Cycling is known to be a popular sport and hobby in different parts of the world. Some prefer bike rides as a mode of transportation, for fitness, or even just for fun. Whatever your reason is to cycle, you’ll surely love riding when your new bike is perfect for you.
So, how can you choose what’s the perfect bicycle for you? Here are some tips that may prove useful in narrowing down your choice. Knowing these things will also provide a good starting point for learning what will work best for you.
- Know Where You Will Ride
Everything will be easier once you start figuring out what kind of riding you want to do. There are many kinds of bikes, and knowing what you’ll do with them narrows the field considerably. Maybe you will stay on paved surfaces or explore natural-surface paths. It will also be good if you consider how often you will ride and how far.
If you’ve decided to stay on the pavement and ride primarily for exercise, a road bike or fitness bike is a good choice for you. Now, if you’re just looking for casual rides with the family, you may look more into a comfort or cruiser bike. And if you’ll bike mostly for commuting, a city bike is the best for you.
But what if you want to bike for commuting and fitness then think later on that you might ride on both pavement and natural-surface trails? Well, there’s a versatile gravel bike fit for you. Lastly, if you’ll ride entirely off-road and more onto natural-surface paths, a sturdy mountain bike is the best choice.
- Prioritize Your Size and Fit
Each body is different, and bikes come in many sizes. Finding the one that fits you is important not only for reasons of comfort but also for safety. In this case, your height and body measurements matter in finding the right size of your bike. This is because different manufacturers apply different geometries in their bike frames.
You may first look into the “standover height” or the height of the top tube in relation to the ground. Standover height is important for two reasons. First, proper clearance while standing over the top tube ensures safer riding – in the event, you slide forward off your saddle, you will land with your feet planted on the ground, and not hit yourself on the bike. Second, if the bike frame is the right size for you, it will make riding more comfortable and efficient.
Another factor you can also consider regarding fit is the “cockpit length”, the distance between your saddle and handlebars. If the bike is too big, you will likely feel like you are stretched out, riding in an almost “superhero” position. And if the bike is too small, you may feel like you’re cramped up.
Giving importance to these things will result in your bike providing you with a balanced ride in four aspects: efficiency (power), handling, aerodynamics, and comfort. You achieve that balance when you get the bike that’s fitted just for you.
- Be Willing To Invest in Accessories and Tool Kits
Well, purchasing the bike alone can be a bit pricey and you might just forget on bike accessories. Investing time in cycling also means you have to invest in quality bike accessories. For example, a good bike helmet. It is true that some helmets can get expensive, but the amount of safety it can provide is definitely invaluable. It will protect you or might even save your life from accidents.
In addition, your vision is your most important asset when riding, so it is important that you are wearing something that could protect your eyes. Get some lenses that can shield your eyes from dirt, sun glares, and other harmful elements. To further protect other parts of your body such as the skin, arm, and leg sleeves are also recommended so that your skin will be covered against the heat of the sun during long rides.
When you’re riding at night, you’re at high risk for accidents. To avoid this, don’t have second thoughts on buying those blinkers and lights. And to help you with mechanical issues while on the road, a small hand pump, multi-tool, and a saddlebag filled with other basic needs will definitely help you.
Buying a bike isn’t exactly easy at all, it can be a challenge since there’s a lot of things you have to consider. However, there is so much beauty in cycling and all of your efforts will be paid off once you get the bike that will best suit you. Stay safe and ride happily!