Choosing the Best Beginner Bike

Choosing the Best Beginner Bike

If you are interested in getting started with cycling, you will probably wonder “what is the best beginner bike for me?” When I started shopping for my first bike in over twenty years, my goal was to find a good bike for riding around with my kids and getting a little exercise, and I wanted an affordable bicycle. Now, after getting into cycling during the past two years, and riding many bikes, I’ve come up with some tips for choosing the best beginner bike.

First, you must think about how you will most likely use the bike, and then you can consider the main bike categories below:

Mountain Bikes – are created for off-road cycling. This activity includes traversing of rocks and washouts, and steep declines, on dirt trails, logging roads, and other unpaved environments. A knobby-tired many-geared mountain bike is what you need if you know you’ll be off-road.

Cruiser Bikes – usually have a single gear or very few gears. They have big tires and big seats and allow a comfortable riding position. If you want to have a relaxed-pace riding with few challenging hills and either paved or gravel paths, a cruiser might be the way to go. A cruiser is not the best idea if you decide to try to ride at a fast clip or go on a long ride. Those big seats are not ideal for more aggressive riding and can actually lead to chafing if you ride too hard.

Comfort/Hybrid – designed for general-purpose utility and commuting on a wide variety of surfaces, including paved and unpaved roads, paths and trails. It combines features from the road bike and the mountain bike, and includes variants such as the city bike, cross bike and commuter. If you’d like a cruiser but need gears for hills, comfort bike might be good for you. For those wanting a serious workouts but whose backs can’t tolerate the seat position of a road bike, a hybrid will be good choice.

Road Bikes – are built for traveling at speed on paved roads. These are the best bikes for long distance riding or strenuous riding on pavement, but understand that you’ll be in more of a hunched over position. Quality road bikes also tend to be more expensive than the entry-level bikes in the other categories. A road bike is for you if you can see yourself riding on long rides for hours. Most road bikes are truly fine-tuned machines that are excellent for their intended use.

Commuter Bikes – are bicycles for daily work and study travel. Bicycles are used for commuting worldwide. While you can do that on any bike, there are some that are set up with fenders, racks and even built-in lighting to make commuting easier. Folding bikes, under this category, can be really handy to carry onto buses and trains.

You should set a budget in your head, but prepare yourself to pay more. I have read many reviews by people not satisfied with cheap bikes, as there really is a quality difference.