Find the Best Bicycle for You
Bicycle riding are a great way to exercise and an eco-friendly transportation. In honor of Bike to Workday, which a week away (May 11th), here are some factors to consider when in search for a bike that is best suited for you.
Type of Bike
Do you want to go off road, go fast, commute or be sight-seeing? What you do determines the type of bike you need:
- Mountain – it’s sturdy, with knobby, off-road tires, but you can use it in the city too.
- Road – built for speed, it has narrow tires meant for riding on pavement.
- Hybrid – a combination of mountain and road bike, useful for commuting.
- Cruiser – it’s meant for leisurely rides.
The type of bike often determines handlebar style:
- Drop bar – seen on most road bikes, it allows you to crouch over so you’re more aerodynamic.
- Flat bar – common on mountain and hybrid bikes, this style makes you sit upright and gives you control.
- Riser bar – often on mountain bikes, the handlebar reaches upward so you can sit farther back to see ahead.
- Mustache bar – sometimes on hybrid bikes, the style provides options for how far you lean forward.
Gears, Suspension and Brakes
Bikes consist various gears, suspensions, and brakes. These are meant to help you navigate through your activity, depending on what you use your bike for. For instance, if you’re on riding hills, you’ll want more gears to choose from. If you’re on rocky terrain with a mountain bike, you’ll want suspension. For brakes, the choices are rim, disc, coaster (pedal backward to brake) and drum. Although, you may not have a choice, depending on the type of bike you initially chose at the start.
A durable bike for someone who rides regularly can be under $1,000. Bikes made from the best materials cost more. If you consider buying a used bike to save money, factor in the cost of a tune up.
According to lifehacker.com, figure out your frame size by multiplying your inseam by 0.65. A petite adult with a 25” inseam would need a 16” frame.
Once you decide on a bike, try it before you buy it. Make sure it’s comfortable and adjust the fit. Your knee should be slightly bent while pedaling when your leg is all the way down, and the seat shouldn’t tilt forward. A good bike will last many years, so make sure it feels right!