Monday 06.07.2020
COMFORT ON TWO WHEELS

How to properly adjust your bike seat

Before you pedal off, take a few minutes to run through these three steps.
It's important for bicyclists to adjust their bike seats so that they have proper posture. Photo: Tino Pohlmann/ergon/pd-f.de/dpa.
It's important for bicyclists to adjust their bike seats so that they have proper posture. Photo: Tino Pohlmann/ergon/pd-f.de/dpa.

Finland in summer is one of the most appropriate countries to get around by bicycle, due to its large network of bike lanes. However, riding a bike stops being fun when your butt falls asleep on the seat because it's not positioned correctly.

Before you pedal off, take a few minutes to run through these three steps, advises the German bicycle news information service Pressedienst Fahrrad:

Step 1: Is everything horizontal?

First check that the saddle is level when the bicycle is standing perfectly straight upright. You will need a spirit level and an Allen wrench or multitool.

Loosen the screw on the seatpost, then place the level on the saddle and move it until the level is straight before tightening the screw again.

Step 2: The heel test

Have one person hold the bike while you, the rider, climbs up. Alternatively you can support yourself against the wall.

While on the saddle, push the pedal to its lowest point. Put your heel on the pedal and push the knee all the way out - if the cyclist can't reach the pedal with his or her heel, then the saddle must be lowered, and if the knee is still slightly bent, then the saddle must be higher.

Step 3: Adjust for correct posture

Spine

Loosen the bolt or quick release on the seatpost and move the saddle up or down as necessary. Some posts might have a ruler on them to help you find the right height for you. It's important to sit correctly: If your back is too bent over, you should readjust.

Bear in mind that the human spine is not a straight line but an S-shape made of three curves. Therefore, a good posture is one in which there is a balanced alignment of these curves.

Try moving the saddle up and down a few times and jumping up on the seat until you are sitting so that your spine forms an S-shape.

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