With so many types of bikes on the market for different disciplines it can be confusing to choose the right bike for you. This guide is designed to help you choose which bike is best for you in three simple questions.
Before you do any research it is probably best to get a firm figure in your mind. This will help you filter bikes to match your price range.
Leisure riding can be short trips to the shops, meeting up with your mates at the park or riding down your local canal tow path. You'll want a versatile bike that can tackle a range of situations. A hybrid is ideal as they combine the efficiency of lightweight road bike, but the stability and durability of a mountain bike.
For daily rides of less than 15 miles or so you'll want a comfortable bike that isn't too heavy and hard to pedal. Mudguard mounts are a great feature to keep you clean and dry. Powerful disc brakes are perfect for busy urban environments.
Fast-paced cycling on the roads. They are lightweight and require a bent over, low-down position to improve aerodynamics. Road riding can be races over short distances, or long distance (100+) endurance rides. These bikes are excellent for beating the morning rush to work too.
Built for speed. Lightweight, stiff and strong frames maximise pedalling efficiency and energy transfer. Ideal for commuting, fitness training and racing.
When the tarmac ends, mountain biking begins. We're talking forest tracks, smooth singletrack and trail centre loops. Mountain bikes are durable with upright stable riding positions. Forks and suspension systems add weight so some strength and agility is needed for more rugged off-roading.
This is a key factor in choosing the best bike for you. Do you have any joint or mobility problems that would hinder you riding a heavy e-bike or mountain bike? Would being bent over into an aerodynamic position for a long time cause you back problems?
A hybrid classic bike with an upright riding position will be best in terms of comfort. Road bikes and cyclocross bikes need you to be quite flexible to reach the drop handlebars. A mountain bike requires you to be quite fit and agile as these bikes are heavier because they are more durable.
Electric bikes (also known as e-bikes) are becoming more popular, with compact batteries and powerful motors to help assist your pedalling. These bikes flatten hills, quicken commutes and let you ride further for less effort. E-bikes are all about having fun.
You can buy an e-MTB to head into the wild, or an e-hybrid for speedy trips around town. You can now even get e-Road bikes.
See our full range of e-bikes at all price ranges.
Many brands offer women's specific bikes that come in smaller frame sizes and size specific components to help give you the best fit (and comfort) possible.
As the growth in women's cycling continues more bike brands are now offering bikes that have been built from the ground up for female riders. These bikes come with different riding positions to get the most out of the female anatomy. For more information read our women's specific frame guide.
You're now armed with the knowledge to begin your research. Choosing a bike doesn't have to be difficult or confusing. Simply by knowing your budget, the type of riding you'll be doing and your fitness limitations, you can select the bike that's right for you.