PRODUCT TEST: ISM PM 2.0 Saddle
A Saddle That Won’t Numb or Cause Pain
We typically don’t test saddles here in EBA. There are simply too many rear ends, and every one of them is different. But, when the ISM saddles showed up on our desk, they were simply too unique-looking to pass up.
Tech Features: ISM saddles all feature a nose-less design that’s made to increase blood flow and prevent genital numbness, which any serious rider knows can come from riding an uncomfortable saddle. The PM 2.0 is ISM’s mountain bike-specific saddle with a sloped design to maximize blood flow for a healthier and more comfortable ride. The shape may be unconventional, but ISM claims this saddle allows for easy up and back movement on the saddle. The PM 2.0 tipped our scales at 377 grams, which is slightly higher than a similarly priced saddle without these features. The saddle is available with chromoly rails, sells for $190 and can be purchased directly from ISM’s website. www.ismseat.com
On the Trail: We wanted this saddle to be tested by a rider who needed this issue resolved. We kicked it over to one of our most trusted test riders, a man who’s been riding mountain bikes for over 30 years. He’s dealt with back pain and blood flow problems for many years to the point where a few weeks ago he told us he could not even sit on a chair, let alone on a bike. Amazingly, installing this saddle allowed him to take his rides from “an excruciating 30 seconds” to a full nine miles long. That’s an impressive transformation in our book. We’re not going to say that this saddle is a solution to a medical problem for everyone, nor is it going to be seen on many pro riders’ bikes, but it certainly worked for our test rider.
The ISM saddles are slightly taller than others, which means you will need to adjust your saddle height. In fact, the entire setup process is different due to the lack of a nose, which means with an ISM saddle it will require some trial and error to find the ideal setting.
Bottom line, if you need a saddle like this, you’ll be more than happy to deal with the unconventional looks. Our test rider was absolutely ecstatic to be back on his bike weeks after surgery, and it was this saddle that allowed him to do it. It’s not a product for everybody, but it’s one that will be a godsend to many.
• Blood flow and comfort claims are real
• Weight is comparable to all but the lightest saddles
• Easier to maneuver around on the trail
• Setting it up takes some know-how
• Expensive for a chromoly-railed saddle
• Unconventional looks will turn off some riders
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