Bike seats, as ordinary as they sound, play an important role in the way cycle. Coming from someone with a back pain history, I can assure you that a well fitting saddle will make all the difference when it comes to cycling.
Women also face a number of issues caused by using a bad bike seat. So I asked my wife Jill to write her opinion about choosing the best bike seats for women.
Your bike can make you do unbelievable things; choosing it over your car for starters. And what better way to do it than feeling cozy and relaxed on your ride? So, it’s essential that you invest in a quality women’s bike seat.
Don’t know where to start? Keep on reading!
- Why Your Bike Seat Matters
- 5 Best Bike Seats For Women
- Why Great Bike Seat Matters
- Women’s Bike Saddle Buying Guide
- Frequently Asked Questions
Why Your Bike Seat Matters
Your bike saddle can make a huge difference in your cycling regimen. If a short pedaling session sets off your back pain alarm, you know how crucial it is to get the right kind of seat.
The perfect seat type will depend on what you’re doing with the bike.
For example, a road bike or a cruiser bike means versatile riding with a range of different terrains. In that case, a gel-padded or memory foam bike seat is the way to go. On the other hand, mountain biking calls for a narrower saddle profile.
So, what is your biking style?
Are you willing to try out some cycle sports? If yes then I suggest you buy a bike saddle that caters to a specific style. Here’s why choosing the right bike seat is so incredibly important for you!
Perfect for Losing Weight
Cycling is an excellent way to drop those extra pounds from Christmas. If you’re a stress-eater like I am, getting one tummy roll or two really takes a few days of hyper snacking.
But don’t worry just yet; bring your bike out of the garage and use it for daily commuting. Not only will it help with your mood but also get you back in shape! And the Uber fee you’ll be saving adds up in the long run.
Encourages You to Pursue Cycle Sports
Mounting biking and learning its many tricks is hands down one of the most rewarding achievements in my sports life. Not to mention, riding uphills or steep downhills really get your adrenaline pumping and give you one hell of an experience.
Once you get comfortable with your bike, you’ll be naturally inclined towards mastering those cool BMX tricks around the park or better- dirt jumping, enduro, or cross country racing. My bike seat is what kept me committed to biking from day one and now it’s my number one sport.
Good for Your Sit Bones
Sit bones are basically the bones in your hip area that stay in contact with the surface on which you are seated. Narrow saddles create more pressure to your soft tissue areas down there and as a result, you might end up thinking that cycling is not for you. But a memory foam saddle makes it so much better. Moreover, a wide rear saddle supports your sit bones better if you’re naturally large or overweight.
5 Best Bike Seats For Women
Here I have chosen the five best bike saddles for female cyclists. There’s no reason for you to put up with the stock saddle. I’m listing some cool bike seats for different uses right below!
Terry Women’s Butterfly Carbon Bike Saddle (Best for Commuting)
When it comes to making your daily commuting enjoyable, choosing a snug bike seat is the best thing you can do.
Your daily commute might or might not include crazy long distances as it did in my case but it’s always a smart decision to invest in a cool saddle like the Terry Women’s Butterfly bike saddle. For starters, this lightweight ladies’ bike seat can finally relieve your lower back pain.
We all know how a bike seat that feels too hard under our hips can give us the worst back pain and ruin our day. Designed for athletic and regular riders alike, the saddle will give you the ultimate support in your biking moments. On top of that, the glossy butterfly graphics will add to your cycle a punch of elegance. Its rear panels are made of leather so you don’t have to worry about wear and tear in a long, long time.
What I liked about this bike seat is the excellent cutaway design that ran through its nose to the midsection. It adds so much comfort to your biking experience; inspiring you to choose your bicycle over a boring bus ride to your destination. Not to mention, this womens saddle also makes a wonderful choice if you prefer cycling as a form of exercise.
- Wider rear for extra comfort
- Weighs less than 220 grams
- Black leather finish with glossy prints
- High-quality cutaway design in the middle
- Suitable for comfort bikes and road bikes
- The aerodynamic design doesn’t promote an upright sitting position
Bikeroo Bike Saddle for Women (Best for Comfort)
If you’re looking for the best bike seat to ride comfortably, Bikeroo bike saddle for women is the way to go!
This Bikeroo seat is also gentle on your inner thighs and won’t cramp your hips at all.
Let’s face it, an uncomfortable seat is what keeps us from cruising around the town in our free time and enjoying some quality me-time. Well, that’s about to change because this super comfy seat makes your life a little bit easier.
While cycling is incredible for women’s health, comfort plays a key role here. This bike saddle is great for you because it not only comes with a rain cover but also the necessary mounting tools so that you can set off with your favorite ride as fast as possible!
Its padded construction really keeps the softer tissue areas in your thighs comfortable. Its wider front part is specially designed for worryless cruising and road biking. Your tailbones won’t hurt no matter how many miles you cover nor will you experience cramping in your lower body after a ride. That being said, cycling just got more fun with this super comfy saddle!
The bicycle seat sports a universal fit; meaning that it will fit your city bike, mountain bike, hybrid, or cruiser bike without a hassle. I used to suffer from a poor saddle fit on my bikes until I came across this Bikeroo one. I also noticed how much it helped my posture. Its deep center cutout relieves pressure from the hips and doesn’t make you feel stiff. How great is that?
- The padding is easy on the inner thighs and hip areas
- Comes with a saddle adapter and waterproof rain cover
- Supports an upright riding position
- Ergonomic cutaway helps with pressure channel relief
- Installation is simple and easy
- This seat is not that suitable for shorter people
YLG Oversized Comfort Bike Seat (Best for Large Women)
Padded with high-density memory foam inside, the YLG Oversized Comfort Bike saddle will deliver the best comfort to your biking days. Not more than a year ago, I promised myself that I would lose some weight and hop onto the fitness train. It wasn’t easy especially because I was almost 40lbs overweight and every time I went to exercise with my bike, I would return home with pain in my hips and thighs.
The stock saddle that comes with your bicycle barely cuts the deal because they are hard, narrow, and uncomfortable. I almost gave up cycling till one of my friends suggested this oversized comfort bike seat and I instantly made the purchase. It was indeed a decision on the right track because, with this lady’s bicycle seat on, I cycled every day and got in shape within a few months.
The YLG bike seat is why I fell in love with cycling and now as a mountain biker who loves to dirt jump and pull stunts around the skate park often, I strongly recommend the large women out there to get this comfy seat right away. It also has a high-quality waterproof PVC leather coating which makes it more durable and able to withstand heavy-duty cycling.
And yes, let’s not forget about the dual-spring rubber ball suspension below the bicycle saddle here because it’s the absolute best when it comes to keeping your back safe from heavy jolts and bumps on the road. It makes up a reliable shock absorption feature and you can most definitely take it on the pebbly roads on the hills just like smooth pavements and dirt roads!
- High-density memory foam with premium quality gel padding
- The extra-wide design takes pressure away from your hips and thighs
- Dual-spring rubber ball suspension neutralizes the bump effects while riding
- Waterproof and anti-scratch PVC leather cover adds extra durability
- Might compromise leg movement of slender riders
Brooks Saddle B67 S Bicycle Seat (Best Classic Saddle)
Nothing beats an elegant tanned leather saddle like the Brooks Saddle B67 when you want to take biking seriously and commit to it. This one of a kind bicycle seat will stay with you through thick and thin with its incredible durability.
Crafted with care in England, you get to experience the goodness of a vegetable-tanned leather saddle and revamp your bike for the better. It also gives you plenty of room to flaunt your bike because a handmade saddle topples the industrial ones with ease. Putting its great looks aside, let’s talk about why this saddle is the best for you!
For starters, this saddle is made of vegetable-tanned leather. It’s a porous material that helps with natural ventilation throughout your journey. Oftentimes while riding my bike along the trails I have felt like I’m sitting on a ball of fire. The longer our hips stay in contact with the seat, the faster it will heat up and make us feel super uncomfortable.
That’s one of the reasons why many well-made bike seats will have a cutaway in the middle section to dissipate heat and keep you cool. This leather bike saddle for women sprung construction keeping you safe from the bumps and cracks.
If your ride doesn’t have a good front suspension fork or rear shocks to handle jolting, you are going to love this saddle because of its high-quality springs that do a similar job- they keep you relaxed and steady!
- Comes with Proofide so you can condition the leather
- You won’t feel like sliding off the seat like on a gel saddle
- A High-quality sprung seat delivers a decent suspension throughout your ride
- You can easily attach its single rails to micro-adjust saddle pillars
- Takes a few rides to break in and become comfy
Ergon SR Women’s Sport Gel Saddle (Best for Sports)
Here comes my favorite sports gel saddle by Ergon. I must say, on the days when I’m feeling sporty, clamping the Ergon SR saddle on my bike and going cross country racing with my girls turned out to be some of the best days in summer!
To begin with, the saddle has a narrow nose. This makes it more suitable for the times when pedaling is extreme. Uphill or downhill riding and all-terrain competitive biking call for a saddle that is not only comfortable but also designed for uncompromised leg action. You don’t want to be lounging on your bike seat when it comes to racing with time trials on.
Moving on to the overall feel of this incredible bike saddle, I was surprised to see that for a sports saddle, this one was extremely comfortable. It truly kept my groin area fatigue-free and relaxed. Other than the regular muscle strain from pedaling, I experienced no soft tissue discomfort while cycling miles after miles on dirt roads and trails.
Thanks to the orthopedic comfort foam and gel pads, this seat feels like a seat and not your living room couch. This is important because sinking into those cushiony seats really spoils the fun of speeding across the streets. Too much padding also acts as a downside in uphill climbing or cross country racing because in those cases, you need to bend towards the handlebars and pedal like crazy.
- A narrow profile at the front of the saddle helps greatly in enduro racing and cross country racing
- Orthopedic comfort foam with gel pads don’t make you sink into the saddle
- Nylon composite shell and CroMo rails make this saddle very durable
- Long cutout design relieves pressure from the groin area
- The winged back stretches wider to support your sit bones
- Quality microfiber coating reduces friction and allows movement
- Not suitable for large females
Why Great Bike Seat Matters
If cycling isn’t any fun for us, we can always put music on and do some yoga at home. But we need fresh air and see the outside world for getting out of our heads as well.
If you’re like me, oftentimes you feel like the walls are closing in on you whenever you spend too much time at home. This is where your bike comes to save the day.
Easy On Your Groin
If you’re reading this article, my guess is that you are already fed up with the stock saddle. A bad saddle can leave you with sore sit bones. I used to struggle with it so much until I stopped thinking that the problem is in me.
The truth is, stock saddles are made for all, and little thought is given to the saddle compared to the whole bike. So, a wobbly and hard saddle is very likely to cause pain to our inner thighs and groin area and obstruct the blood flow in the groin region.
Reduces Pressure on Hips & Tailbone
Many of us struggle with a comfortable fit and get demotivated to take our beloved bike out for a spin. When you choose your cycle for daily commuting, you do not want to get used to a saddle that puts pressure on your tailbone and hips. Because it adds to our predominant back and lower abdomen pain when it’s that time of the month.
Promotes Mountain Bike Racing
Mountain biking requires a saddle with a slim profile so you can pedal with ease. Moving on to aggressive biking when the terrains are rough calls for a sleek, gel-padded, and long cutaway saddle. A quality sports saddle can help you learn everything from cross-country racing to dirt jumping without breaking your back or hurting your delicate parts.
Women’s Bike Saddle Buying Guide
Since women usually have narrower shoulders and wider hips as opposed to men’s anatomy, the saddle shape contributes a lot to how well you can pedal and how your back is holding up from all the exercise.
Below I am highlighting the key specs you need to see before shopping for bike seats for women!
Nose Profile: Wide vs Narrow
A wide seat is more comfortable and you should definitely go for a roomy bike saddle if you have back pain issues or tender seat bones. Most soft memory foam cushioned saddles have a wide nose profile to accommodate your groin area in a better way. But when lots of pedaling is involved, a wide seat may cause your inner thighs to chafe or slightly restrict your leg movements.
That said, a narrow racing saddle may not look comfortable but there are gel saddles made especially for MTB racing. Unlike wide saddles, the narrow ones cause less friction and help you pedal faster. If you don’t have a good thigh gap, you will soon find out that a wide seat will most likely keep the lid on your pedaling game.
Then there are also bike seats with no noses. I have talked about them in my best noseless bike seat review.
A sprung saddle is important if your commute is full of gravel, pebbles, and bumps all the way. The springs below act as a suspension while you’re riding on uneven roads. Back pain gives me a hard time and truth be told, a sprung saddle is what keeps me doing the freerides and dirt jumps so often. Don’t even think about hitting the trails on your full-sus or hardtail without a sprung saddle, ladies!
The cutaway or the hole that runs in the middle of a bike saddle you see in seats like Cloud 9 Cruiser saddle is for two purposes. One being ventilation, the other reason is to protect the soft tissue area in our crotch. Bike saddles tend to get hot when we ride them for a long time. Not to mention, we end up sweating from places we won’t name.
Memory Foam Padding Vs. Leather
Memory foam saddles are good for you if you have frequent pains from sitting on hard surfaces. The soft foam conforms to your shape when you sit on it. These bike seats can relieve pressure from your back and keep you comfortable.
On the other hand, leather bike saddles start to feel comfier as you keep riding on them. You have to grant them the weathering-over period. Leather saddles don’t make you feel like you’re sinking into your seat or sliding off. I recommend a leather saddle for ladies with stronger backs.
Compatibility with Seat Posts
A wobbly saddle is the most annoying thing ever. You want a saddle that you can attach to your bike’s seat post easily. Whether you ride a road bike or a mountain bike, even if you have two, a saddle compatible with both types of bikes gives you the best bang for your buck. Quality saddles will come with necessary mounting tools and they support the modern micro-adjust seat posts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Women’s bike seats vs. men’s – what is the difference?
Women’s bike seat has a wider profile that is better suited for naturally wider female hips. They are also shorter than men’s bike seats. Saddles for men are narrower and longer compared to women’s.
Can a man use a woman’s bike seat?
A man can use a woman’s bike seat if he is comfortable with a bit wide and short saddle. But since there is a difference in men’s and women’s anatomy, most men might face discomfort riding a women-specific seat.
A long and narrow nose saddle can only be found in women’s sports saddle or MTB saddle.
How can I make my bike saddle more comfortable?
Get the right kind of bike seat for your anatomy and riding type. Adjust the saddle to a comfortable height and be seated in the middle. It is recommended that you choose thin padding. Bike gel seat covers can make stiff saddles more comfortable.
Why do women’s bike seats have holes?
Some of the bike seats have holes for ventilation. Breathable materials as the saddle cover work well because the heat generated from the friction causes significant discomfort while riding your bike. The holes or the cutaways helps release the heat and direct the airflow to the hot and humid region. They promote a better riding position and take the extra pressure away from sit bones.
The bike seats with holes in the middle (cutaways) are not exclusive only to the female seats. Many male bike saddles also have them.
Are Selle Italia seats any good?
There are several highly rated Selle Italia women’s bike seats available on Amazon and from other retailers. While they are not cheap, I believe they are a worthwhile addition to my review and will be added soon.
So, this was my rundown on the most comfortable bicycle seats for women. While Bikeroo and YLG saddles stayed ahead in terms of comfort, I’m going to crown the Ergon SR saddle to be the best women’s bike seat. Not only is it a comfy choice for commuting and cruising but also does an incredible job when you’re cycling on mountain trails.
That is why this Ergon Women’s Bike seat makes an excellent MTB seat. Clamping it on your hardtail bike or hybrid bike will give you more advantage to try out the sporty side of biking! Be it performance riding, road biking, or simple daily commuting, you are in for a great adventure while keeping your delicate parts safe and protected.