Unique Essax Shark saddle launched… who needs a hole when you can have a fin

Essax Shark saddle uses shark fin shape to promote improved pedalling efficiency

by David Arthur   February 21, 2014  

Essax Shark.

Saddles, you think you’ve seen them all and then along comes the unique Essax Shark. Now, there are plenty of theories about saddle design, shape and width, but according to Jon Iriberri, a Spanish bike fitter, the unique shark fin design is said to evenly spread a cyclists weight onto the sit bones and reduce hip rotations, limb differences and inefficient pedalling techniques.

Some claims. This novel saddle design apparently eliminates such issues with the unique shark fin located at the rear of the saddle. The fin, the company claims,  helps to correctly locate the sit bones onto the right part of the saddle. Along with aligning the sit bones, it's said to prevent side-to-side rocking when pedalling and better align the knees to help distribute pressure evenly, and comfortably, through to the sit bones.

The company says its testing, hundreds of real biomechanical studies during the development, found the fin isn’t perceptible to the cyclists when pedalling. It seems to be the case that if you can you feel the fin, you’re not sitting correctly on the saddle. Think of it as a guide then, as seems to be the case, to ensure you're sat properly on the saddle. Doesn’t seem so bonkers now does it?

Essax are based in Alicante, Spain and is a company with 25-years experience in the manufacturing of polyurethane foam. They’ve applied this know how to making saddles, and produce the saddles in their own factory. They produce a range of saddles of the more conventional type too, including the Adrenaline Tech, Tudons and Eon, but they're pushing the boundaries with this new design.

The saddle is currently with the UCI technical committee who will judge if it can be allowed in UCI races and events. It's also being race by UCI Professional Continental Team Pro, Caja Rural Seguros RGA.

The saddle weighs a claimed 210g and is constructed with 3mm deep foam. The fin is 40mm wide and high, and 100mm long, the saddle itself is 140mm wide at its widest points. We’ve no word on availability or pricing yet.

We’re an open-minded bunch here at road.cc, we prefer to hold judgment on new products until we’ve actually had the chance to try them out, but we do have to admit this does challenge everything we know about how a comfortable saddle should look. But there does appear to be valid science behind the design. We'll try and get one in for test.

More at www.essax.eu

26 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

Nothing new here - I've long held the opinion that if you can feel your saddle working it's way inside you, you're probably doing something very wrong.

posted by Nick T [792 posts]
21st February 2014 - 12:52

like this
Like (25)

Kinky.

posted by deblemund [87 posts]
21st February 2014 - 12:53

like this
Like (28)

So do you use chamois cream with it or Preparation H?

493rd in GC Fantasy TdF 2014

posted by Sanderville [212 posts]
21st February 2014 - 12:58

like this
Like (20)

That old Yellow Pages advert came true after all.

Like sitting on a razor blade, indeed.

posted by Nick T [792 posts]
21st February 2014 - 12:59

like this
Like (13)

I paid fifty quid for these shorts, and twenty quids worth is up me arse!

posted by allez neg [4 posts]
21st February 2014 - 13:13

like this
Like (22)

Thinking

posted by sunDOG [13 posts]
21st February 2014 - 13:16

like this
Like (13)

Jeepers. If you're like me, you're none too elegant when hill-climbing. I can just imagine a hard out-of-the-saddle effort coming to a harsh end as you slam your arse down on the saddle.

Anyway, white - no thanks

posted by s_lim [108 posts]
21st February 2014 - 13:28

like this
Like (26)

popular as a warm up for those riding out to the heath for a meet up

'It's the closest you can get to flying'
Robin Williams response when asked why he enjoyed riding so much

posted by Simmo72 [283 posts]
21st February 2014 - 13:29

like this
Like (28)

check's date um, nope, not April 1st? Confused

posted by Al__S [520 posts]
21st February 2014 - 14:29

like this
Like (13)

Well, it's... innovative...

If you're the sort of cyclist who's honking from side to side while sat in the saddle however, you're probably the sort of cyclist who's still using the OEM one and wouldn't think to change.

Boardman CX Team '14 | Cannondale CAAD8 '12 (written off, SMIDSY) | Scott Sportster '08

Gizmo_'s picture

posted by Gizmo_ [814 posts]
21st February 2014 - 14:49

like this
Like (5)

Rolling On The Floor

posted by del_boy13 [6 posts]
21st February 2014 - 14:57

like this
Like (15)

Hmmm...a saddle that lifts and separates.

posted by MKultra [210 posts]
21st February 2014 - 15:13

like this
Like (25)

A saddle that is described to
"evenly spread a cyclist"
Rolling On The Floor

posted by sfichele [98 posts]
21st February 2014 - 16:03

like this
Like (6)

i'd only buy it if it said Essex ...

posted by Karbon Kev [670 posts]
21st February 2014 - 19:52

like this
Like (19)

Handy if you have an itch.

jayonabike's picture

posted by jayonabike [11 posts]
21st February 2014 - 20:01

like this
Like (13)

How I love the smart cracks. regards from a wet Auckland morning (still about 21C, mind).

Gerard the Kiwi

GerardR's picture

posted by GerardR [84 posts]
21st February 2014 - 20:22

like this
Like (16)

They should market this with their own bib short. Surprise
I can't see how the average chamois pad would work well with that fin. Cue the "Jaws" shark music.

Shut up legs, you don't get a vote.

ridein's picture

posted by ridein [48 posts]
22nd February 2014 - 2:48

like this
Like (5)

"So do you use chamois cream with it or Preparation H?" KY jelly I think Crying

Sam

posted by zagatosam [26 posts]
22nd February 2014 - 6:16

like this
Like (6)

looking forward to the review. i have tried a variety of saddles and settled on charge spoon as being ( relatively) comfortable and easily affordable. i tried RIDO as i was getting back pain, but this " innovation" was not helpful.

if this works i will consider it, but i am sceptical.

posted by philtregear [72 posts]
22nd February 2014 - 12:48

like this
Like (5)

Surely with the typical British arse bearing down on it the erm, technical feature will get squashed after a while.

At least you can take it back and say fins ain't what they used to be.

posted by allez neg [4 posts]
22nd February 2014 - 13:38

like this
Like (3)

Reduces hip rotation by being spectacularly uncomfortable if you move around on it? Yikes.

posted by racingcondor [109 posts]
22nd February 2014 - 14:20

like this
Like (10)

Now I knoiw why they refer to the chamois as an insert!

posted by Notsofast [38 posts]
22nd February 2014 - 22:02

like this
Like (5)

"Hello girls."

Boardman CX Team '14 | Cannondale CAAD8 '12 (written off, SMIDSY) | Scott Sportster '08

Gizmo_'s picture

posted by Gizmo_ [814 posts]
22nd February 2014 - 23:14

like this
Like (4)

Not April the first yet is it? Laughing

posted by sodit [67 posts]
23rd February 2014 - 10:03

like this
Like (4)

There must be a typo in the name of this product. It should read A$$ Axe.

blog rowerowy - my blog about bicycles (written in Polish, but feel free to visit me! Smile )

mikroos's picture

posted by mikroos [181 posts]
23rd February 2014 - 14:07

like this
Like (5)

This saddle should be sponsored by Mastercard Wink Wink Wink Wink

Pffft Gears, who needs them

JackBuxton's picture

posted by JackBuxton [38 posts]
24th February 2014 - 16:34

like this
Like (8)