Setback Vs Straight Seatpost [In-depth comparison]

Finding the right offset for your Seatpost is very crucial. After all, who’d want sore muscles all over even after they’ve been accustomed to riding? 

That’s where setbacks and straight Seatpost come in. Both offer a fundamentally different position to the rider.

So, you may wonder which one is more suitable between setback vs straight seatpost?

Setback Seatpost offers multiple offsets to ensure the comforts of the rider. By measuring the setback Seatpost the offset is determined through the rider’s compatibility. The straight Seatpost on the other hand is the zero offset. It positions the rider more in a forward position.

Sounds complicated? A little more explanation might be of help. So let’s begin!

Short Comparison: Setback Vs Straight Seatpost

Before we move to long discussions, let’s gather some surface ideas. The table below gives the basic differences between both.


Setback Seatpost

Straight Seatpost


Multiple (0 to 35)

Only Zero




Saddle Position

Interchangeable but mostly backward








Expert Recommendation

Need more details? Then join us in the next section.

Detailed Comparison: Setback Vs Straight Seatpost

You’ve seen the basic differences. Now we’ll be talking about more detailed stuff on both Seatpost. 

Hopefully, by the end of this discussion, you’ll find the answers you were looking for.

Sitting Position:

When it comes to setbacks it’s mostly about the seating position of the rider. It barely has anything to do with the riding quality. 

Setback Seatpost is for the riders to have a comfortable sitting position on their bicycle. Seatposts vary depending on the offset angle.

So, if you’re wondering what the Seatpost offset is, it is the seating angles. These angles range from 0 to 35 degrees. The setback is to put your position more backward for your comfort. 

The ideal seat back angle is 25 degrees. On the other hand, a straight Seatpost means zero angles. It is also called zero setback Seatpost

The setback measurement is decided based on the rider and his/her bicycle. It’s decided by measuring the bending of knees between the ankle and hip bone.

Depending on the rider’s physic the setback is fitted and it’s changeable. The UPANBIKE Bike Seat Post has an adjustable clamp that you can set according to your comfort. This can be considered as a benefit of setback Seatpost

The straight Seatpost only moves in an up and down position. The setback Seatpost in comparison moves in a tilted way as the Seatpost is fitted.

Although the sitting comfort depends on the rider, setback Seatpost is comfortable for most. At least, you can change the sitting angles.

Winner: Setback Seatpost

Saddle Position:

Setback Seatpost is suitable for any casual ride. Straight Seatpost can be considered the same but it’s more suitable for bicycle racing. 

For mountain riding, a straight Seatpost is more common. PNW Components Cascade Dropper Post comes with not only mountain riding but several travel options. But setback Seatpost mountain bikes are also used when necessary.

What setback does is that it sets the saddle’s position more backward. The bigger the angle is the further your sitting position will be from the handlebars.

There are long setback Seatpost to make the gap between handlebar and saddle longer. There are also short setbacks to reduce the gap in between. 

Fitting one of the best seller Italian saddles with setbacks might give the best experience.

On the contrary, a straight Seatpost gives the rider a relatively forward seat. Since its position is more perpendicular than angular the saddle’s position is moved forward.

Now, which you would prefer between both totally depends on you. 

Winner: Depends on the rider

Rider’s Physic:

As we’ve mentioned before, the position of the Seatpost mainly depends on the rider’s physic. Whether you’re comfortable with a setback or straight Seatpost, you’d have to see for yourself.

So if you’re asking why use a setback Seatpost the answer is it’s more convenient.

First, you’d have to be fitted on your bicycle. See what’s the best sitting position for yourself. A wrong sitting position can cause bruising from the seat

The offset you’d require can’t be determined without doing the proper measurement. However, for tall people, we’ve seen that Seatpost is more suitable.

That is because the rider needs more space between the saddle and the handle break. If the space is narrow, it would be uncomfortable for the person to ride.

Similarly, a straight bike Seatpost is more suitable for short people. Since it has a narrow gap the rider can easily reach for the handlebar. The same gap might be narrower for tall people.

If you’ve short femur bones you’re probably more suitable to ride zero setback bikes. It’ll help you to settle on the paddle better. 

Straight Seatpost also works well if the bicycle’s top tube is longer than usual. It removes the gap between the saddle and the stem. But picking the perfectly measured top tube will be a safe option. 

But getting a suitable product can be a hassle. Here we have listed some good quality top tubes that might help you in this regard-


Product Name

Key Featur


Allen Sports Crossbar for Transport on Step-Through Style Bikes

  • Its internal spring keeps the bike secure

  • As is has plastic coated hook, it can protect the bicycle’s finish

Retrospec Bike Rack Cross-Bar Top Tube Adjustable Adapter

  • Easy to install, doesn’t require any tools or instrument

  • Universal Fit

Lastly, about the seat posts, always prefer your comfort first over other criteria. But make sure the bike is nicely set. As a whole, it all depends on the physic and understanding of bike geometry.

Winner: Depends on the rider

Final Verdict: Setback Vs Straight Seatpost

Getting a setback Seatpost or a straight Seatpost should be determined after taking the measurements. Professional or regular riders know which Seatpost gives them the best posture for riding.

But for newbies, the first thing to consider is the posture that you’re comfortable at. Most people try setbacks at first because it’s more common in today’s bicycles. 

So, if you’re wondering do I need a setback Seatpost, it’s too early to decide. Depending on your physic you can measure the right offset for yourself. So in this case, it’s safe to say that setback Seatpost is more used. 

You can buy any of these setback seat posts for your bicycle-


Product Name


Zipp Service Course B2 Seatpost

ROADNADO Carbon Bike Setback Seatpost

But that doesn’t mean straight Seatpost is a no for you. You can always give a trial and see if it fits with your posture well. These are some good straight Seatpost you can buy-


Product Name


Wald Straight BMX Bicycle Seatpost

DJC Suspension Seatpost Straight Pillar Headless Bike Seat Post

However if it’s far too forward you can always choose a setback Seatpost.

Hopefully, that answered your questions.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the saddle setback?

It is the horizontal distance between two-point. One is the front tip of the saddle. The other is the center of the bottom bracket. Saddle setback occurs when the rider is properly balanced. And doesn’t need muscular power to support his weight.

How to determine Seatpost length?

A Seatpost must be a minimum of 25mm in the lower section of the horizontal tube. It is welded with a seat tube. The total length of the Seatpost should be 90mm from top to bottom. It is the point where the seat tube is welded. 

Which Seatpost is better between carbon and alloy?

Between carbon and alloy, the alloy is a more preferable choice. Carbon Seatpost has greater dampening from vibrations and it’s also lighter in weight. Aluminum on the other hand has less dampening and is more suitable for the job.

Can Seatpost be shortened?

Yes, you can shorten your Seatpost. In that case, you’ve to cut your Seatpost short. If it’s cut from the bottom the max height line would have to be adjusted. That means a certain sized length of the tube has to be left. It is to make sure of it.

How to know if the saddle is positioned too backward?

You can determine whether your saddle is too backward from observing a few signs. First, you’d feel pain from the back of both knees. If it hurts in one knee then the saddle is positioned too high. Your feet will go numb and you may feel upper hamstring pain.

Final Words

That was all from us about setback vs straight Seatpost. Hopefully, we were able to quench your curiosity on which one is more suitable.

Don’t forget to do the setback measurement. The wrong setback can be more damaging than you can think.

Wishing you a safe ride!

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