Finding the perfect saddle can be a pain in the backside. Whether you’re a fitness fanatic, daily commuter or just a weekend rider, finding a comfy seat can make all the difference to your enjoyment. With that in mind, we’ve compiled a rundown of what we thing are the cushiest saddles out there right now. Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin…
1.ISM Saddles – from £76.49
So good, we couldn’t pick just one, ISM Saddles’ unique ‘noseless’ shape may make you do a double take, but there’s some important science behind it. Its patented cut-out supports the pelvic bones and avoids squashing the sensitive soft tissue areas down there. The result? It allows your blood to flow freely and significantly reduces pain and numbness. It comes in a host of designs, sizes and padding options, depending on your style of ride.
2. Brooks B135 – £150
Brooks have been making leather saddles in the UK since Victorian times, so they know a thing or two when it comes to comfort. These saddles can be seen sported by Shoreditch’s finest hipsters. The B135 in their ‘Unique’ range is designed for city cyclists and comes with some heavy duty springs at both the front and the rear to help absorb bumps and shocks. It’s further helped by its wide profile and the hammock effect that the leather helps to create across the frame of the seat. It has that classic vintage look too, if you like that sort of thing.
3. Bioflex Ozone Saddle – £22.49
Comfort doesn’t always have to come at a hefty price tag. For the more frugal of riders amongst us, the Bioflex Ozone can ensure you can keep both your bum and your wallet happy. Designed in the UK, these saddles have a thick layer of gel to cushion you. Its ergonomic cut-out down the middle can help to reduce pressure and the company’s own ‘ShockLite’ dual density base technology helps smooth out your ride. And at under £25 you can’t go wrong.
4. Specialized Phenom Expert – £60
A saddle for the more serious rider who is out on the road or the trail all day, the Phenom Expert consistently comes up trumps amongst cyclists. Like many other saddles, it features a cut-out channel, but unlike others it features Specialized’s nifty ‘Adaptive Edge’ technology. The shell of the saddle is reinforced with carbon, but the clever part is on the rear edges, which are made from a softer material that adapts to your unique anatomy as you ride. The base is fitted with hollow titanium rails and the seat itself is padded with a lightweight polyurethane foam which add strength and comfort without adding more load.
5. Fizik Arione Donna Women’s Road Saddle – £94.99
You don’t need us to tell you the difference between male and female anatomy, but with this in mind, it’s usually better for women to plump for a female-designed saddle. The Fizik Arione Donna (which also comes in a men’s version) is a popular choice for ladies across the world. It’s slightly wider towards the back to cater for female pelvic bones and has thigh glides around the back edges to help reduce friction. It too, has a pressure-relieving cut-out, but a female-specific one for increased comfort.
As with all saddles, one size does not fit all. You wouldn’t buy a sofa without sitting on it first, so adopt the same strategy with your saddle and you’ll be looking ahead at many years of comfortable riding.