Originally Posted by TimLube22
I am new to cycling and would really like to incorporate it into my life. Just the other day, a buddy of mine gave me his 1988 Specialized Stumpjumper. Man, that thing was well taken care of. Anyway, just went to the bike shop and got everything back in working order (new tires, minor adjustments) and now I want to hit the road!
I do have a couple questions regarding seats. From what I've heard, the thin seats are good for maintaining speed, whereas a wider seat is more for the "comfy" biker? I recently bought a new gel saddle from Wal Mart that is quite wide in the back and thins out in the front. Is this ideal? Or should I try to get used to the seat I have now?
Thanks guys! I look forward to spending lots of time on here, as well as on my bike.
The seat is a interesting problem. I would take the wide seat back to Walmart unless you're a very large person. If you're a very large person the try the wider seat until the weigh comes off then switch to the narrower seat. If you're not a very large person the wider seat will hurt your butt like crazy especially on longer rides of more then a 3 miles. If your not a wide guy take the wide seat back to Walmart and try using the saddle that came with the bike for awhile.
Saddles are a personal thing and sometimes searching for the right saddle can literally be a pain. The best way to eliminate about 70% of the hit and miss in saddle searching is to get a styrofoam block, place it on a hard chair and sit on it naked...yes naked, just don't let the neighbors see you! Let your butt settle into the foam then stand up and look at the block, you should see two indentations on both sides indicating your sit bones, measure that distance from center to center of the indentations. Then take that measurement to an IBS and make sure the sit bones will sit squarely on the center of the pads without landing on the area that is sloping downward. Warning, make sure you put your clothes on first before heading out to the LBS!!
The other odd thing about saddles. On the surface a soft cushy thick gel seat would seem like it would be the most comfortable to ride on, and you would be right if only going a mile or two or three, but soft saddles will actually hurt your butt more the longer distance you ride then a harder saddle will. Also give your butt time to break into a saddle too and to firm up. The more time you spend riding the harder the butt becomes, I can ride well over 100 miles in a day and not feel a whole lot of discomfort but I've been riding for more then 40 years. I got a friend of mine involved in cycling and it took him a year of training to be comfortable sitting on a seat for 100 miles. So if you're not use to riding don't expect the seat to immediately comfortable for awhile. Make sure the bike is properly fitted to you to so the comfort level will be greater.