Congratulations and welcome to The Club. Whether you’re a veteran rider, someone who is just starting to ride, or you’re returning to riding after many years, we think you’ll feel right at home on our saddles. Selle Anatomica is a family owned company that really does put the needs and the comfort of our riders first. If you have any questions about these instructions, your new saddle, or riding in general, please give us a call at 619.269.1120 or email us.
While following these instructions, keep in mind that due to the unique geometry of your body and your bike, you may not be able to attain all of the suggested settings in each step. If you’re unsure about any of the terminology, there is a diagram at the end of this page. Finally, these are guidelines, not rules. For the best results, we always recommend that you visit a professional fitter.
Saddle height is the distance from the center of the bottom bracket, up the seat tube, to the top of the saddle. Measure your saddle height by standing against a wall and holding the spine of a book firmly under your groin just like your saddle would be. Measure the height of the book’s spine from the floor. Take a few measurements and get a good average. Multiply this number times 0.883 to calculate your saddle height. Go on a short ride with a friend following along behind you. If your hips rock up and down as you pedal, your saddle is too high. Incrementally adjust the saddle down until the rocking goes away. Don’t go too low or you will lose efficiency and strain your knees.
To start, position the tip of the saddle nose over the bottom bracket. You can use a plumb line or level to make sure the line is perfectly vertical. Keep in mind that given the geometry of some bikes, this first measurement is not always achievable. Next, with your feet clipped to your pedals at 3 and 9 o’clock, you should be able to measure another vertical line from the bottom edge of your forward kneecap to the front pedal axle. Move your saddle forward or back in order to achieve this vertical line.
Begin with your saddle nose elevated 1/8” - 1/4” up from level. Ride your bike sitting upright, hands at your sides. If you feel yourself slipping forward, adjust the nose up accordingly. The goal is to balance your weight over your sit bones, relieving pressure on your soft tissue.
In the straight ahead position, if you feel a pressure point on one side at the back of the saddle or under one sit bone, one of your legs might be longer than the other. Also, pressure in your groin or inner thigh region on one side may indicate a short leg. If one of your legs is longer than the other, rotate the nose toward your longer leg. Adjust the saddle 1 degree at a time until the pain is gone.
New saddles are pre-tensioned at the factory. Counterclockwise rotation of the tension bolt tightens the leather and clockwise rotation loosens it. After 100-200 miles, the saddle may take on a concave shape. Re-tension the saddle slightly to achieve the original shape of the slot and a hammock feeling for your sit bones, but be careful not to over-tension the leather. Experienced riders often try to reproduce the stiffer feeling of other leather saddles by over-tensioning, which prematurely stretches the leather and puts pressure on your sit bones. In general, the leather will stretch like a new pair of shoes and then stop, usually about halfway through the tension bolt. Always tension the saddle at the beginning of, or during a ride. Never apply tension at the end of a ride.
Use a damp cloth to clean your saddle. If your saddle gets wet during a ride, remove tension and let it dry naturally at room temperature without applying any heat. In wet climates we recommend Selle Anatomica Saddle Sauce or a third party waterproofing agent but never use any solvents or silicone. That would cause the leather to lose it’s shape and stretch.
Your saddle should be dry and clean before applying Saddle Sauce. When applying using an applicator such as a towel or sponge, dampen it first with water. Use long one-directional strokes once over to prevent tacky build-up. Saddle Sauce will not alter color or finish, but will dry to a mellow gloss. Protect Saddle Sauce from freezing. Saddle Sauce should be applied every two to three months depending on the amount of rain your area receives and how often you ride.