How High Should a Bike Seat Should Be?

Couple sitting on a tandem bicycleAre you excited about your new bike? Do you want to go on an enjoyable vacation? If you are in line to this thought process, then you have to set the basics right.

Comfortable positioning of your bike seat is the most important aspect here. Place yourself conveniently on the bike so that you can explore the best on your travel plan..!!

Also, considering the health repercussions it is suggested that we maintain the right balance in the seating arrangements to avoid back pain, knee pain, and other similar issues. Now, how do we start the process of determining the best height for our bike?

 

Follow these simple steps and you will get it right.

There are three very important parameters in this regard. Understand how to measure these parameters and further set it according to your optimum comfort levels to fix it tight.

 

  1. Saddle height – Take a measuring tape and measure the length of your bike seat completely from the front to the back on the surface and find out the center point and mark it with a marker. Next, measure from this center point below the seat to the bottom bracket of your bike. This is the saddle height. Ensure that you keep the bike on a flat surface without any movement while taking these measurements.

Source: https://www.pinkbike.com/news/Tech-Tuesday-Six-measurements-that-every-rider-should-know-2011.html

  1. The Fore/ Aft seat position – This position refers to how much closer or farther the seat needs to be placed in accordance with the handlebars. This location is very important because it determines the right balance of your entire body. It will strike the right balance between your power and efficiency levels as well.
  2. Seat Tilt – Keep a small straight board like a clipboard on the seat measure the seat angle horizontally. Alternatively, you can use an inclinometer to measure the saddle tilt.

Source: https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/mtb-positioning-chart

Once we have got the basic understanding of the measurements we will have to seek methods to find the correct saddle height, tilt and the fore/aft positions for us to get the right bike fit. Let us check out on how to do this.

How to make a bike seat more comfortable

Senior couple on country bike rideTraditionally, experts have been following certain methodologies to seek the right positioning. It has been accepted worldwide and people are witnessing the benefits as well. Let us discuss some of these methods:

  1. Heel to the Pedal method – Sit comfortably on the bike and just get supported either by leaning on a wall or just holding on to some object like a cupboard or chair or just hold on to your trainer.Place your heel exactly on the middle of the pedal and start moving backward. Reach to the farthest point you can by completely stretching your knee straight. This is called the six o’ clock position.

Source: http://1mhowto.com/howto/how-to-properly-adjust-the-bike-saddle-height/

If you can see your knee is still bent, then the seat height needs to be adjusted. Keep adjusting in small measurements. If you feel that the heel has lost the contact with the pedal, then you should start lowering the saddle in small measurements. Once, you are set and comfortable measure the saddle height as described above and keep it safe for your reference.

  1. Holmes Method – This is a very simple and easy method to find the appropriate saddle position. Keep your bike on a turbo trainer and get it fixed. Start riding and exactly note the point where the pedal is in the lowest position and try to measure the knee angle at this point. It should be generally in the range between 25 degrees to 30 degrees. If it is above 35 degrees, then increase the height of the seat. If it is below 25 degrees, then you will have to lower the saddle height accordingly. Repeat it two or three times and check for the consistency and find the right measurement.
  2. 109% Method – This method gives a very appropriate measurement. Stand straight against a wall. Keep a book between your legs and clamp it tightly. Slowly move it upwards. You will start feeling uncomfortable; this measure of yours is called the inseam. Mark this point on the wall. Measure the distance between this point to the ground. The height of your saddle should ideally be 109% of your inseam. You can use the previous methods to set the exact height appropriate for your physique and verify with the 109% method.

Once you have determined the right position, note down the saddle height, the tilt and the fore/aft position and make sure you maintain it always. Check after every few days and ensure you contain the power and efficiency well. After you get a fair understanding of the measurements, it is important that you adjust and get the saddle fixed correctly.

Related Topic: How Do Bike Brakes Work

How to lower a bike seat

Smiling african man sitting on bike and looking awayThere is a junction where the saddle meets the bike frame. The seats are first loosened and adjusted at this junction. There will be a lever that is present just below the seat for us to adjust manually. A swift release of the lever gives us the option to move it upward or downward.

If you have seen a screw tightening the framework, then get the right key or tool to slightly loosen the screw and the attached bolt to lower the bike seat. After lowering it to the exact place press the lever down and tighten it or lock it with the appropriate key.

People must have felt, the techniques behind biking are very simple. However, there are simple things like the points discuses above that holds great importance.

We may not know the benefits now, but over a period of time, it definitely proves right on your body muscles giving the right strength.

If these points are not concentrated or rather the seat height is not fixed right then we may have silent health issues that bloom bigger to a serious problem at a very old age. Hence, get the saddle height work right on your body now and always..!!

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