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seat height

chatlowchatlow Posts: 843
edited March 2014 in Road general
Quick question regarding the height of a road bike saddle - I've set mine so that when my feet are clipped to the pedals and in the down position, there's a slight bend in my knee.. then when I'm unclipped, my heel can reach the pedal without my hip rocking. This has worked out OK but the handlebars are now a good 3-4 inches lower then my saddle and causing quite an aggressive riding position on my commuting bike. It's also causing a bit of lower back pain.

I've added a spacer to increase my handlebars by 1 cm but is it best I reduce the height of the seat a bit? My thoughts were to set the height to as high as possible without causing issues as I would get the most power out of each pedal stroke?

Posts

  • Garry HGarry H Posts: 6,639
    No, It's best to add the spacer, assuming your saddle is at the correct height. Sounds like you may benefit from a fitting...
  • your knee should be at a 25 degree angle when at the bottom of the pedal stroke and once set you should adjust the fore/aft position of the seat based on knee cap being over ball of foot when forward at 3 o'clock position. Finally adjust handlebars to reach and comfort
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  • There are too many variables in that equation to be able to give a proper answer.
    I'd see a fitter, still the best money I spent on my cycling.
    Where in the country are you? I can recommend www.fit2ride.cc if you're anywhere near Yorkshire/Lancashire.
    The guy there fits the Sidas custom footbeds too, which are a revelation.
  • gloomyandygloomyandy Posts: 520
    If the spacers don't raise the bars enough you can always "flip the stem" to give extra height. My understanding is that it is always best to get the saddle position right then adjust the bars to get a good position for your hands. However as others have said there is interaction between the two! Good luck.
  • chatlowchatlow Posts: 843
    your knee should be at a 25 degree angle when at the bottom of the pedal stroke and once set you should adjust the fore/aft position of the seat based on knee cap being over ball of foot when forward at 3 o'clock position. Finally adjust handlebars to reach and comfort

    Thought it was 150 degree angle? I'm sure my seat height is pretty bang on.. I used string and weight dangled over my knee to get the saddle position right. Perhaps my legs are freakishly longer than my torso

    Just realised I'm using a stem with 15 degree raise. Old stem was 6. It's not flipped but I may to go back to the other stem
  • kajjalkajjal Posts: 3,380
    chatlow wrote:
    your knee should be at a 25 degree angle when at the bottom of the pedal stroke and once set you should adjust the fore/aft position of the seat based on knee cap being over ball of foot when forward at 3 o'clock position. Finally adjust handlebars to reach and comfort

    Thought it was 150 degree angle? I'm sure my seat height is pretty bang on.. I used string and weight dangled over my knee to get the saddle position right. Perhaps my legs are freakishly longer than my torso

    Just realised I'm using a stem with 15 degree raise. Old stem was 8 or 9. It's not flipped but I may to go back to the other stem

    You seem to have set the saddle height and position correctly which is a good starting point. Just remember KOPS is a starting point for the average rider. My saddle is slightly further forward than KOPS as I have my feet further forwards on the pedals to be comfortable.

    My road bike only has about an inch of drop as that is what I prefer. I have tried more but didn't get on with it and can always use the drops if I need to. I put spacers below the stem and flipped it into the upright position. I have relatively shorter legs compared to my body. In the end as long as your riding position is comfortable, injury free and lets you get the power to the wheels just go with what you prefer.
  • JayKostaJayKosta Posts: 635
    Yes, if possible 'flip' the stem to raise the bars.
    The seat height and position sound good.

    I think there are also 'steering tube extenders' that might work if a good position can't be achieved via the stem.
    Check online or at local shop.

    Jay Kosta
    Endwell NY USA
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