When I first heard about the Specialized Women’s Power Comp Saddle with MIMIC Technology, I knew I had to try it. Everywhere I turned women kept raving about it!
Obviously, I wanted to see if the Specialized Power Comp Saddle with MIMIC truly delivers on its promise to make my sit bones and my lady parts comfortable.
So, you may ask, does it deliver? YES.
Yes, yes, 1000 times YES! Read on to learn more about the Specialized Power Comp Saddle with MIMIC Technology, and why I enthusiastically recommend this saddle to the Femme Cyclist Community.
Review in a Nutshell
- Saddle is designed with women’s body geometry in mind for sit bone and soft tissue comfort.
- MIMIC technology is designed to make “numbness and pain disappear with a design that mimics the body’s response to different types of pressure to create equilibrium with soft tissue.”
- Specialized created a focus group of women to test the saddle and calls it “one of the most tested in (their) history.”
- Comes in three sizes to fit different sit-bone widths (143mm, 155mm, and 168mm).
- This saddle is so popular that sometimes your preferred width/size may be out of stock.
- Though there is a variety of sizes, I somehow seem to fall solidly between the sizes, so the saddle does feel a bit wide for me.
- If you are used to a saddle with a cutout, the lack of cutout may take some getting used to.
- The price, in comparison to a saddle I tried of comparable materials from another manufacturer, is high. I think that the design of the saddle makes the additional cost worth it, however.
You Don’t Have To Suffer
Finding the right saddle can be the difference between becoming a cyclist and, well, not. Some women find that cycling is just too painful.
When I began cycling again as an adult, I had no idea my sit bones or soft tissue could hurt so much. I remembered so much about cycling as a kid! Rides around the neighborhood, racing down the hill, hopping on my bike to go to someone’s house to play.
Maybe some kids experience saddle pain, but I certainly wasn’t one of them! As an adult cyclist, however, I quickly discovered that body parts I barely knew I had down there did not enjoy the pressure I put on them.
So many people said, “Don’t worry! You get used to it!” Weeks, months, and even YEARS went by, and I did NOT get used to it.
I had padded shorts with great chamois, was riding regularly, and was just hoping that with time the pain would lessen and go away completely. That I was still just “breaking in my sit bones” or…something!
The pain did lessen, but it did NOT go away. I finally decided that I had to do something about this. My husband rode a whole lot more than I did, but he quickly acclimated to his saddle and never looked back.
So, what was wrong with me? Turns out, nothing.
It was my saddle that was completely wrong for me. It was too narrow.
I had no idea that you need to measure your sit bones to get the right width for your sit bones! The cut-out was in the wrong place.
Finally, while I never advocate for a big and cushy padded seat (since they tend to cause more problems than they solve), it felt like I was riding on a steel plate. I went to my bike shop, I got my sit bones measured, and I started my quest to find the perfect saddle.
The moment I started doing saddle research, the saddle that was mentioned by women again and again was the Specialized Women’s Power Saddle with MIMIC. If you go into just about any thread in a women’s cycling forum or Facebook group, you will usually see that someone has recommended this saddle.
And honestly? I am not surprised. Specialized put a lot of research and development into formulating a saddle specifically for women. They also did a tremendous job marketing it.
The result? A women’s specific saddle that, according to Specialized’s website, is designed to make “numbness and pain disappear with a design that mimics the body’s response to different types of pressure to create equilibrium with soft tissue.”
Intrigued? I certainly was! Of all of the cycling products out there on the market, THIS was the one that I was most interested in.
A Saddle Designed Specifically for Women!
I cannot emphasize enough how wonderful it is to have a saddle that is made for and tested by women. Our anatomy is different from men, and even can differ significantly from one woman to the next.
I think women talking about saddle pain and finding the right saddle has become more normalized than it used to be. I distinctly remember a group ride where a friend of mine yelled “MY VAGINA!” because her saddle was bothering her. The longer we stay in the saddle, the more likely it is that we will experience pain.
The subject is no longer taboo, or at least it certainly shouldn’t be! We are talking about it, and companies like Specialized are addressing it.
So what, specifically, is the problem that Specialized is attempting to address? Some women have more of an “innie” labia (skin above the vaginal opening), and others have more of an “outie”.
While doing research, Specialized found that cut-out saddles, which on paper seem to make so much sense for women with an “outie,” can actually be problematic because swelling may go through the cutout (OUCH!). By putting soft memory foam in the saddle where the cut-out otherwise might be, Specialized addressed this problem and created a saddle that supports soft tissue without added pressure.
One issue with cutouts is that sometimes the edge of the cutout can cause pain. By eliminating the cutout, and instead using recessed cushioning in this area, Specialized has worked to combat the problem.
Specialized also found that a lot of men actually liked the comfort of the MIMIC saddle too, so they started incorporating it into their unisex saddles. As you may guess, in the cycling world it is not the norm for a company to create a product for women and then adapt it for men, as opposed to the other way around.
It’s really amazing to see that the needs of female cyclists are beginning to take more of a front seat in research and development at Specialized.
Saddle Uses “MIMIC” Technology Developed by Specialized
I had no idea what MIMIC technology is, or why it’s so important, but after a little research I totally get it now! Specialized designs their saddles to mimic a body’s soft tissue.
In other words, they use all sorts of methods of testing pressure points with the saddle. The goal is to find ways to mimic human soft tissue in the saddle itself.
This way you get the structure and the support you need in all the right places. The density of the foam changes depending on where your body contacts the saddle.
The foam under the sit bones is firmer, whereas the foam in the traditional “cutout area” in the middle of the saddle where your soft tissue naturally hits is softer. The nose of the saddle is on the softer side too, since that can be another point of contact with soft tissue.
The result of this technology is a saddle that is designed to go the distance, literally.
All This Research and Development Comes At A Cost…
It’s important to mention that the Specialized Power Comp MIMIC Saddle does come with a somewhat hefty price tag. Retailing at around $130 USD, it is significantly more expensive than saddles of comparable materials.
This is likely due to the fact that there is so much research dedicated to developing this saddle. Premium research, it seems, also comes with a premium price tag.
I do truly think the price is worth it, however. I am a firm believer in investing in comfort, and therefore I am always willing to put my money wherever my body comes into contact with my bike.
Premium shoes, gloves, and saddle to me are so important as an endurance cyclist. I want to be on the bike as much as possible, and be as comfortable as possible, therefore a good saddle is a must.
The Specialized Power Comp MIMIC is Not for Everyone
Truly, no saddle is.
Some women LOVE a good cutout and do not want to give it up. Additionally, there are women who have tried the Specialized MIMIC Saddle and have passed on it, either for this reason or for some other.
We are all made differently, and there truly just isn’t a “one size fits all” saddle or even a “one saddle that comes in different sizes fits all” saddle. I read reviews from women who really wanted to like this saddle. They found themselves hoping it would be “the” saddle, and it simply wasn’t.
This may be because of shape, lack of cutout, or some other issue. Certain saddles just won’t feel great on our sit bones or our soft tissue. So far, there just hasn’t been a saddle that will fit the bill for all female riders.
Bottom-Line: A Must Try For Every Woman
I truly believe the Specialized Power MIMIC Saddle is a “must try” for any woman who is struggling with finding the right saddle. It’s technology and design is specific to the body geometry of women, and the saddle is designed for women.
I think it is especially a must-try if you are experiencing soft tissue pain or have had issues with cutouts not quite fitting properly.
The research that has gone into alleviating pain, especially soft tissue pain, is extensive. This could mean the difference between agony and a long, comfortable ride.
Though there isn’t a magical saddle that will work for every woman, this one in particular seems to work for many of us!
Additionally, I think it’s important to note that Specialized designs their bib shorts to compliment their saddles, and vice versa. I find that the combination of Specialized shorts and the Specialized Power Comp MIMIC keeps me comfy in the saddle longer than any other bib short/saddle combination I have tried.
More Help To Keep You Comfortable Down There
- 9 Best Women’s Bike Saddles & How To Choose!
- 9 Best Padded Bike Shorts (Cycling Shorts) For Women
- How to Heal (and Prevent) Saddle Sores
- 7 Best Chamois Creams for Women & How To Use It!
About The Reviewer
Stacy Ann Smith is a New England-based cyclist who strives to stay upright on her bike. She is the founder of Sascy Cycling, and her mission is to encourage women to love their body and focus on what it can do, not what it looks like. When Stacy’s not cycling she is teaching high school history and eating pizza with her husband and son. For awesome women’s cycling tips and to learn more about Stacy, visit Sascy Cycling at www.sascy.com.