I'll preface this by saying that I've been a mountain biker for over a decade, including XC racing for a couple years. I've never had a hard time adjusting the saddle angle (tilt forward or back) on my mountain bikes.

Now, I just got my first road bike, and I can't seem to get the angle to feel right. The seatpost is an Icon Graphite series (single bolt adjustment, but has notches as you angle the seat fore and aft). Saddle is a Selle San Marco (Trek 'postal service' design).

It seems that at one seat angle, it feels fine when I have my hands on top of the bars (on brake handles), but when I'm in the drops, its not so comfortable on my "soft bits", and I find myself lifting myself slightly off the seat with my legs as I ride to keep the pressure off.

Alternatively, if I tip the seat 1 notch forward, then I feel more comfortable in the drops, but when more upright on top of the bars or on the brake handles, then my butt slides forward.

I guess this just has to do with the change in body angle from being on top of the bars to being in the drops, and wanting the seat to be at a different angle for each position. Since on my mountain bikes, you don't really change your whole body's angle that much, I've never had this problem before.

I though maybe switching to a 2-bolt style post might help because I could try to get it adjusted into a "sweet spot" basically at an angle between 2 notches on this Icon post, but the Icon post is also set back slightly, whereas a 2-bolt adjustable design puts the seat directly over the tube, so the seat would be slightly more forward then to begin with...

Any suggestions?

2 Answers 2


You should have a fair amount of fore/aft adjustment on the seat rails without changing seatposts, unless you're already at the limit. I might try sliding the seat forward a little before giving up on that seatpost.

  • Excellent point, for whatever reason, I completely forgot about sliding the seat forward a bit. The weather stinks here right now, but I threw the bike on a trainer and played with it, and sliding the seat forward did seem to help in my situation. Thanks!
    – rally25rs
    Sep 7, 2011 at 13:00

I had to experiment with a number of different saddles to find one that was comfortable. I was experiencing similar issues to what you're describing.

The solution for me was to get a saddle with the middle 'carved out'. Something like the Selle San Marco Aspide Arrowhead.

The carved out section meant that when I'm down on the drops the carved out section didn't put pressure on my sensitive bits.

Selle San Marco Aspide Arrowhead

  • Yeah, virtually all of your better seats these days have some sort of "relief" in the middle. Oddly, it was Terry who first started making seats this way. Sep 7, 2011 at 0:14
  • Another great point. Both my MTB saddles have the groove, but this road bike seat doesn't. I marked Adam's answer as 'accepted' because sliding the seat forward a bit on the rails did help in my particular case, but saddle replacement with a more comfortable one is definitely a good option too.
    – rally25rs
    Sep 7, 2011 at 13:02
  • @DanielRHicks: Who is Terry and why was it odd? Oct 19, 2012 at 15:50
  • @CareyGregory -- Odd because for several years Terry, a women's bike company, sold the best men's seats. Oct 19, 2012 at 20:22
  • Btw, Specialized Riva is a woman specific saddle, that I (male) find being the most comfortable seat on Earth. The reviews in Mtbr list the same impression by other men.
    – Vorac
    May 29, 2014 at 6:41

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