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Saddle Size and Type

Old 12-23-17, 10:28 AM
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Saddle Size and Type

I'm looking to replace the Body Geometry Toupé Sport, 143mm saddle on my 2016 Specialized Roubaix. Sit bones measure approximately 133 mm apart. What size saddle would be most appropriate? This 143mm is apparently too small, as rides over 10 miles or so haven't been very comfortable. I get a bit of relief by sliding way back on the saddle, but I'm obviously too far back.

Also wondering if I need more of a flat type saddle or rounded one? I'm thinking about trying a Power Expert or Phenom Expert saddle. I realize it's gonna be a trial and error process, but any and all experiences and opinions are greatly appreciated.
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Old 12-23-17, 11:02 AM
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Sounds like the nose of your saddle needs to be tilted down more. Asking people the best type of saddle is like asking what the best tasting food is. Taste buds and butts are different.
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Old 12-23-17, 11:07 AM
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^^^^ Yeah, I concur 100%. Asking around for advice on a saddle is a fool's errand.

But, since you asked: Fizik Aliante.
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Old 12-23-17, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass
Sounds like the nose of your saddle needs to be tilted down more. Asking people the best type of saddle is like asking what the best tasting food is. Taste buds and butts are different.
Originally Posted by Scarbo
^^^^ Yeah, I concur 100%. Asking around for advice on a saddle is a fool's errand.

But, since you asked: Fizik Aliante.
Understood, and as I said, I know it's gonna be a trial and error process. But, I suppose I'm looking for opinions on what size saddle is appropriate for the specific size sit bones given. Also, opinions from those that have had a less than comfortable experience with this particular saddle. In another words, anything that may help shorten the learning curve.
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Old 12-23-17, 11:40 AM
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Well, if your sit bones measure 133mm apart then you probably should seek out a 155mm saddle.
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Old 12-23-17, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Scarbo
Well, if your sit bones measure 133mm apart then you probably should seek out a 155mm saddle.
This would be true if cyclists actually sat on their "sit bones"; the Ischial Tuberosity. We sit on those in chairs, but most people on bikes are leaned forward and are sitting on the narrower Iscial Ramus.

Specialized has come up with a system that suggests saddles based on Ischial Tuberosity width, but that doesn't mean that's what you're sitting on, it just means that the Tuberosities are easy to measure and the Ramus is not.

Also, the outer width of a saddle doesn't really predict how wide the part you sit on is going to be. It depends how the saddle is curved and whether it drops off quickly or not.


Kontact makes a phenomenally ergonomic saddle, and many people riding them have sit bones that are wider than the saddle itself. But no saddle works for everyone. So I would suggest sticking to trial and error rather than arcane measuring formulas. Just note what kind of shapes work and what don't.
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Old 12-23-17, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact
This would be true if cyclists actually sat on their "sit bones"; the Ischial Tuberosity. We sit on those in chairs, but most people on bikes are leaned forward and are sitting on the narrower Iscial Ramus.

Specialized has come up with a system that suggests saddles based on Ischial Tuberosity width, but that doesn't mean that's what you're sitting on, it just means that the Tuberosities are easy to measure and the Ramus is not.

Also, the outer width of a saddle doesn't really predict how wide the part you sit on is going to be. It depends how the saddle is curved and whether it drops off quickly or not.


Kontact makes a phenomenally ergonomic saddle, and many people riding them have sit bones that are wider than the saddle itself. But no saddle works for everyone. So I would suggest sticking to trial and error rather than arcane measuring formulas. Just note what kind of shapes work and what don't.
Oh, OK.

Fizik Aliante.
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Old 12-23-17, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by one4smoke
Understood, and as I said, I know it's gonna be a trial and error process. But, I suppose I'm looking for opinions on what size saddle is appropriate for the specific size sit bones given. Also, opinions from those that have had a less than comfortable experience with this particular saddle. In another words, anything that may help shorten the learning curve.

Is your weight well on the sit bones, or kinda distributed to other locations as well? I sought to have ALL my weight on the sit bones, and nowhere else.

This analysis helped me find what worked for me.

If you were getting sore in the soft tissue in between the sit bones, I'd think a wider saddle would help. Or, a flatter (left to right) saddle would help.

If you were getting sore in the soft tissue in front of the sit bones, I'd think a less flat (front to rear) saddle would help. Or a saddle with relief cut/molded into it's shape.

Tilt. For me, the rear part of the saddle where the bones rest must be at least level, or a tiny tilt nose up. Otherwise I am constantly sliding forward, which forces me to be constantly pushing myself rearward searching for the wide part of the saddle again.
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Old 12-23-17, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact
Also, the outer width of a saddle doesn't really predict how wide the part you sit on is going to be. It depends how the saddle is curved and whether it drops off quickly or not..
I think this might be the most under-considered aspect when saddle shopping. You lose a lot of actual sitting "width" when saddles round off down the sides. Not to mention that the "Arc" material has to go somewhere. Ouch. That's why I like flat saddles.
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Old 12-23-17, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by SquidPuppet
Is your weight well on the sit bones, or kinda distributed to other locations as well? I sought to have ALL my weight on the sit bones, and nowhere else.

This analysis helped me find what worked for me.

If you were getting sore in the soft tissue in between the sit bones, I'd think a wider saddle would help. Or, a flatter (left to right) saddle would help.

If you were getting sore in the soft tissue in front of the sit bones, I'd think a less flat (front to rear) saddle would help. Or a saddle with relief cut/molded into it's shape.

Tilt. For me, the rear part of the saddle where the bones rest must be at least level, or a tiny tilt nose up. Otherwise I am constantly sliding forward, which forces me to be constantly pushing myself rearward searching for the wide part of the saddle again.
Well, both ...kinda. The pain is in a narrower area between the sit bones, yet seems slightly more to the front.

I do tend to tilt the nose upwards a bit, which has always been the preferred position for me.

I'm thinking I'll try the Specialized Power Expert in a 155mm, then go from there. This will probably one of those things where ...whatever you think, just go the opposite for the correct solution.
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Old 12-23-17, 01:47 PM
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To prove the fools errand point, I see a couple of posters have recommended Fizik Aliente saddles.

I find Fizik Aliente saddles to be midieval torture devices.
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Old 12-23-17, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by one4smoke
Understood, and as I said, I know it's gonna be a trial and error process. But, I suppose I'm looking for opinions on what size saddle is appropriate for the specific size sit bones given. Also, opinions from those that have had a less than comfortable experience with this particular saddle. In another words, anything that may help shorten the learning curve.
Your saddle is wide enough. Other peoples experience with your particular saddle means nothing. When you have pain in the, uh, sensitive areas after a few miles and sitting back helps you need to drop the nose of the saddle. When the nose is too high is will cause the issue you describe. Just because your saddle may be level right now doesn't mean the nose is not too high. So many people give up on a saddle, then blow money blindly buying others recommended by strangers on the internet because they do not know how to properly adjust the tilt.

You want to find the balance between crotch pain (nose too high) and sliding down the front (nose too low). That will make some saddles be tilted up slightly, some will be level and other will look like the nose is tilted down. They aren't all the same. Adjust it a tiny bit at a time. For me, even a millimeter of adjustment is noticeable.

It's best to start with the nose a little too low. If you feel like you're sliding down then pull over to the side of the road, raise the nose a hair and get back on. Repeat until you find the sweet spot. I can get conformable on any size or shape of saddle as long as it isn't super narrow. I personally prefer the feel of curved ones but that's irrelevant to anyone else.
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Old 12-23-17, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by one4smoke
I'm looking to replace the Body Geometry Toupé Sport, 143mm saddle on my 2016 Specialized Roubaix. Sit bones measure approximately 133 mm apart. What size saddle would be most appropriate? This 143mm is apparently too small, as rides over 10 miles or so haven't been very comfortable. I get a bit of relief by sliding way back on the saddle, but I'm obviously too far back.

Also wondering if I need more of a flat type saddle or rounded one? I'm thinking about trying a Power Expert or Phenom Expert saddle. I realize it's gonna be a trial and error process, but any and all experiences and opinions are greatly appreciated.
Too far back? Maybe the saddle is too far back. Before going nuclear and abandoning this saddle, perhaps try moving it forward in 1/4" increments and see if you can find a "sweet spot".

I also ride slightly nose up but some saddles have a more "prominent" nose and work better level. Try leveling along with the above incremental adjustments and see what happens.
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Old 12-23-17, 02:20 PM
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try a brooks Cambium C17 Carved saddle .... best saddle that I have ever used (I have them on both of my bikes) ... many people who ride long Audax rides (300 Km+) use these
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Old 12-23-17, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass
Your saddle is wide enough.
Are you basing that on the measurements of my sit bones at 133mm? I have heard that one needs to add 20mm to get the appropriate saddle size.

Originally Posted by Lazyass
You want to find the balance between crotch pain (nose too high) and sliding down the front (nose too low). That will make some saddles be tilted up slightly, some will be level and other will look like the nose is tilted down. They aren't all the same. Adjust it a tiny bit at a time. For me, even a millimeter of adjustment is noticeable.

It's best to start with the nose a little too low. If you feel like you're sliding down then pull over to the side of the road, raise the nose a hair and get back on. Repeat until you find the sweet spot. I can get conformable on any size or shape of saddle as long as it isn't super narrow. I personally prefer the feel of curved ones but that's irrelevant to anyone else.
I have done that already, to the point where I do feel as if I'm sliding forward. Especially if sitting in an upright (no hands, resting while coasting) position.

It's not crotch or "taint" pain I'm getting. It's very close to the sit bones, but a bit more forward and in.
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Old 12-23-17, 03:16 PM
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A few years back I traded my B17, for a Selle San Marco Rolls, and for the bike I took the B17 off ,
I got a made for Brompton Fizik Vitesse, They're black, saddle rail bend a bit different..

I had a Vitesse CP3, a softer density foam with a gel window , Now I have 4 of the ones Brompton got made, thinner, denser padding..
Saddle was an option on the light weight Titanium parts equipped -X models..


Typical Vitesse marketing seems to be aiming at women so pink & white 'Pleather'.. covering.




...
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Old 12-23-17, 03:44 PM
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Originally Posted by one4smoke
Are you basing that on the measurements of my sit bones at 133mm? I have heard that one needs to add 20mm to get the appropriate saddle size.
Don't get caught up in measurements. If your saddle was too narrow you would know it in the first 1000 feet. Trust me. If you start feeling pain 10 miles into a ride the problem is the adjustments.

Originally Posted by one4smoke

I have done that already, to the point where I do feel as if I'm sliding forward. Especially if sitting in an upright (no hands, resting while coasting) position.

It's not crotch or "taint" pain I'm getting. It's very close to the sit bones, but a bit more forward and in.
If you actually have tried adjusting it like that and it's not working for you then I would look for a saddle that has a completely different shape.

Last edited by Lazyass; 12-23-17 at 03:47 PM.
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Old 12-23-17, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact
This would be true if cyclists actually sat on their "sit bones"; the Ischial Tuberosity. We sit on those in chairs, but most people on bikes are leaned forward and are sitting on the narrower Iscial Ramus.

Specialized has come up with a system that suggests saddles based on Ischial Tuberosity width, but that doesn't mean that's what you're sitting on, it just means that the Tuberosities are easy to measure and the Ramus is not.
Originally Posted by Lazyass
You want to find the balance between crotch pain (nose too high) and sliding down the front (nose too low). That will make some saddles be tilted up slightly, some will be level and other will look like the nose is tilted down. They aren't all the same. Adjust it a tiny bit at a time. For me, even a millimeter of adjustment is noticeable.
Originally Posted by WNCGoater
Too far back? Maybe the saddle is too far back. Before going nuclear and abandoning this saddle, perhaps try moving it forward in 1/4" increments and see if you can find a "sweet spot".

I also ride slightly nose up but some saddles have a more "prominent" nose and work better level. Try leveling along with the above incremental adjustments and see what happens.
Upon closer inspection (after showering) ...I stand corrected. It is the other set of (smaller?) Iscial Ramus bones up at the "taint" area that is giving me the problem.

So, one of you guys are probably right. It's either the tilt, or the saddle is too far back. I still may need a 155mm instead of a 143, but adjusting this Toupé Sport either fore/aft or tilt will more than likely make things better for the time being.
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Old 12-23-17, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by one4smoke
Upon closer inspection (after showering) ...I stand corrected. It is the other set of (smaller?) Iscial Ramus bones up at the "taint" area that is giving me the problem.

So, one of you guys are probably right. It's either the tilt, or the saddle is too far back. I still may need a 155mm instead of a 143, but adjusting this Toupé Sport either fore/aft or tilt will more than likely make things better for the time being.
Another thing you can try is lowering your saddle a little bit. It takes pressure off of your sitbones when your leg is extended. I actually have my saddles almost 2cm lower than the calculations say it's supposed to be. If you try it bring it down just a little bit at a time. It will feel weird pedaling for a couple of miles but you get used to it. It hasn't slowed me down one bit, just don't get it too low or you could get knee pain. I basically like to feel like I'm sitting "in" the bike and not "on" it if that makes sense. You have to be flexible when it comes to all these recommended measurements for everything, not everyone is built the exact same way. A person with your inseam may not have hips, femurs, pelvis and every other body part exactly like yours.
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Old 12-23-17, 04:28 PM
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OP, please do let us know if at the end of this thread, which will no doubt reach many pages in length, you are any more edified on the matter than when you first posited the question. I mean, feeling yourself out in the shower is all well and good as far as it goes, but you still have to procure a saddle that you find that you and your posterior can live with. Saddle Nirvana is out there, I can assure you. Out there; not in here.

Last edited by Scarbo; 12-23-17 at 04:49 PM.
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Old 12-23-17, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Scarbo
OP, please do let us know if at the end of this thread, which will no doubt reach many pages in length, you are any more edified on the matter than when you first posited the question. I mean, feeling yourself out in the shower is all well and good as far as it goes, but you still have to procure a saddle that you find that you and your posterior can live with. Saddle Nirvana is out there, I can assure you. Out there; not in here.
Ha ha... Kinda figured that would be a bit too much info. Not surprised someone would run with it. Especially someone from Cali, where my wife is from.
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