Top 5 Best Mountain Bike Saddles

Our comprehensive guide showcases the best mountain bike saddles available, ensuring you find the perfect fit for your needs.

Table of Contents

Explore now and ride in ultimate comfort with the best mountain bike saddles on the market.

You left in a good mood for an outing with your mountain bike. But the more the minutes pass, the more your buttocks hurt. You try to put yourself in a dancer’s position to limit the damage, but as soon as you sit down, the discomfort is again present.

It is an observation that many people who practice mountain biking have made. With this misadventure, you started looking for a new saddle for your bike, but you are lost in front of the many existing models. Here are the top 5 best Mountain Bike Saddle models.

Top 5 Best Mountain Bike Saddles – Comparision, Guide and Review

SMP Trk Medium

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The SMP Trk Medium saddle is a model designed entirely by hand from Italy. If you are looking for quality, it will be there because the saddle results from 15 years of advanced studies in posture and aerodynamics.

SMP Trk Medium Feature Summary

• Dual-density, contoured and cut-away saddle for maximum comfort
• Square cut-out in the centre for blood flow
• Made from tough gel covered with a plush microfiber fabric

What We Think Of SMP Trk Medium

Therefore, it is a top-of-the-range saddle for intensive use that perfectly suits any morphology. Its beak shape is particularly characteristic and designed by sharp designers to obtain a flat base.

When you have to face steep descents or, on the contrary, long climbs, you have absolute control of your mountain bike and a feeling of comfort at all times.

In addition, the length of the frames and the bars allow for perfect adjustment based on each person’s position. In addition, installation is particularly simple with any upright frame.

Regarding the padding, it includes soft polyurethane and a specific gel. The covering is in SMP Vacum Tech, and the frame is in AISI 304 stainless steel.

If your last mountain bike ride ended in pain in your posterior, this would not be the case with the SMP Trk Medium saddle.

Video and Photos Demonstration of The SMP Trk Medium

credit: Beady Eye Network

Pros and Cons Of SMP Trk Medium

Pros

  • High Quality
  •  Attractive
  •  Lightweight,
  •  Good fit
  •  Comfortable

Cons

  • Limited Color Choices

SDG Bel-Air RL

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Here is another quality saddle that we have included in our ranking. And for a good reason, the SDG Bel-Air RL model is remarkably efficient when you want to practice mountain biking on the road, in XC, Downhill, or All Mountain.

SDG Bel-Air RL Feature Summary

• The Bel-Air is a classic styled, high-quality steel saddle with a durable synthetic covering.
• This 140mm wide saddle has a slightly sloping channel that runs along the length of the perineal.
• The Bel-Air comes with SDG’s comfort nose and padded rear for enhanced comfort for the rider.

What We Think Of SDG Bel-Air RL

It is a particularly functional saddle that will guarantee comfort in any circumstance, especially when the road starts to get steep. Everything has been thought out thanks to the front and rear inserts, so longevity is guaranteed.

Particularly pleasant are the CroMo rails and the microfiber cover with Kevlar reinforcement. In addition, the SDG Bel-Air RL saddle has excellent value for money, so it is a choice to consider from the start seriously.

In addition, the model weighs only 324 g, which is particularly light compared to direct competitors. It is suitable for male and female use, which explains its versatility.

Video and Photos Demonstration of The SDG Bel-Air RL

Pros and Cons of The SDG Bel-Air RL

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • Heavy

Fabric & Fabric Scoop Shallow Elite

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How about stepping up a gear with your mountain bike? Know that the Fabric Scoop saddle perfectly matches this optic. Once you have fitted it to your mountain bike, your performance will be unmatched, and you will enjoy remarkable comfort.

Fabric Scoop Feature Summary

 • With the Fabric Scoop Elite Saddle, you get a durable, long-lasting saddle that’s designed to support your comfort and performance.
• Flexible nylon shell for all day comfort and support.
• Chromoly rails optimize durability.
• Weather-proof microcover cover stands up to years of hard use.

What We Think of Fabric Scoop

The adaptation is simple and flexible enough to say goodbye to unpleasant pain. Another particularity of the saddle, it is available with three different profiles. Therefore, you must choose the profiling that best suits your riding style and consider your morphology.

The design is particularly revolutionary without compromising resistance, lightness, and the feeling of comfort.

It is a high-end saddle with carbon materials for the base as well as for the rails. Thanks to this, it is no surprise that the saddle weighs only 182 g.

The cover is made of microfiber and will be completed by a Shallow profile. Nevertheless, its use remains exclusively reserved for men, so for a women’s model, it is better to move towards another choice.

Video and Photos Demonstration of The Fabric Scoop

Pros and Cons of The Fabric Scoop

Pros

  • Excellent shape
  • Bonded upper makes it look more expensive than it is

Cons

  • Only available in black

WTB Volt

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The WTB Volt saddle is a compendium of new technologies. It is, therefore, not for nothing that it is a particularly popular model among mountain bikers. It has a medium thickness as well as a superior quality padding.

WTB Volt Feature Summary

• High density, cold-cured foam in durable, weatherproof cover
• Sweat- and moisture-resistant padding
• Gel inserts for extra comfort and support
• Custom-molded Helix padding for a more ergonomic riding position
• Weight: 310g

What We Think of WTB Volt

As you can see, the WTB Volt saddle has some particularly subtle curves. It will not disappoint you in time with intact quality. In addition, it will accompany you in the sensations of comfort and is designed for speed.

But what explains its immense success is its incredible versatility with an upward curved tail and a slight descent observable at the level of the beak to promote pedaling.

It uses Flex Tuned Shell technology. It’s a subtle alliance to make efficiency and flexibility possible—sort of between soft shell and carbon composite.

The gel and HLX padding is a real success, as is the Comfort Zone technology that equips the saddle. It’s a way to relieve pressure on sensitive areas while guaranteeing remarkable comfort over the long term.

The WTB Volt saddle will be a companion of choice, and you will have a hard time getting rid of it.

Video and Photos Demonstration of The WTB Volt

Pros and Cons of The WTB Volt

Pros

  • Classic design
  • Comfortable
  • Reasonable weight
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • None

Ergon SM Enduro

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This saddle is made for anyone looking for thrills. However, this does not mean that pleasure should come at the expense of comfort. With this in mind, the Ergon SM Enduro saddle was designed.

Ergon SM Enduro Feature Summary

• Built for Enduro – The SM Enduro was built from the input and skills of the fastest pro riders from the Enduro World Series.
• Distributes Weight – Men’s specific shape eliminates pressure on the genital area and distributes the rider’s weight on their sit bones.

What We Think of The Ergon SM Enduro

It is the brainchild of world-class professionals in the field of Enduro mountain biking.

Even when you’re at full speed, you have complete control. The saddle is intended to be short and narrow to feel remarkable freedom. You will not feel too much pressure, thanks to the presence of a relief channel.

So if you are looking for a saddle that gives you seating comfort on any trail, you now know which model to choose.

Among these technical specificities, you will admire its stealthy color and nylon composite shell with a CroMo rail. As for the cover, it is made of microfiber with orthopedic comfort foam padding.

It is the last one we wanted to present to you in our ranking because it fully deserves it for the many advantages mentioned.

Videos Demonstration of The Ergon SM Enduro

Pros and Cons of The Ergon SM Enduro

Pros

  • Moderately priced
  • Reasonably lightweight
  • Ergonomic design

Cons

  • Flat side-to-side profile may not work for everyone

FAQs

How to Choose a Mountain Bike Saddle?

If you own a mountain bike, you will find saddles made especially for you. Often, they are equipped with anti-scuff protection given the difficult conditions that must be faced in mountain biking. These saddles are sturdier at the corners.

It is also possible to choose an MTB version of the saddle. Its front end is shorter and more padded. This shape makes it possible to obtain a more forward saddle position while remaining regulatory for official competitions.

1. Compatibility

The choice of a saddle must take into account its compatibility with your bike. Many saddle models are designed with carbon fibre rails. They are oval and large.

Their shape does not always make them compatible with all bicycles, especially if they are older and the Seatpost has side clamping mechanisms. Finding instruments to adapt the saddles is possible, but this is not the ideal solution.

In addition to the hardware, the saddle profile should be examined to determine its compatibility with your bike. If the saddle profile is very low, the distance between the rails and the bottom of the shell, this low profile can make it difficult to adjust the angle. Some Seatpost may protrude beyond the clamping mechanism. Other rods may touch the bottom of the saddle.

2. Morphology

The mountain bike saddle must, of course, be adapted to your morphology. The fit of a saddle is similar to that of a shoe. The body reacts differently to the same type of saddle: your flexibility and the degree of the natural rotation of your pelvis when cycling differs from person to person.

Choose the saddle’s shape according to your practice in mountain biking and your morphology. For leisure, the body weight is usually present on the back of the saddle. Choose a model with a wide and semi-hollow or hollow shape. Thanks to this device, comfort will be present.

If, on the other hand, you practice mountain biking with a sporting perspective, then you will be more inclined towards the front. Choose a thin, flat saddle to minimize friction and not be embarrassed when changing position.

3. Comfort

Beginners generally agree that the more padded a bike saddle is, the more comfortable it is. It’s not always the case. Placement and density are more important comfort factors. All saddles have flexibility when the weight of the rider is applied. Most padding is made from a combination of closed and open-cell foam.

The more the saddle is used, the more the padding tends to dissipate in the areas subject to the greatest weight application. This situation occurs regardless of the thickness of the padding.

Modern saddles are nylonplasticcarbon fibre, or even composite materials. They are more effective in preventing body fatigue than padding.

Saddles with minimal padding and a well-designed shell may be more comfortable. Heavy padding causes the saddle to become uncomfortable after prolonged use.

Manufacturers generally provide information when purchasing the saddle to ensure its long-lasting comfort. Flexibility and position influence this degree of comfort. You must give the saddle some time to take on its final shape. It is, therefore, necessary to be patient during its first uses.

The important thing is to configure your saddle correctly. A difference in inclination of one or two degrees forward improves its comfort. You can move the saddle forwards, backwards, up, or down as you wish, depending on the position you find most comfortable.

Saddle height is also an important factor. Its total height varies greatly depending on the model. If your new saddle is higher than your previous saddle, you need to adjust the seat post. It is the same if it is shorter. The rod must then compensate. The shorts also affect the saddle height adjustment. You must find the right position to promote good leg extension and adequate power transfer.

The difference in padding from one short to another determines your position on the bike. It is always recommended to wear the same shorts when trying on different saddles. The shape and comfort differ from one short to another.

4. Hull material

The shell material can be of different kinds. Mostly, you find nylon, carbon, composite, magnesium, or plastic saddles. Your choice should be about comfort and flexibility. Opt for a flexible nylon shell with padding suitable for long outings. If you want to practice mountain biking in a sportier way, choose a rigid carbon shell.

5. Coating

Depending on the type of coating, you will not have the same comfort. Leather saddles are generally used on hybrid bikes. Other plastic materials are also covered with microfiber, synthetic, or cotton fabric. Then, the padding is done with a specific foam, an air cushion, or a gel.

Note that mountain bike models intended for the competition are made of carbon and have no coating. It is a special feature to transmit the pedalling force better.

6. Structure

The metal structure is a choice of comfort and robustness. However, the major drawback lies in the weight. It shouldn’t be a problem if you’re a recreational mountain biker. Otherwise, opt for a carbon structure because it is just as solid but much lighter.

You can also choose chromo steel or aluminium rails. These are materials that provide excellent comfort on the road. A titanium structure also has its advantages in terms of flexibility.

Finally, to gain strength and weight, go for monorail saddles.

How to Choose Your Saddle Width?

Selle SMP TRK Gel Saddle Black - Medium

The width of your saddle is one of the most important factors in your comfort and performance on the bike. A saddle that is too narrow will put too much pressure on your sit bones, leading to numbness, pain, and even injury. A too-wide saddle will rub against your inner thighs, also leading to discomfort.

There are a few things to consider when choosing the right saddle width:

  • Your sit bone width: The width of your sit bones is the most important factor in determining the right saddle width. You can measure your sit bone width on a piece of corrugated cardboard or paper with a grid pattern. Once you have your measurements, you can use them to find a saddle with the right width.
  • Your riding style: If you ride in a more upright position, you will need a wider saddle than riding in a more aggressive position.
  • Your bike frame: The width of your bike’s seat tube will also affect the saddle width you can use. Some bikes have narrower seat tubes than others.

Once you have considered all of these factors, you can start shopping for a saddle. Many different saddles are available, so it is important to try out a few different ones before you make a purchase. You should also ensure you can return the saddle if it is not the right fit.

Here are some tips for choosing the right saddle width:

  • Start with a saddle with the right width for your sit bone measurements.
  • Try out a few different saddles before you make a purchase.
  • Ensure you can return the saddle if it is not the right fit.
  • Feel free to experiment with varying saddles until you find one comfortable.

Understanding the Importance of a Quality Saddle

A mountain bike saddle plays a critical role in ensuring rider comfort and preventing discomfort, pain, and fatigue during long rides. It serves as the primary point of contact between the rider and the bike, making it crucial to choose a saddle that suits your individual needs and riding style.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Mountain Bike Saddle

1. Ergonomics and Design

The ergonomics and design of a saddle greatly impact the level of comfort and support it provides. Look for a saddle that features:

  • Shape: The shape of the saddle should match your body’s contours and provide adequate support to the sit bones (ischial tuberosities). Consider a saddle with a moderate width and a slight curvature to distribute pressure evenly.
  • Cutouts and Relief Channels: Many modern saddles incorporate cutouts or relief channels to alleviate pressure on sensitive areas, such as the perineum. These features can enhance blood flow and reduce numbness or discomfort during long rides.

2. Cushioning and Padding

The cushioning and padding of a saddle contribute significantly to the overall comfort it offers. However, it’s important to strike a balance as excessive cushioning can lead to increased pressure on sensitive areas. Consider the following:

  • Foam Density: Look for a saddle with foam padding that strikes a balance between comfort and support. Denser foam provides better support and prevents sagging, ensuring long-term durability.
  • Gel Inserts: Some saddles incorporate gel inserts within the padding to offer additional cushioning and shock absorption. These can be beneficial for riders who prefer a plush feel.

3. Riding Style and Discipline

Different riding styles and disciplines require specific saddle features to optimize performance and comfort. Consider the following factors:

  • Mountain Biking: For mountain biking, consider a saddle with durable cover material, such as synthetic leather or reinforced nylon, to withstand the demands of off-road riding. A saddle with reinforced side panels can also prevent wear and tear from abrasions.
  • Cross-Country (XC) Racing: XC riders benefit from a lightweight saddle with minimal padding to reduce weight and increase pedalling efficiency. Look for a narrow profile to allow for easy pedalling motion.
  • Downhill (DH) Riding: DH riders should consider a saddle with extra padding and reinforcement to absorb shocks and impacts during aggressive descents. A wider profile with a more pronounced curvature can provide stability and control.

4. Saddle Rails and Materials

The rails and materials used in saddle construction influence both weight and durability. Here are some considerations:

  • Rails: Saddle rails connect the saddle to the seat post. Common materials include steel, titanium, and carbon fibre. Steel provides durability at a lower cost, while titanium and carbon fibre offer lighter weight and increased shock absorption.
  • Cover Material: Choose a saddle with a high-quality cover material that strikes a balance between durability, breathability, and resistance to moisture. Synthetic leather and microfiber are popular choices.

What are The Characteristics of a Mountain Bike Saddle?

What are The Characteristics of a Mountain Bike Saddle

Having a good saddle is crucial for comfort and performance. Here are some key characteristics to consider when choosing a mountain bike saddle:

  • Width: The saddle should be wide enough to support your sit bones but not too wide to put pressure on any area. The width you need will depend on your individual anatomy and riding style.
  • Length: The saddle should be long enough to allow you to move around comfortably while riding but not too long for it gets in the way.
  • Shape: The saddle’s shape should distribute your weight evenly and prevent pressure points. Some saddles have cutouts or grooves in the centre to help with this.
  • Cushioning: The saddle should have enough cushioning to provide comfort but not so much that it affects pedalling.
  • Material: The saddle should be made of a durable material that can withstand the rigours of mountain biking. Common materials include nylon, carbon fibre, and titanium.
  • Weight: A lighter saddle is easier to pedal but may need to be more durable. A heavier saddle is more durable but may be more difficult to pedal.
  • Price: Mountain bike saddles can range from a few dollars to several hundred dollars, depending on quality, features, and brand.

Ultimately, the best way to find the right saddle is to try out a few options and choose one that is comfortable and fits your needs. A bike shop can also help you find the right saddle based on your riding style and preferences.

What Saddle for an e-Mountain Bike?

If you have purchased an electric mountain bike for leisure outings, i.e., hiking, go for a standard width with a rounded saddle. Depending on your morphology, do not hesitate to choose a model slightly wider than the average.

On the other hand, if you have acquired an electric mountain bike for sports, whether a semi-rigid mountain bike or a full-suspension mountain bike, it is recommended to choose a standard width of 135 mm and a semi-rounded saddle.

However, if you have a wider pelvis, choose a larger width; this will allow you to enjoy much better comfort.

Again, the choice of a saddle on an electric mountain bike also depends on your position. When you are upright, the weight remains better distributed at the level of the saddle. In this case, choose a slightly larger model.

However, be careful not to choose a width too large, as this could cause friction on the inside of the thighs and hinder your pedaling movement.

If, on the other hand, you tend to have chronic pain in the perineum, choose an electric mountain bike with a saddle with a hollow or hollowed-out central channel.

If you have certain ergonomic constraints at the level of the urogenital apparatus, choose a model of the saddle without a nose. As a result, you will not feel any pressure on the genitals or the perineum. It is also a popular model for cyclists making multiple stops.

A saddle with a removable beak will allow you to adjust its length, undoubtedly contributing to your comfort on the electric mountain bike.

Finally, a saddle with a central groove is still recommended for people with prostate problems.

As you can see, there are many disparities between the models, and feel free to experiment to form your own opinion.

Why is Mountain Bike Saddles Hard?

Mountain bike saddles are hard because they must be durable and provide good support. Bumps and vibrations are constantly hitting the saddle, and it needs to withstand this without breaking or becoming uncomfortable. A hard saddle is also better for pedalling, as it absorbs less energy.

However, finding a relatively easy saddle is important, as this can also be uncomfortable. There are a variety of saddles available with different levels of firmness, so it is important to try out a few different ones to find one that is comfortable for you.

Here are some tips for choosing a comfortable mountain bike saddle:

  • Start with a saddle with the right width for your sit bone measurements.
  • Try out a few different saddles before making a purchase.
  • Ensure you can return the saddle if it is not the right fit.
  • Feel free to experiment with varying saddles until you find one comfortable.

Here are some additional tips for making your mountain bike saddle more comfortable:

  • Wear padded cycling shorts or underwear.
  • Adjust the saddle height so your hips are slightly higher than your knees when the pedals are at the bottom of their stroke.
  • Rotate the saddle forward or backwards until you find a comfortable position.
  • Use a saddle cover or gel pad to add additional cushioning.
  • Take breaks often to get off the saddle and stretch your legs.

Following these tips, you can find a comfortable mountain bike saddle to help you enjoy your rides more.

Why do Mountain Bike Saddles Hurt?

Mountain bike saddles can cause discomfort and pain for a few different reasons. Here are some possible causes:

  • The saddle is too narrow, putting too much pressure on soft tissue.
  • The saddle is too soft, making it difficult to pedal.
  • The saddle is not the right shape for your body, whether your sit bones are wide or narrow.
  • The saddle must also be adjusted properly for your body in height or angle.
  • The saddle is dirty or wet, leading to chafing and discomfort.
  • You are riding too long, and even a comfortable saddle can become uncomfortable.

If you are experiencing saddle pain, there are several things you can do to address the issue:

  • Try a different saddle to find one that is more comfortable.
  • Adjust the saddle height and angle to fit your body better.
  • Use a saddle cover or gel pad to add cushioning and reduce friction.
  • Take frequent breaks every 20-30 minutes to stretch your legs and rest your bottom.
  • Wear padded cycling shorts or underwear for additional cushioning.
  • Clean the saddle regularly to prevent chafing.
  • Dry the saddle after riding to avoid discomfort from wetness.

If you have tried these tips and are still experiencing pain, it may be time to see a doctor or physical therapist to identify the cause of the pain and develop a treatment plan.

Mountain Bike Saddle Height

The correct saddle height for a mountain bike is important for both comfort and efficiency. A saddle that is too high can cause knee pain and fatigue, while a saddle that is too low can make it difficult to pedal effectively.

There are a few different ways to find the correct saddle height for a mountain bike. One common method is to use the “heel on pedal” method. To do this, sit on your bike with your heels on the pedals and your cranks in the lowest position. Your leg should be straight but not locked out. If your leg is bent, your saddle is too high. If your leg is straight and your heel is off the pedal, your saddle is too low.

Once you have found the correct saddle height using the “heel on pedal” method, you can fine-tune it by riding your bike and adjusting the height until you find a position that is comfortable and efficient.

Here are some additional tips for setting the correct saddle height for a mountain bike:

  • Wear the same shoes that you will be wearing when you ride.
  • Make sure that your bike is in good working order and that the brakes are adjusted properly.
  • Start with the saddle at a height that is slightly lower than you think it should be.
  • Ride your bike for a few minutes and adjust the height as needed.
  • The saddle should be level, not tilted forward or backwards.
  • Your knees should be slightly bent when your feet are in the 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock positions on the pedals.
  • You should be able to pedal smoothly and comfortably without feeling any pain in your knees or hips.

Conclusion

We have provided many technical details to help you choose the right saddle. We have also provided you with a ranking of the five best models. As a result, it is impossible to find yourself in an unfortunate position after your next mountain bike outing.

Your buttocks will no longer hurt, and the pleasure of hitting the road with your mountain bike will thus be intact.

Marcelline
Marcelline

Marcelline is a writer and covers several categories thanks to her multidisciplinary expertise.

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