Comfy and safe but not for performance bikers
Oct 24, 2008
Review by gvfarns
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Very comfortable. Cheap. Safe.
Cons:Positions you forward on the bike. A bit heavy.
The Bottom Line: Definitely recommended. Take some time adjusting before you decide you don't like it. You can make this work!
I got this seat for my mountain bike because I realized that I wasn't a hardcore mountain biker who wants the lightest seat possible with best control; I'm a casual city rider who hates pain between the legs and worries about his man parts. So I was looking for a comfort seat. I compared this with the seats that have two pads and have glowing reviews from people with prostate problems and this was, well, cheaper. It also looks a bit more comfy.
Recommend this product?
This seat is comfortable to sit on. Very comfortable. Like an office chair or better. If all we did on bikes was sit, this would be the best seat money can buy. However, we also pedal on bikes, and that creates a bit of a problem. Specifically, as you pedal your legs push down on the front edge of the seat on the downstroke and after a while it hurts. Normal bikes (not the cruiser kind) have the center of the pedals right under the seat. That's fine if your seat is a narrow ridge that is squashing your man parts and your legs are dangling off the sides, but if you are sitting on a nice comfy office chair seat, your legs come out in front. So the situation is not optimal. That's why most other prostate protecting comfort seats look really scary: the pads are out behind the seat post, so the post is precariously positioned between your legs. I haven't really tried them, so I won't comment more on them.
Anyway, if you have a bike with a comparatively upright natural position (high handle bars and the like) and especially if you have a bike that has the pedals out in front of the seat, then you are going to absolutely love this seat. When you just sit in it, there really is no pressure. It's shaped like your backside. It's padded. It's really nice.
But I don't have one of those bikes. I have a trek 4500 mountain bike. So here's how I handled it...
At first I lowered the seat, but it feels funny because your knees go out in front and then bend almost underneath you, putting an undue proportion of the work on your thighs. So I raised it up to normal seat height (about the height of the handlebars). Then we run into the upper leg pain from the front edge of the seat. The manual says to keep the seat level, but what do they know? so I angled the seat forward. Ahhh, very comfortable to pedal. And if I want to just sit and coast, I can sit just a bit farther back, almost on the back edge. Not as comfy as an office chair, but pretty good still. I can sit or pedal on this forever (from a soft tissue point of view). Pain between my legs? Zero. Worries for my future sexual prowess? Zero. I love this seat and this setup. When I see a bump on the road, I don't worry about lifting myself off to prevent nasty shocks being transmitted to my most delicate areas. I just sit down and relax. Shocks are spread throughout your bottom. Ahhhh. Makes me want to invest in a recumbent bike next time.
But is there a downside? Oh yes, having the seat angled forward puts a lot of your weight on your handlebars. Result: a crazy workout for your arms. I don't think I have sufficient arm strength to ride this all day long. I never really ride more than my 5 mile commute anyway, so I don't mind a bit. In fact, it's kind of nice. Now riding my bike gives me wicked triceps as well as amazing leg muscles.
So what I'm saying here is, you need to adjust adjust adjust this seat until it's right. Try crazy positions. You might end up very happy like me. Or maybe not.
There's some talk here about trouble controlling the bike. I haven't noticed any significant changes from a horned seat. I guess I wasn't using the horn between my legs much for control. I tend to keep my hands on the handlebars. One time I do notice things a little funny is when I get up to pedal hard for some reason. That's fine, but then when I go to sit back down, my backside has to feel around quite a bit more before I find the seat than it did when I used horned seats. It's not a big deal. Certainly it won't make me want to trade this seat in for anything else.
My wife was experiencing some discomfort with her other bike seat despite the gel padding and all our best efforts at adjusting, so I bought one of these. Problem solved. So it is comfy for women too.
What would I tell the schwinn people if I was giving them feedback? Well, they should probably address the issue of the seat positioning the rider too far forward on the bike. I wouldn't go to an extreme and start changing fundamentals, but they could have the little bars under the seat that attach to the post come forward just a bit more than they do. That would probably open up this seat to a lot of people. Other than that the design is pretty great.
This seat has eliminated all my backside and between-the-legs pain, which was seriously hindering my enjoyment of cycling. Forget all those people saying you should wear special biking shorts (yeah right), get your seat professionally microfit (doesn't help), or just wait out the pain. This seat takes some adjustment and a bit of getting used to, but I would never go back. In fact, without this seat I won't cycle.
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