ladies seats difference?

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ladies seats difference?

Postby emilmh » Mon Jan 24, 2011 9:06 am

Hi All,
I'm just wondering what makes a saddle a ladies saddle, and if there is any reason why it would or would not be good to use on a mens bike. (please save all childish jokes for yourself)
I am only a very small build weight wise and I only use my bike for leisure riding (nothing hardcore or serious at all). From what i can gather ladies saddles are designed for more comfort, at the expense of what i can only assume to be weight?

info and experiences appreciated.

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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby Mulger bill » Mon Jan 24, 2011 7:56 pm

G'Day emilmh.

From what I've read, womens specific saddles are typically wider at the rear to better support the sit bones and shorter at the nose to apply less pressure to tender bits. I'm sure there's more than this to it as I know a few women who swear by "regular" saddles.

I think this topic would get more hits in the Womens section so I'll move it over for you.

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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby Missy24 » Mon Jan 24, 2011 8:32 pm

yes and no, generally speaking ladies seats are wide and cushy, but if you look at the more performance orientated ones you'll find as always that they are on par with the mens.

Drunkmonkey and I had a good argument about this not long ago in regards to Selle SMP saddles, I said there was a womens line and DM said there wasn't... turns out there isn't a womens line, but the mentality of 'Pink It' is very much out there and Selle SMP and Selle Italia really get into it.

I love Selle Italia saddles with the cut out, I don't recall which one it is right now, but, the important thing to remember is

Yes there is a difference, in theory, but the important thing is finding a saddle that works for you, a lot of companies have 'testing centres' in stores, find a bike shop that has this, or tell your bike shop to get it.

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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby emilmh » Tue Jan 25, 2011 10:45 pm

I was actually thinking it would be more useful if there were any men using ladies saddles, as that is the situation I am considering. Trying out saddles is also sadly out of choice as my budget doesnt allow me to buy from a lbs.

The main reason i asked is that i suspect that as road racing/riding is male dominated sport the ladies saddles are somewhat of a (bad) marketing term for just "more comfortable".
Again, if any men have used ladies saddles I would like to hear your opinions.

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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby foo on patrol » Wed Jan 26, 2011 4:11 pm

I like your thinking Emilmh. From my perspective as a male rider, I would rather have a seat that is comfortable for 200Ks than be readjusting and hoping around all over the place trying too get comfy. Alas there was not any choice when I was racing, like there is now! :(
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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby Missy24 » Wed Jan 26, 2011 6:16 pm

Your pretty much onto it.

A few things to know about pinking and shrinking in the bike market.

1. your bike does not need to be women's specific (mostly the bikes are lower spec until you get high up on the money tree - an experienced fitter will be able to work with the geo of the bike)
2. saddles, its really only a women's one when they put women on the label and don't make the same shape in the mens with men written on it

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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby Ruby » Fri Jan 28, 2011 7:22 am

I know a few blokes that ride with Specialized womens saddles. The higher end one like the ruby look quite similar to the mens....except for some design differences. Apparently.

I have a WSD saddle on one bike and a "mens" (a Romin) on the other. Even though both have sensationally little padding the WSD is just a bit more comfortable. I use a 130mm saddle so can go with either. So in this respect I feel my arse can tell and favours WSD. Having said that I don't have a great deal of experience with a range of brands.

I know specialized do test saddles, not sure about other brands so that you can try before you buy.

I don't buy the that "your bike doesn't need to be WSD". For sure it is a marketing opportunity but not every woman can ride a unisex bike. For some of us there isn't a lot of option as many brands neither pink nor shink small enough.

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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby gorilla monsoon » Fri Jan 28, 2011 5:27 pm

As far as spending money on saddles goes I believe some states have consumer laws that require the retailer to take back the goods if they do not suit the purpose for which they were purchased.

I have returned three saddles which have not been suitable and been given my money back and I have also bought a couple of saddles that have an expressed three month return policy printed on the packaging.

If in doubt, phone your state consumer protection group and, as a back up, ask about the store's return policy before you pay for your new saddle.
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Re: ladies seats difference?

Postby duds2u » Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:55 pm

If the LBS you are buying from is half way decent they will put the new saddle on your bike and send you for a test ride ( mine did).
The saddle seemed a strange fit and then we tried a larger fit ( Specialised saddle). I only rode 400 meteres and came back having decided it was a keeper.

As an aside, different knicks will make a difference to the the feel as well. I have a pair of Diadora knicks which feel good but are only good for1 hour rides. I bought a pair of Specialised Comp knicks just before I bought the new saddle and the combination is made for long comfortable rides.

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