How To Make Exercise Bike Seat More Comfortable (In 3 Steps)

Exercise bikes are in every gym, they can be found in home gyms, or it might be the only exercise machine you own. Exercise bikes are brilliant for cardio, stamina, and even high intensity workouts. 

Exercise bike saddles can be uncomfortable if they’re positioned wrong or simply not the right fit for you. It’s vital to know how to make exercise bike seat more comfortable, and this guide will explore the ways to make your exercise bike better for you.  

It’s a very common problem on many types of exercise bikes; the saddles can just be too uncomfortable to use. There are a few reasons why we find them so unpleasant: 

  • Saddle Is Too Narrow/Wide  
    Our sit bones take all our weight when we sit down, so if your saddle is not right for your structure, it’ll cause you discomfort. Investing in the right size saddle will save you time and energy later. Women have wider sit bones than men, so their saddles are designed wider. If women sit on a men’s saddle, their weight won’t be correctly distributed, and vice versa, men will feel more pressure in the crotch area. 
  • Loose Fitted Clothing  
    Wearing sweatpants or gym shorts will cause a lot of chafing. The saddle nose prevents your thighs from rubbing together but won’t stop loose clothes from rubbing. Chafing can lead you to sore thighs, and the excess sweat can even lead to a UTI. Always wear cycling pants when exercising. 
  • Saddle Is In The Wrong Position  
    If your saddle is too high or low, this can cause a lot of discomfort and even back pains. Your saddle should be roughly the height of your hip when standing and should be adjusted accordingly. 

Why Is It Important to Have A Comfortable Exercise Bike? 

Having a comfortable exercise bike will give you more time to focus on the workouts themselves. Some benefits include: 

  • Shock Resistance  
    The bike saddle is designed to alleviate the pressure or shock movement while cycling, and an uncomfortable exercise bike saddle will only increase the shock and pressure felt. Keep in mind that higher priced bikes tend to have better seating.
  • Little To No Chafing  
    If your saddle is the wrong fit for you, then chafing against the nose of the saddle is inevitable. You can also experience a pinching or numbness if sustained for too long. A comfortable exercise bike will eliminate this. 
  • Better Circulation  
    It’s always a good tip to change positions every once in a while. With a more comfortable setup, you’ll find that your legs experience less numbness as the blood flows better through your thighs. Standing up will become less difficult with a comfortable saddle. 
Why Is It Important to Have A Comfortable Exercise Bike

How To Make Exercise Bike Seat More Comfortable (DIY Guide) 

Correct Setup 

A correctly set up stationary or spin, or even a brand such as Peloton will relieve any stress or pain on your back and thighs. It can also improve your posture and accommodate for better workouts. A correct setup should be as follows: 

  1. 1
    Sitting upright, with your toes and midfoot on the cycle, the leg should be straight with a slight bend in the knee. Too much bend can create a strain in the knee and lead to issues later on. 
  2. 2
    Set the handlebars high – they should be roughly the same height as the saddle. This will accommodate any lumbar pain or discomfort. They can be adjusted to your comfort level. 
  1. 3
    Set the distance between your handles and saddle approximately the length between your middle finger and elbow. Adjust to make it shorter if you find it too difficult. 

Saddle Selections 

Men and women have different sit bones, so you should ensure the saddle is correct for you. Men tend to build up pressure in the front of the saddle, while women experience it more to the back.  

  • Purchase a saddle that is right for your sit bones. Women should invest in narrower saddles, while men will benefit from a wider design. Different types of exercise bikes will need different fixtures. 
  • Invest in a gel or foam topping for your saddle. These are relatively inexpensive and can save you chafing and soreness later.  
  • You can also invest in padded bike shorts, which will resist the rubbing against the nose and reduce the friction between your thighs and the saddle.  

Changing Position 

Changing positions will stop your body from going numb from one position. It would help if you switch between standing and sitting at least every 10 minutes.  

Standing 

  • Your knees should be bent slightly to allow circular motions.  Straighter legs require you to work harder and can lead to pain in the knees. 
  • Keep your back straight to stop it from hurting or straining.  
  • If you’re sprint cycling, your hips should tilt sideways each spin to allow a fluid, circular motion. 
How To Make Exercise Bike Seat More Comfortable

Sitting 

  • Keep your chin up – a low chin can strain your neck. 
  • Shoulders should be upright and chest lifted to allow smoother motions through your body. 
  • Bend your elbows slightly; straight elbows will grow tired or strained quicker. 
  • The back should remain straight. A bent back will only lead to pain through your spine and lower in your hips. 

People Also Ask (FAQs)

Should bike seats be higher than handlebars? 

The saddle should be the same height as the handles or slightly lower. This keeps you upright while cycling. 

Where do you sit on a bike seat?

Sit as far back as possible to ensure an even distribution of your weight. Tilt the saddle very slightly forward to avoid the nose putting pressure on the pubic bone. 

How do I know if my bike seat is too high? 

You will feel yourself rocking on the saddle or feel strain in the back of your knees. Peddling won’t feel as smooth as it should. 

Do bike seats get more comfortable over time? 

After prolonged use, you’ll find your saddle may get more comfortable as you get used to it. If it becomes more uncomfortable, you may need to replace it. 

Is a wide seat or narrow seat better for an exercise bike? 

Wider saddles are better for longer sessions or leisurely cycling. Thinner seats are better for shorter or more intense workouts. Find bikes with wide seats here.


Conclusion

Making sure your exercise bike is comfortable is as important as the workout itself. An uncomfortable saddle will only lead to hindrance, which is the opposite result we want from our cycles.  

Take some time to check your seat is right, and don’t be afraid to call a professional for advice or to switch your seat out. Keep cycling, and let chafing be a thing of the past.