While most recreational cyclists will never compete, racing drives a significant percentage of the bicycle industry’s product development and marketing. Terms like lighter, stiffer, andfaster are all used to describe the latest and greatest products. But what about comfort? Are comfort and performance mutually exclusive? Not according to Cirrus Cycles. The company’s BodyFloat™ seatpost is designed to improve comfort and performance by isolating the rider from high-frequency vibrations.
Unlike telescoping suspension seatposts, the BodyFloat post uses a linkage system that produces a vertical motion–which, according to the company–does a better job of isolating the rider (aka, the bike’s motor) from vibration. That motion, combined with the system’s undamped coil springs, results in a quicker response, which is purportedly critical for quelling high-frequency vibrations. To accommodate different sized riders, Cirrus offers four spring rates in two sizes (1.5-inch for the top position, and 1.75-inch for the lower position). When you order a BodyFloat seatpost, you specify your weight, the type of bicycle (road, mountain, etc), and handlebar style (drop or flat). For review purposes, my sample seatposts included all four spring rates, so I was able to experiment with various combinations.
As I’m very particular about my saddle height, I was initially concerned that replicating my preferred position would be difficult due to the BodyFloat’s vertical movement. To be completely honest, however, once I found the correct spring rate combination (orange/orange), dialing in my fit was no more difficult than swapping saddles or seatposts. One or two short rides spent tweaking saddle height were all that it took to find the sweet spot. Fine-tuning the saddle height and spring tension was easy thanks to the post’s pre-load bolt. And because the Cirrus post doesn’t rely on rearward travel, I was able to directly transfer my saddle’s fore/aft position to the BodyFloat seatpost.
Hopping aboard the BodyFloat-equipped bike for the first time immediately reminded of me of my old Softride beam bike. That shouldn’t come as a surprise, as Cirrus’ founders and engineers were involved with the original Alsop Softride beam design. And as I would do with that beam bike, the first thing I did was check the tire pressure to see if it was too low. Like a big, soft tire, the BodyFloat seatpost’s smooth ride is immediately apparent. Unlike those beam bikes, though, there’s no lateral sway with the Cirrus post. And once you’ve selected the correct spring rates, there’s no bouncing or bobbing with the BodyFloat post.
When I began testing Cirrus’ seatpost, I discovered that I had a tendency to hover slightly above the saddle when traversing broken pavement or bumpy trails. My legs and upper body would stiffen, causing me to expend additional energy so that I could isolate myself from road buzz and chatter. As I logged more miles on the BodyFloat, that tendency to brace myself subsided. After a couple of weeks, I was taking full advantage of the BodyFloat’s isolation capabilities. On a whim, I swapped out the Cirrus post with my bike’s original rigid seatpost. Using the same saddle and tires, the difference in comfort was like night and day. Broken pavement and washboard trails that went unnoticed aboard the BodyFloat post now felt like rock gardens by comparison.
Does the BodyFloat work as advertised? Absolutely. It’s does an outstanding job of isolating the rider (aka, the engine/motor) from road shock and vibrations. With the BodyFloat, your entire body feels more relaxed. That relaxation translates to increased efficiency–and enjoyment–because you’re not wasting energy by tensing up to brace against bumps and cracks. After four months of use, I’m completely sold on the product, and can’t see myself going back to traditional seatposts on my un-suspended bicycles.
With a price of $249 for the alloy model ($395 and $415 for the carbon and titanium models, respectively), some folks will undoubtedly balk at the BodyFloat’s cost. While not exactly cheap, you could easily burn through that much money trying to find a more comfortable saddle (or worse, an entirely new bicycle). And speaking of saddles… I tested the Cirrus post with a dozen different saddles, and models that were so-so on rigid posts felt much more comfortable when paired with the BodyFloat.
Disclosure: Cirrus Cycles provided review samples for this article, but offered no other form of compensation in exchange for editorial coverage.
BodyFloat is the bike industry's first and only true 'Motor-Mount'.
BodyFloat attaches a variable motor (the body) and attaches it to a variable chassis (the bike), then allows for infinite customization to create the ideal marriage of comfort and performance.
Why does it work? A controllable, minimal and correct vertical travel path on a non-damped, friction-free mechanism with infinite tuning. Simple physics proves the theory...and complex engineering proves the reality.
By simply modifying both spring rate and spring tension, the rider can finitely control both their body's and their bike's inertia. That means NO BOUNCE or WASTE! Svelte Road bikes, heavy electric bikes, fixies, beach cruisers or the myriad of mountain bike rigs...BodyFloat will enhance whatever technology it resides upon and improve any motor that it resides under.
What is the first thing you build when you build a house? A foundation. Build a crap foundation and you'll have a crap house. So don't do that. BodyFloat allows the rider to build the perfect foundation and effective connection between themselves and their bike that perfectly fits his or her specific style of riding and their personal comfort & performance desires. Once a proper foundation is achieved, every performance and comfort metric will improve...and you can tune it on the fly!
Whatcha think about all that?
" I have been riding my BODYFLOAT for one year now and will never ride a road or gravel bike again without one.
The product connects me to the road in a manner that increases my confidence, especially on descents. Rather (than) bouncing at speed over bumps and divots, the BODYFLOAT keeps my rear wheel glued to the ground.
In group rides, I used to finish last on the descents. Now I finish first or second – and without fear.
The BODYFLOAT also gives me an endurance edge on long distance training rides and races. Less of my energy is used lifting my body off the saddle (for rail crossing tracks and small holes) and more of my energy is transferred through the crank to the wheels and into the ground.
I love your product! Thank you for bringing it to the marketplace. "