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What is the best road bike saddle? Experience extra comfort!

Written by: R2B Store


Time to read 9 min

Choosing the right road bike saddle is crucial for every cyclist. A saddle is not just a part of the bicycle; it is the foundation of a comfortable, efficient and pain-free ride. The right saddle can make the difference between a satisfying day on the road and an uncomfortable experience that leaves you longing for the end of your ride. In our search for the best road bike saddle , we tested a range of saddles, taking into account various factors that contribute to comfort, performance and durability. Our goal was to find a saddle that not only meets the physical challenges of long rides, but also respects the cyclist's personal needs.

Our goal was to find a saddle that provides an optimal riding experience, combining comfort and performance, so that every cyclist can get the most out of their rides.

The top 5 Best Road Bike Saddles highlighted:

1. Best Road Bike Saddle of 2024: R2B Bicycle Saddle Suitable for Road Bike

A racing bike saddle is crucial for every cyclist. There is nothing more annoying than experiencing discomfort from your saddle while cycling. But do you choose a soft or hard saddle? These are questions we answered during our test.

The best saddle in our test is the racing bike saddle from R2B Store. Whether you're training for a race or enjoying recreational rides, this saddle guarantees an enhanced riding experience.

Robust and ready for action
From the moment we installed the R2B saddle, the excellent build quality was noticeable. The saddle is constructed with durable materials that can withstand the rigorous demands of cycling. The finish and craftsmanship suggest that this saddle is designed to last for many miles without sacrificing comfort.

Comfort put to the test
During our test rides we emphasized comfort, given the long hours we spend on the bike. The R2B Bicycle Saddle provided exceptional support and pressure distribution, remarkably reducing the usual discomfort on longer rides. The padding and ergonomic shape of the saddle played a key role in this comfortable riding experience.

Lightweight and performance-oriented

One aspect we particularly liked was how the saddle contributes to the overall efficiency of the bike. Its light weight allowed us to increase speed without unnecessary strain. This made the R2B Bicycle Saddle a perfect choice for both training rides and competitive events.

Price-quality ratio: A smart investment
Considering the quality, comfort and performance of the R2B Bicycle Saddle, we thought it was an excellent investment. It offers a perfect balance between price and quality, making it accessible to a wide range of cyclists looking to enhance their riding experience without breaking the bank.

2. Best Road Bike Saddle Men: Voltano Road Bike Saddle - Black / Silver

When the Voltano Race Bicycle Saddle arrived with us, we were immediately impressed by the sleek black and silver finish. The saddle exuded quality and promised a combination of style and functionality.

The gentlemen on the test panel in particular thought this was the perfect saddle, the saddle is still comfortable even during long distances. A combination of softness without feeling the robust materials.

Construction and Materials

When installing the Voltano saddle, we noticed its sturdy construction. It felt light, but without sacrificing strength – a crucial balance for any serious cyclist. The use of gel in the saddle immediately appealed to us, given our preference for comfort on long rides.

The Test Course: Comfort and Performance in Action

We tested the Voltano Race Bicycle Saddle on both rough terrain and on the road. The comfort level was remarkable, thanks to the gel padding that effectively absorbed shock on rough trails. At the same time, the ergonomic shape of the saddle ensured optimal pressure distribution, allowing us to ride longer without discomfort.

Lightweight and Manoeuvrable

One aspect that stood out during our rides was how the light weight of the saddle contributed to the agility and speed of our bike. Whether we were climbing a steep slope or navigating corners, the Voltano saddle helped us move efficiently and quickly.

Made for the Long Ride

The Voltano Bicycle Saddle provided excellent ventilation, a feature we really appreciated during intense rides on hot days. Additionally, the saddle seemed designed with durability in mind; the materials and workmanship are of high quality, so we expect the saddle to last for many kilometers.

3. Best Road Bike Saddle Women: BOTC Bicycle Saddle - Sport Trekking Bicycle Saddle

When the BOTC Bicycle Saddle first passed our doors, we were struck by the promise of an exceptionally comfortable riding experience. This saddle, designed for both sports and trekking bikes, promised to be a solution for long and often uncomfortable rides.

The women on the test panel were particularly impressed with the saddle, it is a slightly wider saddle, which was an advantage compared to other bicycle saddles.

Quality and Installation

The installation of the BOTC Bicycle Saddle was surprisingly easy, a welcome change from the often complicated assembly processes. The saddle itself felt sturdy and well-made, with materials that promised both durability and comfort.

Testing the Comfort

From our first ride the difference was noticeable. The BOTC Bicycle Saddle offered an unprecedented level of comfort, thanks to its generous padding and ergonomic shape that seemed specifically designed to minimize pressure points. Even after several hours on the bike, we remained comfortable.

Smooth and Stable

During our test rides, from smooth asphalt to rougher trekking trails, the BOTC Bicycle Saddle performed excellently. Your bike will get a major upgrade compared to the old saddle. By riding a fraction lighter you can improve your performance.

Comfortable saddle for women.

It is often more difficult for female cyclists to find a good saddle. It is a fact that there are more male cyclists. By including additional women in our test panel, we have ensured that the perfect saddle was also found for them. They often needed a wider saddle, this is due to the wider pelvis that women generally have.

4. Best Waterproof Road Bike Saddle: Contec Elliptic+ Sport Bicycle Saddle Saddle – 100% Waterproof

In the rainy Netherlands it is not entirely unimportant to choose waterproof accessories. Consider a waterproof phone holder for your bicycle or a waterproof racing bike saddle.

Of course, the real die-hard cyclists don't let the rain stop them. But a waterproof racing bike saddle can also come in handy if you leave your bike outside. View our extensive review here.

Waterproof Wonder

One of the most striking features of the Contec Elliptic saddle is its 100% waterproofness. This revolutionized our riding, especially on those unpredictable days when the weather could change at any moment. The comfort of knowing our saddle was protected from the elements changed how we planned and enjoyed our rides.

Comfort on Long Distances

The true heart of the Contec Elliptic experience lies in the gel filling. From the first moment we took our seats, we felt a level of comfort that was both new and profound. This gel filling, combined with the elliptical shape, provided optimal pressure distribution and support, making long rides considerably more comfortable.

Universal Appearance

Its design and comfort make it an ideal choice for all types of cyclists, regardless of the type of bike or the intensity of the ride. The saddle fit in perfectly with our holiday adventures, but we could easily imagine how it would also shine on a racing bike or city bike.

Value for money

Compared to other bicycle saddles in our top 5, this bicycle saddle is slightly more expensive. But most saddles do not have the unique quality of this ideal saddle. The water resistance is of course something that no other bicycle saddle from this top 5 does not have. You pay a little more, but you certainly get more quality in return.

5. Best Ergonomic Road Bike Saddle: Road Bike Saddle - Women and Men DesoMax

A good ergonomic bicycle saddle is often difficult to find. It is not a soft saddle, but not too hard either. A good bicycle saddle consists of a combination of ergonomics and quality. You want to maintain an upright position while cycling and you need a bicycle saddle that supports this. Read below why this bicycle saddle is perfect for this.

Ease of installation: Smooth and Simple

Mounting the Desomax saddle on our bicycles was a piece of cake. The compatibility with both MTB and road bikes gave us the flexibility to test the saddle on different bikes, a versatility we really appreciated. The simplicity of installation allowed for a quick transition from unboxing to actual road testing.

Sporty Designed: For the Active Cyclist

The sporty design of the Desomax Gel Saddle particularly appealed to us. Not only did it look good on our bikes, but it also provided the ergonomic benefits essential for intense cycling.

Universal Appeal: A Saddle for Everyone

One of the most impressive aspects of the Desomax Sport Saddle, compared to a bad saddle, was its universal appeal. The saddle seamlessly suited the needs of both male and female cyclists, offering a level of comfort rarely found in unisex models. This versatility made it an ideal choice for couples or teams who value uniformity in equipment.

Frequently asked questions about the best road bike saddle

How much drop between saddle and handlebars?

The amount of drop (the difference in height) between the saddle and handlebars of a bicycle can vary greatly depending on the type of bicycle, riding style, and the cyclist's personal preference or body type. The drop has a major influence on the riding position, comfort and efficiency while cycling. Here are some general guidelines:

Racing bikes

  • Competitive Riders: For those focused on speed and aerodynamics, the drop between the saddle and handlebars can be quite significant, sometimes up to 4 inches or more. This creates a more bent-over position that reduces air resistance.
  • Touring riders: Recreational riders often opt for a less extreme drop, varying from 2 to 5 cm, to maintain a more comfortable position that can be maintained for a long time.

Why does a racing bike have a hard saddle?

A racing bike typically has a harder saddle for several reasons, all of which contribute to the cyclist's performance and efficiency. Although it may seem counterintuitive, especially to new cyclists or those who associate comfort with softness, there is clear logic behind choosing a harder saddle on a road bike:

- Better power transmission

- Reduction of friction

- Weight saving

- Improved positioning

- Long lasting shape retention

How far forward the saddle on a racing bike?

The position of the saddle on a road bike, including how far forward or back it is, is crucial for optimizing your riding position, comfort and pedaling efficiency. The adjustment depends on several factors, including your body type, flexibility, riding style, and the specific geometry of your bike. Here are some guidelines for determining how far forward you should position the saddle:

1. Knee-over-pedal axle (KOP) position

A common method of adjusting saddle position is to ensure that your kneecap is directly over the pedal axle when the pedal is at its furthest point forward (3 o'clock position). You can check this by dropping a plumb line from the bottom of your kneecap to see if it lines up with the axis of the pedal. This helps optimize power transmission and reduces the load on your knees.

2. Adjust for comfort and performance

The ideal saddle position varies per individual. Some cyclists prefer a slightly more forward saddle to reduce pressure on the back of the thighs and facilitate a more aggressive position, which can be useful for time trials or climbing. Others may move the saddle slightly back for a more balanced position that is good for long distances and climbing.

3. Flexibility and hip rotation

Your flexibility, especially in the hamstrings and hips, can also affect how far forward you position the saddle. Cyclists with good flexibility can ride more comfortably with a more forward saddle, because they can tilt their hips further without discomfort.

4. Regulations

For competitive cyclists, UCI rules apply that determine how far forward a saddle may be. Make sure you stay within these rules when participating in official competitions.

5. Testing and adjusting

Start with the KOP method as a starting point and make minor adjustments from there. Pay attention to how your body reacts during different types of rides and adjust the position based on what feels most comfortable and efficient. It is often a matter of trial and error.

A professional bicycle fitting is always recommended if you have any doubts. An expert can help you find the optimal saddle position that suits your body type and riding style, which can prevent injuries and increase your riding pleasure.

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