If there's one recurring complaint about conventional bicycles, it's that the saddles hurt peoples' nether regions. As a result, we've seen ergonomic seats that have no material in the middle, that are made up of independently-moving ribs, and that move around with the rider. One of the latest, the Reprieve Bicycle Saddle, combines a dipped middle with an inflatable nose.

Designed by Texas-based 3 West Design, the Reprieve features a fairly normal rear end that supports the rider's "sit bones" much like any other saddle. Its mid-section, however, drops down by three-quarters of an inch (19 mm). This is to relive pressure on the rider's perineum, by not requiring it to take as much of the rider's weight as it would otherwise.

Additionally, the rider's soft tissues are supported by an inflatable polyurethane bladder in the nose of the saddle. This allows the seat surface to deform in response to pressure applied by the perineum (and by ... other things), instead of simply pressing back against it.

The saddle itself features a genuine leather surface, titanium rails, and weighs about 210 grams (7.4 oz).

If you're interested, 3 West Design is currently raising production funds for the Reprieve on Kickstarter. A pledge of US$100 will get you one, when and if they're ready to go. The planned retail price is $185.

More information is available in the following pitch video.

View gallery - 3 images