How to choose the height of the bike seat

How to choose the height of the bike seat

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Methods for Determining the Correct Saddle Height on a Bicycle

Setting the correct seat height would seem to be such a fundamental part of preparing your bike before riding. what you can guess there is a better method for this. But you are wrong.

All experts agree only that if the height of the saddle of a bicycle is set incorrectly, the consequences can be catastrophic. Setting the saddle too low can reduce cyclist fatigue time by as much as 12 percent, new research shows.

Consequently, cyclists in a limited time at their disposal can really travel less, reducing their opportunities, it would seem, for an elementary problem that can be solved.

This is an interesting theory, but even knowing this fact, many cyclists do nothing. Read on to find out exactly how to set the correct saddle height for your bike.

Despite this commonly used method, there is practically no scientific evidence to support this option, moreover, it often leads to setting the bike saddle height too low.

Professor Will Palever of Mississippi Women’s University has written several papers comparing methods for finding the best seat height and says: The main problem is that this method does not account for individual differences in the length of the cyclist’s thigh, shin and foot.

A more reliable method was developed by Hamley Thomas in 1967. They experimented with different saddle heights and found that the ideal height was achieved when the saddle was located 109% of the distance between the crotch and the cyclist’s foot (as shown) when measuring the length from the pedal axis to the top of the saddle.

To calculate this size, stand facing a wall and place a thick book between your legs as if it were a saddle. Stand straight with your heels on the floor. mark the line along the top edge of the book while touching the wall.

The distance from the floor to the height of the mark corresponds to your measurement between the crotch and the feet.

It is best to measure several times and calculate the average of all results. This procedure will reduce the measurement error.

This method is extremely popular and is recommended by many trainers. However, a recent study by Professor Pelever showed that it was inferior to the Holmes method (see below) in terms of driving economy.

This is a popular variation of the 109% method and was first used by three-time Tour de France winner Greg Lemond.

Using the inner crotch to feet as a guide, you need to calculate 88.3% of this value to get your bike to that distance from the center of the carriage axis to the top of the saddle.

Interestingly, what Professor Pelever proved. that this often results in different seat heights from the method of 109% and, although this method is suitable for many people, it may not be ideal for people with long bones of the thigh.

choose, height, bike, seat

This saddle height adjustment method was originally developed to reduce excessive cycling injuries and takes a very different approach from the first three methods.

It uses a device called a goniometer to measure the angle of the knee joint at the bottom of the pedal travel.

Holmes recommends using an angle of 25 to 35 degrees, and closer to 25 degrees for those cyclists. who have problems with the patella (tendonitis).

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All of this may sound a little confusing from a technical point of view. If you find it difficult to make such a measurement, then it is probably better to go with one of the two methods of measuring the distance from the crotch to the feet according to method 2 or 3. But if you wish, you can pick up a goniometer from medical equipment suppliers, the cost of the device will be about 30 Euro.

Research by Professor Pelever has shown that adjusting the saddle height on a bicycle. based on the knee at a 25-degree angle, outperforms all other methods (including the 35-degree angle). Using a goniometer and 25 degrees is undoubtedly the best method I would recommend to cyclists, he says.

Don’t rely on feelings of comfort. If you feel like the saddle is set at a lower height than optimal, you may feel uncomfortable in the beginning, Pelever says. However, as your body adapts (usually after two to three weeks), the new position will not only feel comfortable, but it will improve your performance in the long term.

Of course, if you still feel uncomfortable after a few weeks, then you need to make changes. It is best to use the 25 degree angle from the knee as a starting point.

Have someone look from behind to make sure your hips are not swinging back and forth across the saddle due to excessive expansion at the bottom of the stroke.

How to Set Your Bicycle Seat Height

If so, the angle may need to be adjusted upward for better comfort.

choose, height, bike, seat

How To Get The Correct Saddle Height | Bike Sizing | Tredz Bikes

When I set the saddle height for someone on a bicycle, the angle from the knee. is typically somewhere between 25 and 30 degrees, but much closer to 25 in most cases, says Pelever.

Watch the video on how to adjust the saddle height on your bike:

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Bike landing. Saddle height

The safety of the knees and ligaments depends on the height of the saddle position, but, most importantly, how much the fifth point can withstand. You need to set the saddle position in dynamics using video filming. As a first approximation, you can set the saddle height according to numerous recommendations from the Internet and before the Internet. The recommendations are that at the lowest point you need to be able to straighten the knee joint until it clicks, touching the pedal with the heel. And during pedaling, when the support on the pedal is not with the heel but with the pad of the thumb, it is necessary that the leg should not be straightened in any case. Sometimes the preferred angles of maximum extension of the knee joint are indicated, 143-153 degrees. It is postulated that if the leg is straightened too much, the ligaments may suffer, if, on the contrary, it remains insufficiently straightened, the knees are killed. Of course, these are very reasonable recommendations, they are quite sufficient for arrivals for 2-3 hours without stops, and with stops, they are probably generally sufficient for any distance.

Unfortunately, these recommendations are only part of the general picture of biomechanics, and if we consider this part in isolation from others, then with a long pedaling, the consequences can be bad.

I’ll start with the thesis discussed in the previous post that all people are different. over, they differ from each other much more than athletes involved in cycling. Therefore, the desire to adjust the fit for certain angles of flexion of the knee, setting the height of the saddle along the heel, etc has the same significance as the average temperature in the hospital.

The optimal saddle height is directly dependent on the person’s pedaling technique. There is nothing particularly tricky about the pedaling technique. But it must be borne in mind that the look at yourself from the inside can be very different from how it looks from the outside (I’m talking about myself). Therefore, independent control of the video is very important. I will describe my feelings when power pedaling in contacts with the optimal saddle height for me.

When pedaling (especially uphill), the internal sensation: heels down. The most pronounced feeling of the heel down is when the pedal moves down, that is, first the heel comes down, and then the toe presses the pedal in pursuit. The shin-heel angle feels the same as in a ski boot. Achilles is slightly stretched, but no more than in a ski boot. The position of the tibia tilt forward. the load on the Achilles is static so that the Achilles does not become inflamed (it was like that). That is, you do not need to move the heel up and down, but lower the heel when moving down and keep it that way. Keep the heel down to the bottom and a little more to the sensation that the Achilles begins to stretch. The downward heel sensation is then transferred to the other foot (which begins to move downward), and that foot turns into a hook that pulls the pedal upward from the contact clip. In this case, the heel does not rise up, that is, you pull the pedal up with your toe towards you.

In fact (according to the cinematography) the heels do not go down, the foot takes a horizontal position for one frame (1), and then the heel rises up. That is, internal sensations are exactly internal, it does not look like this.

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In principle, it would be nice if the leg at the knee was a little more straightened, but the study of cinematography showed that this does not happen. If the saddle is put a little higher, then the leg does not straighten further, but the heel rises (2) (even with sensations the heel is down, if it is even higher, then it begins to crawl backwards along the saddle. (These are my legs, the leg straightens more for other test participants 3)).

So the videos (only) show how the leg really straightens when pedaling. In a stationary state, of course, I can easily extend my leg completely. You can pedal with the same feeling, but this has nothing to do with reality. In my case, it also affects the fact that the legs are different, the right one unbends better in dynamics, the corresponding difference in the saddle height is 1 cm (as a result, I put it under the right leg).

In general, as a first approximation, I recommend doing this.

First, roll for about an hour and a half so that the body settles down. Then make cinematograms. Set the height of the saddle so that the foot at the bottom of the pedal revolution takes a horizontal position. True, there is one but. At the same time, the leg should not be too straight. By the beginning of the 2016 season, stretching has improved markedly, so it became possible to raise the saddle higher (while maintaining the horizontal position of the foot). Here is another photo (1), which was above (season 2015).

And here is the landing of the 2016 season:

Colleagues from the forum found that the leg is too straightened and this can lead to unpleasant consequences. To be honest, that’s what happened. In the final series of 100 km races of the season, I stretched some kind of anatomy in the back of the knee. Only passed by the end of winter. Therefore, by the beginning of the 2017 season, the saddle was slightly lowered.

Thus, the main criterion for the optimal saddle height is that the foot is horizontal in the freeze frame of the lower point of the pedal, and the saddle is set as high as possible. Next, you need to look at the resulting angle in the knee joint. It is good that it falls into the recommendations given above: 143-153 degrees. If it does not fall from below, like the top photo of this inset (138 degrees), then it’s okay, it’s just the stretch. And if the leg turns out to be too extended and goes beyond the recommended range, as in the next photo (161 degrees), then it is better to lower the saddle. You can not immediately, but listen to the back of the knees and, if painful sensations appear like a little pulled, then immediately after that.

There is one more thing that is visible only to an outside observer. This is the swinging of the hips from side to side. That is, when the leg is extended, the hip goes down. I drove like that for a long time, a couple of seasons, and I thought that the discomfort in the joint of the femoral neck in the morning after a long pedaling is what it should be after torsion. At the same time, I was completely confident that there was no swaying of the hips. Until I saw myself from the side on the brevet from the action camera riding behind In general, swinging the hips in amateur skating should be avoided. This is also an indicator of too high saddle height.

I will return to the horizontal position of the foot at the bottom point. As I wrote in a note on pedaling in a circle, this is not a mandatory position. There may be a slight inclination of the heel up, toe down, especially if the pedals are not contact. However, when aiming for long distances, I recommend adjusting the saddle so that the foot is horizontal. This brings us to a very important point in the saddle height issue. It’s not just for pedaling. over, for racing, the saddle can be lifted from the optimal position. This will increase the power.

The optimum saddle height allows you to save as much fifth point as possible. They often try not to talk about this intimate detail in the first place. But after 5 hours of twisting, it is no longer possible to hush up the question

How is the weight of a person on a bicycle distributed in general? The touch is at five points, two on the pedals, two on the handlebars and a fifth on the saddle. Accordingly, all the weight falls on 5 points, which in the literal sense of the word are hard. The fifth point in terms of weight distribution is more related to the legs. That is, the harder (in total in a circle) you press on the pedals, the less load on the 5th point. Gradually, the legs get tired, this is reflected in the fact that the average speed drops. Consequently, the load on the 5th point increases. Now we introduce the raised heels at the bottom of the pedaling pivot point. This is the same as standing on tiptoes. While fresh and vigorous. no question. But eventually the heels will drop. And then what will happen to the already tired fifth point? And sharply. The most unpleasant thing is that the 5th point is arranged so patiently that the consequences can be noticed too late, after the ride. And plans for the next races may be drastically violated.

Vadim Nikitin

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Correct fit on the bike is the key to a comfortable ride!

So, you have purchased a bike. We are sincerely glad and congratulations! This is a really necessary and useful acquisition. Now all that remains is to configure it correctly for a comfortable ride.

How To Set Your Road Bike’s Saddle Height. Tips For Getting Your Saddle Position Right

Setting up your bike for a proper fit involves manipulating the saddle and handlebars. Saddle adjustments include adjusting the height, tilt, and offset, and you can adjust the handlebars by adjusting the stem length, stem angle, stem lift, and stem width and shape.

The fit will depend on which bike you purchased: walking, racing or touring. Each type has different bike settings, takes into account the peculiarities of the ride and provides the most appropriate body position to minimize the load on the back and legs.

A walking seating position on a bicycle implies an almost flat, perpendicular to the ground, back due to the lowered saddle and raised handlebars. With such a fit, there is no particular stress on the muscles of the arms, legs and back, and the head is in a comfortable position for contemplating the surroundings and landscapes. But this position brings certain inconveniences that experienced cyclists know about, and beginners will only have to get to know them. This landing is not designed for long distances. In addition, trips over bumps and pits will negatively affect the spine.

The racing position involves supporting the bulk of the body with the hands due to the raised saddle and lowered handlebars. As a rule, the saddle is 5-10 cm higher than the handlebars. This position is typical for road bikes and requires some physical preparation and flexibility of the back. At the same time, the position of the legs and the load on the muscles are so balanced that they contribute to a long and fast ride.

Touring bike seating effectively combines the benefits of walking and racing seating. In this case, the back angle is approximately 45 ° in relation to the ground. The bicycle seat is located, as a rule, at the level of the handlebars or slightly below it. In a tourist landing, part of the cyclist’s weight is distributed to the arms, but most of it falls on the fifth point. For tourism, the landing should not be too low, since in this case, during a long ride, the neck and lower back will ache, and you will not be able to look around and enjoy the views at all. But too high a seating position is also not suitable, because in this case, the muscles of the leg will quickly get tired.

The saddle is essential for a proper fit on any ride and on any bike. A properly selected bicycle seat is a guarantee of a comfortable and, most importantly, a long ride. It often happens that the saddle that was sold with the bike is not comfortable. It’s easy enough to find out: after driving 25-30 km, you will feel obvious discomfort.

As you know, due to the difference in anatomy, women need a saddle slightly wider than men. The most common saddle width, according to experts, is 14.3 cm suitable for most people. In any case, absolutely all saddles are uncomfortable. This comes from a lack of practice to such loads. The discomfort should go away on its own after a week of training. If this does not happen, then pay attention to the saddle itself.

Saddle adjustment includes high-low, front-back, and up-down tilt. Setting the saddle too low can lead to problems with the knee joint, the most complex joint in the human body.

Correct saddle height implies a near-extended foot on the pedal in the lowest position, with the cyclist sitting on the saddle, holding the handlebars, and the foot on the pedal with the heel.

The saddle should be mounted almost parallel to the ground, but this is a fairly individual setting.

choose, height, bike, seat

Adjusting the saddle back and forth according to the rules directly depends on the position of the knee over the axis of the pedal at the same height of the pedals. But, for example, athletes often use this setting to shift the center of gravity.

Even with completely correct bike settings, much of the correct fit is still up to the rider. When riding, special attention should be paid to the position of the head. It should not be too tilted, and to relax the neck muscles, periodically turn your head left and right. When riding a bicycle, it is necessary to exclude unnecessary movements, because they waste a lot of energy, and therefore set up the bicycle so as not to move out of the saddle forward or backward, and also not to ride it left and right. To relieve tension in your back and legs, periodically shift up and out of the saddle.

Hand position is also an important aspect in long-term riding. For better aerodynamics and a proper fit, keep your elbows bent along your body. And before hitting bumps in the road, try to relax them for better shock absorption.

You can always find out these and other rules for boarding and adjusting the bike at our bike rental and repair points.

And remember, the correct fit on the bike is the key to a comfortable ride and pleasure from a walk.