• pressure mapping tests in the lab and in real-world scenarios led development of new Tenku bib shorts that match PRO's short-nose Stealth saddle

  • Shimano’s new customized bib short selector offers more advice on the best shorts to choose

The holy trinity of contact points – feet, hands and backside – have been the centre of attention of bike builders, bike fitters and bike designers for many years. Cyclists agonize over their choice of footwear and their handlebar set-up, yet their choice of bib short and chamois comfort is often under-considered.

To address the significance of this choice, Shimano has married up the design of its new Tenku bib short with the design of a PRO Stealth saddle. Tying the whole bib short range together, Shimano has also created a unique bib short selector to help riders find their perfect fit.

Tenku x Stealth

Shimano’s Tenku bibshorts are designed exactly to match the shape of the Stealth saddle from Shimano owned brand PRO thanks to laboratory measurements and exacting testing from and a pool of test riders.

Shimano product manager Giovanna Dominicus: “We started our focus on the PRO Stealth saddle, which is a short-nose saddle design for fast and hard riding. It puts different demands on a chamois which aren’t immediately apparent but start to be noticed the longer you’re in the saddle, especially over back-to-back days. By being highly specific on the exact size, shape and material of the saddle, we could create a far more optimized bib short.

“The Stealth is for more aggressive riding, it tilts the rider more forward, shifting pressure points and makes the rider more aerodynamic. Knowing this design characteristic meant we could be more precise in the construction of the padding. We reshaped the chamois and developed new super microfibre antibacterial honeycomb structured materials which are specifically made for longer rides at a higher pace. This wicks sweat better and even creates micro ventilation in the shorts where the anatomic cut in the Stealth saddle is. We could match the shape of the saddle exactly to the chamois, reducing chafing, creating a perfect fit and a superior garment in many ways.”'s Niels Boon: "At the final stage of the development of these unique bib shorts, the research done by showed that the Tenku bib shorts delivered a higher comfort level and a lower amount of overall pressure at the front part of the saddle than traditional bib shorts. This was confirmed in a representative group of experienced cyclists, in lab tests as well as during field tests under real-life conditions."

Bib short selector

It’s not only at this elite end of cycling where saddle and short choice is important. At the entry level, a low-quality bib short and wrong saddle choice can ruin a ride for a new starter. To help in this choice Shimano has created a unique bib short selector.

The bib short selector asks a few simple questions about the type of ride and the level of intensity before returning the most suitable bib short choice over three different types of riding styles:

Easy riding - Aiming for a relaxed, medium-paced ride? Bib shorts from Shimano’s entry-level selection might be the best option. Kodama bibs or Shimano bibs for male riders and Mizuki shorts or Mizuki ¾ bibs for female riders are perfect for daily cycling up to 3 hours, both on and off-road. These models all come with a chamois that offers great comfort and effective performance during the ride.

Medium level riding - For more adventurous goals, like off-road riding or faster, more-demanding rides, bibs from Shimano’s Medium level selection can be a great addition to comfort. Hikari, Nozomi and Evolve bibs for male rides or Sumire bibs for female riders are made of fast-wicking materials and are designed to support cyclists during their longest and trickiest rides.

Professional level riding - Shimano’s pro selection of bib shorts were created to support elite riders  in their most intense, fast rides. S-PHYRE Leggera, S-PHYRE Flash and Tenku bib shorts for male riders and Flash Yuri Shorts or bibs for female riders have noticeable aerodynamic advantages to keep riders cool, enhance speed and support muscles for maximize the power transfer.

Giovanna Dominicus: “Our research and experience shows how often saddle or sitting issues can affect the enjoyment of a ride, especially newer riders. We believe cyclists should consider their clothing carefully based on the type of ride they are going for because choosing the right pair of bibs is not only important for enjoyment, they can improve performance too.

“No matter which type of ride you prefer and how advanced your cycling performance is, it’s always worth choosing your shorts carefully, especially as you start to build up the mileage and spend longer in the saddle.”

Let your next ride decide and use Shimano’s bib short selector - - to make the choice easier.


PRO Stealth saddles are currently available through Shimano and PRO retailers. The Saddle Selection service can help riders understand the fitting of different saddles. Other services can be found at selected dealers across the world.