Little Tweak, Big Difference

by bonjourbicycle

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When I first started riding my WorkCycle, Leigh, I was so giddy with excitement that I would just hop on and go. But after a few weeks of riding, I started to feel that my knees were perhaps coming up just a little too high and recalled the in-shop debate with me, the shop owner, and the mechanic on how high my seat should be. The mechanic put the seat as low as possible, partly to get it in my car (I came in from out of state to get it), but also because I’m pretty short. The shop owner, however — a petite woman herself — was not so certain. We discussed the merits of being able to have your feet on the ground while stopped versus the benefits of the additional leg extension (and thigh power) you’d get with a higher seat. Because of logistics, though, and because I wanted to get comfortable with the bike, we decided on the lower seat height.

And, initially, this was fine. Especially riding along side traffic, I liked being able to stop comfortably while at lights. But then, on my long bike path stretches, I started to become very conscious of my knees and feel like I was not pedaling as smoothly as I could be. I immediately suspected that it was because of the seat height and quickly had it adjusted.

What a difference an inch or two can make! With just a little tweak, riding Leigh feels much better now and I’m okay with just having one toe able to touch the ground while stopped. (And because of the loop frame, I’m always able to slide off my seat if I absolutely need both feet on the ground.)

What about you? Do you prefer a lower or higher seat on your bicycle?