A while back I got a used Schwinn Airdyne for my home gym.
Excited to get it, after its first few uses I found the seat to be very uncomfortable. I ride mountain bikes, so I have ample time in the saddle, so it just wasn’t a break in period where the user would get used it.
The seat that comes with the airdyne is quite large and fat, and since this is 30 year old plus exercise machine, it comes with a one size fits all saddle that just doesn’t serve a good purpose for those using the airdyne for high intensity interval training (HIIT).
I tried moving the seat up and down as well as adjusting the tilt of the seat. None of these adjustments made the seat feel any better. A constant feeling of needing to readjust and find a better position made an already uncomfortable situation on the Airdyne even more unpleasant.
I went through a series of measurements with a tape measure and plumb line to try to figure out why the seat was so uncomfortable. Riding the airdyne with the stock seat put me in a position where I felt like I was in a position where my quads were about to explode.
The measurements that I made were from the bottom bracket to the top of the seat. Also I measured from the middle of the seat with the plumb line to the bottom bracket to try to figure out where the seat position was fore and aft.
After getting these measurements in the same ballpark, I went back and tried the seat again and it was still a problem.
I went to the local bike store and found a bike seat that wasn’t as hard as the saddle on my racing bike, but I found something that was closer to the shape and size of a normal bike seat.
Once I purchased the new seat for around $30 then I needed to get the proper hardware to clamp onto the airdyne seat post. This hardware is old school and can be found on cheap bikes or kids bikes. It is sort of compression fit.
The new seat went on and it changed my personality. It not only made the Airdyne exercise more comfortable and similar to a cycling exercise, but it allowed me to push harder and transfer more power to the pedals in a more efficiency manner. The positioning on the Airdyne was now not so quad dominant and shared the workload with the various muscles.
In conclusion I feel that the airdyne stock seat should be changed for use in a CrossFit or home gym if you are serious about using it for hard interval training. It is a great piece of equipment minus the seat!