Saddle selection can be difficult.
There are plenty of different options that can frankly be confusing. If you don’t have a strong idea of the kind of saddle you need, then we suggest skipping ahead to our Buying Guide. It gives a few tips and suggestions that might help significantly narrow down your search.
Our review of the best bike seats covers a broad range of both styles and prices. We have bike seats that are suitable for every make of bike you can think of. Hopefully, the best bicycle seat for your needs will be amongst them.
So, let’s dive in and take a closer look…
- 1 Best Bicycle Seats On The Market In 2021 Reviews
- 1.1 1 Brooks England Cambium All Weather Bike Seat – Best Value for the Money Bike Seat
- 1.2 2 Oversized Most Comfortable Replacement Bike Seat – Universal Fit for Exercise Bike and Outdoor Bikes – Best Oversized Bicycle Seat
- 1.3 3 Fizik Arione Open Performance Bike Saddle – Best Racing Bicycle Seat
- 1.4 4 WTB Rocket Saddle – Best Mid-Range Bicycle Seat
- 1.5 5 Planet Bike Men’s A.R.S. Anatomic Relief Bicycle Saddle – Best Bicycle Seats that Protects the Perineum
- 1.6 6 Speed Medium Saddle – Best Budget Bicycle Seat
- 1.7 7 Brooks England B17 Bike Saddle – Handmade Leather Bike Seat (Steel, Titanium, Copper) – Best Road Bike Saddle for Long Rides
- 1.8 8 Schwinn Comfort Bike Saddle – Best Cruiser Bike Seat
- 1.9 9 Brooks Saddles B67 Bicycle Saddle (Men’s) – Best Premium Bicycle Seat
- 1.10 10 Bikeroo Exercise Bike Seat Cushion Cover – Best Excercise Bicycle Seat Cover
- 2 Best Bicycle Seat Buying Guide
- 2.1 Overview
- 2.2 Padding
- 2.3 For multi-purpose riding…
- 2.4 So, why don’t performance bikes have saddles with padding?
- 2.5 Cutaway Channel
- 2.6 Width
- 2.7 Is there such a thing as too narrow?
- 2.8 Nose Length
- 2.9 Short or medium?On the other hand, short-nosed saddles go hand in hand with more leisurely riding. However, there’s no option for shifting to a more forward position, and they also impede movement.
- 3 Before You Go…
- 4 So, what is the Best Bicycle Seat?
Best Bicycle Seats On The Market In 2021 Reviews
1 Brooks England Cambium All Weather Bike Seat – Best Value for the Money Bike Seat
Brooks is where bicycle saddles began. They were founded in the mid-19th century and originally started out making horse saddles. This all changed after the founder had a rather unpleasant experience with one of the wooden seated bikes of the time.
The birth of the modern bike saddle…
Following his painful undercarriage episode, John Brooks designed the first leather bike saddle. In 1882 he filed a patent for the design, and so the modern bike saddle was born. Brooks continues to make bike saddles to this day, with many of the same designs, in their original Nottingham factory.
The Cambium All Weather Bike Seat in this review is a bit of a departure from their popular all leather saddles. Now, clearly, Brooks wasn’t using Cambium over 100 years ago. So, how good is this relatively new material, and who exactly is it for?
Let’s find out…
Brooks Cambium is a combination of natural rubber with a fused layer of cotton canvas. The Cambium is then coated with a specially formulated nylon to provide a waterproof finish. This makes it perfect for all-weather riding.
The Cambium is super hard-wearing and also has a natural degree of give. It mirrors the cyclist’s movement to provide high-levels of rider comfort. It’s a truly great alternative to softer silicone infused saddles.
Comfort rather than speed…
This long-nosed saddle is most suited for road bikes, tourers, city bikes, and tourers. The saddle is most likely to interest tourers, commuters, and bike packers.
It’s a saddle that’s likely to find most favor with cyclists who are more concerned with comfort rather than speed. This is primarily because weighing a not inconsiderable 450gms makes it one of the heaviest saddles in its class.
The perfect size…
Brooks England Cambium All Weather Bike Seat comes in three different sizes. The C15 is made for cyclists with small sit bones. The C19 is made for cyclists with large sit bones. There are cutout and non-cut out options depending on if soft tissue relief is required.
Check out the Buying Guide for the benefits of either cutout or non-cutout saddles.
- Choice of sizes and cut out options.
- It’s heavy.
2 Oversized Most Comfortable Replacement Bike Seat – Universal Fit for Exercise Bike and Outdoor Bikes – Best Oversized Bicycle Seat
This is a cruiser saddle through and through. It’s a stubby nosed highly padded and sprung saddle. There are over 2 inches of thick foam padding in the seat. If that isn’t enough to soak up the road vibrations, it also has two large springs to soften the ride.
The springs are made from elastomer. This is a synthetic rubber compound. It’s used in place of stainless steel to keep the weight down. The fact is, though, that this is still no lightweight. Weighing approximately a kilo, this is about as heavy a bike seat as your ever likely to find.
Good quality, fair price…
The saddle is well finished and is covered in a weatherproof synthetic material. It’s a strong, durable saddle that offers a good standard of quality at a very fair price.
So, who is it for?
The saddle is firmly aimed at cyclists covering short distances at a leisurely pace. This kind of riding places the rider in an upright position and therefore requires high levels of padding. If you ride a cruiser or are just riding around the neighborhood, this seat is perfect.
Over larger distances, the padding and shape prevent a rider from adopting a more powerful riding position. The width also impedes full movement, which makes it an unsuitable choice for longer rides.
An added bonus…
The Oversized Comfort Bike Seat has standard rail mounts. Additionally, it comes with a mount adapter so that can it can be used with older style seat tubes. We’re sure you’ll agree that’s a very handy bonus.
The seat is perfect for both men and women.
- Thick padding.
- Elastomer springs.
- Good value.
- Supplied with mount adaptor.
- Very heavy.
- Not suitable for large distances.
3 Fizik Arione Open Performance Bike Saddle – Best Racing Bicycle Seat
If you’re riding a premium road bike, the chances are that your backside, feet, or hands are touching something made from Fizik. Franky, the chances are that you’ll be touching all three.
Fizik is an Italian manufacturer that specializes in manufacturing premium quality shoes, bar tape, and saddles. What makes their story a real standout is that despite only being in business for 20 years, it’s a sector of the market they now dominate. This gives you an idea of the incredible performance and standards of their products.
The Fizik Arione is an out and out racing saddle…
The saddle is long-nosed with a narrow rear. It comes in two sizes. The smaller size is 130mm wide, and the widest size is 140mm wide. For cyclists with larger sit bones, this is probably too small.
The saddle has a carbon-reinforced shell. It’s covered with a Microtex layer that delivers high levels of comfort and durability. For extra comfort, there is a cutaway to help alleviate pressure in the soft tissue areas.
What’s even better?
Fizik also includes their proprietary wing flex technology for yet more comfort. This technology helps the seat to mimic your movements as you naturally shift around in the saddle.
The Arione is almost certainly destined for road bikes only. What’s more, since the width of the saddle is long and narrow, it’s likely to find the most favor with aggressive riders who have relatively narrow sit bones.
This is because aggressive riders sit in a forward position whilst putting the majority of force and power through the pedals. Aggressive riders, therefore, need minimal support towards the back of the seat. The majority of their weight is placed in the middle of the seat.
Finally, with regards to weight, coming in at 205 g, we can regard this as a true racing saddle. Admittedly, there are much lighter options, but at 205 g, it’s light enough to hold its head up on any high-end road bike.
And the best part?
One of the advantages of being slightly heavier than some other high-performance bike seats is that the cushioning incorporated into the saddle adds more comfort over longer rides. For road cyclists competing or riding over longer distances, the extra comfort and durability make this a great choice.
- Well made.
- Wing flex technology.
- Good value.
- Narrow rear width.
4 WTB Rocket Saddle – Best Mid-Range Bicycle Seat
WTB doesn’t have the same market presence as either Fizik or Brooks, but they still make some good quality entry and mid-level bike seats. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly bike seat, this is a great place to start your search.
The WTB Rocket saddle features a carbon rail, which helps keep the weight down to a very respectable 189 g. This is 26 g lower than the Fizik Arione we’ve just reviewed. Highly impressive since it comes in at around a quarter of the cost.
A good compromise…
It has a long nose and is well padded the rear. This kind of padding may work against more aggressive and endurance riders. However, for most other riders, it offers a good compromise of allowing easy movement together with some basic padding.
Another big plus is that that it comes in a good selection of sizes. The smallest size measures 130mm wide. The largest size measures 150mm wide. Happily, the large size is wide enough for all but the very broadest of cyclists.
The WTB Rocket doesn’t have a full cutout, but…
It does have a generous central groove running through most of the seat. It’s another nice compromise that again will suit most riders. This is a highly versatile saddle that could find its way onto a wide range of bikes.
It’s most suitable for use on mountain bikes, road bikes, commuters, hybrids, and city bikes. It’s also suitable for a wide range of cyclists. If you have an entry or mid-level bike, and you want to upgrade the stock saddle, this is a great option.
- Good padding.
- A wide option is available.
- Good value.
- Not a good long-distance choice.
5 Planet Bike Men’s A.R.S. Anatomic Relief Bicycle Saddle – Best Bicycle Seats that Protects the Perineum
Planet Bike makes a small range of good quality bike accessories, which are all fairly priced. They always have our attention since 1% of their revenue, not profits, go to charities dedicated to fighting on our behalves for a cleaner planet. This is a great example of corporate responsibility to the environment.
To this point, Planet Bike has already donated over $2,000,000. Well done, Planet Bike!
So, to business, just how good is the Planet Bike Men’s A.R.S. Anatomic Relief Bicycle Saddle?
The Planet Bike Men’s Saddle falls into the same price category as WTB saddles. Like the WTB Rocket, it has a large channel running through most of its length. It’s there to create relief for a man’s soft tissue. Ladies, count yourselves lucky!
The saddle has a lot of padding for this kind of long-nosed shape. The padding is responsible for pumping its weight up to a somewhat bloated 408 g. The padding is made from foam, as opposed to gel, and covers the front as well as the rear of the saddle.
Comfort all the way…
For extra comfort, the rear of the seat is flexible and moves with you as you change position on the bike. The surface of the seat has a tear-resistant Lycra layer. It’s water-resistant too, which means you can ride on the wettest of days without fear of damage. This is an all-weather and durable saddle.
A great all-rounder…
Planet Bike Men’s A.R.S. Anatomic Relief Bicycle Saddle, like the WTB Rocket, is very much an all-rounder. It’s is a great option for mountain bikes, city bikes, hybrids, flat bar bikes, and e-bikes. The only use we would caution against is long-distance riding.
- Cutaway channel.
- Well padded.
- Good all-round saddle.
- Not suitable for longer distances.
6 Speed Medium Saddle – Best Budget Bicycle Seat
This is WTB’s best-selling saddle and another great budget-friendly option in their line-up. It is long-nosed but has a shallower cutaway channel than the WTB Rocket we reviewed earlier. It has a similar look to the Fizik Arione. Though the Speed Medium Saddle undoubtedly has thicker padding.
The saddle weighs a rather heavy 379 g, which makes it a heavy choice if you intend to use it on a road bike. The weight is down to the liberal use of thick padding and the choice of steel rails. There is a lighter steel Chromoly rail version, but that still ways 343 g.
What did we love about this bicycle seat?
It has abrasion-resistant corners that help to protect it against ripping and tearing. What’s more, the microfiber cover makes it suitable in all weather conditions. This is a strong and durable saddle.
The medium saddle measure 145mm at its widest point. This is a good size for medium to large-sized cyclists. Since it’s not a true performance saddle, so the rider is more likely to spend larger amounts of time at the rear of the saddle, the generous width is likely to prove useful.
Short to mid…
The thick gel padding is also likely to be beneficial over short and medium-length rides. Over longer rides, the padding could impede movement and be less of a help and more of a hindrance.
This is a great saddle for shorter periods and for less performance orientated riders. It’s another versatile saddle that would be at home on commuter bikes, gravel bikes, hybrids, and possibly road bikes. It’s not one we’d recommend for mountain bikes though.
- Good value.
- Excellent gel-padding.
- It’s wide.
- Cutaway channel.
- Tear-resistant corners.
- Can interfere with movement no long rides.
7 Brooks England B17 Bike Saddle – Handmade Leather Bike Seat (Steel, Titanium, Copper) – Best Road Bike Saddle for Long Rides
They don’t make them like this anymore! Oh, hang on, yes, they do, and you can still buy one. How cool is that? Frankly, the skill that goes into making this saddle is amazing. They’re still handcrafted in the same factory where bike saddles were first produced back in 1866.
The Brooks England B17 Bike Saddle is a piece of cycling history available at the click of a button. It’s made using the very best vegetable-tanned leather. Black is the obvious classic choice out of the seven colorways. But, if that doesn’t rock your boat, take a look at the Apple Green saddle. It’s a really surprising modern color.
If that’s still not your thing…
Any of the other five colorways are almost certain to match your frame and style. This is a strong and durable saddle. But it’s also very comfortable too. Being leather, it affords good levels of ventilation. It also offers excellent freedom of thigh movement.
There’s no doubt…
The main selling point about the Brooks B17 is its comfort. What it does, that no synthetic saddle can, is to conform to your shape over time. Think about how a comfy old pair of leather shoes slowly mold over time. This is what you get as the B17 molds to your backside.
Initially, it does take a little wearing in and will feel hard. However, after a few hundred miles or so, as it loosens up, it feels better and better. Once it’s fully broken in, it will afford unrivaled levels of comfort. As well as being the best bicycle seat for comfort, it’s also tough, durable, and weather-resistant.
So, what kind of bike is it best suited for?
Commuters, road bikes, fixies, and tourers are the most common kinds of bikes to sport a B17. However, where the B17 really excels is over long distances. Truthfully, the B17 is almost the de facto choice for tourers and bike packers.
The only real downsides of the saddle are its weight and, for some, the old-fashioned looks.
Plus, this is not a light saddle…
It weighs around 500 g, so is not a great choice for a modern road bike. Of course, a very different story when your cycling around the world loaded with panniers and all your worldly possessions. In these circumstances, a few extra grams are neither here nor there.
The old-fashioned looks are very much part of this saddle’s charm. Never the less, on a new aero carbon-framed bike, it’s going to look so, so wrong, more like ridiculous. On the other hand, put it together with a steel-framed vintage bike, and it will look oh so right.
- It looks amazing.
- It conforms to your shape.
- Comfortable over long distances.
- The look is not suitable for modern carbon bikes.
8 Schwinn Comfort Bike Saddle – Best Cruiser Bike Seat
Schwinn is another company who, like Brooks, made cycling history. Schwinn’s contribution to the bicycle goes right back to 1933. During the austere times of the great depression, they brought the very first cruiser bike to market. It was designed to be an affordable, sturdy, but stylish alternative to the motorcycles of the time.
In fact, the early bicycle cruisers of the day mimicked motorcycles to such an extent they even had fake gas tanks. These cost-conscious and super comfortable bikes quickly became a hit. With all this history surrounding the cruiser bicycle, it, therefore, seems appropriate to include at least one of their cruiser saddles.
So, just how good is the Schwinn Comfort Bike Saddle?
Let’s find out. The saddle is extremely well-padded. It has close to 3” of foam padding. This, on its own, is enough to soak up all eh bumps and vibrations of the road. However, just to make sure, Schwinn has put in some dual coil spring, heavy-duty shock absorbers.
The saddle is guaranteed to give you a super smooth ride…
As you expect from Schwinn, the quality and finish are first-rate. It’s well put together using premium materials. It has a waterproof coating, which is as durable as the rest of the saddle.
The Schwinn Comfort Bike Saddle is most likely to find its way to some kind of cruiser bike. No great surprise there! But it also works well with any bike that’s likely to be ridden over shorter distances.
For the cyclist that’s not in a hurry…
This is a saddle for cyclists who are going to ride in a predominantly upright position. It’s a saddle for the less serious leisure kind of cyclist. A cyclist that’s not in a hurry and is more concerned with comfort rather than speed or power.
It’s the best bike seat for a lazy ride.
- Thick foam padding.
- Dual coil springs.
- Build quality.
- Comfortable for short rides.
- Not suitable other than for short distances.
9 Brooks Saddles B67 Bicycle Saddle (Men’s) – Best Premium Bicycle Seat
This is our third and final saddle from Brooks. Like the B17, it’s a skillfully handcrafted leather saddle. The workmanship that goes into this saddle is as phenomenal as the company’s history.
The B67 was first introduced in 1927 as the updated version of the B66. So cool. It made using the very best vegetable-tanned leather. There are four colors to choose from; Black, Antique Brown, Tan, or Honey. They all look beautiful.
The B67 has a modern rail, which makes it easy to attach to any seat post. With an adaptor mount, it’s also easy to attach to older style seat posts too.
It has dual springs that are treated with an anti-corrosive coating. The dual springs make it a great for dampening down rough surfaces of poorly finished roads. The dual springs also make it look like something your great, great grandpa would have had on his bike!
This one’s a keeper…
Like all Brooks leather saddles, the B67 will mold to the contours of your backside. The longer you own and use the saddle then the more comfortable it’s liable to become. Once the saddle is properly worn in it’s likely to be a ‘Keeper’ and be moved to your next bikes without thought.
The B67 is less versatile than the B17 and is geared to a more leisurely style of riding and bicycles. It’s suited to a more upright riding style, so it’s a great choice for city bikes hybrids and cruisers. It would also look very much at home on a vintage steel bike.
The B67 has no padding, and so it won’t interfere with your natural leg and hip movement. Consequently, although it’s not designed as such, it can be relatively comfortable over quite large distances.
If you want a lot of comfort, and you’re happy to pay a premium price, the B67 is a solid choice.
- Beautiful craftsmanship.
- Saddle molds to your shape.
- Dual sprung.
- Vintage style not suitable for a lot of bikes.
10 Bikeroo Exercise Bike Seat Cushion Cover – Best Excercise Bicycle Seat Cover
This is a bike seat cover made specifically for exercise bicycles. The seat cover is waterproof and made from hard-wearing durable materials. It’s tough enough to stand up to as many spinning and exercise classes as you like. It’s also easy to clean after it’s been used.
The cover has a combination of foam and gel padding. There are three sizes to choose from. The smallest measures 7” at the rear. The largest measures a very broad 11”. One of the three sizes will fit all standard exercise machines. Just make sure you measure the machine’s seat first.
They all have a narrow channel running down the center for soft tissue relief. The seat cover takes seconds to attach and just seconds to take off. This makes it perfect to take to your spinning class or local gym for your workout. No more sitting on someone else’s dirty, sweaty seat!
The seat cover can also be used to provide extra cushioning for your home exerciser. The design makes it most suitable it fits over seats that are fitted to bikes with an upright riding position.
Not suitable for…
The bike seat cover is not very suitable were more aggressive riding positions are adopted. This is because it’s likely to interfere with your leg and hip movement. This, in turn, is liable to cause chafing on the inner thigh.
- Available in three sizes.
- Well padded.
- Easy to put on and take off.
- Easy to clean.
- Only suitable for an upright riding position.
Best Bicycle Seat Buying Guide
Saddle selection can be tricky. There are some good general guidelines to be followed. However, finding the right saddle for your body shape, bike, and riding position can come down to a few rounds of trial and error.
For these reasons, we’d encourage you, where ever possible, to seek out advice from cyclists with similar requirements. Maybe even try to borrow a saddle to try, if you can. Hopefully, you’ll get a great fit the first time. To give you the best chance of getting it right at the first attempt, here are a few key guidelines.
The more padding, the more comfortable the saddle. Right? If only this were true, things would be so much easier. Padding can help with comfort, but it has to be on the right kinds of saddles. Thick padding is most useful where the cyclist is riding in predominantly an upright position over short distances.
This style of riding transfers the majority weight through the backside and onto the seat. In this situation, using thick foam padding or gel can greatly increase rider comfort. Typically, this kind of seat is found on wide, short saddles. These are usually on cruisers, hybrids, or city bikes.
For multi-purpose riding…
Less thick foam or gel padding can also find its way onto narrower and longer nosed saddles. For multi-purpose riding, they work well. These saddles are usually found on road bikes, mountain bikes, commuters, and hybrids.
These are definitely a versatile saddle.
So, why don’t performance bikes have saddles with padding?
This is because performance cyclists put a lot of power through the pedals, and so very little pressure is put through either the seat or the handlebars. Since performance cyclists also wear padded shorts, these function effectively to provide the rider with all the padding they reasonably require.
Another reason padding is not found on performance, and also on a lot of endurance saddles, is that the padding can interfere with the movement of the legs and natural hip rotation This can cause chaffing, over long distances, as well as a loss of power.
Full cutaway or narrow channels are very common amongst long-nosed saddles. The purpose to create a channel for a gentleman’s soft tissue to sit. This relieves the pressure that can otherwise cause a numbing sensation, or even pain, in a gentleman’s area.
This experience of numbness and pain is not common to all cyclists. A large number of cyclists will never experience this. However, if you do, then you should think about switching to a cutaway saddle.
Wider saddles go hand in hand with bikes that have upright riding positions. Wider saddles will also typically be padded and even have springs. They work brilliantly over short distances but not so much over long distances. This is because the large width of the saddle can cause chafing of the thighs over a long ride.
Narrower saddles go hand in hand with performance bikes and cyclists. The more power being put through the pedals, generally, the narrower the saddle. Narrower saddles allow for better hip rotation, leg movement, and transfer of power.
Is there such a thing as too narrow?
If you choose a long-nosed, narrow saddle, possibly for a gravel, commuter or road bike, you still need to ensure the rear has sufficient width. There is such a thing as having a too narrow performance saddle. Performance saddles come in different widths according to the width of your sit bones.
If you get one that’s either too wide or not wide enough, it could very well be uncomfortable. Too wide a saddle will cause chafing, and too narrow a saddle will place too much pressure on your sit bones. A quick search online will arm you with some simple measuring options to ensure you order the optimum size.
Simply put, the longer the nose on the saddle, the easier it becomes to put more power through the pedals. Long-nosed saddles go hand in hand with powerful, aggressive riding. They allow the rider to move to a forward position for high power transfer without impeding movement.
Short or medium?
On the other hand, short-nosed saddles go hand in hand with more leisurely riding. However, there’s no option for shifting to a more forward position, and they also impede movement.
Finally, medium nosed saddles are a compromise between the two extremes. There’s some loss of power and ease of movement, but they can prove very comfortable over longer rides. These kinds of saddles are frequently found on tourers, commuter bikes, and mountain bikes.
Before You Go…
Why not check out our Best Bike Chains Review? Or if you’re into tech and gadgets, be sure to check out our reviews of the Best Bluetooth Headsets For Drivers, the Best Remote Start System, the Best Double Din Head Units, and the Best Car Compasses currently available.
So, what is the Best Bicycle Seat?
We’ve come to the end of our review, and there you have it. Finding the best bike seat for your specific needs is not easy. Cyclists with similar body sizes, bikes, and riding styles, often choose very different seats. And what is comfortable for one cyclist can be painful for another.
The saddles in our review all have their own benefits. However, the…
…was an easy top pick over the other worthy contenders.
This beautifully crafted, handmade saddle oozes class and history. The attention to detail and level of craftsmanship is first-class. It’s also truly beautiful.
The unique ability of the saddle to conform to your body shape is its ace in the hole. Once it’s molded to your shape, it will be a saddle that stays with you. It will be a treasured possession that will never be let go.
Enjoy your bike, and enjoy your rides.