After a recent session with Jason Nichols from Inspired Orthotic Solutions (IOS) I got an inkling into the importance and life expectancy of the humble seat.
Jason who provides orthotic work to the VIS (and has worked with some of the best cyclists that Australia has produced) considers the seat to be one of the most neglected parts of the bicycle. The humble seat is responsible for supporting your body on the bike and is one of the critical components for assisting with the development of power. Checking my trusty training bike Jason was quick to point out that my seat was bent sideways! Whats more interesting is that this is a fairly common theme with seats older than a year. They take a thrashing, supporting your weight while bouncing through a tough road race, a criterium circuit, the pot holed riddled commuting/ training ride or the descent down a hill at 10 million kms per hour.
This puts the life of a seat at around the same time as a good set of training tires! For the pros Jason says it is worst. Sitting at about two months tops for these demanding riders. So what happens? They sag and bend out of alignment.
This makes for a unstable support from which to develop all that much need power for leaping across breaks and going hard in races. Old seats can also contribute to sore knees and other bio-mechanical related injuries.
Often left on the bike for its entire life or worst, recycled from bike to bike the humble seat is something to consider checking to see if it’s still straight when you go to fit your next set of tires.
Jason can be contacted on (03) 9596 7000 or found at 226 Esplanade, Brighton, VIC Australia.