Go with your gut instincts and you'll pick the right one. You probably can't go wrong with either choice. I have a Specialized Ruby Elite and I love it. Spent way more than I intended, but have never regretted my decision.
Post a picture when you bring her home.
"It is a mistake to regard age as a downhill grade toward dissolution. The reverse is true. As one grows older, one climbs with surprising strides." George Sand ______ Janice Eastern Standard Time https://www.fitbit.com/user/2H3PX3
I'm in the midst of getting a new bike (Thank you, mom!) and think my LBS is doing a good job. They discuss their fitting process at http://www.nicolletbike.com/p/bike-fitting s.html. Next Tuesday is 'head to the store and come home with, or order, The Bike'. Today, I dreamed realistic dreams and the fitter pulled down a bike he thought looked good and had me sit on it in the trainer. He tweaked the seat height up, then up again, and up yet again after he saw me pedal. I'm one of those long-legged short-torsoed people that it sounds like women's bikes are perfect for. He evaluated my torso/arm angle to check if the seat-handlebar length was appropriate.
Now I just need to decide ... Specialized Dolce Sport Compact, or just the Dolce Compact? Decisions, decisions, decisions. (If anyone has input, I'm a fairly beginning rider, out in the middle of nowhere, MN, with lots of prairie and the occasional reasonably sized river valley to provide hills. I ride 10-20 miles a day when the weather cooperates, always on pavement. And I have no idea how to pick between the two models. I'm fairly sure I'm clueless enough that a test ride won't help me make a decision. I am upgrading from a 1980-ish Crossroads hybrid)
September Minutes: 228
Fitness Minutes: (10,066) Posts: 40 5/8/13 1:25 P
Fit also depends on the type of bike you are riding. I have three bikes and all three are set up differently because of the style and type of riding they are for. My touring bike is different than my 3 speed which is different than my mountain bike. The "straddle" test is only the basic test for frame size but not actually getting fit for the bike.
Just because you are a women doesn't mean you need a women's specific bike. I know many women that have shorter legs and longer upper bodies and they can't ride a women's specific. No one can tell you what you need without measuring you. Leg length and torso length, long femur, short/long arms? We are all different.
If you do find a bike that is not women's specific ask to try it with a women's specific saddle...or several that serve to support your position and anatomical requirements.
thanks everyone who responded! I have decided to go with bike shop that is 2 hours away. Not convenient for me but I just feel better about the fact they are willing to order a bike for me without demanding an upfront deposit. They have assured me that if I don't like the bike they order I'm not stuck with it. The local bike shop in my town has said I'm not stuck with it if they can resell it. I dont' know if that meant it was in resellable condition or if it sold off the floor. I'm hesitant to buy from them as they don't have what I want in stock and in order for them to order it for me I must pay a 30% deposit plus they're the guys who had me straddle the bike and said how tall are you? you're tall you will need a man's bike.
If they tell you to straddle a bike and say that man's bike will do.. They are not very good.
1. Bike fit. The shoe, position fore/aft, and length of femur legs will determine the seat tube length and seat height. Seat angle plays a big part too. 2. Your top tube length could be an issue. Sometimes women are long in the legs and short up top. But not always. There are women specific bikes, they may or may not fit. 3. Test the bike dynamically with a fitter watching. Get the numbers and see which makes and models would be a good fit.
You are doing your homework. You will figure it out.
There are many degrees of assessing bicycle "fit"...the most advanced require gadgets and $$$. My LBS did offer for free a sit-bone fit on some sort of paper which measured pressure points to help in selecting a saddle.
Here are some other resources...not at all an endorsement as I have done none of these, just info:
I've gone to three different shops now and they just eyeball me and tell me to straddle different bikes. I'm a 5'10" female and some guys at these bike shops tell me because I'm tall I have to have a man's bike and one guy said he could order a females bicycle and just adjust a stem to make it work. No one has ever bothered to truly measure me so I'm not sure how it is supposed to work and if fit is so important to the bike experience how exactly is that determined? Thanks so much! I just don't know enough to know what fit means. Are they just experienced enough that they can just eyeball a person to determine size? My fear is that I'm going to be stuck with a bicycle that doesn't fit and I will be stuck with it.
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