10 Best Road Bike Saddles for a Comfortable Ride in 2020
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Everyone is different so it makes sense that bike saddle manufacturers create different models to suit each unique rider. The best road bike saddles are designed for comfort and ease of use where you’re able to place your weight on the sit-bones and they’re well integrated to your lower back.
This helps with pressure relief on the soft tissue areas. A poorly made saddle can turn your riding sessions into a real nightmare which is why it’s important to find a well-designed and well-made bike saddle that’s actually designed with your health, performance, and comfort in mind.
Read on for a comprehensive guide that’ll help you find quality road bike saddles for long rides on the market.
Best Rated Road Bike Saddles
Through rigorous testing, we’ve compiled a list of the very best.
We’ve taken into account different factors while compiling this list, including performance, construction as well as size and shape variety. Read on for more.
1. OUTERDO Bike Saddle Mountain Bike Seat
This affordable OUTERDO mountain bike seat is an upgrade from the standard bike saddle in that it provides an ergonomic design complete with a long nose that makes it easier to navigate through the bars when going up or down any type of terrain.
The seat also offers a unique narrow design that fits perfectly under your bike shorts chamois. This increases the comfort factor and all without adding extraneous padding.
This saddle also comes with other fantastic features, including shock-dampener equipped rails. These are designed to soften the ride when going through rougher terrain for longer periods of time.
The seat also features a hollow middle which is designed to provide comfort for your tailbone and sit bone, while helping to prevent chafing.
2. Pioneeryao Bike Seat
The Pioneeryao bike seat is known for durability and comfort. It’s also quite swanky, featuring a faux leather cover which means it can last for many years to come, and it’s also water-resistant. You can definitely ride in this saddle for several hours without feeling chafed or pinched.
It’s also padded with high-density foam for added comfort which is not as elastic as gel. It’s definitely an acquired experience, especially if you’ve never used something similar before, but you can easily get used to it and it’ll definitely get rid of the pain.
This saddle has an interesting shape with a short nose and a wide behind. This is to improve comfort while sitting and going through different types of terrain.
You practically won’t feel the change in movement and can go for miles in graded roads whether you’re going up or down, without feeling discomfort. In the middle of the saddle is a small divot that provides added ventilation.
3. Selle Royal Men’s Respiro Bicycle Saddle
This versatile bike saddle from Selle Royal is designed for male riders and although it’s pricier than other models, as you’ll see in the following paragraphs, it’s well worth the price.
Like most other high-quality saddles it has a mesh-covered hollow center to improve ventilation. However, unlike other models, the dip extends all the way to the back of the saddle to help achieve air circulation all the way to the back, which is a game changer. Not only that, but Selle went the extra mile by incorporating a cooling gel cover into the saddle to prevent it from heating up during warm weather conditions.
This saddle also has thick padding made from tridimensional gel that’s designed to protect your bones and keep you nice and comfy for those long rides. The saddle is also quite elastic, which means you get to enjoy considerable bounce over rugged terrain.
It’s also worth noting that its wide seat is much bigger than most other models, but its comfortability will depend on the width of your hips. The best part is that this bike saddle comes in a variety of different options including a women’s version with a shorter nose and wider seat. Other versions include the relaxed, moderate, and athletic bike saddle.
4. Planet Bike Men’s A.R.S. Anatomic Relief Bicycle Saddle
This saddle is specially made with unique features that are both eco-friendly and ergonomic. This is one of the most comfortable on this list as it’s made to offer optimal back support.
This is perfect for health-conscious users with specs that are made with your lower back in mind. You definitely won’t have to worry about booking chiropractor visits when riding your bike with this saddle.
In addition to advanced back support, this bike saddle is made from special padding that’s designed to help with weight distribution and optimal comfort. Basically, you get to enjoy the best quality, eco-friendly padding with this one.
Not only that, but this saddle is covered with high quality, durable material that helps to keep everything in place and it’s nothing less than what you’d expect from a brand like Planet Bike. After all, this company is dedicated to designing high-quality bike accessories as its main mission.
5. SGODDE Comfortable Bike Seat
This unisex bike saddle from SGODDE offers unique gel padding which is made from synthetic fatty gel that’s highly elastic.
This provides you with perfect compression so your bones don’t suffer while sitting on the saddle. This makes for better shock absorption but sometimes at the price of reduced pedaling efficiency. It will definitely increase the bounce while pedaling.
The saddle’s hollow center is complemented by a long nose that offers optimal ventilation. The nose and back also feature reflective striping for added pizzazz. Not only that, but these strips are designed to help you remain visible in low light conditions such as in the early evening or early morning.
The only caveat to owning this saddle is it’ll add a significant amount of weight to your bike, about 500 grams worth in total.
6. ISM PR 3.0 Saddle Black
Next on our list of the best road bike saddles is the ISM PR 3.0. It features an ergonomic design, a wide back, and extra padding.
It’s perfect for recreational bikers which is evident from its noseless split-fit shape. It’ll definitely keep the pressure off your bones and lower back.
The ISM PR 3.0 is padded with 60-series foam and gel as well as a 145mm wide rear section. It has a length of 235mm and sits on steel rails. This means it’s heavier than most but it’s definitely more comfortable than a lot of other ones.
The extra padding is designed to facilitate a comfortable ride for triathletes and recreational cyclists alike. It’s the perfect saddle for anyone looking for a comfortable ride even if it’s not the prettiest model.
7. Brooks England Cambium All Weather Bike Seat
In 1878, a leather goods maker named Jon Boultbee Brooks lost his horse to old age, which meant he had to rely on bikes to travel to work and other run errands. This is the point when he realized that bike saddles aren’t made equal nor are they made for comfort.
That’s why he decided to make his own unique design and that’s how Brooks England came to life. Since then, the company has been making top quality bike saddles from only the best leather material and the Cambium C17 is no exception.
This one is constructed from vulcanized rubber which is known for its ability to combat seat vibration as you ride through rocky terrain, and it’s suitable for use in any weather condition.
The only caveat with this bike saddle is that it’s quite weighty and this is all thanks to the fact that it’s made from a combination of steel and rubber. It weighs 450g on average but there’s a cut-out option that can help to reduce the weight some. Plus, it comes in three options, namely 140mm, 162mm, and 184mm.
8. Selle ITALIA Diva Gel Flow Bicycle Saddle
This top quality saddle from Selle Italia is specifically designed for women and has a characteristic lightweight construction.
It’s covered with leather for extra comfort and has beautiful feminine styling that’s hard to ignore, and yet it’s not too flashy.
The center features a large cut for better air circulation and blood flow, while the wide width means that you’ll enjoy a comfortable ride. It could use a narrower profile for the pro rider but it’s perfect for recreational bikers. It’s super comfortable for long and short rides alike, and it’s perfect for rec riders.
9. Prologo Dimension Space T4.0
When testing this bike seat from Progolo Dimension, our correspondents all had the same thing to say; this thing better make it to the list of the best road bike saddles on the market! It’s comfortable, lightweight, and features a short-nose design that offers increased performance.
It’s padded in all the right places and even offers a cutout with anatomic relief with a unique shape that allows you to enjoy a smooth ride through relatively uncomfortable terrain. This saddle is certainly perfect for fast riders and road racers. It’s also very lightweight and is constructed from high-quality materials.
However, its lightweight construction takes away from its versatility and it tends to sacrifice performance for comfort, especially when riding casually or in an upright position.
The thin shell material doesn’t help with its stiff texture, and the thick padding makes for a less-than-comfortable off-road ride. However, all of these components are perfect for use in aggressive riding conditions.
10. Fizik Aliante Gamma K:ium Road Bicycle Saddle
Like most Fizik Aliante gear, this bike saddle is on the pricey side but it’s one of the best road bike saddles after all. Trust us, we don’t take this statement lightly. This saddle is built differently. It has a lightweight body weighing just 250 grams and it has a straight center with no apparent contours. It features very little padding in the form of high-density foam which is placed on the top part.
This saddle is basically built for comfort and performance alike, and is made to fit the curves of your body perfectly by avoiding the buildup of pressure on certain parts, which is that usually causes pain and discomfort on long rides.
However, this isn’t the airiest saddle compared to all the others. But, the fact that it doesn’t have a lot of padding makes it ideal for use on long journeys. That’s because there isn’t much material to cause sweating or chafing and its narrow design means that it’s able to keep your thighs apart effortlessly.
This saddle has a long nose that’s perfect for climbing up flat roads and hills, but it’s exactly ideal for long sections of flat road.
How to Pick the Best Road Bike Saddles
If you’re going to buy a saddle for your road bike under 2000, then you have to consider the following factors:
Usually, rigidly shaped riders who need to stay on an upright position require a flat saddle. This makes it easier to enjoy a consistent feel no matter the type of terrain you’re traversing through.
Another popular saddle shape that you should consider is a bit more curvaceous with wavy sides to enable better flexibility. It’s perfect for riders who tend to maintain a rigid formation while on the saddle and it’s perfect for maintaining correct cycling posture.
A lot of brands offer gender-specific bike seats that are designed to offer comfortable seating no matter what your anatomical shape is. However, it really does depend on the individual rider’s preferences. Some men prefer a women’s saddle and vice versa, while unisex models are equally popular as well.
Most riders prefer moderate amounts of padding because thick padding tends to put pressure on soft tissue areas whereas lightly padded areas make it easier for your bones to sink into the saddle itself.
With that said, it’s always a good idea to make some kind of choice between the two otherwise you’ll get stuck with a hard saddle.
Your bottom should fit perfectly on the bike road saddle seat so that you experience perfect body weight alignment. The goal is to ensure that you actually plonk your sit bones onto the seat instead of the surrounding soft tissues. To achieve this, the saddle should be the right shape and width.
A lot of bike shops offer memory foam to help you figure out what the width of your bones is so you can find the perfect seat. If, for some reason, they don’t have these at your favorite shop, then you can always achieve the same purpose using some cardboard.
All you need is a standard measurement to figure out how large or small your bike seat should be. This will also help you to figure out how aggressive and flexible your 10 speed bike should be.
The shell is what determines the saddle’s shape and bounce. Different manufacturers design them differently with varying length and width dimensions.
Carbon shells are the most popular version because they’re lightweight but durable. However, these qualities make them both sought-after and pricier than other options.
A large variety of road saddles come with cutouts to relieve pressure and protect you from soft tissue damage. This kind of feature is the ideal way to prevent chafing and it works by getting rid of the material that would otherwise put pressure on your undercarriage.
However, this cutout area is not always popular and some riders find it unsettling as the channel’s edge tends to dig into sensitive areas of the body.
A lot of modern saddles are made from synthetic materials but there are certain models that are constructed from genuine leather but they tend to be pricey as well.
The most important thing is to ensure that they’re well-made and don’t have panels and seams that end up chafing. Just make sure the seat cover is super durable and you’ll be fine.
A lot of bike upgrades such as bike saddles nowadays come with incredible safety features that are designed to cover two elements.
The first one is to absorb shock and this is typically built into the saddle design. This makes it easier to make it through the bumps on the road while protecting your bottom.
The second aspect of it is quite simple and involves maintaining a simple design that’s focused on practical functionality instead of stylish flash. This often includes simple things like reflective materials that can come in handy when riding in low light conditions.
It doesn’t matter what type of saddle you use, it’ll take a bit of getting used to and a few practice runs to get comfortable using it on a regular basis. That’s why it’s important to do your research when looking for the best rated road bike saddles same as you would do with a bike lock alarm.
Well, there you have it! That’s our list of the top rated bike saddles and the factors you should look out for. If we were to pick a particular option, it would be the OUTERDO Mountain Bike Seat.
It’s ergonomically designed with shock-absorbing rails, a long nose and a narrow seat design to facilitate comfortable riding.
Although it doesn’t have a lot of cushioning, it offers the perfect middle ground.