From trying to lower your carbon footprint to looking for a new way to exercise all the way to getting some recreation with your family, there are many reasons why you might have decided to get yourself a bike. However, with such a wide variety out there, it can be a bit difficult to find the right one. As opting for the right option is essential to make the most of every bike ride, you need to know what aspects to look at. Keep on reading for a useful guide on picking the right bicycle.
Decide on the kind of riding you plan on doing
For starters, you want to know what you will be using the bike for. As each bike is designed for a specific style of cycling, it’s essential that you know what kind of biking you will be doing. For example, do you want to stay in the city or plan on going off-road? Do you want leisure or demanding physical activity? Do you plan on using the bike as a transportation method? Are you looking for a kids’ bike to teach your little one how to ride? By answering these questions and understanding what you expect from a bike, your decision will be made much easier as you will know exactly what type to look into.
Familiarize yourself with different types of bikes
Now, depending on their purpose, you can find various bike models out there.
For instance, you can look into road bikes if you’re looking toget some exercise. These are made for sealed roads and usually come in two categories – competition and endurance. The former models are designed with speed in mind and have harder gears and a stiff frame. The latter variety is more common as they are picked for social and fitness-based cycling.
A gravel or adventure bike is a type you should take into consideration if you’re looking for versatility as it can work on a variety of surfaces while carrying some additional gear. You can use them on paved roads but also make your way off-road and into gravel roads.
If you’re after something even more active, mountain bikes might be for you. When getting the right one, you also have to take the terrain you want to ride into account. Here, you want to pay attention to the suspensions that the bike comes with.
On the other hand, if you need a mode of transportation, you can look into urban and foldable bikes that make it easy to cover a short distance to work. Foldable ones are easy to collapse and take with you on the bus or train.
In case you and your friends or family members want to go on chill rides around town, get some fresh air, and get some physical activity, cruiser bikes are the way to go. They are made for comfort and everything from the handles to the seat will help you feel comfortable. They are not fast but that is the fun of it.
Moreover, if you want to teach your kid motor skills and balance as well as road manners, you need to look into kids’ bikes. No matter if your little one is 18 months old or 14 years old, you will be able to find a model that fits them. To ensure the bike is not too big for them, have them straddle the top bar and see if they can firmly stand on the ground with both feet.
Lastly, you can also look into various hybrid models and even electric and power-assisted models.
Determine the size you need
To be comfortable and confident on your bike, you also need to get the right size. If you purchase a bike that is incorrectly sized, your cycling adventures will be uncomfortable and potentially even unsafe. Most types are available in at least five sizes so you will not have to opt for a bike that does not meet your size requirements. The factors that determine the size you need include your height, inseam length, flexibility, and even riding experience. After you select the right size, you want to adjust the saddle and handlebar height so that it fits you properly.
Know where to buy from
Once you have a better idea of what you’re looking for, it’s time to start your search. If you want to try out the bike and get a feel for it, you can visit a local general sporting goods store and see the available models. Then, you can also look for used bikes. There are many quality bikes that are still in great shape but offered at a lower price. On the other hand, you can also look online. It’s easy to find a trustworthy bicycle shop that offers free shipping and a free 14-day return policy. That way, even if you get a bike that doesn’t suit you, you might be able to swap it for a better model. Bear in mind that some stores are also specialized so they offer only a specific type of bike, so if you have something particular in mind, you can also narrow down your search in that manner.
Establish the price range
Another important aspect you simply cannot overlook is the price of the bike. Keep in mind that the prices can be as low as a few hundreds of dollars and go up to dozens of thousands, depending on the type of bicycle. With that in mind, you want to determine your budget and look for bikes that fit into your price range.
Look into parts and accessories
In addition to the bike, you also have to look into the necessary parts and accessories. For one, you need to do some research and see how easy it is to find spare parts. While you should look for a supplier that offers a warranty, not everything might be covered so you want to ensure you can easily fix your bike should an issue arise. Then, you might also want to modify your bike a bit by adding a water bottle holder, swapping the lights for a different model, or changing the saddle or pedals. In that case, you want to see which accessories can be added to the model of the bike you choose. Lastly, although a bike helmet might not be required by law in some places, it’s best that you get one as it will keep you safe. Plus, you can also invest in accessories like gloves and padded clothing as it can only enhance your cycling experience.
With such a wide array of options, it can be a bit difficult to find the right bike. For maximum comfort and safety, keep these tips in mind when choosing a bicycle for your adventures.