Bike Adjustment – How To Adjust The Height Of The Saddle And Steering Wheel In The Bike?

How to set the saddle in the bike and at what height should the steering wheel be? The answer to this question is the key to a pleasant and - above all - healthy driving. Unfortunately, cyclists can often be noticed who have already incorrectly adjusted their single track. Sometimes you can not see any mistakes in adjusting the bike right away, but after some time knee and back pain occurs. How to adjust the height of the saddle and the steering wheel so that it can be driven comfortably and safely on it?

Incorrect bike adjustments can have different effects: if someone has a saddle positioned too low, when he pedals, his position is contorted and he almost touches the steering wheel with his knees, looking like a younger sibling on a bicycle. On the other hand, when the saddle is too high, the leg to reach the pedals must be completely straight, and this causes excessive muscle tension. Equally often cyclists have problems with the steering wheel adjustment, which can lead to back, neck and shoulder pain.

Find out how to adjust the height of the saddle and steering wheel in your bike so that riding on it is not only pleasant but also safe.

How to set a saddle in a trekking bike?

The trekking bike works both during recreational rides and longer trips, which is why we can see it on the streets so often. There are several ways to set a saddle in these types of bikes:

1. Method 109%

The 109% method is one of the most popular and the oldest methods of regulating a bike - it was developed in 1967. It says that the correct height of the saddle should be 109% of the length of the inner side of the leg - thus we will calculate the ideal distance between the upper part of the seat and the center of the pedal axis.

Once, the 109% method was more popular, now it gives way to more precise methods - LeMond and Holmes.

How do we measure? We stand back to the wall (touching her heels) in shoes in which we ride a bike. Between legs, we put a thin book as the equivalent of a saddle. It must adhere to the crotch - just like a saddle. Mark a place on the wall where the upper edge of the book touches the crotch (or ask someone for help) - we multiply the result by 109%. The measurement should be performed several times and averaged.

2. LeMond method

This method was developed by one of the Tour de France winners - Greg LeMond. It is also very popular and is one of the varieties of the 109% method. First you need to measure the length of the inner side of the leg - a method known from the 109% method. Then multiply the obtained value 0.883 times - in this way we will get the distance between the center of the support and the upper part of the saddle.The meter should be routed along the seat tube line.

3. Holmes method

For calculations using the Holmes method, a goniometer, ie a device for measuring angles, should be used. The method assumes that the knee angle, when the pedal is located at its lowest, should be between 25 and 35 degrees. The Holmes method is considered the most accurate, although initially, if we get used to the lower position of the saddle, we may feel some discomfort. After a week or two of regular driving, however, it should disappear.

4. Heel method

A very popular method of bike regulation, which does not require any complicated calculations. It consists in placing the heel on the pedal in the lowest position, with the leg straight. The height of the saddle should be adjusted so that in this setting the pelvis remains in a horizontal position.

This method, however, is not considered effective. First of all, because no one goes in the position with the leg straightened, and secondly - it does not include individual factors, such as the different length of the specific person's feet, differences in the length of the femur and tibia.

The first factor to consider is placing your hands on it. In the case of recreational riding on a trekking bike, it is enough for the angle between the arm and the body to be less than 90 degrees - it does not have to be exactly the same as in the case of the resultant road cycling. The most important is the comfort of the cyclist, and the height of the steering wheel can be the same as the height of the saddle, later, during the season, it can be gradually lowered. The rule is that the more vertical we adopt, the more comfortable we are.

Another parameter that should be taken into account when adjusting the steering wheel in a bike is its width. Here again the determinant should be the convenience of a person who will ride a bike for many kilometers. It is best to choose a bicycle with a steering wheel, with which we feel comfortable, holding our hands spread across the shoulder width. Also remember to put the handles and handles in such a way that it is easy to reach for them and you do not have to twist your wrists to grab them.

Worth knowing


How to adjust the city bike?

A person riding a city bike takes a more upright position than a trekking or road bike. An upright silhouette means more comfortable driving, and the steering wheel is bent into the shape of the so-calledsw allows allow for a comfortable setting of hands and an even more pleasant ride. Thanks to the straight figure we maintain greater stability on the bike.

The saddle in the city bike is again set using the LeMond or Holmes method, but the steering wheel, unlike the trekking bike, should be placed at least 5 cm higher than the saddle . Thanks to this, the greater weight of the body will be transferred to the back of the bike, but it will not rest on the wrists and arms. This solution again serves to improve the comfort of riding a city bike.

How to set a saddle in a road bike?

Road cyclists devote special attention to the appropriate height of the saddle, and the recommended methods are those that work best also in the case of a trekking bike - the LeMond method or the Holmes method. In the case of a road bike, it is best to avoid the saddle inclination - it should be set horizontally - unless you use the aerodynamic steering wheel, then you can tilt it by one or two degrees.

How to set the steering wheel on a road bike?

When it comes to regulating the steering wheel on a road bike, it is governed by different laws than the one in a trekking bike. Road bike often means time trial and the desire to achieve the best results, so it is best to put your hands on the steering wheel so that the angle between the shoulder and the body is 90 degrees - bending the arms in the elbow will increase the comfort of driving, and the greater will be their bend, the more the silhouette it will become aerodynamic.

The road bike bridge should be mounted 2-2.5 cm lower than the saddle.

As for the height of the steering wheel on a road bike, the rule is that the lower it is in relation to the saddle, the less resistance of the rider fights the cyclist. As in the case of a trekking bike, the length of the steering wheel should correspond to the width of the arms. If it is wider, the ride will be more comfortable, but it will cause a slower twisting.

It will be useful to you

How to choose a bicycle seat?

  • The saddle should not be too hard or too soft - riding a hard saddle from the beginning is uncomfortable, and falling in the saddle too soft leads to painful abrasions;
  •  a saddle with carbon or titanium rods absorbs vibrations best;
  •  if you often change position on the saddle - choose a longer and variable width, if you rather keep a fixed position - choose a shorter saddle;
  • the saddle should have a comfortable width - to choose it, sit on the bike chosen in the store in a position you usually take on your own, and when you get out of it, dents on the gel pillow will reflect the spacing of your sciatic bones to which you need to choose the width of the saddle.
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