Saddle angle and the pros

Jun 28, 2009
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Who is on the level, who is tilted down, and who is racking themselves with an incline?
 
Saddle position is very personal and definitely varies.

I give the same advice about saddle tilt, that the rider should feel like they are sitting 'in' the saddle. The goal being riders relaxing their shoulders, elbows a good deal. I've seen riders who have taken my advice with their saddles pointed down and they report feeling like they are sitting 'in'. Their upper bodies confirm it.

That's not me though.
 
Jun 28, 2009
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I think a saddle that is titled up too much (even if that means level) or set too far back will cause back pain, too far forward will cause pain below the knee, and tilted down too far down will just feel weird.

DirtyWorks said:
Saddle position is very personal and definitely varies.

I give the same advice about saddle tilt, that the rider should feel like they are sitting 'in' the saddle. The goal being riders relaxing their shoulders, elbows a good deal. I've seen riders who have taken my advice with their saddles pointed down and they report feeling like they are sitting 'in'. Their upper bodies confirm it.

That's not me though.
 
Aug 4, 2009
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Very personal should have no waight on the hands just enough to steer.

Some of the new hard dunny seats like Specialised Toupe may require a slight drop at the back but only 3mm at most.

These Guys in the pelaton are looked after by specialist bike fit mechanics so you would think they have it spot on.
 
Jul 27, 2009
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Zigster said:
Frédéric Guesdon: down, although the stand makes it look worse than it is
That's not actually as down as it looks, on a curved saddle (actually any saddle) you dont put the level on the back edge to the front edge.

Do it like this, measure where the saddle is 100mm wide, put one edge of the level here with the rest of the level towards the front. It should be level or 1 or 2 degrees down i.e. you are ignoring the very back part of the saddle when determining whether it's level or not.
 
May 4, 2010
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Zigster said:
I think a saddle that is titled up too much (even if that means level) or set too far back will cause back pain, too far forward will cause pain below the knee, and tilted down too far down will just feel weird.
That's how I've always understood it too. Funny though, this spring I moved my saddle back about 1cm (almost max) and still level. The lower back pain I had been experiencing seems to be going away, even though most of my climbing has been in the saddle. :confused:
 
Jun 18, 2009
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I"ll hijaak it slightly and ask how do people here set their saddle tilt?

I ride a selle italia SLR and when it's dead level, I'm constantly sliding forward. I ride with a slight upward tilt. I have no idea if that's officially proper, but I never have saddle soreness and it makes me feel, like the other poster said, that I'm sitting in the saddle.

I'm not a very flexible person so maybe that's part of the issue too.
 
Jun 28, 2009
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your stem or top tube might be too long, pulling you forward

or you might just be oddly shaped
 
richwagmn said:
I"ll hijaak it slightly and ask how do people here set their saddle tilt?

I never have saddle soreness and it makes me feel, like the other poster said, that I'm sitting in the saddle.

I'm not a very flexible person so maybe that's part of the issue too.
Like the other poster said, you might want to experiment with a shorter stem. Buy a shorter (maybe 5mm?) cheapo stem and see how it goes. Don't change the rise. The saddle sounds good to me.
 
Jan 13, 2010
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Zigster said:
your stem or top tube might be too long, pulling you forward

or you might just be oddly shaped
It shouldn't be hard to discern the difference between sliding off the front because of the saddle's tilt and sliding off the the front because the stem's too long. If you find yourself pulling yourself off the front of the saddle with your arms, the stem's too long. If you feel like you're pushing with your arms to get your **** back where it belongs, the tilt is too low in front.
 
richwagmn said:
I"ll hijaak it slightly and ask how do people here set their saddle tilt?

I ride a selle italia SLR and when it's dead level, I'm constantly sliding forward. I ride with a slight upward tilt. I have no idea if that's officially proper, but I never have saddle soreness and it makes me feel, like the other poster said, that I'm sitting in the saddle.

I'm not a very flexible person so maybe that's part of the issue too.
perhaps not enough setback, and/or a too long stem?

Last week I wanted to ride one of my bikes which happens to be my smallest, but it had no post or saddle on it, so I quickly threw in a saddle and post with zero offset. I found that I kept wanting to tilt the seat up more and more, I reckon coz I was too far over the bottom bracket. I should be using more setback on this bike.
 
richwagmn said:
I"ll hijaak it slightly and ask how do people here set their saddle tilt?

I ride a selle italia SLR and when it's dead level, I'm constantly sliding forward. I ride with a slight upward tilt. I have no idea if that's officially proper, but I never have saddle soreness and it makes me feel, like the other poster said, that I'm sitting in the saddle.

I'm not a very flexible person so maybe that's part of the issue too.
Some fit 'experts' get all worked up about angles and distances and points in space and such but the bottom line if it works for you, then it works for you, regardless of the angle.

Fitting is an art, not a science, regardless of what some fitters, who all seem to use computers, and cameras and all sorts of expensive stuff, say. I guess they need to pay for all the gizmos they have.
 
Jun 28, 2009
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that would be a little easier to accept if we had some photos of pros who have their saddle pointed up
 
Jun 18, 2009
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Zigster said:
that would be a little easier to accept if we had some photos of pros who have their saddle pointed up
The thing is the SLR is a pretty flexible saddle though. I can easily push down on the nose with my hand and flex it a couple of millimeters or so. So if I'm riding in the drops, I'm probably going to be sitting more on the nose of my saddle and it flexes downwards which is why it's slightly pointed up.

Again, I have no issues with it at all. Saddle soreness, numbness just doesn't happen.
 
Jan 13, 2010
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That's a cool photo of Jonathan Boyer. At the 1982 Worlds, I presume.

The flat-to upward tilt worked better in the old days because the handlebars were higher, even at the brake hoods where most of the riding is done.
 
ustabe said:
The flat-to upward tilt worked better in the old days because the handlebars were higher, even at the brake hoods where most of the riding is done.
probably where they should be. :p *Mini rant from a '90s man*

Tell all the young'ns out there, ya don't need a huge bar drop to get aero.
Jee, how convenient of me to select two of the classiest riders ever to help illustrate a point. :)


 
Jan 13, 2010
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Ah, two of the best from the 70s and 80s, De Vlaeminck and Moser. Observe how De Vlaeminck pulls his back flat and straight.

Of course, the crowd I'm usually with has riser stems on their Roubaixs.
 
Jun 10, 2009
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Captain Serious said:
probably where they should be. :p *Mini rant from a '90s man*

Tell all the young'ns out there, ya don't need a huge bar drop to get aero.
Jee, how convenient of me to select two of the classiest riders ever to help illustrate a point. :)
Agreed - a lot of people don't seem to realise they have elbows...
 
May 4, 2010
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dsut4392 said:
Agreed - a lot of people don't seem to realise they have elbows...
I've often wondered about that myself. :)

In addition, when you ride a bike that actually requires you to bend your elbows to get a flat back, you also reduce your body's frontal area (less forearm area exposed), which should help to decrease air resistance even further.

Here's one thing I have seen addressed though, when it comes to discussing a deeper drop vs a deeper elbow bend: It seems to me, that if you ride with a deeper elbow bend, you would need to have your saddle further back to get the same leverage for pulling on the bars, whether on the tops for clmbing, or in the drops for hammering. What do you think?
 

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