Can you recall the time when you succeeded in pedalling a bike without anyone holding onto the handle to keep you balanced? It feels thrilling when you get to do that. At the same time, you're discovering how cycling can be enjoyed with only a bike.
But as a beginner, choosing the right bike for you can be daunting. There are many factors to consider, like the type of riding you want, how much money you want to spend, and what kind of terrain or surface you will ride on most often.
As daunting as it seems, choosing a bike doesn't have to be a challenging task. In this article, we will walk you through the different types of bikes available at Decathlon and what to look for in a bike for beginners.
Why should you cycle?
Cycling is mainly accessible to all walks of life, including young children. All you need is a suitable bicycle and several essential accessories, and you're ready to pedal your way around. If you're conscious about your health, cycling is a great way to stay fit and healthy.
You can also have fun at the same time, riding the wind at your pace and exploring your friendly neighbourhood while saving the environment. If you're feeling competitive, a world of road and mountain bike racing is waiting for you.
How to choose the right bike?
Before you walk into your local bike shop and pick out a suitable one, know that there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to bikes for beginners. Different bikes are ideal for various purposes, and different people have different needs for their bikes.
So, your first step in choosing the right bicycle for your needs is to determine the type of riding you will be doing most often. If you’re going to use your bike to go around your neighbourhood on paved roads, then a road bike is your best option.
But, if your primary use of the bike will be on dirt trails or other unpaved surfaces, then a mountain bike might make more sense. You can also ask yourself questions like:
- Am I going to cycle with the family?
- Am I going to get into bike racing?
- Am I going to use it for mountain biking?
Once you figure out the type of riding you will often be doing, it will help narrow down the choices available, especially when you’re still a beginner. At the same time, it will help you save on unnecessary spending as you begin to discover the joys of cycling.
What key features to look for when choosing the right bike?
Not all bikes are created equally, which is why we came up with this section. Plus, there are many factors that you need to consider when choosing the right bike, such as your height and weight, as well as how often you plan on riding it.
Before you decide on a bike, here are some key features to look out for when choosing the right bike:
- Relaxed positioning
- Wide tires
- Proper fit
Riding on a stable bike is crucial for an enjoyable ride. A stable bike will provide sufficient support as you balance and corner, allowing the ride to be predictable and manoeuvrable at slow speeds. It should also have a longer wheelbase, wider handlebars, and a low stand-over height so that you can easily put your foot down to steady yourself.
Cycling around on your bike should be done as comfortably as possible. And you can do so with a beginner bike as they tend to keep the rider’s back somewhere between a 90- and 70-degree angle with the ground. This will put less strain on your back and neck.
Regardless of the type of bike you choose, consider looking for options with wider-than-typical tires. They offer more grip and traction so that you can ride safely across different types of terrain.
How to know whether the bike is a proper fit for you? Well, you can ask to test ride a bike you like if the shop assistant allows you to do so. This way you get a sense of the bike, making it easier for you to decide.
Types of Bike Available at Decathlon
At Decathlon, we offer an extensive range of bikes for all levels of cyclists, including beginners like you. The following are the several types of bikes available.
Road bikes are designed for racing on paved surfaces such as roads or tracks. They are lightweight with narrow tires and thin wheels, making it easy for you to pedal powerfully during a long journey. But, leaning forwards throughout the entire journey isn’t great for visibility. You also need to wear padded cycling shorts to ensure a comfortable journey.
Different from road bikes, mountain bikes are generally leisure and sports bikes that you can use to get around town, thanks to their suspension and multiple gears. The low handlebar makes pedalling more comfortable – great for covering longer distances. However, the sloping position isn't ideal for people with back problems.
Hybrid and City Bikes
The hybrid and city bikes are great for short trips to your neighbourhood stores. They are easy to handle, and you can even add a basket, pannier rack or baby seat to the front or back. These bikes are also relatively upright and comfortable for your back, which is perfect for use in the city.
Folding bikes are the most unique among the bikes we have mentioned. They are ideal for people who don't have much storage space or when you want to combine your cycling with public transport. You fold your bike and carry it on the train or bus without getting side-eyed by other passengers.
Get Your First Bike at Decathlon
Looking for a bike for beginners? Decathlon has an extensive range of bikes for beginners, categorised according to the type of ride you're looking to do often.