Road bike, Mountain bike, Beach Cruiser or just a Hybrid bike?
Buying the Right Bike for You
Bicycle riding is a great way to spend time with the family, see the world at your own pace and to get exercise. There are so many types of biking routes and bikes that have been adapted to maneuver those routes that the task of buying the right back for you can be confusing. You can't just see a bike that is shiny and new and say that it is for you. Pick the wrong bike and it will end up unused and taking up space in the garage or in your next yard sale. So, to get you started on your new exercise adventure here are five helpful tips for buying the right bike:
1. Determine where you will be riding your bike and how often. How often you will ride and the route that you choose determines the best type of bicycle for you. Type selection is important and depends on where you intend to ride. Are you planning to ride on mountain trails or are you looking for simply speeding along the road or pavement? Your preference will actually determine whether you are looking for a road bike, mountain bike, beach cruiser or just a hybrid bike. Ask your friends or family members about bikes or you may just do some research on the internet so that you can develop some proper knowledge to help you find a bike that works for your needs.
2. Know your height. Bikes come in different sizes to accommodate your height. A bike that is the wrong size for you can mean cramped legs, a sore back, sore knees or stretched muscles. To make sure you are buying the right size bike, straddle the bike. You want about an inch clearance above the frame. Checking the seat height is easy. While someone holds the bike frame steady, get on the bike. You want your leg about 90% extended or slightly bent. When your pedal is all the way up, you want your bent leg vertical so that your knee is over the ball of your foot. The seat can be adjusted forward or back to achieve this. To check if the bike fits your torso, your back should be at a 45- degree angle and your arms should be bent slightly. The handlebar stem can be changed out if you need it to be longer or shorter to get the right torso length.
3. Test Ride a number of options. Ask the store if you can take several different bikes for a spin. Some of the bike shops may allow trials while others may not. You could even ask a friend for their bike to "test drive" in advance. Don't let the first bike you ride be the one you purchase from the store.
4. Buy the best bike you can the first time. People have the tendency to stay on the cheap side especially during a recession, but there are some things that don't pair well with "cheap." A bike is one of those things. You will be riding this bike alone or maybe attaching a carrier for your child to ride with you. You want to know that you can depend on your bike to keep you safe while you ride. If the bike you need is out of your price range, then shop for a good quality used bike.
5. Visit a bike shop for advice. Go to the experts when you want to know something. Those who sell bikes for a living know about bikes and will most likely share their personal views. Let them size you for a bike, ask their opinion about what type of bike you need and find out all the nuances of bike riding. Make sure that you are asking your customer representative about the features of the bike that you prefer. Learn about the frame, the seat, the brakes, the speed gears and more. Every type of bike will have a different set of features and try to find the model which will suit you the best. Ask about the availability of the accessories and parts. These things must be readily available with the shop so that you can buy them whenever you need them. Bike repairing can be a difficult task because of the complexity of the type of bike in question. Make sure that the bike shop offers repair services. If you don't find a bike at that store that is the right bike for you, take the knowledge
from that visit to choose a bike from another store or shop online. There a are some great online biking stores where you can often times find bikes that are not available locally.
There is more to bike riding than just riding. That's the easy part. Choose your bike wisely to get the best for your money and your riding days will be that much more enjoyable.