actually like a little padding in my mtb bike and less in my road bike. But I also agree that size is the most important factor.

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    Jamis Dakar XC Comp
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  8. #8
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    Is there a way you can mesure the distance between your "sitz bones" by yourself, and then find out what width of saddle you need?

  9. #9
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    There are two boney protrusions in you backside, one to the left and one to the right. They are called your Ischial Tuberosities, but most people call them your "sit bones". They support nearly all of your weight when you are sitting. They are located to the left and right of your anus. They are usually farther apart on a female than on a male to accomodate the birth canal. You should be able to feel them if you sit on a hard surface and rock slightly to the right and the left. You will feel the increased pressure on them as you rock in that direction.

    The easiest way to measure them is with a tailor's tape measure. Bend over and place the tape on one of the areas where you felt the pressure and pull the tape taunt to the other area that you felt the pressure. Place your finger over the spot on the tape to mark it where it passes over the area where you felt the increased pressure. Then just read the tape where you have it marked with your finger.

    If you have aluminum foil place it on a soft surface, like carpet, sit on it and measure between the two deepest indentations.

    As a last resort, visit your LBS and get a fitting. This is usually included in a full fitting for a bike.
    2011 Fuji Nevada 5.0 ST
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  10. #10
    Workin for the weekend!
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    Quote Originally Posted by bribemewithfood View Post
    If you have aluminum foil place it on a soft surface, like carpet, sit on it and measure between the two deepest indentations.
    Great idea!

  11. #11
    XC Hack
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    Shops that do the Specialized BG fit system have a memory foam bench seat that retains sit bone indents which are then measured.

  12. #12
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    Yeah, that was after I looked like a fool bending over and measuring my arse in the bathroom...
    2011 Fuji Nevada 5.0 ST
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  13. #13
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    As other have said, first be sure the rear part of the saddle is wide enough to comfortably catch your sit bones.

    Padding: not too much. Soft and squishy feels great for a little while, but your groin is carrying your weight, not your sit bones. Light to moderate padding is the way to go.

    Nose: if you climb seated a lot, with your butt forward on the saddle, a wide and padded and/or droopy nose is helpful - what I call "taint-friendly".

    Split saddles theoretically reduce pressure on the interior part of your groin, but increase it on the outer part. I've had both types, and I think it doesn't really matter - strictly personal preference.

    Try different saddles. I've got about a dozen hanging from the rafters, some are ridden to death, some didn't really work out. Plus, my preferences seem to change. Your butt will tell you.

    Everyone's butt is different. What works for Joe may not work for Sam, and what works for both of them may not work for you.

    That being said, if I had to recommend one line of saddles to try, it might be WTB. A lot of people seem to like them. But there are other good ones to choose from - many for $30 to $75. Expensive means doesn't necessarily mean good for your butt.

    Finally, position of the saddle can make a big difference. Remember that for seated pedaling on level terrain, your sit bones should be on the wide whale tail in back, carrying your weight. Also, most saddles should be installed fairly level - at least start that way and adjust slightly if needed.
    Use it, use it, use it while you still have it.

  14. #14
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    I will definately try split sides/groove/hole... I'd trade a little side uncomfness for safe groin... I have still familly to make. )

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raxik View Post
    I will definately try split sides/groove/hole... I'd trade a little side uncomfness for safe groin... I have still familly to make. )
    OK - but remember, split or not, what really preserves your groin is having your seated weight carried by your sit bones on the rear of the saddle.

    If your sit bones hurt for the first few rides, you've got it right. If your groin hurts, it's not right.
    Use it, use it, use it while you still have it.

  16. #16
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    I have really bad stock Bontrager seat, and I never felt any pain in rear bones or groin, but what I do feel after 20-30 miles is "funny" feeling of pressure in groin, that's what I want to get rid of with new seat, hopefully.

  17. #17
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    I usually choose the saddle that came with my bike!

  18. #18
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    Trial and error is the only way after you determine your sit bone width.

    Some people like cushion, some dont. Some people like contour, some dont. Some people like cutouts, and some dont.

    Try to find a LBS with a saddle tester program. You can put like $20-30 down and try out all you like. Once you find one, they may take that deposit off the price of the saddle.
    Raised in a Chicken-Coop by Chickens

  19. #19
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    I heard that some shops that carry WTB have a loaner program to try diffrent saddles . As to if you are sore after a ride that depends on the time in the saddle type of riding and how much riding you do.

  20. #20
    Flow like water
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raxik View Post
    I have really bad stock Bontrager seat, and I never felt any pain in rear bones or groin, but what I do feel after 20-30 miles is "funny" feeling of pressure in groin, that's what I want to get rid of with new seat, hopefully.
    That is a good plan. You do not want to have the soft tissue carrying the weight.
    Pain in two places under bones is far better than pain in the prostate or 'taint area.

  21. #21
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    Saddles make a huge difference in my experience. Sounds like some good advice on the sit bones. I know i benefitted greatly from changing out saddles. Now i use saddles with deep v's or cut-out since they really make riding more enjoyable.

  22. #22
    Kitty! Kitty! Kitty!
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    everyone says the saddle that came with my bike is horrible...I love it. I feel comfortable every time I get on the bike. I guess it's the right fit along with personal preference. Or maybe I just don't know what really comfortable is...

  23. #23
    Professional Crastinator
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    Yuken pick yer friends and yuken pick yer seat, butcha cain't pick yer friend's seat.

    -F
    It's never easier - you just go faster.

  24. #24
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    Hi OP,

    Choosing a saddle is a very personal thing.. and I suggest getting it from a good LBS that understands your needs..

    Over the years, I have gone through several saddles, Vetta Gel in the 2000s, and Fizik in the late 2000s until now.

    You may need to test some saddles, and choose..
    But before investing in some saddles, it is a pretty good idea to invest on a good pair of cycling shorts.. I am very happy with Nike's padded cycling shorts, and own several pairs.

    When you test saddles, it would be good to have your shorts on, since the saddle would feel differently with different types of padding/shorts.

    It will be more of a "try some and choose.." most of the times, you can feel it right away.. but the real test is the long ride (2+ hours)..

    Find an LBS that would let you swap out, or try different saddles.

  25. #25
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    Sit bones sit bones sit bones, as others have said. The width is key and length is not to be overlooked. Most shops have demo saddles, go try them, several if need be.

    Whenever I see a seat thread I always recommend people to check out SMP Selle as it worked so well for me and a few others I know. The drop nose is really nice on steep climbs as well. Not cheap, but its quality and very durable.

    Their website (Selle SMP Pro) also has tons of great info on seat selection, check them out.
    The Pros Stuff also sends them out for demo's.


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