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Does raising your Seat so that you are Tippy Toed at rest offer Benefits?

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Does raising your Seat so that you are Tippy Toed at rest offer Benefits?

Old 01-17-22, 08:40 PM
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AJW2W11E
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Does raising your Seat so that you are Tippy Toed at rest offer Benefits?

Does raising your Seat so that you are Tippy Toed at rest offer any Benefits? I tried it a few years back when I was training for Mount Ranier and hsd sore knees from hiking so much. I thought , albeit perhaps incorrectly , that raising my seat while riding my bike, my knees flexed less .
Lately , watching taller and faster riders, I notice their knees flex at most 30 degrees and maybe their power is coming from the the strongest part of the quadriceps? Shorter riders flex their knees maybe 45 degrees? ( hypothetical value) and really churn their legs.
Does any of this make sense? Of course I dont intend to stand on a phonebook to mount my bike. ,but would an inch or two help?
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Old 01-17-22, 08:54 PM
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Seat height and bottom bracket distance relate to bike fit. Seat height to ground surface is another matter. When I stop I can just touch the ground with my toes stretched or lean slightly to one side or the other (usually my left). I don't have any knee problems and I'm 72 (just recently).
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Old 01-17-22, 08:56 PM
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Your mileage might vary, but I just feel more comfortable when the seat's higher. I just get down off the saddle when I stop.
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Old 01-17-22, 08:57 PM
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If you can touch the ground while sitting on your saddle, it is probably too low.

John
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Old 01-17-22, 09:25 PM
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Seat should be high enough that you get adequate leg extension. It has nothing to do with how your feet interact with the ground.

And it's not just your quads that make the pedals go round, btw. Glutes, calves, and hamstrings do a lot of the work, and proper saddle height facilitates all of them.

Last edited by Rolla; 01-18-22 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 01-17-22, 09:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post

(You should ask the mods to combine your two identical threads)
Mods sorry i pushed the submit button twice. Can you fix?
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Old 01-18-22, 12:27 AM
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Generally, some bend ought to be in the leg at the lowest position. Hiking the saddle up can ruin the comfort on the bike for little to no gain. ​​​​​If you want to tinker with it, raise it a few milimetres at a time, then ride hard with a set of allen keys in your pocket. Preferably ride in the drops with your least padded shorts.

If you feel discomfort of any sort when sitting in the saddle and going fairly hard for a while, knock it down a 3-4 milimetres and you have found your highest comfortable saddle height.

My saddle height turns out to be well Inline with the Lemond formula minus a centimeter (well, modern pedals have lower stack, so it ought to be lower) but I got there experimentally.

​​​​​​
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Old 01-18-22, 12:40 AM
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When the seat is too low, I exhaust my quads very easily, but if it is too high, I find I can't transfer enough power through the pedals/crank.
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Old 01-18-22, 04:42 AM
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I've got my saddle set so that my foot can sit flat on top of a regular height curb (perfect for when stopped at traffic lights) when sitting on the saddle. This makes for a comfortable ride without any leg pain and no feeling of lack of power.
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Old 01-18-22, 06:17 AM
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One common way to get in the ballpark for saddle height is to sit on the bike, unclipped, with one pedal down and your hips level. Extend your leg to the pedal that is down and touch your heel to the pedal. Your leg should be straight. Then, try the other side. Adjust your saddle so that, with your shorter leg (if one is slightly longer than the other, which is not uncommon) you can just touch the down pedal with the heel of your shoe, again keeping your hips level.
Another estimate: your knee should be flexed by about 30 at the bottom of your pedal stroke. (That is, flexed 30 from an imaginary line straight down your leg - you don't want your lower leg to be at a 30 angle with respect to your upper leg.)
This should get you pretty close to where you need to be. Then you can tweak if necessary.
Tips: If your hips rock side to side while pedaling, your saddle is too high. If you have knee pain at the back of your knee, your saddle may be too high. If you have knee pain at the front of your knee, your saddle may be too low.
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Old 01-18-22, 06:20 AM
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Your correct saddle height is related to pedal distance, not the ground.
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Old 01-18-22, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Your correct saddle height is related to pedal distance, not the ground.
Thank you.
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Old 01-18-22, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
Seat should be high enough that you get adequate leg extension. It has nothing to do with how your feet interact with the ground.

And it's not just your quads that make the pedals go round, btw. Glutes, calves, and hamstrings do a lot of the work, and proper saddle height facilitates all of them.

(You should ask the mods to combine your two identical threads)
Originally Posted by noimagination View Post
Another estimate: your knee should be flexed by about 30 at the bottom of your pedal stroke. (That is, flexed 30 from an imaginary line straight down your leg - you don't want your lower leg to be at a 30 angle with respect to your upper leg.)
.
Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Your correct saddle height is related to pedal distance, not the ground.
This really can't be emphasized enough: the critical measure is how much your knee is bent at the bottom of the pedal stroke. Where your foot is in relation to the ground while you're on the saddle is of no consequence whatsoever. Any relationship between whether or not you can touch the ground with your foot while in the saddle and maintaining a proper knee angle while pedaling is purely coincidental, and probably won't apply from bike to bike.

Are you experiencing any actual problems with your pedaling?
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Old 01-18-22, 08:34 AM
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Setting a good saddle height is very useful, and perhaps the most important component of how a bike fits. It can change a bit for you over time depending on fitness and flexibility, so if things change, you may want to adjust again as time goes on.

The best height is a little bit below a bit too high. Sounds silly but its easier to tell when a saddle is too high. Your hips tend to rock side to side and you feel stretched and uncomfortable in the saddle.

It can be harder to tell if the saddle is too low. So to test it, try raising the saddle 1/8 or 3 mm and ride for a couple weeks. Then decide it its better or worse. If its worse, go back down. If its better, try another 1/8. At some point you will find too high. Then back down and you should have the proper height for now.

Otto
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Old 01-18-22, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by ofajen View Post
Setting a good saddle height is very useful, and perhaps the most important component of how a bike fits. It can change a bit for you over time depending on fitness and flexibility, so if things change, you may want to adjust again as time goes on.

The best height is a little bit below a bit too high. Sounds silly but its easier to tell when a saddle is too high. Your hips tend to rock side to side and you feel stretched and uncomfortable in the saddle.

It can be harder to tell if the saddle is too low. So to test it, try raising the saddle 1/8 or 3 mm and ride for a couple weeks. Then decide it its better or worse. If its worse, go back down. If its better, try another 1/8. At some point you will find too high. Then back down and you should have the proper height for now.

Otto
This ^

Saddle too high, even slightly, potentially causes far more problems than even quite a bit too low.

Most people have a "window" of saddle height that they can comfortably tolerate. Go above that window even by a few mm and you will soon start rocking your hips to compensate for leg over-extension. But on the low end you can often go 20 mm or more below your upper limit before you start getting problems with over-worked quads and excessive knee bend. So always better to go on the low side of what you find comfortable and then increase saddle height incrementally by a few mm at a time to see if you feel any benefit. As soon as you feel that you are chopping through the bottom of the pedal stroke without full control that indicates you have gone too high. Excessive downward toe-pointing reaching through the bottom of the stroke is another clue that you have gone too high. Your ankles should feel nice and loose and within their natural range of motion throughout the pedal stroke. Some people naturally point their toes downward, others have a more flat stance. But you should be aware what feels natural vs forced ankle flex.

Several very experienced fitters I know or have read about say that most keen cyclists arrive for their fit with their saddle too high. Like 80% of them! Influenced no doubt by trying to copy what they perceive to be a pro look. But even pros are known to lower their saddles during long events with cumulative leg fatigue. I read once that it's not uncommon for pros to end a grand tour with their saddle 10 mm lower than when they started. Some riders even adjust their saddle height on the fly to compensate for tired legs or injury. Saddle height is not set in stone. I tweak my own saddle height during the year depending on my condition and type of riding I'm focusing on. I have a window of about 15 mm that I routinely use. I tend to set my saddle a bit lower for endurance events than I would for a 1 hour full gas effort on fresh legs.
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Old 01-18-22, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by ofajen View Post
Setting a good saddle height is very useful, and perhaps the most important component of how a bike fits. It can change a bit for you over time depending on fitness and flexibility, so if things change, you may want to adjust again as time goes on.

The best height is a little bit below a bit too high. Sounds silly but it’s easier to tell when a saddle is too high. Your hips tend to rock side to side and you feel stretched and uncomfortable in the saddle.

It can be harder to tell if the saddle is too low. So to test it, try raising the saddle 1/8” or 3 mm and ride for a couple weeks. Then decide it it’s better or worse. If it’s worse, go back down. If it’s better, try another 1/8”. At some point you will find too high. Then back down and you should have the proper height for now.

Otto
sorry duplicate post
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Old 01-18-22, 09:28 AM
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Dropper post here. I just drop it when I come to a.stop so I can firmly plant both feet. When I take off, just pop it back up.

*
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Old 01-18-22, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by AJW2W11E View Post
...I notice their knees flex at most 30 degrees...
This is spot on. I believe the angle at full extension is supposed to be something like 30-35 degrees.
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Old 01-18-22, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
This is spot on. I believe the angle at full extension is supposed to be something like 30-35 degrees.
30 degrees is often quoted as a limit, but for most people 40 degrees or more might be more appropriate. All depends on the range of motion of your knees, which can vary a fair bit between individuals and their fitness, age etc, etc.
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Old 01-18-22, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by PeteHski View Post
30 degrees is often quoted as a limit, but for most people 40 degrees or more might be more appropriate. All depends on the range of motion of your knees, which can vary a fair bit between individuals and their fitness, age etc, etc.
That's a good point, although I think many of those people go with shorter cranks since it's the sharper angle at the TOP of their stroke that needs to be reduced. I don't think it's common for them to have to bend their knees MORE, but I could be wrong.
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Old 01-18-22, 04:23 PM
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This guy would need to lower his seat below the pedals to be tippytoed...
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Old 01-18-22, 04:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Riveting View Post
This guy would need to lower his seat below the pedals to be tippytoed...
This guy can totally shred flat, dry pavement and circus rings!

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Old 01-18-22, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by urbanknight View Post
That's a good point, although I think many of those people go with shorter cranks since it's the sharper angle at the TOP of their stroke that needs to be reduced. I don't think it's common for them to have to bend their knees MORE, but I could be wrong.
One problem with too much leg extension at the bottom of the stroke is loss of control of the hamstrings, causing the pedal stroke to go choppy - leading to various other issues and risk of injury. Here are a couple of articles on the subject

https://www.bikedynamics.co.uk/fit02.htm

https://www.stevehoggbikefitting.com...ard-can-it-be/

Shorter cranks tend to make fitting less critical at both ends of the stroke. My local fitter (very experienced pro, not an average shop salesman) is a big fan of shorter cranks for most people.
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Old 01-18-22, 06:38 PM
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Your knees can tell you when your saddle settings are wrong. Too short and you get discomfort in the front of the knee, too long and you get discomfort in the back of the knee. My toes don't quite touch the ground when I am in the saddle, when I stop I put a foot on the curb, or slide forward off the saddle and stand over the top tube. Getting out of the saddle when stopped at a traffic light or such is a good time to let the blood circulate.
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Old 01-19-22, 05:34 AM
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Originally Posted by 50PlusCycling View Post
Your knees can tell you when your saddle settings are wrong. Too short and you get discomfort in the front of the knee, too long and you get discomfort in the back of the knee. My toes don't quite touch the ground when I am in the saddle, when I stop I put a foot on the curb, or slide forward off the saddle and stand over the top tube. Getting out of the saddle when stopped at a traffic light or such is a good time to let the blood circulate.

Riding on a maladjusted saddle long enough to cause knee pain so you can figure out the correct height by trial and error is not a good idea.
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