Bike Buying Guide - Can’t decide if you want a mountain bike, hybrid or road bike? Not sure of the correct size bike for your child? Read this guide and find out exactly what you need to know when purchasing a bike.
SEE THE SIZE CHARTS
BELOW FOR EACH BIKE TYPE
Consider these factors before you purchase:
Where will you be riding
Type of surface – road or dirt, etc
Usage – leisure or fitness
Transportation or Recreation
Commuting – school or work
When you know what you’re looking for, you can find the right bike for your needs.
Mountain Bikes, as the name suggests, are designed for riding on mountains and dirt trails. Off-road riding requires the bike to be equipped with a sturdy frame, suspension, and durable wheels, and up right handle bars.
In addition, mountain bikes have low gearing to get you up those steep trails. And naturally strong brakes needed when you eventually have to descend those step trails.
Suspension can either be Front only or Full Suspension.
Front Suspension is probably all that’s needed for the casual rider or beginner, as most riders will be riding this bike on roads and pavements also.
Full Suspension is for the hardcore trail blazers. If your serious about steep hills and rocky trails then full suspension is essential.
Light frame, low handle bars and skinny wheels are characteristic of road bikes. Efficiancy is the name of the game here – you want less weight and less wind resistance.
These bikes are great for fitness and long commutes. However road bike are not very versatile, meaning that they can pretty much be ridden on hard surfaces only.
They have big cushy seats, upright handle bars so you don’t have lean down too much, and not too many gears to muck about with, nice and simple.
They have narrower wheels and less tread on the tyres than mountain bikes.
While they have up right handle bars and low gear ratios, unlike the typical road bike.
You do have to compromise for its lack of speed and also its overall sturdiness. A great multipurpose alternative.
These bikes are used for racing, however they are a great option for kids to muck about on, as they are very sturdy.
Free style bikes are designed for serious riding off ramps and half pipes, with the essential aim of doing tricks. Not suitable for kids or beginners.
Kids bikes come in a number of different sizes, measured according to the wheel size and the height of the rider. They are modeled off mountain bike styles. Basic entry-level bike come with removable training wheels.
Toddlers can use balance bikes, which don’t have pedals and are designed to be pushed by mom or dad, or they can “walk” it.
TYPES OF BIKES
- Mountain Bikes – Trail riding, mountain riding, fitness, backcountry, expedition
- Road Bikes – Road riding, racing, fitness, distance
- Cruiser Bikes – Leisure riding, casual riding, about town
- Hybrid Bikes – Commuting, fitness, casual rides, bike paths
- BMX/Freestyle Bikes – BMX course riding, kids’ riding, trick riding
- Kids Bikes – kids’ riding, learning the basics